Gail L. (divine-ms-m) - Reviews

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Adoption Is for Always
Adoption Is for Always
Author: Linda Walvoord Girard
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.8/5 Stars.
 3
Review Date: 11/5/2006
Helpful Score: 1


Celia (who appears to be five or six years old) has always known that she was adopted, but she is just beginning to understand the significance of the word. Although her parents deal with her questions with honesty and love, Celia experiences a confused mixture of fear and anger. Was she given up because she was bad? Would her birthmother come and take her away from her adoptive parents? Her parents and teacher stress the love that her birthparents felt for her, as well as how much she is loved and wanted by her adoptive family. In addition to her birthday, Celia and her parents decide to celebrate her adoption day each year. Information a young child can understand about adoption is skillfully integrated into the text. Expressive pencil drawings within colored borders enhance the story. One of the best titles about adoption available for young children. (Kindergarten-Grade 3)


Adult Children of Fairly Functional Parents: A Nest of My Own in the Family Tree
Review Date: 5/7/2006


Join Becky and Ruthie for a hilarious look at the roots, shoots and fruits of their own family tree! This mother/daugher writing team climbs fearlessly into the family tree, then bounces around on the limbs to see what shakes loose! The result is the story of a family filled with love and laughter, yet one with its share of challenges and disappointments--and memorable characters.

Mee the Rare Bird, Becky's Dad (Ruthie's husband), who's so perfect he makes life miserable for Becky's husband, Scott. The Jaybird, little 18-month-old Rachel, who disappears one day without wearing even feathers. Uncle Genie, who insists he can blow feathers into a pillow with a vacuum cleaner. The Matriarch, great-grandma Peterson, at 94 the sage and spiritual leader of the whole flock. And all the rest in the nest!

Written with a rare and wonderful combination of wit, keen insight, and a gift for finding fun in even the smallest detail, this book overflows with the joy God brings to families who follow Him.


Alaska's Three Bears (Last Wilderness Adventure)
Alaska's Three Bears (Last Wilderness Adventure)
Author: Shelley Gill
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.4/5 Stars.
 5
Review Date: 9/9/2006
Helpful Score: 1


This is a delightful and very informative book about bears for both adults and children, although the focus is on children.

This is not the traditional Three Bears story. Alaska's Three Bears is about the three kinds of bears one might find in that great state and North America: the grizzly, the polar bear and the black bear. The opening sentence begins, "Once upon a time...", but in a box below the story line on every page is valuable information about bears in general and each of the three species of bear in particular.

The first information paragraph states: "There are three species of bear in North America. Grizzlies used to roam from Ohio to California, now the big brown bears have been driven north onto the last pieces of remote land. Black bear can still be found in forests throughout the U.S. but only in Alaska and Canada can you find all three bears; the grizzly, polar bear and black bear, living in the wilderness we call bear country." Did you know all that?

The book tells how each bear chose the place where he wanted to live. The polar bear liked the cold, snow and ice so he stayed in the far north. The grizzly liked the frolicking river with its salmon, the roots he could dig and animals he could chase. The little black bear finally chose the forest with its bug-filled stumps and places to hide. In the end, no matter how far each roamed, they could always find their way back home.

Published in 1992, this book remains a popular one for youngsters of all ages. Though far from being a youngster, I find myself taking it off the bookshelf from time to time to reread the valuable information it contains and to enjoy the magnificent illustrations by Shelley Gill.


Alfred Hitchcock's Tales to Be Read With Caution (Thorndike Large Print General)
Review Date: 7/19/2006


Fair warning. Even if you are naturally cautious, it would be remiss of me not to advise prudence as you proceed from story to story in this death-and-defiance filled anthology. If you heed this admonition, your discretion will be rewarded--with shock-absorbing revelations and dark insights. So do go chary into this good collection and you will rage against the dying of your reading light. Alfred Hitchcock thus introduces the 24 stories in this anthology, from authors such as Donald E. Westlake, Patricia Matthews, Bill Pronzini, John Lutz, Margaret Maron, Lawrence Block and others, a collection of amazing variety and tantalizing ingenuity.


All Are Naked
All Are Naked
Author: Wayne Barcomb
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 4/23/2006


Peter Quinn has a successful career, a father running for governor of Massachusetts, a waterfront home in an affluent coastal town, and a beautiful wife. His perfect life and marriage become troubled as he and his wife, Marilyn, try to cope with her partial paralysis from an automobile accident. Peter's business takes him to New York, where he meets Michelle Nicole, a beautiful exotic dancer, who is caught in a destructive relationship with a charismatic criminal named Ralph Sacco.
Peter is infatuated with Michelle until he realizes, too late, the peril of the involvement. She enlists Ralph into a scheme to share Peter's wealth. Peter and Marilyn are drawn into the dangerous world of Michelle and Ralph. Throughout the book, the wealthy and politically powerful Boston characters contrast with the underworld of New York. Dark secrets from both sides unravel as the book moves toward its conclusion of retribution and redemption.


Amazon Lily
Amazon Lily
Author: Theresa Weir
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 5/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 9/24/2006


This novel was such a change of pace from the usual romance novel and I loved it. Weir's writing was so sensual and beautiful, matching the actual climate of the Amazon, and it was one of those love-hate novels that just pulls at your heart-strings. Give this one a try and you'll be surprised at how it pulls you in.


Ancient Egyptian Oracle
Ancient Egyptian Oracle
Author: Carlton Books
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 5/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 8/5/2006


PLEASE NOTE: This listing is for the BOOK ONLY. I do not have the oracle cards to go with the book. But if you need a book to help interpret your set of the Cards of Ra-Maat (similar to Tarot Cards), then this is the book for you.


And That's My Final Offer! (His A Doonesbury book)
And That's My Final Offer! (His A Doonesbury book)
Author: G. B. Trudeau
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.5/5 Stars.
 5
Review Date: 7/14/2006


This collection of 1979-1980 "Doonesbury" cartoons is one of the most thematic collections of reprinted daily strips because most of these comics focus on two main topics. The first is how Duke came to be representing the interests of Universal Petroleum in Tehran during the Iranian hostage crisis and the exaggerated reports of his death. The second is the arrival of Joan Jr. on the doorstep of Joanie Caucus. Joan Jr. actually helps tie these two major threads together because her roomie at Georgetown turns out to be Honey, who is upset by the fact that her boyfriend has been condemned to death. Of course, once we get to Georgetown we have to visit the classroom of Dr. Henry Kissinger. This is one of the better of these collections from this period in the history of "Doonesbury".
I think these are pretty fun satires of American politics and culture during this period.


Angel Party (The Angel Academy, No 4)
Angel Party (The Angel Academy, No 4)
Author: Misty Taggart
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 10/7/2006


When Cassie Pettigrew doesn't get invited to Kim Miller's birthday party, she feels like an outcast. The mountain of junk her grandfather collects doesn't help. Or does it? Her two angels-in-training use the pile of junk to show Cassie self-acceptance and how a little imagination can lead to friendship.


Animosity
Animosity
Author: David Lindsey
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.
 12
Review Date: 10/27/2006


This is psychological suspense where the horror is subtle and comes from everyday and unexpected sources.

Ross Marteau is an American living in Paris, where he makes a decent living as a sculptor. After a particularly nasty breakup with his girlfriend of several years, he decides to return to his home in Texas and work from his studio in the art-friendly city of San Rafael. There he settles into a routine of working in the mornings on his next project and sharing conversation and a beer in the afternoons with his friend Amado Mateos. It is during one of these afternoon meetings that he notices a newcomer to the town.

Celeste Lacan is a beautiful woman who soon approaches Ross with a proposition. She would like to offer Ross a commission to sculpt her sister. Ross demurs--he already has a commission--but Celeste asks him to meet her sister before refusing, and when he does, he understands why Celeste is so insistent. Leda is not only the most beautiful woman Ross has ever seen, she is also the ugliest, and as a sculptor Ross knows that he will learn something new about beauty. As Ross begins working with Leda and meeting Celeste in the afternoons, he becomes obsessed with the two sisters. Life is about to become a living hell for Ross Marteau, and the ending of this story about art and love is breathtakingly horrifying.


Answer As a Man
Answer As a Man
Author: Taylor Caldwell
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 9
Review Date: 4/23/2006


IT WAS A SMALL PENNSYLVANIA TOWN AT THE TURN OF THE CENTURY. A WORLD OF CORRUPTION AND GREED, WHERE SECRETS WERE PUBLIC KNOWLEDGE AND LOVE WAS FOR INNOCENTS. THIS WAS THE WORLD OF JASON GARRITY. A MAN OF PASSION AND PRINCIPLE. A MAN WHO HAD PULLED HIMSELF UP FROM THE SLUMS AND NOW HAD EVERTHING HE THOUGHT HE WANTED. WHAT HE WANTED MOST WAS BEAUTIFUL PATRICIA MULLIGAN, DAUGHTER OF THE TOWN'S WEALTHIEST MAN. JASON FANTASIZED ABOUT HER, LONGED FOR HER FROM AFAR--NEVER DREAMING THAT HIS GREAT BEAUTY WOULD SOON BE HIS. FOR PATRICIA HAD FALLEN IN LOVE WITH JASON'S BEST FRIEND. AND EVEN NOW WAS BEARING HIS CHILD. BUT HE LOVED ANOTHER....THUS IT BEGAN. THIS TALE OF TANGLED PASSIONS AND THE BRUTAL COST OF WEALTH AND POWER.


The Appalachian Trail Backpacker: Trail-Proven Advice for Hikes of Any Length
Review Date: 9/16/2006
Helpful Score: 2


The AT Backpacker is a well-written, no-nonsense guide. The Logues give the low-down on hiking with an eye toward the Appalachian Trail. I found everything I needed to know about foods to eat and how to be safe drinking water. They also go through the dizzying array of gear out there, from tents and backpacks to stoves, sleeping bags, boots and clothes, all with the AT in mind. There are also chapters on winter backpacking, backpacking with children, and long distance hiking which expand on the basics.
This book gave me the confidence to get out on the trail for some shorter hikes (weekend hikes and a week-long trip). I have used the checklist for overnight hikes in the back of the book to prepare for many hikes and find it the best equipment checklist anywhere.

I recommend this book for anyone who wants to learn more before hitting the AT for a hike.


Arctic Daughter: A Wilderness Journey
Arctic Daughter: A Wilderness Journey
Author: Jean Aspen
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 7/26/2007
Helpful Score: 1


This stark, philosophical work chronicles Aspen, an artist and daughter of the author-adventurer Connie Helmericks, who, 16 years ago at the age of 22, chose to sojourn into the wilderness of Alaska, above the Arctic Circle, and live off the land. Aspen was accompanied by her first husband-to-be Phil; her harsh, relentlessly honest journal depicts two stoics who ate salted and dried horse meat, berries, and raw, rubbery moose that contained "the wriggly pearl of a maggot." The couple encountered no other humans for almost a year, and in that time the author sought the " 'essence' of experience . . . that elusive something that makes the world sparkle." Aspen believed that civilization snatches away more than it gives in return: "I'm not certain that all our toys are worth what we pay for them." Rather, she endured the brutal weather and exulted when the sun returned after a 60-day absence: "Life isn't safe, no matter how carefully you plan. . . . You may as well enjoy the ride." Aspen's journey isn't pretty reading, but her voice is memorable and her endurance marvelous.

This is the best book I have read on a sojourn in the Arctic wilderness. It makes you want to go there, do that. Aside from the poetry of the writing, the book has an unforced sense of humor. I laughed out loud many times. I recommend Arctic Daughter to all and sundry.


Asking Questions: An Inspector Ghote Mystery
Asking Questions: An Inspector Ghote Mystery
Author: H. R. F. Keating
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
 2
Review Date: 4/23/2006
Helpful Score: 1


Inspector Ghote of Bombay is directed by the Commissioner of Police to interrogate the scientists at a prestigious research center. It seems that the friend of an international film star has been relying on the effects of a dangerous drug made from snake venom, and this drug is being smuggled out of the center. With his melodious, fractured English and a dogged persistence, Ghote tackles the case and thinks he's solved it when he finds the obvious suspect, the snake handler, dead in the Reptile Room. But the Commissioner intervenes again, and Ghote must find the murderer. Asking questions is Ghote's specialty, and he battles indifference from the local police, the egotism of the head scientist, and foot-dragging on the part of his own superiors to find the guilty party. Ghote is as endearing as ever in this satisfying, entertaining mystery that conveys the rarefied atmosphere of elite scientific research and offers a host of intriguing secondary characters.


Awaken the Dawn
Awaken the Dawn
Author: Doris B. Wolfe
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
 4
Review Date: 9/10/2006


Lisa Andersen gave in to God's call to teach at a remote jungle school in South America for one year. Wasn't that good enough? Why was God asking more of her than her heart could give?

Pilot Mike Osborne was still healing from his wife's tragic death. It wasn't easy to juggle his flying job with rearing two kids. He was managing, even if he did have to rely on other missionaries a lot. But did that give them the right to play matchmaker?

Were Lisa & Mike ready to deal with their hidden fears?

Excellent! I couldn't put it down!


Ayurvedic Zone Diet
Ayurvedic Zone Diet
Author: Dennis Thompson
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 5/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 7/7/2006


Dr. Thompson presents an ancient wisdom in an easy to read fashion. His presentation of the material is both insightful, well organized and entertaining. Which is quite a feat given the subject matter he has taken on here! The book includes a concise description of the background needed to understand the premises, a set of questions which gives the reader instant insight into his/her own typology, and suggestions for how to improve the quality of their lives based on that typology. I enjoyed reading the book and look forward to applying its principles in my new quality life!


The Babe Magnet
The Babe Magnet
Author: Robin Wells
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 56
Review Date: 4/30/2006


The call from a Dallas police officer informed Holt Landen that not only had Ella Sinclair died in a car crash, but the heiress named him as the father of her child. He barely remembers the flighty woman he had a one night stand with in Aspen, but the DNA proves he is the father of a six month old child with Ella named Isabelle. Holt leaves New Orleans to pick up his daughter only to learn that his daughter suffers from Attachment Disorder. Holt is desperate for help, so when Isabelle stops crying while hearing New Orleans radio parenting advice show host Stevie Stedquest speak on the radio, he offers the childless Stevie a deal. They wed in a marriage of convenience in which she provides Isabelle with proper loving nurturing and she has that child she wants to raise. However, Stevie and Holt are opposites in every foreseeable way except that Isabelle has hooked both of them. Now can the baby play matchmaker when neither of the two adults wants the other?

THE BABE MAGNET is an intriguing contemporary romance, even with using the Stone Age gimmick of a marriage of convenience and a traumatized baby to bring the lead couple together. Though obviously opposites, Holt and Stevie are caring people, who readers will like since both try to do the right thing for Isabelle. However, the infant owns the show as she is unable to allow anyone to reach out to the darkness with love-- that is until her daddy and her new mommy shower her with affection because everybody needs hugs.


Balancing Home & Career: Skills for Successful Life Management
Balancing Home & Career: Skills for Successful Life Management
Author: Pamela J. Conrad
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.3/5 Stars.
 2
Review Date: 8/12/2006


For someone currently playing 3 roles (wife, mother, employee), this book gave ideas which saved not only time, but also considerable frustration. It was so interesting that I read it in one sitting, but so valuable that it was on my bedstand for further reference. The workbook format is an engaging approach. Highly recommend!


The Battle For History: Re-fighting World War II
The Battle For History: Re-fighting World War II
Author: John Keegan
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
 7
Review Date: 9/23/2006


A MUST FOR WWII HISTORY BUFFS!

In this slim, but magnificent, volume, John Keegan sets forth the required reading list for all interested in WWII. It should not construed as a history of WWII in itself: it is not.

Rather Keegan compares and analyzes many of the published histories of WWII and provides a critique of the work, its author and his assessment of the biases or omissions in the works he cites. At that level, "The Battle For History" is invaluable. It is as if your studies of the subject are being guided by one of the most eminent historians of the period.


Behold That Star: A Christmas Anthology
Behold That Star: A Christmas Anthology
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 5/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 11/12/2006


Looking for a fresh collection of read-aloud stories to usher in the season of joy and giving? For those grown tired of commercialism, who feel that Santa Claus and red-nosed reindeer do not project the true Christmas spirit, this book may be the answer. Containing little-known classics by old and new masters of the genre, this best-selling anthology includes stories from many lands, interspersed with songs and poems--over half the contents available in English for the first time. Brings to Christmas something other than tinsel and glitz.


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