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Review Date: 10/20/2014
Helpful Score: 3
I have just started my second 21 day sugar detox, the first time I did it without the actual book (I just used the yes/no list and made my own meal plan). I had just had a baby and needed to lose quite a few pounds. It went hand and hand with me transitioning to the Paleo lifestyle. It was difficult in the beginning, but really worth it! I lost about 25 pounds and I really did "bust the sugar cravings." It is kind of amazing how dependent we are on sugar. I didn't really consider myself that much of a sweet tooth, but I really benefited from doing this detox anyway.
Anyway, here in the middle of my second detox, I am SO glad I decided to purchase the book. There is some pretty good information about sugar and how it works in your body in general. There is also a quiz which helps you decide which level of detox is right for you. And the cool thing is, even athletes, pregnant and nursing mothers can participate (with some modifications)! This diet is truly a way of life that anyone can follow. AND the book has quite a few recipes to use, including some of the "kitchen basics" like bone broth and even ketchup!
I would highly recommend this diet to ANYONE who wants to lose a little weight, clear up their skin, and just become healthier in general
Review Date: 9/20/2014
I received a signed copy of this book for free. It seemed like a unique story so I thought I would try it.
I feel that overall, the book was very well written. I didn't particularly relate to any of the characters, but that is not essential to an entertaining story. The book was, for the most part, very engaging and interesting. It started out a little slow for me and got more interesting.
One of the main things that I liked about this book was that it was very unique. I have read a good bit of science fiction and the plot and concepts of this book really stick out. An alien transports his consciousness to an unknown time and location, which ends up being a Plantation on planet earth during the civil war. The plot somehow intertwines with Nazi Germany and a Russian scientist. I could see this book being turned into a movie!
There were some minor things that irritated me slightly.
I have never heard the word "y'all" used to address one individual person. In this book (in the Plantation scenes) it was used to address both one person or many people at once. It was confusing at first - but that was a minor thing, like I said.
There were a couple of typos that should have been fixed that bothered me. There was one chapter which attempted to explain some of the science and theories behind the organic ship which I found very difficult to understand. It almost felt like those scenes in Star Trek where the characters use a lot of fluffy, general, long scientific-sounding words to describe something. I think it could have been put into better layman's terms.
The ending was a little disappointing to me. It was almost as if the author left room for another book (or books) after this one except for the fact that the characters' lives after the book's events were detailed in the last few pages.
Overall, though, the book was well written and memorable.
Review Date: 11/4/2014
**spoiler alert** Well, Darren Shan has done it again, this book was fantastic! Things were pretty bleak for Darren at the end of the last book, he was set to be executed and he had just seen Gavner Purl killed by the traitorous Kurda. To top it all off, he had jumped into the freezing mountain river.
This book was probably the most sad/intense of all of the Cirque du Freak books I have read so far. There is some intense fighting with the vampaneze, quite a few deaths of beloved characters and some ethical and legal dilemmas. One of the hardest parts of the book is when Darren realizes that the fighting with the vampaneze is not black and white. I nearly cried when Kurda was executed. I really always liked him and could totally understand that he did what he did to save the vampires.
I am really eager to read more about this "Vampaneze Lord" (maybe it is Steve, Darren's friend from the first book - that might be why his blood was "bad")
I was SO happy when the Princes made their final ruling in the end. I kept thinking that there was absolutely NO way out for Darren, but making him a Prince was very creating thinking, albeit not totally unexpected.
As always, I'm SUPER excited to read the rest of the series!
Review Date: 11/8/2014
I was totally taken back with how much I loved this book! Starting out, this book just felt so much more sophisticated and intelligent than most of the books I have read recently. I felt like I was reading a classic.
Georgia Stekker was a starry-eyed dreamer who was full of life and plans for the future. She felt things [too] deeply and she loved too much. She got mixed up with the wrong kind of man and, after his betrayal, was never the same again. Her intensity in the years to come was turned toward an elaborate scheme to see her former lover burn.
Georgia was so easy to relate to and it was really fascinating to observe her character development throughout the story. This book seems to me to be a warning to those who want revenge. Georgia devoted her entire life toward her revenge strategy and totally lost herself. She was so successful and she had so much potential but she gave up true happiness to see Larry go down in flames.
GiftedAuthor: Book Type: Paperback1
Review Date: 1/4/2015
I received an e-book version of this story in exchange for an honest review.
This was just a good, fun story! Voima and her twin brother Vendd live in the Soltulands, where some among them (Vendd included) have special abilities that set them apart from the others. Unfortunately, the king and his sister (who also happen to have powers) have essentially made it illegal for "Gifteds" to exist. They are captured when discovered and forced to fight in duels to the death for the entertainment of the king and spectators.
Voima and her brother have had to live their lives under the radar for years to avoid Vendd being captured. But one day, a Gifted comes running into the inn in which they work, trying to get away from some of the kings soldiers. Vendd and Voima are eventually captured and the fight for both their lives begins.
I really did like this book - it was easy and enjoyable to read. The characters were interesting and there were some twists in this story! Some of the twists were a little predictable, but it was a fun story that would make a great movie!
Review Date: 10/2/2014
Overall, I really did enjoy this book. Lately, I have been really interested in Circus culture for some reason. I got this from the Amazon Kindle First section because the idea sounded interesting, especially compared the other three books that were offered. I read this after finishing Cirque du Freak 3 and after buying Geek Love.
The book was kind of slow in some places, but when I did put it down I thought about it throughout the day (this is always a positive sign for a book). I didn't really find the Romeo and Juliet(a) portion cheesy, in fact, the romance parts of this book were some of the best parts.
This book didn't really feel much like a mystery or thriller to me, there was not enough action or intrigue for that. I did find myself wanting to know who the big bad was as I neared the end and I will admit I was slightly surprised by the ending.
The death of Julieta's brother/cousin is one of the main reasons I rated this book three and a half stars rather than three stars. Its not that it was all that emotional for me, but it added a kind of genuineness to the book that otherwise was sort of lacking. The whole issue of magic was kind of weak in my opinion, but the fact that people really got hurt and Sam died made it more real. I kept thinking throughout that the characters were just really superstitious and were making their own luck or bad luck. The mind is a powerful thing.
As some of the others have stated in other reviews, I think one of the main things missing from this book was the overall circus "feel." The parts about Julieta's mothers act, the trapeze artists (which I REALLY enjoyed - I just loved the Garcia characters, especially Remy and Dita), and Kat the dog trainer were just about all the other acts we got to see. I did enjoy the fact that this book explored a little more of the business side of the circus in some of the parts where Julieta and her father talk to Thurston.
But really, the book was good! The dialogue was interesting and the characters were very relatable.
Review Date: 2/2/2015
These books are just so creative and entertaining! This book was so fun and easy to read, you really get immersed in the world!
Harry Potter is back at Hogwarts for his second year. After arriving at the school in a flying car and almost getting expelled for performing magic outside of school he begins the school year. There is a new Professor for the Defense of the Dark Arts class and a new Slytherin Seeker (Hint: It is someone Harry and the rest are NOT fond of at all). Not long after he arrives, a message is painted on a wall: "The Chamber of Secrets Has Been Opened..." Harry, Ron and Hermione go through a variety of antics to figure out what the Chamber of Secrets IS and why this message has the professors and students so scared. I really enjoyed the parts of this book that were not in the movie, such as Nearly Headless Nick's "Deathday Party" and several parts involving Percy Weasley.
I am so very glad I finally decided to pick up this book series (I feel like I'm the only one in the world who has not read it yet!)
Review Date: 2/2/2015
I just finished reading this book for the first time ever and I am really very impressed and totally taken with the Potter universe!
I actually watched all eight movies before starting the books and I am glad I decided to do this.
The first thing that struck me about this series was how creative it is. The world that J.K. Rowling has created is so incredibly imaginative and fun. It really draws you in.
Harry Potter, who is around eleven years old, is living with relatives who really don't like him or want him around. His parents died when he was a baby and he does not know anything about them other than that they supposedly died in a car crash. His life changes when he gets a letter from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. He has been accepted into this school even though he has no idea that he possesses any kind of special powers. Other than a few "coincidental" odd things happening to his adopted family, he has not shown much of magical ability. Off he goes to Hogwarts, where he encounters an entire world which he did not know existed. At first he is afraid he will be behind all the other students, but when he begins classes and training he finds his place and begins to show many talents.
This book is not as "dark" as some of the later books, which is nice. The characters are so lovable and the book is a very quick and easy read.
Fantastic story! I will likely not be able to help measuring future fantasy/sci-fi books that I read up against this because it is just so incredible!
Review Date: 10/30/2014
Another solid Cirque du Freak book!
In this book, Darren, Harkat, and Larten have set off in pursuit of the Vampaneze Lord.
There is not anything extremely major that happened in this book, but there was a LOT of interesting history explained and important people met.
Mr. Tiny had told the assembly at Vampire Mountain in the end of the last book that only three hunters could go after the Vampaneze Lord, Mr. Crepsley, Darren, and one other un-named hunter. He directed them to go see the lady Evanna. On the way, they met the fifth Vampire Prince, which until now, had not made an appearance in any of the books. He was the third hunter. The trio + Harkat the little person went to see Evanna and then made their way back to the Cirque du Freak. In this book was their first encounter with the Vampaneze Lord!
This book was not as full of action as some of the others have been. Instead, the main focus of this book, I believe, was destiny and fate. I really enjoyed learning about Vancha March and Evanna. It seems there is always something new to learn about the vampire society and the vampaneze. And I am also beginning to become VERY curious as to who Harkat is/was.
I'm a little irked that we still have not SEEN the Vampaneze Lord. I am getting so nervous as to if and when they will confront and defeat him and who he even is!
As always, I love the series even more than before and can't wait to read the next book :-)
Review Date: 12/31/2015
I wanted to read this book because I have heard so many people talk about how much they liked it. Three stars is a very low rating for me - I generally give books the benefit of the doubt and try to emphasize their positive qualities.
This book just did not resonate with me. First of all, it isn't that original. It seems like the idea of a person walking around outside their body "deciding" whether or not to pass on has been done so many times before. The dialogue was, in places, very unrealistic and irritating. In the first few scenes/flashbacks, the interactions between her and her parents almost made me put the book down - no one is that witty/sarcastic. I kept imagining her dad as Ron Burgandy. Her dad was a character that I actually liked despite all of that but her mother, on the other hand, I could not stand. I was getting really fed up with all the feminist, pro-abortion, Planned Parenthood, and atheism references. It was very difficult for me to relate to her family at all (which I think was a necessary part of evoking emotions during this story). At NO point did I feel sad for her or her family. Her relationship with her boyfriend was very strange.
Overall, a book that just flat out missed the mark. It was a quick read but not worth it in my opinion.
Review Date: 10/12/2014
I really LOVED this book! I have always enjoyed books and movies about switching bodies (Freaky Friday, It's A Boy Girl Thing, etc.) - this book is kind of similar. Except instead of a switch, it is two minds in one body.
Avery wakes up from an accident with the voice of a guy in her head - he does not know really anything about himself other than his name. Over time, Ave and Marcus talk and get to know one another. Life becomes so awkward for her.
The interactions between Ave and Marcus are just great. The thing about having someone in your head is that you can't really hide anything from them. Things with them are genuine and real.
I also appreciated all the pop culture references (it is actually rare that I get to read a book that has just been released that year).
This story was just FANTASTIC! It will be one I remember and talk about for a long time.
Review Date: 1/31/2015
I really enjoyed this book a lot. I entered into a giveaway for it (I received a free copy of the book through Goodreads First Reads) because I was asking the obvious question, "Who would give up a private practice to go work with criminals, and WHY?" This particular question was answered in the first few chapters, Dr. Wright was basically bored/burned out with what he was doing before he decided to go treat maximum security prisoners. I guess it seemed like a fun adventure.
The first few chapters were a little slow. His description of the prison was a little hard to follow. It was very detailed, but because of my total lack of history in a prison system, I still don't really know what the prison looked like or the layout other than that Dr. Wright's office was in a basement so he had no windows.
I actually laughed many times while reading this book - which is very rare for me. I really enjoyed Dr. Wright's dry and sarcastic sense of humor and I kept wondering if some of these interactions with the inmates really happened. Sometimes it seemed like he was talking down to his patients but I am quite sure that all the things he had to put up with (lying, manipulation, and the like) from patients who just wanted drugs to take recreationally (or sell) or who wanted an "escape" from the monotony of a maximum security prison would quickly drive someone to deal with the prisoners in this way.
I learned a lot about criminals in general. I have never taken a criminology class and other than Orange is the New Black, I don't really know anything about the prison system at all. One of the things he mentioned that I thought was interesting was that the inmates were all generally very friendly UNTIL you said "no" to them or denied a request. Then they showed their true colors. He said that a "frightening percentage" of these inmates were "charismatic" even.
A good deal of this book was a complaint against bureaucracy in general. This didn't really bother me. In fact, because of his little sarcastic comments throughout his explanations of his dealings with red tape, ridiculous rules, and clueless administration it was enjoyable.
Overall, a really informative and humorous book!
Review Date: 11/4/2014
I have seen most of the episodes of Pretty Little Liars on ABC family (which I LOVED) and so I thought I would pick up the series. I actually got this as a free E-book on Kindle.
I did really like this book - it is actually very similar to the TV series, with one pretty big exception, the language. I would not recommend this book for anyone under 18. There is a LOT of language, teen drinking, innuendo, and some really adult situations in general. What's funny is that the show is really the same as far as the situations go (except that the girls don't smoke cigarettes in the show and there is not quite as much drinking). The relationships and major events of the story are the same. I think as I watched the show I started rooting for the girls and came to understand why they did the things they did, but, really, they do some pretty bad things!
In the first of many books in this series, the girls are all back in Rosewood three years after their "friend" Allison went missing. They are all dealing with some pretty big stuff and have changed a lot. Hanna is having run-ins with the law, Aria has found herself and hooked up with someone at a bar who turned out to be her new English teacher, Spencer is trying to live up to her sister's accomplishments and is kind of going after her sister's boyfriend, and Emily is fighting her parents expectations and is becoming more comfortable with her sexuality.
They are teenagers, so their choices aren't always the best. But making their lives more complicated is this unknown person "A" who keeps sending them text messages and emails teasing them and indicating that he/she will expose the girls' dirtiest secrets. The only problem is, no one knew those secrets except Alison! Who is sending the text messages??
The TV series is extremely intriguing and compelling. This book was definitely both of those things and I am really looking forward to reading the rest of the series.
Review Date: 2/13/2015
Helpful Score: 1
I entered a giveaway for this because I love the BBC show, "Call the Midwife." Well, this book was not totally what I expected but I actually really liked it. It is about three generations of midwives who are all dealing with their various issues. I do feel that the midwifery in the book was well researched and I really enjoyed the sections about babies being born.
The book is written from three women's perspectives, the chapters rotate: Neva, Grace, Floss, Neva, Grace, Floss... and so on. I wasn't sure that I would like the alternating but as the book went on I did enjoy it a little more. The "secrets" of the women (Neva and Floss in particular) I found to be reasonably compelling. I enjoyed Floss's secret the most, both because I figured it out not even halfway through the book and also because I found it really interesting.
In some ways, this book is like a Lifetime movie. It was a good, fairly quick read that I really did enjoy it.
Review Date: 11/4/2014
Wow. I am loving this series and so I was excited to start this book. It started out in a very mild (almost slow) way; five trials, none of which would be particularly easy for Darren even though the ones which would be impossible for him were taken out of the running. The first bit of this book was a little slow for me actually. I kept thinking, "Well, there is only two ways that this could turn out, either he succeeds or he dies." Boy, was I wrong!
Leave it to this amazing author to completely change the game! I expected there to be complications of some sort during the trials. When Harkat saved Darren in the fourth one, I knew it was a big deal but was hoping that the princes would make an exception. The funny thing is, they never actually announced an actual decision. They all just kind of knew Darren was doomed. When he made the decision to run away, at first I was SO disappointed in him. I actually put the book down for a couple of hours and I am glad I did. It gave me a bit of perspective. Darren was a CHILD! I had gotten so caught up with the vampire culture that I was like "rah, rah, die for honor's sake...etc." But that is actually ridiculous! I really do respect their customs but SERIOUSLY? Also, no one seemed to mention the fact that he is only a HALF vampire, so I don't really understand why there were no special rules for him. They really expected him to compete like a full vampire! They seemed to only want to act on precedent and they never made room for new situations! I found myself really understanding where Kurda Smahlt was coming from. And HIS "betrayal" at the end was shocking, I tell you!
The end of this book was probably one of the most thrilling episodes thus far. I continue to be amazed at the twists and turns of this story. I am really excited to read the next seven books.
Review Date: 10/20/2014
I entered a giveaway for this book based on the reviews it had, and I am glad I did!
It is a pretty creative story about a girl who moves to Cape Cod after receiving a phone call that someone has given her a house. There, she discovers the truth about who she and her ancestors truly are and it is both frightening and exciting to her. There is a love story, of course, and some pretty major twists and turns.
There were a few moments where I was at the edge of my seat and completely engaged in the story. There were some shocking moments as well! The lore and paranormal aspects of this book were pretty interesting; it was actually pretty refreshing to read a book of this genre that did not include vampires, werewolves, or zombies (though I do love those).
I think I will have to pick up the next book
Review Date: 9/20/2014
I am big fan of the TV series on CW and I thought that I would try the books out. I was pleasantly surprised!
Elena is the queen bee of her school and she falls for the mysterious Stephan, who is a vampire. It turns out that she looks just like a woman, Katherine, from his past whom he and his brother, Damon, were in love with. Elena is attracted to both brothers but chooses Stephan because he is the more "wholesome" brother. But she is strangely drawn by Damon's darkness.
The books are a bit different from the show, most of the characters are the same but there are a lot of differences in hair and eye color, roles in the story, etc. There are some additional characters and some are missing. This really isn't that bothersome though, I visualize the characters as they are on the show with no problems.
The writing is fairly good, the story is interesting and I was able to read the books fairly quickly. I am definitely looking forward to the next couple books: The Fury and Dark Reunion.
Overall, the TV series is much more complex and compelling, but these books are pleasant and entertaining to read!
Review Date: 10/3/2014
I picked up this series as a recommendation from a friend not knowing what to expect. I LOVED the first three and this one did not disappoint.
Part of what I like about these books is that they are easy to read in a short amount of time. They are extremely engaging and interesting. The characters are all very fascinating and I am completely hooked on this series.
In this book, Darren and Mr. Crepsley travel to Vampire mountain to participate in the meeting of the Vampire Council, which happens only once every 12 years. I really enjoyed learning more about the structure of vampire society and some of their customs. There was not as much blood and gore in this book as there has been, but that's not a problem at all. The story is still really interesting.
Of course, you are left with a cliffhanger at the end.
I'm so excited to read the rest of the series!
Review Date: 12/6/2016
I got this book for free on my kindle and I am SO glad that I opened it up to read! (I rarely read books on my kindle because I prefer physical books).
Dahlia has been in what is *basically* an insane asylum for the last 14 years. In this postapocalyptic (currently apocalyptic?) world, she is known as a Plaguer... one of the only people on earth to have survived the Bloody Death. She is also the only one aware of the somewhat mysterious enemy, the Black Walkers. They torture her to find out what she knows about them but she is very strong willed and won't give them anything. One day she is broken out of her concrete prison and meets people who are wild and free...
This book was really interesting and unique to me in a lot of ways. First, every chapter didn't end in a cliffhanger which I REALLY appreciated. I couldn't put it down regardless but I was SO glad that it wasn't pretentious like some books. The writing was so fantastic! I was able to really paint a picture of what was happening and I LOVED Dal's character! Some of the books that I have read lately have had just BORING protagonists. Dahlia was so interesting and spunky...
The actual storyline didn't really progress far but I was still enthralled. I liked getting to know Dahlia better and am so eager to read the next three books in the series! It's a really unique post apocalyptic story and I am so thrilled to have read it!
Review Date: 9/20/2014
This book has everything, a coming of age story, love, loss, a tear-jerking horse story, politics, zombies, revenge, betrayal, and a lot more.
I picked this up because I play World of Warcraft and I am really loving learning more about the lore surrounding the universe of the game. This book did NOT disappoint; it is truly fascinating and informative and has left me hungry for more.
I rated this five stars because I know this book will be very memorable as I play the game; it is nice to have a back story for some of the characters I have met in the game.
I enjoyed the first half of the book the most because it was very emotional and engaging. Arthas was fairly easy to relate to and it was so interesting to learn about his childhood and young adulthood. The second half, while extremely fascinating, was less engaging. The book takes on a strange dynamic where the main character (whom you have likely been rooting for) turns into a villain who is very distant and cold. The two halves of the book are different because its almost like you kind of step back after he picks up Frostmourne and watch his chaotic spiral into darkness, as he pulls a lot of people down with him. It was, truthfully, sort of depressing. But I have done the Ice Crown Citadel raid, so I know how his story turns out. ;-)
The more I read, the more I understand that villains are very complex. Things are not black and white, and this is what literature is all about.
Great book! I think that the people who will enjoy this the most are WoW players, but I think others can enjoy it as well.
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