May 14, 2017

Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger

Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger
   
Title:  Ordinary Grace
Author:  William Kent Krueger
Source:  Audibel and Kindle Unlimited
Audio Length:  10 hours 59 minutes
Book Length:  336 pages
Publisher:  Atria Books
Publication Date for Book:  March 4, 2014
Publication Date for Audio:  March 26, 2013
ISBN:  1451645821
ISBN-13:  978-145-1645859
I started listening to this book on the way home from a long trip.  The length of the book was right  at 11 hours, which was about the amount of time it would take me to get home.  However, about half way through there was a technical issue and no matter what I did I couldn't get it to work.  And, to make it even worse, it stopped at a cliff hanger point, and I worried about it all the way home.  When I got home I found that it was available through Kindle Unlimited ( my preferred method is to read a story), so I couldn't wait to find out what happened.

I would say that at least the first third of the book is dedicated to character development, so when the action started happening, it was wonderful.  However, the long time spent on character development paid off, because I truly felt like I knew and understood the characters very well.  When the story picks up steam, it will keep you glued to it until the end.  The story is centered around the Drum family who lives in New Bremen, Minnesota.  The family consists of a Dad who is a pastor and a Mom that feels she has wasted away in a small town.  The children include, 16 year old  Ariel, (the apple of Mom's eye) who is getting ready to begin school at Julliard, 13 year old Frank ( the story teller), and Jake, the youngest child.  It starts with the death of one of Frank's schoolmates, Bobby.  Bobby was ran over by a train and his death is suspicious, because it appears that he just sat there and waited for the train to run him over.  Shortly after Bobby's death, Frank and Jake find another dead man not far from where Bobby was killed. As if this wasn't enough tragedy in this small town, there is eventually another death that devastates the Drum family personally.  It is not known whether or not the deaths are connected  and approximately the second half of the story is dedicated to solving this mystery.  

I loved the audio part of the book and feel the narrator did a great job reading it.  However, the Kindle Unlimited book was full of grammatical errors, which made it  a little frustrating to read.  Perhaps these errors occurred during the transference from written to digital.  These errors were definitely not in the audio version.











May 09, 2017

Britt Marie Was Here by Fredrik Backman

Britt Marie Was Here by Fredrik Backman



If you have read My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry by Fredrik Backman, then you will definitely want to read this one.  Britt Marie is an intriguing part of the Grandmother book and this book answered all of the questions I had about her.  But, this book is also a great story involving Britt Marie in which the answers about her come to light.

Even if you have not read the Grandmother book, it is OK, because this is a total stand alone book.  Britt Marie is a late 60 ish, early 70 ish woman that has been married to the same man for a long time, when he dumps her for a younger model.  So, for the first time in a very long time, Britt Marie finds herself all alone and in need of a job.  The thought of working outside the home is terrifying.  Britt Marie has a social anxiety disorder, therefore she has great difficulty communicating with others.  In addition to this she also has obsessive compulsive disorder, especially when it comes to housekeeping..  She has no children of her own and she feels as if no one even knows she exists.  She decides she wants to  make a difference in the world and leave her mark on it.  She calls the unemployment agency and meets a young woman that ends up helping her find more than work. I think the thing I liked most about this book is that it shows that we should never give up on what we really want out of life and that it is never too late to change our life for the better.

I haven't been disappointed yet with Frederik Backman's books.  I plan to read them all and am looking forward to read his newest, Bear Town, which was released late last month.   












May 08, 2017

How's the View? by Jimmy Williams

How's the View? by Jimmy Williams





Title:  How's the View?
Author:  Jimmy Williams
Version:  Kindle
File Size:  161KB
Publication Date:  January 29, 2017
Language:  English
ASIN:  B01ND1D50X
Source:  Purchased from Amazon

This is a wonderful book about the importance of perspective.  Most people rarely, if ever pay attention to perspective.  However, as Mr. Williams addresses this factor, it becomes clear to the reader that perspective can make a huge difference in our lives.  We tend to see things through our own perspectives, but when we take a moment to try and understand other peoples perspectives (as well as our own), we will often find a better understanding of what is being communicated.  This one little thing can help reduce misunderstandings.

In this book, Mr. Williams helps the reader develop a good understanding of their own perspective.  He also addresses several universal laws.  One of those universal laws is the law of opposites.  He describes how he came to believe in this law and how it has impacted his own life.  He goes on to explain how this law affects interpersonal relationships.  Most people do not realize that we generally get back what we give out.  For example, if one person screams at another person, it is likely they will get screaming back.  But, on the other hand, if one person gives out kind words, they will likely get kind words back.  Mr Williams goes on to to talk about how people with negative attitudes often get back negativity.  He explains the concept in detail and in an easy to understand manner.

In addition to all of this, Mr. Williams addresses fear based views in relationships.  In this type of relationship, the fear of leaving a partner is stronger than the misery of staying in the relationship.  People in this type of relationship often end up pursuing loveless relationships, because they are afraid of not having validation from another person. There are many good examples of how this works.  Mr. Williams doesn't leave the reader with a million questions and no answers.  Instead, throughout the book he provides questions to help the reader create the life they want.

There is a lot of information packed in this little book. By sharing his own experiences, Mr. Williams helps the reader learn that their life can be changed for the better, just by knowing what their own  perspective really is and how simply acknowledging other peoples perspectives can make life better.  This is a great self help book, but it also has valuable information for mental health workers. 












April 07, 2017

My Grandmother asked me to tell you she is sorry by Fredrik Backman

My Grandmother asked me to tell you she is sorry  by Fredrik Backman

April 05, 2017

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman



Title:  A Man Called Ove
Author:  Fredrik Backman
Publisher:  Atria Books
Sold By:  Simon and Schuster Digital Sales, Inc.
Language:  English
ASIN:  B00GEEB730
Source:  Purchased from Amazon

This was the first book I read by Fredrik Buckman and I love it so much that I am now on a mission to read all of his books.  The protagonist, Ove is not your average, well loved book character.  He is an angry, short tempered, senior citizen that has definitely not moved into the 21st century.  He has basically been a loner since his wife died, and her passing did nothing to improve his disposition.  He follows rigid rules and expects everyone else to also follow them.  However, one day a young couple moves in to the house next door and shakes Ove's world up.  The wife is very talkative and very pregnant and on their first meeting she manages to plow down Ove's mail box.

The young woman always seems to somehow overlook Ove's cantankerous  moods and talk.  Despite Ove's repeated attempts to avoid these people, the woman manages to befriend him,  Well, sort of befriend him.  This story is centered around this odd friendship.  There is plenty of things both of these people will learn about themselves, as well as each other. It is a story of heartbreak, humor, and sorrow, but mostly it is a beautiful story of love kindness and friendship.  Ove might not seem to be an interesting character at first glance, but if you give him a chance, he will steal your heart.













March 31, 2017

The Secret Language of Your Body by Inna Segal

The Secret Language of Your Body by Inna Segal


Title:  The Secret Language of Your Body
Author:  Inna Segal
Publisher:  Simon & Schuster
Date Published:  2010
ISB N:  979-1-58270-260-0
471-1-4391-7671-9
Pages:  251
Source:  Borrowed from a friend

Every time I pick this book up I love it more.  It is amazing how helpful it has been.  For example, Currently  I have been having foot cramps in my right foot and according to the book, I have been dealing with too much obligation, and trying to break through something using force instead of just allowing it to happen naturally.  And, guess what-it hit the nail on the head! That is exactly what I have been dealing with.  According to the book  the remedy for all of this was to look at my life and change directions and to focus on letting go of things from the past and move forward.  This is the way I should have been thinking.  The book also directed me to look at my foot and hold it as if it is one of my most precious assets and to massage it while believing it is very valuable (which it most certainly is). It also encouraged me to talk to my foot and tell it how important it is to me and apologize for neglecting it.    I have followed these directions for several days for about 5 minutes at a time.  And, believe it or not, my foot has not cramped at all since I have been doing this.  However, prior to this it had been cramping many times a day for several weeks.  The book goes on to to cover the toes and to explain that the connections to each toe, as well suggesting remedies for each toe.  The remedies mainly consist of paying attention to the part of the body that is bothering you and to send positive energy to the body part that has been neglected while acknowledging the neglect.

Maybe you are a bit skeptical ( I was), however, if you decide to give it a try, I believe that you will be surprised how well it works.  I was surprised, but I am also grateful for the information, because the foot cramps were interfering with my daily activities and nothing else I had done worked.












March 31, 2017

Goats of Anarchy by Leanne Lauricella

Goats of Anarchy by Leanne Lauricella







Title:  Goats of Anarchy
Author:  Leanne Lauricella
ISBN:  978-1-63106-285-8
Publisher:  Quarto Publishing Group
Publication Date:  03/2017
Source:  Purchased from Amazon
Pages:  144

For anyone that follows "Goats of Anarchy"  on social media, you know that these goats can brighten up the dreariest of days.  I have been following "Goats of Anarchy" for almost a year and every day I look forward to seeing what Leanne has posted.  I love seeing these beautiful creatures living such good lives.  I greatly admire Leanne Lauricella for following her heart and dedicating her life to rehabilitating these precious babies.

This little book feels like my own personal photo album.  Although I see them on her social media posts, the book helps me keep them straight, as well as providing a little more information on each goat.  Included in the book are photo's of all the goats she has rehabilitated or is in the process of rehabilitating.  The book has helped me get a better understanding of each goat's personality.  It is  an uplifting book that proves there are still kind, gentle people in the world and it is so full of cuteness it is difficult to keep it closed.

















May 14, 2017

Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger

   
Title:  Ordinary Grace
Author:  William Kent Krueger
Source:  Audibel and Kindle Unlimited
Audio Length:  10 hours 59 minutes
Book Length:  336 pages
Publisher:  Atria Books
Publication Date for Book:  March 4, 2014
Publication Date for Audio:  March 26, 2013
ISBN:  1451645821
ISBN-13:  978-145-1645859
I started listening to this book on the way home from a long trip.  The length of the book was right  at 11 hours, which was about the amount of time it would take me to get home.  However, about half way through there was a technical issue and no matter what I did I couldn't get it to work.  And, to make it even worse, it stopped at a cliff hanger point, and I worried about it all the way home.  When I got home I found that it was available through Kindle Unlimited ( my preferred method is to read a story), so I couldn't wait to find out what happened.

I would say that at least the first third of the book is dedicated to character development, so when the action started happening, it was wonderful.  However, the long time spent on character development paid off, because I truly felt like I knew and understood the characters very well.  When the story picks up steam, it will keep you glued to it until the end.  The story is centered around the Drum family who lives in New Bremen, Minnesota.  The family consists of a Dad who is a pastor and a Mom that feels she has wasted away in a small town.  The children include, 16 year old  Ariel, (the apple of Mom's eye) who is getting ready to begin school at Julliard, 13 year old Frank ( the story teller), and Jake, the youngest child.  It starts with the death of one of Frank's schoolmates, Bobby.  Bobby was ran over by a train and his death is suspicious, because it appears that he just sat there and waited for the train to run him over.  Shortly after Bobby's death, Frank and Jake find another dead man not far from where Bobby was killed. As if this wasn't enough tragedy in this small town, there is eventually another death that devastates the Drum family personally.  It is not known whether or not the deaths are connected  and approximately the second half of the story is dedicated to solving this mystery.  

I loved the audio part of the book and feel the narrator did a great job reading it.  However, the Kindle Unlimited book was full of grammatical errors, which made it  a little frustrating to read.  Perhaps these errors occurred during the transference from written to digital.  These errors were definitely not in the audio version.











May 09, 2017

Britt Marie Was Here by Fredrik Backman




If you have read My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry by Fredrik Backman, then you will definitely want to read this one.  Britt Marie is an intriguing part of the Grandmother book and this book answered all of the questions I had about her.  But, this book is also a great story involving Britt Marie in which the answers about her come to light.

Even if you have not read the Grandmother book, it is OK, because this is a total stand alone book.  Britt Marie is a late 60 ish, early 70 ish woman that has been married to the same man for a long time, when he dumps her for a younger model.  So, for the first time in a very long time, Britt Marie finds herself all alone and in need of a job.  The thought of working outside the home is terrifying.  Britt Marie has a social anxiety disorder, therefore she has great difficulty communicating with others.  In addition to this she also has obsessive compulsive disorder, especially when it comes to housekeeping..  She has no children of her own and she feels as if no one even knows she exists.  She decides she wants to  make a difference in the world and leave her mark on it.  She calls the unemployment agency and meets a young woman that ends up helping her find more than work. I think the thing I liked most about this book is that it shows that we should never give up on what we really want out of life and that it is never too late to change our life for the better.

I haven't been disappointed yet with Frederik Backman's books.  I plan to read them all and am looking forward to read his newest, Bear Town, which was released late last month.   












May 08, 2017

How's the View? by Jimmy Williams






Title:  How's the View?
Author:  Jimmy Williams
Version:  Kindle
File Size:  161KB
Publication Date:  January 29, 2017
Language:  English
ASIN:  B01ND1D50X
Source:  Purchased from Amazon

This is a wonderful book about the importance of perspective.  Most people rarely, if ever pay attention to perspective.  However, as Mr. Williams addresses this factor, it becomes clear to the reader that perspective can make a huge difference in our lives.  We tend to see things through our own perspectives, but when we take a moment to try and understand other peoples perspectives (as well as our own), we will often find a better understanding of what is being communicated.  This one little thing can help reduce misunderstandings.

In this book, Mr. Williams helps the reader develop a good understanding of their own perspective.  He also addresses several universal laws.  One of those universal laws is the law of opposites.  He describes how he came to believe in this law and how it has impacted his own life.  He goes on to explain how this law affects interpersonal relationships.  Most people do not realize that we generally get back what we give out.  For example, if one person screams at another person, it is likely they will get screaming back.  But, on the other hand, if one person gives out kind words, they will likely get kind words back.  Mr Williams goes on to to talk about how people with negative attitudes often get back negativity.  He explains the concept in detail and in an easy to understand manner.

In addition to all of this, Mr. Williams addresses fear based views in relationships.  In this type of relationship, the fear of leaving a partner is stronger than the misery of staying in the relationship.  People in this type of relationship often end up pursuing loveless relationships, because they are afraid of not having validation from another person. There are many good examples of how this works.  Mr. Williams doesn't leave the reader with a million questions and no answers.  Instead, throughout the book he provides questions to help the reader create the life they want.

There is a lot of information packed in this little book. By sharing his own experiences, Mr. Williams helps the reader learn that their life can be changed for the better, just by knowing what their own  perspective really is and how simply acknowledging other peoples perspectives can make life better.  This is a great self help book, but it also has valuable information for mental health workers. 












April 05, 2017

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman




Title:  A Man Called Ove
Author:  Fredrik Backman
Publisher:  Atria Books
Sold By:  Simon and Schuster Digital Sales, Inc.
Language:  English
ASIN:  B00GEEB730
Source:  Purchased from Amazon

This was the first book I read by Fredrik Buckman and I love it so much that I am now on a mission to read all of his books.  The protagonist, Ove is not your average, well loved book character.  He is an angry, short tempered, senior citizen that has definitely not moved into the 21st century.  He has basically been a loner since his wife died, and her passing did nothing to improve his disposition.  He follows rigid rules and expects everyone else to also follow them.  However, one day a young couple moves in to the house next door and shakes Ove's world up.  The wife is very talkative and very pregnant and on their first meeting she manages to plow down Ove's mail box.

The young woman always seems to somehow overlook Ove's cantankerous  moods and talk.  Despite Ove's repeated attempts to avoid these people, the woman manages to befriend him,  Well, sort of befriend him.  This story is centered around this odd friendship.  There is plenty of things both of these people will learn about themselves, as well as each other. It is a story of heartbreak, humor, and sorrow, but mostly it is a beautiful story of love kindness and friendship.  Ove might not seem to be an interesting character at first glance, but if you give him a chance, he will steal your heart.













March 31, 2017

The Secret Language of Your Body by Inna Segal



Title:  The Secret Language of Your Body
Author:  Inna Segal
Publisher:  Simon & Schuster
Date Published:  2010
ISB N:  979-1-58270-260-0
471-1-4391-7671-9
Pages:  251
Source:  Borrowed from a friend

Every time I pick this book up I love it more.  It is amazing how helpful it has been.  For example, Currently  I have been having foot cramps in my right foot and according to the book, I have been dealing with too much obligation, and trying to break through something using force instead of just allowing it to happen naturally.  And, guess what-it hit the nail on the head! That is exactly what I have been dealing with.  According to the book  the remedy for all of this was to look at my life and change directions and to focus on letting go of things from the past and move forward.  This is the way I should have been thinking.  The book also directed me to look at my foot and hold it as if it is one of my most precious assets and to massage it while believing it is very valuable (which it most certainly is). It also encouraged me to talk to my foot and tell it how important it is to me and apologize for neglecting it.    I have followed these directions for several days for about 5 minutes at a time.  And, believe it or not, my foot has not cramped at all since I have been doing this.  However, prior to this it had been cramping many times a day for several weeks.  The book goes on to to cover the toes and to explain that the connections to each toe, as well suggesting remedies for each toe.  The remedies mainly consist of paying attention to the part of the body that is bothering you and to send positive energy to the body part that has been neglected while acknowledging the neglect.

Maybe you are a bit skeptical ( I was), however, if you decide to give it a try, I believe that you will be surprised how well it works.  I was surprised, but I am also grateful for the information, because the foot cramps were interfering with my daily activities and nothing else I had done worked.












Goats of Anarchy by Leanne Lauricella








Title:  Goats of Anarchy
Author:  Leanne Lauricella
ISBN:  978-1-63106-285-8
Publisher:  Quarto Publishing Group
Publication Date:  03/2017
Source:  Purchased from Amazon
Pages:  144

For anyone that follows "Goats of Anarchy"  on social media, you know that these goats can brighten up the dreariest of days.  I have been following "Goats of Anarchy" for almost a year and every day I look forward to seeing what Leanne has posted.  I love seeing these beautiful creatures living such good lives.  I greatly admire Leanne Lauricella for following her heart and dedicating her life to rehabilitating these precious babies.

This little book feels like my own personal photo album.  Although I see them on her social media posts, the book helps me keep them straight, as well as providing a little more information on each goat.  Included in the book are photo's of all the goats she has rehabilitated or is in the process of rehabilitating.  The book has helped me get a better understanding of each goat's personality.  It is  an uplifting book that proves there are still kind, gentle people in the world and it is so full of cuteness it is difficult to keep it closed.