Sunday, May 31, 2015

IMM and Stacking the Shelves: 5/31/15

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme previously hosted by the Kristi at The Story Siren, and Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga from Tynga's Reviews. We share books we received this week, whether we bought them, got them in the mail or checked them out from the library.

No vlog this week, because I don't feel good and am tired from the craziness of life this past week! I didn't get any books in the mail, but I bought a couple of free ones off of Amazon.

The Prayer Warrior's Ultimate Handbook

Note: This one is STILL FREE! It's a collection of multiple books on prayer, so if you're looking to strengthen your prayer life get it while it's still free!

Leave your links down below so I can check them out!

Saturday, May 30, 2015

ABEA Day 4: Book to Movie Adaptations!

Welcome to day 4 of Armchair BEA! ABEA is starting to come to a close, but it's not over yet! Let's enjoy it while we can!

Today's topic is book to movie adaptations. One of my favorite movie adaptations is Ella Enchanted! I loved the book in elementary school, and fell in love with the movie as soon as it came out. Even now, when I go back to read the book, I love the movie more! It's the one adaptation where I feel the movie did better than the book. I know, shame on me! However, for other movie adaptations, I tend to prefer the book. The author always gets it right!

What are some of your favorite adaptations?

Friday, May 29, 2015

ABEA Day 3: Character Chatter and Blogging Q&A!

Hi everyone! Welcome to day 3 of Armchair BEA! Today's topics are Character Chatter and Blogging Q&A. Since I don't feel like I can go super in depth with either topic, I will touch on both of them today!

Character Chatter:

For me, the main character of a novel has to be relateable or I lose interest in the story. Along with that, I don't like characters who are too perfect. These are the kind of characters that fall in love too fast, and solve their problems quickly. I want a character that is human, with true flaws. However, some characters take flaws too far and seem like martyrs. There needs to be a good balance.

Blogging Q&A:

I don't consider myself a huge book blogger, but I have made a few friends through blogging which has really changed how I view it. My biggest piece of advice is to engage with others bloggers, whether through their blogs, Goodreads, or Twitter. Often no one talks to you unless you talk to them first! A lot of bloggers are willing to make new blogging friends, they simply need the opportunity to meet you! So get out there!

I did post one of the Instagram challenges already, so check it out here! I may or may not do the other challenge, but keep watching for the future days!

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Armchair BEA 2015

Hi everyone! I know I haven't been updating on my usual schedule this week, and there's a reason for that.

Armchair BEA is this week! For those who don't know what that is, it's a way for bloggers who can't attend BEA in New York to still be a part of this event. Check out the site for more info!

This year I volunteered for the prize team, as well as working part time and helping at a friend's bridal shower, so I'm being kept pretty busy! I'll try and post the daily topics as I can!

Day One Introduction Questions: 

1. How long have you been blogging? Where are you from? How did you get into blogging? 

I've been blogging on this blog for over three years now. I started hearing about book blogging from other bloggers, and it really started to interest me. I've always loved reading, so this was a natural leap into blogging! I currently live in Longview, WA, but i recently moved up from Oregon and will probably be moving to Florida in January!

2. What is one book everyone should read? 

Not a book, but a series! The Edge Chronicles is amazing and I rave about it all the time, but seriously. Go read it.

3. What book are you reading right now?

I'm reading a few! I'm finishing up Heart Sisters currently though.

4. What is your favorite genre and why?

Usually fantasy or Christian. With fantasy I enjoy reading about different worlds, and with Christian it helps keep my faith grounded!

5. Why do you loving reading and blogging?

I love to share my love of reading and the books I love with others!

Day Two Social Media:

I have a lot of different social media accounts I use. I'm currently trying to post my daily stuff to Twitter, but usually I just post interesting articles and my blog posts. I'm also using Facebook, where I share some articles I find and also post my blog posts. I'm on Instagram too, at @angelvelvet! Come check me out everywhere :)

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Mini Review and Blog Tour: Called to Be Amish

Release Date: February 9, 2015
Publisher: Herald Pr
Genre: Amish Non-fiction
Series: Plainspoken #2
Pages: 256
Format: Paperback
Buy It: Amazon
ewer than one hundred people have joined the Old Order Amish and stayed since 1950. Marlene C. Miller is one of them. In this rare memoir, Marlene recounts her unhappy and abusive childhood, how she throws herself into cheerleading and marching band, and how she falls in love with Johnny, the gentle young Amish man who helps her lace her ice skates.

Against the wishes of both sets of parents, Marlene and Johnny get married and begin a family. Follow the author on this unusual journey to find out how God s love called her out of bitterness and depression and into the warm embrace of her new Amish community.

Accompany her as she dons an Amish dress and prayer covering and gets baptized. Learn how she endures the strain of ten children, a hundred-acre farm, and accidents and tragedy, and find out how she comes close to walking away from it all. Turning Amish has proven to be anything but plain and simple for this former majorette. But nearly fifty years later, Marlene is still living out God's call as an Old Order Amish woman.
I'll start off by saying I do not request books unless I can see myself enjoying them. I was expecting this book to be non-fiction, but I was thinking it would focus more on Marlene;s love story rather than her upbringing. Unfortunately, I had a hard time getting into the book at the beginning due to the extensive family back story this book starts with. I felt it dragged a bit too much, and I didn't enjoy it as much because of it.

This is not to say that her story was not interesting; it certainly was. I'm sure many people enjoyed this book, and will continue to enjoy this book! There was simply too much history for my taste.

I received this book free for review through LitFuse Blog Tours. I was not required to post a positive review, and the thoughts contained herein are my own.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Review: Clutter Free

Release Date: January 1, 2015
Publisher: Harvest House Publishers
Genre: Non-fiction
Pages: 224
Format: eBook
Buy It: Amazon
If you've ever wished you could clear out your clutter, simplify your space, and take back your life, Kathi Lipp's new book has just the solutions you need. Building off the success of her The Get Yourself Organized Project, this book will provide even more ideas for getting your life and your stuff under control.

Do any of these descriptions apply to you?

You bought a box of cereal at the store, and then discovered you have several boxes at home that are already past the "best by" date.
You bought a book and put it on your nightstand (right on top of ten others you've bought recently), but you have yet to open it.
You keep hundreds of DVDs around even though you watch everything online now and aren't really sure where the remote for the DVD player is.
You spend valuable time moving your piles around the house, but you can never find that piece of paper when you need it.
Your house doesn't make you happy when you step into it.
As you try out the many easy, doable solutions that helped Kathi win her battle with clutter, you'll begin to understand why you hold on to the things you do, eliminate what's crowding out real life, and make room for the life of true abundance God wants for you.
I have a lot of stuff, that's not a secret. I especially have a lot of books. But hey, I'm a book blogger. That's to be expected, right? Unfortunately, a lot of those books are ones I will probably never read, but I keep around "just in case". This book helped me realize how damaging that can be.

Kathi gives step by step tips and guidance as to how to attack the clutter in your home, as well as how to deal with future clutter. A lot of times people receive gifts from friends or family that they don't really need, and it sits there collecting dust. Instead, we could be asking for things we actually need and use!

If you are looking for a solid way to combat the clutter in your life, pick up this book. It won't disappoint!

I received this book free for review from NetGalley. I was not required to post a positive review, and the thoughts contained herein are my own.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

IMM and Stacking the Shelves: 5/17/15

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme previously hosted by the Kristi at The Story Siren, and Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga from Tynga's Reviews. We share books we received this week, whether we bought them, got them in the mail or checked them out from the library.

Mini Review and Blog Tour: Heart Sisters

Release Date: April 21, 2015
Publisher: Abingdon Press
Genre: Christian Non-fiction
Pages: 208
Format: Paperback
Buy It: Amazon
Friendships with other women are as important to our mental, physical, and spiritual health as rest, exercise, and prayer. We don’t just want friends—we need friends. Yet sometimes they can be as difficult as singing a song without the lyrics.

If you’ve ever been hurt by a friend, struggled to balance friendship with everyday life, or seen a friendship end too early, Heart Sisters will help you:
  - Overcome your fear of being hurt by other women,
  - Practically examine issues so you can work your way through conflicts,
  - Recognize when it’s time to establish healthy—and holy—boundaries,
  - Get right with God so you can get right with others, and
  - Discover the secret to authentic friendships.

With discussion questions and real-life examples, Heart Sisters will help you be the friend you want to have.
This book was written with me in mind, I'm pretty sure. But seriously, I LOVED this book. I didn't want to put it down! Natalie really hit home on an issue that most Christian girls don't think is an issue at all. In reality, it's tearing a lot of strong Christian women from the inside out.

Not only does she address finding "heart sisters", but she addresses the other side of the issue: being a heart sister as well. After all, you can't be a heart sister with someone if you can't fulfill their needs as well!

I highly recommend checking out this book. Whether or not you feel like you need to be a better heart sisters or not, I'm sure this book will change your mind.

I received this book free for review through LitFuse Blog Tours. I was not required to post a positive review, and the opinions contained herein are my own.


Want to be a better friend and have better friends? Natalie Chambers Snapp wrote Heart Sisters just for you! She uses her own and others’ stories of successes and failures to illustrate what she has learned about girlfriend relationships. Discussion questions, space to journal, photos, and quick interviews of healthy female friendships are included within each chapter.

Help Natalie celebrate the release of her new book by entering to win goodies you'll need for a girls' night out with your heart sister!

heart sisters-400

One grand prize winner will receive:
Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on May 17th. Winner will be announced May 18th on Natalie's blog.

heart sisters-enterbanner

Friday, May 8, 2015

Follow Friday

Follow Friday is a weekly meme host by Parajunkee and Alison Can Read. Each week they feature bloggers, and we trade blog follows to meet new people!

This week's question:

How do you organize your books? Either at home on your bookshelves or on your reading-device, or on your bookish platform like Goodreads, Leafmarks or Booklikes.

I organize my bookshelf by genre and within the series I own. It makes it easier for me to find them!

Leave a comment down below so I can check out your blog!

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Review: Love on the Line

Release Date: October 1, 2011
Publisher: Bethany House Publishers
Genre: Christian Historical Romance
Pages: 368
Format: Paperback
Buy It: Amazon
Rural switchboard operator Georgie Gail is proud of her independence in a man's world ... which makes it twice as vexing when the telephone company sends a man to look over her shoulder.

Dashing Luke Palmer is more than he appears though.  He's a Texas Ranger working undercover to infiltrate a notorious gang of train robbers.  Repairing telephones and tangling with this tempestuous woman is the last thing he wants to do.  But when his stakeout puts Georgie in peril, he realizes more than his job is on the line.
This book started out strong for me, considering it's historical fiction. I'm not a big fan of historical fiction. However, the tension in the romance between Georgie and Luke is what kept me interested until the end of this book. I appreciated Georgie's stubborn streak, which made the tension all that more appealing.

The only thing I didn't like about this book was the twist ending. It was not what I expected, and it seemed to leave one piece of the story completely untied and not wrapped up. I wish that would have been resolved better.

I received this book free for review. I was not compensated for this review, and the opinions contained herein are my own.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Review: Pastors' Wives

Pastors' Wives by Lisa Takeuchi Cullen

Release Date: April 30, 2013
Publisher: Plume
Genre: Christian Fiction, Novel
Pages: 368
Format: Paperback
Buy It: Amazon
What’s it like when the man you married is already married to God? asks Pastors’ Wives, an often surprising yet always emotionally true first novel set in a world most of us know only from the outside.

Lisa Takeuchi Cullen’s debut novel Pastors’ Wives follows three women whose lives converge and intertwine at a Southern evangelical megachurch. Ruthie follows her Wall Street husband from New York to Magnolia, a fictional suburb of Atlanta, when he hears a calling to serve at a megachurch called Greenleaf. Reeling from the death of her mother, Ruthie suffers a crisis of faith—in God, in her marriage, and in herself. Candace is Greenleaf’s “First Lady,” a force of nature who’ll stop at nothing to protect her church and her superstar husband. Ginger, married to Candace’s son, struggles to play dutiful wife and mother while burying her calamitous past. All their roads collide in one chaotic event that exposes their true selves. Inspired by Cullen’s reporting as a staff writer for Time magazine, Pastors’ Wives is a dramatic portrayal of the private lives of pastors’ wives, caught between the demands of faith, marriage, duty, and love.
This book is not what I expected. For some reason, I was expecting a self-help book advising pastors' wives on how to handle their marriage. Yes, I'm aware the cover clearly says it's a novel, but I was still surprised. However, I did enjoy the book, for the most part. I enjoyed the real struggles between the three women, their families, and outsiders. I liked seeing into their lives, as if they were real.

I didn't like how Candace treated Ginger. I feel like she does not represent Christians well and I was very offended by her demeanor at times. I also did not like the "mini" affair that occurs between two of the characters, who will remain unnamed for the sake of this review.

This book made me wonder how much of this is true in current relationships with pastors and their wives. Obviously they have struggles like everyone else, but we as Christians often put them on a pedestal and think them untouchable.

Overall, I felt this book was well written, considering the author is not a traditional Christian author. I will be curious to see what she writes in the future.

I received this book free for review from LitFuse Blog Tours. I was not compensated for this review, and the opinions contained herein are my own.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

IMM and Stacking the Shelves: 5/3/15

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme previously hosted by the Kristi at The Story Siren, and Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga from Tynga's Reviews. We share books we received this week, whether we bought them, got them in the mail or checked them out from the library.

For Review:
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