Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Audio Book: The Yellow Sock: An Adoption Story by Angela Hunt

Release Date: January 21, 2015
Publisher: Angela Hunt Communications Inc
Format: Audible
Length: 2 hours 55 minutes
Narrator: Becky Doughty
Buy: Audio | Kindle | Paperback


Megan and Dave Wingfield want nothing more than to be parents--to welcome a child of their own. When they aren't able to conceive after two years of trying, they decide to adopt and find that journey is also fraught with mishaps and the potential for broken hearts. Can Megan learn to trust God with the desires of her heart?


The narrator was a bit distracting - her pacing was a bit strange and her voice, though she tried to change it for each character seemed almost robotic and lacking in emotion. I felt like I was listening to Hal from 2001 a space Odyssey read a book.  I think I would recommend reading this on kindle or paperback instead of listening to the audio since the narration is so distracting.

Since I am not a very religious person and was not raised in the Christian faith some of the writing left me cold.  However the emotions about wanting to be a mother and wanting to be pregnant are things that I hear often in my work at an adoption agency.  I really appreciated the way the author brought a lot of adoption language and development to light and shared some of the feelings that many adoptive parents feel or have experienced.

The process of domestic and international adoption was a bit off from the way things really work and the description of private adoption isn't completely accurate but overall the intentions of this book were good.  It touched on the emotional side of infertility and adoption that many books gloss over or are afraid to mention.

Monday, March 27, 2017

ARC Review: Every Body Yoga Let Go of Fear. Get On the Mat. Love Your Body by Jessamyn Stanley

Release Date: April 4, 2017
Publisher: Workman Publishing Group
Format: Kindle
Pages: 232 pages
Genre: yoga - Health - Mind - Body
Buy: Kindle | Paperback


It’s a book of inspiration for beginners of all shapes and sizes: If Jessamyn could transcend these emotional and physical barriers, so can we.
It’s a book for readers already doing yoga, looking to refresh their practice or find new ways to stay motivated.

It’s a how-to book: Here are easy-to-follow directions to 50 basic yoga poses and 10 sequences to practice at home, all photographed in full color.

It’s a book that challenges the larger issues of body acceptance and the meaning of beauty.


Jessamyn is an inspiration to everyone who doesn't look like the typical yogi.  Yoga is for everyone but in most studios you find the same smaller framed women and not many women of color. Jessamyn shows that you don't have to be skinny or white to find your peace on the mat.  Yoga is about YOUR experience not what everyone else in the room is doing but it can be intimidating.

I love Jessamyn's easy to read prose and her down to earth style of writing. Her stories of growing up made the book easy to relate to and her yogic history was at a level that even the most novice person can understand.  I loved that she used models of all different sizes to illustrate different asanas, it really made the book accessible and proves that these postures are obtainable by anybody!

As a yogi with injuries and a Kundalini yoga teacher I applaud Jessamyn's book and hope that her story will inspire more people who may not fit the stereotypical yogic mold.  Anyone can get on the mat and get something from their practice.

Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher through in exchange for an honest review. 

Friday, March 24, 2017

Audio Book: Caraval by Stephanie Garber

Release Date: January 31, 2017
Publisher: MacMillan Audio
Format: Audible
Length:10 hours 18 minutes
Narrator: Rebecca Soler
Genre: YA
Buy: Audible | Kindle | Paperback


Scarlett has never left the tiny island where she and her beloved sister, Tella, live with their powerful - and cruel - father. Now Scarlett's father has arranged a marriage for her, and Scarlett thinks her dreams of seeing Caraval, the faraway once-a-year performance where the audience participates in the show, are over.

But this year Scarlett's long dreamt of invitation finally arrives. With the help of a mysterious sailor, Tella whisks Scarlett away to the show. Only as soon as they arrive, Tella is kidnapped by Caraval's mastermind organizer, Legend. It turns out that this season's Caraval revolves around Tella, and whoever finds her first is the winner.

Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. But she nevertheless becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic with the other players in the game. And whether Caraval is real or not, she must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over, a dangerous domino effect of consequences is set off, and her sister disappears forever.


Scarlett has been obsessed with stories of Caraval and has been writing to Legend the head of the Caraval for years begging him to come their small island but she has never received an answer until now.  Days before her arrange marriage Scarlett and her sister Tella travel to attend the show but as soon as they get there Tella disappears and has become the object of the "game". Now Scarlett and everyone is trying to find her.

During the quest to find her sister Scarlett also needs to find herself, her strength and her power.  Her father is an abusive evil man and Legend has a long twisted past with her family that may be her undoing. Engaged to a man who she has never met but she feels is her only way to get away from her horrible father and save her sister, Scarlett needs to find the strength to stand on her own instead of being so afraid, that may be the only way to truly save her sister...and herself.

With lots of twist and turns this story holds your attention keeps you on your toes and keeps you interested. However this is a very dark story and may not be for all YA readers.  Descriptive with an intricately woven story I really found myself lost in the action.

Narrator Rebecca Soler also narrated the Cinder Series by Marissa Meyer and I loved her reading so much it lead me to this book and I was not disappointed.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

ARC Review: The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel

Release Date:
March 7, 2017
Publisher: Crown Publishing
Format: Kindle
Pages: 288 pages
Genre: Mystery
Buy: kindle | Hardcover 


After her mother's suicide, fifteen year-old Lane Roanoke came to live with her grandparents and fireball cousin, Allegra, on their vast estate in rural Kansas. Lane knew little of her mother's mysterious family, but she quickly embraced life as one of the rich and beautiful Roanoke girls. But when she discovered the dark truth at the heart of the family, she ran…fast and far away.

Eleven years later, Lane is adrift in Los Angeles when her grandfather calls to tell her Allegra has gone missing. Did she run too? Or something worse? Unable to resist his pleas, Lane returns to help search, and to ease her guilt at having left Allegra behind. Her homecoming may mean a second chance with the boyfriend whose heart she broke that long ago summer. But it also means facing the devastating secret that made her flee, one she may not be strong enough to run from again.


Wow, this is a dark, twisted and disturbing book with a hopeful ending.  It seems that all the Roanoke girls have issues and die young, usually by their own hand.  After Lane's mother died Lane is brought to live with her grandparents and cousin Allegra who is a strange and disturbed young woman. Though the two cousins grow close eventually Lane like other Roanoke girls flees the family home but gets called back 11 years later when her cousin goes missing.

As Lane desperately tries to discover what happened to her cousin she also is reconnecting with her past love whose heart she broke when she left.  The two are drawn to each other but this time instead of bringing out the worst in each other they may just be able to help each other break free of their pasts.  With alternating chapters from past to present you discover the mystery of what goes on in Roanoke and why there is so much tragedy in this family.

This book is tragic and yet in the end you find hope that Lane will be able to break free and be happy unlike the other Roanoke girls before her.  Amy Engel keeps you interested and slowly pulls you into the secrets of what is happening in this strange little town. Many of us are shaped by our pasts but we don't have to be defined by them.  Lane doesn't have to be a " Roanoke Girl" she can be her own person. This book really touches on that and how we don't have to let tragedy or our families control our future. Well written this book will stay with me for a while.

Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher through in exchange for an honest review. 

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