Adventures With Ragweed by Linda Lou Crosby

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Overview

Adventures with Ragweed is a collection of humorous short stories filled with adventure and family themes. Ragweed is a tribute to the whimsical part of each of us. Follow this young teen and her best friend, Marney as they travel to Mexico for a fishing trip where the family is to shoot a pilot for a television show instead find themselves in an unexpected sea storm. Laugh out loud as Ragweed takes on the tennis elite at the country club or attempts to rearrange their perfectly cut lawns. Always one to learn new things, this young freckled face gal with the unruly blonde hair builds a float, rides a horse and grows a garden. Each task done with her own unique vies of the world. These stories are meant to entertain. It’s difficult to narrow it down to one specific genre as the book is a collection of short stories suitable for young adults as well as for an older crowd with a sense of humor. Family Relationships, Friendships, Essays and Humor are categories all presented within the pages of this book. May you enjoy each tale as much as Ragweed enjoyed living the adventures.

Review

An adorably cute quick read. Ragweed reminds me of Ramona from the Beverly Cleary books. Always jumping from one adventure to the next. Ragweed is very curious and extremely resourceful. Her resourcefulness leads to many humorous encounters and situations.

The book is listed for young adults. I think a younger age would enjoy it even more. Every short story has a situation that is comical and educational. This creativity keeps the adults entertained as well.

Authors Bio

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Linda Lou Crosby is a video producer, storyteller and former professional athlete. Like Ragweed, she has a unique approach to life. Ragweed is a part of herself she wanted to share with others. Linda Lou has a great sense of humor and likes to laugh and make others laugh too.

She currently lives with her husband in Montana and California where on clear days you can find her fishing, hunting or hiking.

Links:
Website: http://ragweedadventures.com/
Paperback: http://amzn.to/1iDHpDS
Kindle http://amzn.to/1iDGX8L

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SMACK!!!

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I used the cricut artiste cartridge to cut the black paper. I used scrap paper from my never ending stash. I have no idea where the lip stamp came from. I embossed that and added other embellishments.

Thanks for stopping by!!!

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Sisters of Treason by Elizabeth Fremantle

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Overview

From the author of Queen’s Gambit, which People magazine called, “A must-read for Philippa Gregory fans,” a gripping historical novel about two sisters who tread as dangerously close to the crown as their tragic sister, Lady Jane Grey, executed after just nine days on the throne.

Early in Mary Tudor’s turbulent reign, Lady Catherine and Lady Mary Grey are reeling after the brutal execution of their elder seventeen-year-old sister, Lady Jane Grey, and the succession is by no means stable. In Sisters of Treason, Elizabeth Freemantle brings these young women to life in a spellbinding Tudor tale of love and politics.

Neither sister is well suited to a dangerous life at court. Flirtatious Lady Catherine, thought to be the true heir, cannot control her compulsion to love and be loved. Her sister, clever Lady Mary, has a crooked spine and a tiny stature in an age when physical perfection equates to goodness—and both girls have inherited the Tudor blood that is more curse than blessing. For either girl to marry without royal permission would be a potentially fatal political act. It is the royal portrait painter, Levina Teerlinc, who helps the girls survive these troubled times. She becomes their mentor and confidante, but when the Queen’s sister, the hot-headed Elizabeth, inherits the crown, life at court becomes increasingly treacherous for the surviving Grey sisters. Ultimately each young woman must decide how far she will go to defy her Queen, risk her life, and find the safety and love she longs for.

From “a brilliant new player in the court of royal fiction,” (People) Sisters of Treason brings to vivid life the perilous and romantic lives of two little known young women who played a major role in the complex politics of their day.

Review

The Tudor time period is one of my favorites. And Lady Jane Grey is a great tragedy of this time. This story takes place just after Lady Jane’s beheading.
It follows her sisters as they experience court life after the political fall of their family.
This is a very well researched novel. I love the way each sister has a voice. The sisters have different roles throughout the court which is very intriguing. However, there are places in the body of the novel that are just plain dull. I expected a faster pace with more plotting and planning.

3 out of 5 stars

I received this book from Netgalley for an honest review.

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Secrets of Hallstead House by Amy M. Reade

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Overview

Macy Stoddard had hoped to ease the grief of losing her parents in a fiery car crash by accepting a job as a private nurse to the wealthy and widowed Alexandria Hallstead. But her first sight of Hallstead House is of a dark and forbidding home. She quickly finds its winding halls and shadowy rooms filled with secrets and suspicions. Alex seems happy to have Macy’s help, but others on the island, including Alex’s sinister servants and hostile relatives, are far less welcoming. Watching eyes, veiled threats…slowly, surely, the menacing spirit of Hallstead Island closes in around Macy. And she can only wonder if her story will become just one of the many secrets of Hallstead House…

Review

I really enjoyed some aspects of this book and some I did not. I absolutely loved reading about the Thousand Islands. I did not know this place existed. I would love to travel and see these wonderful islands and the homes that inhabit them. You can find out more here .

Some areas of the book are little overly dramatic and very contrived. I did guess the plot and the perpetrator, so the story held very little surprises for me.

I did enjoy reading about the mysteries of the house. Hallstead House is the perfect setting for this suspenseful novel. It made the story very gothic and almost scary in places.

Secrets of Hallstead house is not a bad read. It is very suspenseful, even if predictable and the setting is just fabulous.

I received this book from Netgalley for an honest opinion

3 out of 5 stars

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Dollar scrapbooking beach album

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This was a wonderful beach album that I made in class at the scrapbooking convention. This class was taught by the sweetest lady named Kristi Coy. She owns the company called Dollar Scrapbooking . Every year she sells these albums (after the convention tour, of course) on her website. They have the best instructions and if you don’t understand….just email her. She will respond and help you out. Also, sign up for the emails. The sales are great!

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If I Say Yes by Brandy Jellum

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Overview

Elizabeth Lewis was the child of Hollywood’s darling couple, until her father murdered her mother.
Six years later, she has traded her flashy, luxurious lifestyle for one of safe anonymity as a literary agent. With a different name and appearance, Liza Winter is living the life of her dreams—one where she’s known for who she is instead of what her father did. Except her apartment should be condemned, her car only starts when it wants, she hates the romance genre she has been assigned, and the CEO’s deliciously attractive nephew is out to ruin her carefully laid plans.
Reid Harder has never met an obstacle he couldn’t overcome. When his new position in the romance department comes with a benefit his uncle didn’t mention, he decides to wage a war against the intelligent, beautiful Liza to destroy every argument she has for turning him down. Still, the closer he gets to winning the prize, the more he realizes that the woman is keeping secrets that may endanger not just her life but his.

Will Liza overcome her mistrust of Reid to reveal her secrets before he learns the truth and walks away? Or will a grudge-wielding apparition from her past make her the next deadly Hollywood headline?

Review

This is a very quick and intense read. It is unpredictable till the very end. The author keeps you guessing and wanting more.

I love the relationship between Liza and Reid. Sometimes you just want to jump through the pages and help them get together.

There are few places that the author ” stated the obvious.” And
Liza sometimes has actions that don’t really fit her character. But it is a good romantic suspense that captivates. I am looking forward to book two!

Bio

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Brandy’s passion for writing began long before she actually sat down to write. As a child, she has had an obsession with reading, everything from the classic stories by Jane Austen to YA Fiction by Richelle Mead. Finally, in 2012, she decided to create her own stories for people to fall in love with. Brandy bounces back and forth writing both Romance and Young Adult Fiction (which is mainly just for fun).
At the beginning of 2014, Brandy signed a contract with publishing company Booktrope. She is very excited about the next chapter of her life and cannot wait to share her books and passion with readers.
When she isn’t writing, she can be found chasing after her husband, her four children and her black lab, Diesel. Or curled up on her favorite corner of the couch with her newest book.
Social Media Links:

Website: http://brandyjellumbooks.wordpress.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BrandyJellum
Twitter: @Brandy_Jellum

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Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands by Chris Bohjalian

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Overview

Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands is the story of Emily Shepard, a homeless teen living in an igloo made of ice and trash bags filled with frozen leaves. Half a year earlier, a nuclear plant in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom had experienced a cataclysmic meltdown, and both of Emily’s parents were killed. Devastatingly, her father was in charge of the plant, and the meltdown may have been his fault. Was he drunk when it happened? Thousands of people are forced to flee their homes in the Kingdom; rivers and forests are destroyed; and Emily feels certain that as the daughter of the most hated man in America, she is in danger. So instead of following the social workers and her classmates after the meltdown, Emily takes off on her own for Burlington, where she survives by stealing, sleeping on the floor of a drug dealer’s apartment, and inventing a new identity for herself — an identity inspired by her favorite poet, Emily Dickinson. When Emily befriends a young homeless boy named Cameron, she protects him with a ferocity she didn’t know she had. But she still can’t outrun her past, can’t escape her grief, can’t hide forever—and so she comes up with the only plan that she can.

Review

What a haunting, convoluted, creative tale. When I first started this novel I didn’t think I was going to like it. It was very twisted and jumped around quite a bit. But as I continued reading, I understood the voice of Emily. Emily’s tale is exactly how a teenager would tell a story.(I have a teenager and sometimes she is hard to follow). What a unique way to weave a story.

There were so many creative ideas in this book. I don’t want to give away the story, but the Emily Dickenson with Gilligan’s Island (yes, you heard me right) was a hoot. And yes….I tried it and IT WORKED. You must read the novel just to know about this. The Igloo made of plastic was another creative addition.

I loved how the title tied into today’s events…another reason reading this novel is a must.

This story is tragic as it is unique. There were places I had to pause to catch my breath. I was so afraid something would happen to Emily.

Not everyone will enjoy this book as much as I did. It is a very different read, but, it is one that stays with you days after you finish.

5 out of 5 stars

I received this book from Netgalley for an honest review.

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