book reviews || "Undetected", "The Silent Patient", "The Guardian" & "The Japanese Lover"

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So, I mentioned a couple blog posts ago that I’ve been reading books so quickly that I haven’t been able to keep up with book reviews - and that’s still the case!

Instead of doing one book review in this post, I’m going to do four.

Ready?!

The Japanese Lover by Isabel Allende ||

I tend to gravitate towards love stories (and I write them, too!) and I fell in love with this multi-generational love story. It was one of those stories that I couldn’t decipher how the end was going to go, and that’s a really big bonus for me. The author did an excellent job with her research, and I loved how the story traveled through years and years of history, with a beautiful ending waiting for you at the close.

Overall, I’m giving it four stars because there were a few moments in the book that seemed to slow.

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides ||

I was given this book by one of my best friends, and as she put it in my hands, she said, “You have to read this book!”

The author really kept me guessing throughout the majority of the book. I had a couple of theories, one of which turned out to be mostly right. There were a couple moments where I thought, “This doesn’t add up.” It didn’t, of course, and the twist at the end made everything else make perfect sense. I also very much enjoyed the diary entries mixed with the main character’s point of view. It was different, and I loved it.

I heard this was becoming a movie, and I will definitely be heading to the theaters when it does.

I’m giving it five stars, which seems fitting for reading it in only two days.

Undetected by Dee Henderson ||

Let me start off by saying that I genuinely enjoyed the first book I read by Henderson, Taken. It was a little more detailed than I thought it needed to be, but I enjoyed the story and it was Christian-based, which is a definite plus for me.

So, when I saw Undetected on the “For Sale” shelf at my local library, I grabbed it, expecting to like it just as much as Taken.

However, my review is mixed.

First of all, Henderson is a fantastic researcher. I can only imagine the hours of research she puts into her novels, and as an author myself, I seriously applaud her for taking that time to get all of her facts straight. But, this book unfortunately had a little too much research for me.

One of the main characters, Mark Bishop, is a submarine commander for the U.S. Navy. We find out quickly how dedicated he is to his job, and then we hear a lot about his job. I, unfortunately, scanned over a lot of the submarine details, searching for the love story throughout the pages. It didn’t take me long to find the story, and once there, I found myself flipping the pages quicker.

The relationship part of the book is a little “out-of-the-box”, but it’s wholesome, truthful, and God-centered, which is hard to find in a romance novel nowadays.

Overall, I’m giving it 3.5 stars because I loved the budding relationship between Mark and Gina, and I commend Henderson for her extraordinary research, but it would have been just a great of a story without so much detail about being in a Navy submarine.

The Guardian by Nicholas Sparks ||

Sparks has been one of my favorite authors for as long as I can remember. I love his style of writing and how his love stories are always unique with a bit of twists and suspense.

I haven’t read The Guardian since I was in high school, and I forgot about the majority of the details. I also forgot about how much I loved it! There wasn’t a part in the book that I thought lacked or lulled, and the suspense paired with the romance kept me turning the pages as fast as I possibly could.

As with most N.S. books, five stars from me.

Have you read any of these books? What are your thoughts? I’d love to hear them in the comments!


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book review || "Songs of Willow Frost" by Jamie Ford

Hey there! Just so you know, this post contains affiliate links, which allow me to support my website and writing career. Thanks for stopping by and I hope to see you again soon!


I picked this book up on a whim.

It was in the clearance section at Barnes and Noble, it sounded interesting, and I had a gift card. I honestly wasn’t sure how much I’d like it, but I figured it was worth a shot.

It was a very good shot indeed.

Here’s what I loved about “Songs of Willow Frost”:

  • It pulled me in from the very beginning, which is a must for me.

  • The characters were very, very well developed. Willow Frost herself had an amazing character arc, and I fell in love with a couple of characters, which I’ve written in more detail down below. There wasn’t a character that was under-developed or unnecessary.

  • The book was researched very well. I felt like I was walking through each scene with the characters, which I loved, but it also made me very thankful for our life. Ford did a wonderful job making the reader feel like they were a part of the book.

  • The book flowed continuously without any overly drawn-out or boring scenes.

  • The ending was just what I was hoping for.

Here’s what you might not like about the book:

  • As I said above, Ford is excellent at making the scenes feel real, but that also goes for the graphic scenes, as well. Just off the top of my head, there was a rape scene and a suicide scene that is very detailed. The author does not avoid situations that most of us shy away from but are a horrific part of this world, especially during the era of this book.

  • Along with that, part of the book is set in a children’s orphanage that is severely underfunded, and some of those parts are absolutely heartbreaking.

My favorite character(s):

  • William. One of the main characters in the book, twelve-year-old William captured my heart from the very beginning. He desperately seeks love and gives it so freely. I just wanted to give him a big squeeze throughout the entire book.

  • Charlotte. Best friend of William, Charlotte holds a trait of strength beyond her years, for reasons that might make you tear up near the end of the book. I loved her part in the book.

Have you read Songs of Willow Frost? What did you think of it? Overall, I’m giving it five stars on Goodreads. I’m also planning on diving into Ford’s first novel, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet.

Check out this book HERE, and read more about the author HERE.


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Interested in reading more of my book reviews? Check out all the books I’ve reviewed HERE.


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10 st. patrick's day toddler books under $10

Hey there! Just so you know, this post contains affiliate links, which allow me to support my website and writing career. Thanks for stopping by and I hope to see you again soon!


We don’t celebrate too much of St. Patrick’s Day around here.

We don’t decorate in shades of green. We own very little green clothing. We’re not even huge fans of Irish food (no offense to any Irish folk reading this; I’m sure I’d like you very much!).

BUT, no matter the holiday, something we always do is pick out a handful of books to celebrate. Just like I did for Valentine’s Day, here is a list of ten St. Patty’s Day books under $10, geared just for toddlers!

How to Catch a Leprechaun || “You've been planning night and day, and finally you've created the perfect trap! Now all you need to do is wait. Is this the year you'll finally catch the leprechaun? Start a St. Patrick's Day tradition with this fun and lively children's book.” Ps…this would also be a super cute book to read while creating a real life leprechaun trap! I’ve seen many ideas on Pinterest.

The Night Before St. Patrick’s Day || “It's the night before St. Patrick's Day, and Tim and Maureen are wide awake setting traps to catch a leprechaun! When they wake the next morning to the sound of their dad playing the bagpipes and the smell of their mom cooking green eggs, they're shocked to find that they've actually caught a leprechaun. But will they be able to find his pot of gold?”

Where’s the Leprechaun? || “Where, oh where, have all the leprechauns gone? On a big adventure and up to all sorts of shenanigans! Can you find and color these magical creatures on every fun, action-packed page?”

Happy St. Patrick’s Day, Curious George! || “Today is George’s lucky day—St. Patrick’s Day is here! George loves a celebration, and St. Patrick’s Day means plenty o’ music, dancing, and feasting fun! He dresses up in his festive finest, looks for leprechauns, and learns some Irish dance steps. But can George make it to the parade without causing any trouble?”

Pete the Cat: The Great Leprechaun Chase || “It's St. Patrick's Day, and it's also the grand opening of Pete the Cat's leprechaun catching business. Pete gears up to trap a leprechaun for his friends! But catching a leprechaun is never easy—especially if it’s Clover, who's full of tricks. Will luck be on Pete’s side? Or will Pete learn luck is actually something earned?”

Luckiest St. Patrick’s Day Ever! || “It's March 17th, and the Leprechauns are gathered for their favorite day of the year. Join them as they celebrate St. Patrick's Day with music, dancing, and a parade!”

The Itsy Bitsy Leprechaun || “A magical St. Patrick’s Day twist on the popular nursery rhyme “The Itsy Bitsy Spider!” The itsy bitsy leprechaun is ready for a St. Patrick’s Day adventure as he searches for a lucky four-leaf clover.”

Ten Lucky Leprechauns || “Count from one to ten as one little leprechaun looking for treasure magically becomes ten silly leprechaun friends at the end of the rainbow! A humorous, rhyming celebration of St. Patrick's Day!”

There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Clover! || “There was an Old Lady who swallowed things over and over, and now she's come back to swallow a clover! She's back! That lovely old lady has returned just in time for St. Patrick's Day. Now she's swallowing items to make the perfect rainbow to hide a pot of gold.”

Lucky Tucker || “After rolling in a patch of four-leaf clovers on St. Patrick's Day, Tucker the terrier goes from having nothing go his way to becoming the luckiest dog of the day.”

I hope you all have a very lucky St. Patrick’s Day!


JOIN ALONG WITH ME IN MY 2019 READING CHALLENGE! FREE PRINTABLES, COMMUNITY SUPPORTED, AND MONTHLY GIVEAWAYS! FIND ALL THE DETAILS HERE.


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LIVE book review || "Blood Sisters" by Jane Corry

Hey there! Just so you know, this post contains affiliate links, which allow me to support my website and writing career. Thanks for stopping by and I hope to see you again soon!


I’m back with another book review and I’m super excited about this one! Would you like to know whyyy…?

Because I did a LIVE book review!

I can hear all of you saying huh?, so let me explain.

As I read “Blood Sisters”, I kept a pad of sticky notes by me and every time I had a thought about the book, I wrote it down and stuck the note in there. I continued this all throughout the book, which has led me to a live book review!

Are you ready?

Blood Sisters by Jane Corry

First thoughts: The setting of the book jumps between a prison and a mental health home care facility. Attention = grabbed.

Page 25: I can already tell it’s going to be very hard for me to put this book down.

Page 47: I’m loving the random poems throughout the book. They have me curious.

Page 103: This certainly complicates things…

Page 107: HOLY CRAP.

Page 183: The coincidence seems quite rare, but it’s interesting. I’m guessing it probably wouldn’t happen in real life, but there’s been weirder things that have happened.

Page 225: There’s something very odd about this guy, but I’m not sure what yet…

Page 259: Well, that totally surprised me.

Page 266: That doesn’t seem fair, but that would definitely happen in real life. I’m still on her side.

Page 267: Nice character arc. I knew I wanted to like her.

Page 272: I NEED TO KNOW.

Page 287: Jerk. Liar. Don’t you dare take him back.

Page 289: My goodness, Corry is so talented at leaving you suspended in wait.

Page 294: ANOTHER TWIST. Oh, she’s good.

Page 298: Imaginatively on the edge of my seat.

Page 305: WHAT. I had a slight feeling, but… WHAT.

Page 307: My word, little girls can be so cruel.

Finishes book.

Okay, Corry is fantastic. I’m picking up another one of her books, pronto. She’s a new favorite author, for sure. “Blood Sisters” left me on the edge of my seat so frequently I’m lucky that I didn’t tip over. The ending was just how I like it. Spot. On.

Read along with me by buying Jane’s book HERE. Check out her website HERE (she sounds like a sweetheart).


Join along with me in my 2019 reading challenge! Free printables, community supported, and monthly giveaways! Find all the details HERE.


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