bookblog

The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts

Author:Dr. Gary Chapman (Bio) | Publication:January 1st 2015 by Northfield Publishing | Series: N/A | Length: 208 pages | Genre: Self-help, Relationships, Love, Psychology | ISBN:9780802412706 |Source: Amazon | Book: Amazon (here)

Falling in love is easy. Staying in love-that’s the challenge! How can you keep your relationship fresh and growing amid the demands and conflicts and just plain boredom of everyday life?

I’ll bluntly start by saying how much I detest the majority of all self help books. This one one by no means falls into that category. Dr. Chapman delivers effective and sound advice on how to love others through using what he calls that 5 love languages. These love language are discussed in detail and he provides the best ways to properly fill the “love tank” of a person’s love language. The practical application provided in the book really allows for one to do some soul searching and helps to really put long lasting changes into place rather than promising the sort of instant change that other books promote. Dr. Chapman by no means says that this book is the end all be all to issues one may be having with being loved and loving others, but he does instead offer steps one may take to address these issues.

What I like most about this book is that Dr. Chapman shoots straight from the hip. Even while reading it I noticed things that I didn’t like, but I knew applied to me. When helping someone it is of course important to be mindful of their feelings, but not so much so that they are only told what they want to hear. That more than anything is what drove me to pick this up and read it in the first place. Personally for me it confirmed some things I already knew about myself and helped me to see others who I interact with regularly in a different light. If you choose to pick this book up, it will definitely require effort on your part to make a change and see a difference. For me it w has been and continues to be worth it.

One thing I will point out is the last quarter of the book does get quite repetitive. I’m sure the intent was to drive the point home for those who may struggle with emotional interact, but for me it was slightly annoying. Another thing to note is that the book is written in respect to marriages, but the knowledge contained can easily be applied to any relationship. Other than that I really enjoyed this book and suggest it to anyone who wants to enhance the way they love others.

This book is definitely for anyone who is single, dating, married, or looking to enhance the way they express their love to others. It is without a doubt worth the time it takes to read the book. A link to the author’s bio and to the book are both provided above. Thank you Dr. Chapman for the wealth of information provided here. I look forward to reading your other work.

If you want to learn your love language click here. There’s an assessment that has also been included in the latest edition of the book.

I rated this book a 4/5.

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Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Author:J. K. Rowling (Bio) | Publication:July 2 1998 byA. Levine Books | Series: Harry Potter Series #2 | Length: 341 pages | Genre: Young Adult/Teen, Fiction, Magic, | ISBN:9780439064866 |Source: Barnes and Noble | Book: Amazon (here)

The Dursleys were so mean and hideous that summer that all Harry Potter wanted was to get back to the Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry. But just as he’s packing his bags, Harry receives a warning from a strange, impish creature named Dobby who says that if Harry Potter returns to Hogwarts, disaster will strike.

The scene opens to Harry getting yelled at as usual by his Uncle Vernon. This time over the awful racket Hedwig is making due to being locked up since Harry returned from Hogwarts. After excusing himself from breakfast he goes outside to dwell on the fact that he has not heard from any of his Hogwarts friends since the end of last term. As the Durley’s prepare to host a new client for Uncle Vernon’s company Harry finds himself being remanded to his room and told to act as if he doesn’t exist. During the visit a house elf shows up and gives Harry a cryptic warning not to return to Hogwarts. After ruining the deal for Harry’s uncle and with the arrival of an official warning from the Ministry of Magic, Harry is placed on a prison like sentence until he is rescued by the Wesley’s. Harry spends the rest of his summer holiday with them completely carefree until they leave for Diagon Alley. Harry gets lost and overhears Mr. Malfoy selling some items that he does not want discovered in a Ministry raid. After a harrowing ride where the Wesley’s flying car is destroyed and Harry barely escapes getting expelled he starts to hear voices around the school as students are attacked. Harry and Ron have to solve the mystery of the attacks on their own after Hermione is also attacked. Harry comes faces to face with Voldemort’s memory preserved in a diary that was draining the life out of Ginny Wesley. Harry defeats the Basilisk and destroy the diary of Voldemort ending the attacks and keeping Hogwarts open.

Even though this is a re-read of the series I find myself with a childlike emotion listening to the book from start to finish. While I know that Harry is going to win out, I still find my heart racing at certain parts of the story. This book really increased my appreciation for the emotion that Hagrid adds to the overall tale. His reaction to being sent to Azkaban was one the most heart wrenching sections of the book. Even more so finding out the lengths that Voldemort will go through to get what he wants just increased my dislike for a character who is intentionally written not to be liked. Hagrid on the other hand has a very lovable nature and reminds me of a close friend of mine who is quite famous being bringing stray animals in off the street. He expresses a pure love for those around him and for the creatures he takes care of. This is evident in the way that he still takes care of Aragog even after all the trouble owning the creature caused him. It was my favorite thing about this book. The story itself outside of that I felt was dull in many areas and drawn out when it didn’t need to be. I also was not fully committed to the plot.

This was my first time listening to this on audiobook and Stephen Fry made this a reading exciting read. While the Chamber of Secrets is my least favorite Harry Potter book it still provides the amazing story that I have come to expect from the series.

If you could not get enough of the wizarding world then book two in the series is for you. Harry and the gang returns with even more to investigate and discover than the first book. And Harry once again is fighting to save his life.

Although this is not one of my favorite books in the series it’s still wonderful to read this book again. There is a link to the author’s bio account at the top of the page. Thank you J.K for the second book in the series. On to the third.

I rated this book a 4/5.

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone

Author:J. K. Rowling (Bio) | Expected Publication:June 30 1997 by Bloomsbury Publishing | Series: Harry Potter Series #1 | Length: 223 pages | Genre: Young Adult/Teen, Fiction, Magic, | ISBN:9780747532743 |Source: Barnes and Noble | Book: Amazon (here)

Turning the envelope over, his hand trembling, Harry saw a purple wax seal bearing a coat of arms; a lion, an eagle, a badger and a snake surrounding a large letter “H”.
Harry Potter has never heard of Hogwarts when the letters start dropping on the doormat at number four, Privet Drive. Addressed in green ink on yellowish parchment with a purple seal, they are swiftly confiscated by his grisly aunt and uncle. Then, on Harry’s eleventh birthday, a great beetle-eyed giant of a man called Rubeus Hagrid bursts in with some astonishing news: Harry Potter is a wizard, and he has a place at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

The book opens to the most boring, perfectly normal family in all of Great Britain. Quickly their world is turned upside down when Petunia Dursley’s baby nephew shows up on their doorstep after the murder of his parents in what Harry is lead to believe a car crash. After multiple attempts to deliver letters to Harry which are destroyed by Uncle Vernon, Hagrid personally comes to inform Harry about his acceptance into Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. He tells Harry that he is really a wizard and takes him off to Diagon Alley where Harry is introduced to the wizarding world. Over dinner Hargid tells Harry about Lord Voldemort, what really happened to his parents, and the origin of his scar. The rest of the holiday passes and Harry boards the Hogwarts Express and eventually makes his way to Hogwarts where he is sorted into Gryffindor House and embarks on the first year of his Hogwarts journey. Through all his classes and making the quidditch team, Harry finds himself working to uncover the plot behind a mysterious stone that someone seems to be after. With the help of his friends Harry uncovers the plan to steal the stone and confronts one the teachers who is trying to steal it in order to bring Lord Voldemort back to life. Harry barely defeats the Dark Lord again and keeps the stone from falling into his hands. At the end of term because of their bravery Gryffindor is awarded extra points to win the house cup. Harry heads off with his uncle back to the plain house on Privet Drive.

I love Harry Potter! Now that it’s out of the bag I can get on with this review. This is probably my 9th or 10th time reading the book and each time reminds me of my first. Barely 6 years old I remember trying to read this completely struggling and it taking me forever to get through it. Each page more captivating than the last allowing you to put yourself right along Harry each step of the way. What I find most enthralling about this book is the the level of depth each character possess, even the ones with less impact on the story. The detail and development of the plot and wizarding world is easy to absorb and swallow while reading this story.

This was my second time listening to this on audiobook and I really enjoy the Stephen Fry version better in my opinion. Such a wonderful and captivating story and the series only goes up from here.

If you are a fan of traveling to other worlds, adventure, magic, and wonderfully described feasts this is your book.

This book is literally one of the best selling books of all time. There is a link to the author’s bio account at the top of the page. I humbly thank J.K. for gifting me with the world of Harry Potter and hope that everyone takes the time to read this at least once.

I rated this book a 5/5.

New Years Greeting

Hello everyone! I hope you all had a fantastic and enjoyable New Years! Mine was pretty low key.

I’m excited to have a whole new year ahead to read all the books that I didn’t in 2017. Sad to say I fell into an extreme reading slump that I could not did myself out of. With that being said with 2018 I plan to read extensively more than I did last year. I’m starting out the new year with a re-read of J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series since it is one of my all time favorites. Expect to see lots of reviews and fun posts throughout the year.

Look for my review of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone going up soon.

A Cold Day in Hell (SPOILER FREE)

Author: Lissa Marie Redmond (Bio) | Expected Publication:February 8th 2018 by Midnight Ink | Series: Cold Case Investigation #1 | Length: 397 pages | Genre: Mystery/Thriller/Crime| ISBN:N/A |Source: NetGalley

Lauren Riley is an accomplished detective who has always been on the opposite side of the courtroom from her nemesis, slick defense attorney Frank Violanti. But now he’s begging to hire her as a private investigator to help clear his client of murder. At first Lauren refuses, wanting nothing to do with the media circus surrounding that case—until she meets the eighteen-year-old suspect.
To keep an innocent teen from life in prison, Lauren must unravel the conflicting evidence and changing stories to get at the buried facts. But the more she digs, the more she discovers that nothing is what it first appears to be. As Lauren puts her career and life in danger, doubt starts to lurk on every corner . . . and so does her stalker.

This story quickly jumps into the career and life of Lauren Riley, a successful cold case detective who is well known throughout the Buffalo Police Department for her work. She is a approached by a shifty defense attorney who wants to hire her despite his track record of calling her incompetent on multiple past cases. As she tries to balance her professional and personal life, some lines start to blur. As the tale unravels Lauren must decide who she can trust in this cat mouse game that some how ends up with her in the center. In the end Lauren must decide between following her cop mind or her heart to do what she feels is right.

What I find most captivating about this book is how real it is. Lauren is portrayed as a real character that some people, both men and women might be able to identify with. Not only is she a single mom twice divorced, but also battles with feelings of abandonment as her daughters are off to college. Lauren’s life depiction is not some story of a perfect female cop and all is right in her world without any complications. Instead her her strengths and weaknesses are equally laid out there for everyone to see and multiple characters in the book call out these things which makes Lauren seem even more touchable.

It is not often a book in this genre captivates me enough to stay up all night to complete. I find that crime novels are often easy to figure out and for that reason they tend to bore me. Not this one, the reveal at the end somewhat blindsided me because I couldn’t quite make up my mind. One thing to keep in mind as I read was that not everyone in the tale is as they seem. Redmond did a great job with playing to multiple audiences with the way she wrote her novel and for that I applaud her and her work. What is also cool is that the author worked, and lives in my home town of Buffalo, NY. It was completely by luck that I happened upon this book and it was awesome at how she portrayed the city. I could easily place myself at the majority of the locations she described with ease. I hope I run into her one day.

If you are a fan of crime novels or just looking for a new read, this is definitely worth picking up. The chapters are quick and the story transitions quite well from scene to scene. This is basically your most complicated Law and Order episode you can think of except better and in book form.

This book is not yet release. There is a link to the author’s Goodreads account at the top of the page. I humbly thank NetGalley and the publisher Midnight Ink for this ARC copy of the book to review prior to release. I wish the author all the best and hope to see this on shelves early next year.

I rated this book a 3.5/5. I am looking forward to the next book in the series.

Stowaway Launch

Well after years of telling myself that I couldn’t do this I finally made the leap and started a book blog. Oh yeah, all by myself like a grown up and everything! Like any real stowaway my blog will be stocked full of book reviews, book hauls, random nonsense, and anything else I care to talk about. Are you all ready to set sail?

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Well let me show you around since you’re here. First things first you’ll see all my recent posts when you first arrive on the page. Here I’ll talk about whatever my heart desires at the time.

The next stop is the About Me section where you can find all you need to know about your humble blog host. Any additional questions can be sent through the Contact Me section where I will answer them at my discretion within 48 hours.

Next we move on to the Book Reviews section which at some point will be full of beautiful and articulate reviews for you to all feast your eyes on. Look out because my first review will be posted July 17, 2017 about The Paper Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg.

Then we have our Bookish Stuff section which contains information about book haul, reading suggestions, my monthly wrap up, and my random rants which are sure to pop up.

If you are an author or publisher pay special attention, the Review Requests section is all about you. If you would like your book reviewed I have all the information you need to get it done there as well as information about how I rate my reads.

Well there you have it. I look forward to posting and filling my blog with fun book stuff for everyone to enjoy.