May 31, 2013

First Lines Friday

First Lines Friday is a bookish meme hosted by Literary Marie of Precision Reviews. I encourage all of my fellow book bloggers and bookhearts to play along.
  • Grab your current read(s).
  • Share the first line(s).
  • Include the title and author.

"I had never noticed Lucas before that night. It was as though he didn't exist, and then suddenly, he was everywhere."
~ Easy by Tammara Webber


May 30, 2013

The Dinner

"A fixed appointment for the immediate future is the gates of hell, the actual evening is hell itself." ~ pg. 12

Two brothers and their wives meet at a fancy restaurant. What appears to be a friendly dinner amongst relatives is really a life-threatening meeting to discuss fate. The Dinner is a gripping tale that unfolds in the viewpoint of one narrator, the father of a fifteen-year-old boy who was involved in a horrific act that has triggered a police investigation, jeopardized a political campaign, and shattered trust within a family.   

Think about your first visit to a fancy restaurant. You dress up nice. Show up early to your reservation. The ambiance is set. You browse the menu (that you secretly looked up online earlier). You place your order.

"The crayfish dressed in a vinaigrette of tarragon and baby green onions." ~ pg. 37
"The lamb's neck sweetbread marinated in Sardinian olive oil." ~ pg. 42
"Warm goat's cheese with pine nuts and walnut shavings." ~ pg. 42

Fast forward to when your food arrives at the table. It is presented in a grand way. You look down at the garnished plate...and see more white space than food. At best, there are four bites. But you smile and eat it slowly. Savoring each small mouthful. Dessert is the same—all about the presentation and not size. You leave the fancy schmancy restaurant with a lighter wallet but still hungry. So you stop at a fast food joint on the way home. -__-

This is how I feel about The Dinner. The story moves along like the courses of a well-prepared meal: Aperitif, Appetizer, Main Course, Dessert, Digestif. But it was like the fancy restaurant experience that I described above. All hype, then a let down. Sure, the book was a page-turner but only because I kept reading hoping to reach the good part. Hoping the long-winded narrator would get on with the story already! Hoping I will understand why The Wall Street Journal called it the "European Gone Girl." Waiting for the dark suspense to lead somewhere. Anxious to see where the clues led. I read the last word in the book and thought, "That's it? Oh." Yet The Dinner left me with a good lasting impression.

But maybe that was the author's intent. Maybe Koch's goal was for readers to ask themselves what would they do in this situation. How far would you go to protect your child? It certainly left me with a final thought—the characters' actions were justified in their individual plans to protect family at any, and all, costs. So in this regard, The Dinner will spark a discussion for book clubs, reading groups, and of course dinner parties. Check out the trailer below:

Title: The Dinner
Author: Herman Koch
Published: February 2013
Pages: 239
Edition: eBook
Rating: ♥♥♥♡


May 29, 2013

The Honest Toddler


"Selective acknowledgment has a partner skill known as hyper awareness. I can hear someone open a bag of chips through seven solid brick walls in the middle of a thunderstorm while sleeping. Please hold your applause." ~ pg. 11
The Honest Toddler: A Child's Guide to Parenting is an Internet sensation created by the oh-so-clever Bunmi Laditan and based on her youngest child—who is "this many" years old, not potty trained, not trying. There is no other parenting guide like this one. Topics include how to handle tantrums, a food shopping guide, bedtime/nap tips, car etiquette, discipline and more. There's even homework assignments to practice new techniques learned from this unique manual.

When I tell you I burst out loud laughing hysterically, it is not an exaggeration. I picked up a few tips about toddlers. For example, temper tantrums should be referred to as loud outbursts. And instead of pulling your toddler up by one arm in the middle of the mall, simply pick your child up and abandon errands for the rest of the day. Also, there is no point insisting on inside voices; outside voices win.

WARNING: If read in public, be prepared to explain why you are LOL. It happened to me twice while reading! I simply told the people side-eyeing me to read The Honest Toddler to understand why I am so tickled.

I am not a parent and still enjoyed this book. It is a funny good read for everyone. New parents will appreciate learning how their toddlers think. Seasoned parents will find it quite entertaining and relatable. And child-less people like me will laugh uncontrollably because we don't deal with toddlers on a daily basis so find the sassy narrator's sarcasm hilarious.

I am now including a copy of The Honest Toddler in every baby shower gift. Friends and family, thank me later. The rest of you need to download or purchase a copy. Let the advice within the 200+ pages sink in. I promise you will chuckle and be entertained by the anecdotes. Don't forget to follow The Honest Toddler on Twitter and Facebook. And to the author, Bunmi Laditan, I hope your dream of hiring a full-time au pair comes true really soon. But not so soon that you stop sharing tales of your sassy toddler.

Now excuse me while I review my notes on toddler entertainment. I learned a new approach for when my niece, Taylor Tot, wants to watch Max and Ruby, Doc McStuffins and Caillou in a continuous loop.

DISCLAIMER: This book was received directly from the publisher for review purposes only. In no way does it influence my review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Title: The Honest Toddler: A Child's Guide to Parenting
Author: Bunmi Laditan
Published: May 2013
Pages: 256
Edition: Galley
Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥


May 28, 2013

US vs. UK

The UK is my hometown glory but I live in the US. The US vs. UK bookish meme compares book covers published in the two countries.



Today's first comparison is Calling Me Home by Julie Kibler. The US cover shows a black man and white woman sitting next to each other. They are close but not touching. The UK cover shows a black man and white woman walking in a field. The audio version of the cover shows two feathers: one silver, one gold. All three of the covers are plain but the US cover captures the essence of the story.

Total: US 22, UK 20


Today's second comparison is S.E.C.R.E.T. by L. Marie Adeline. The covers are very similar with the book title in big capital letters and the author's name in capital letters toward the bottom. The difference in covers is the background color and charm bracelet. I prefer the UK cover because it includes the S.E.C.R.E.T. motto: No Judgments. No Limits. No Shame.

Total: US 22, UK 21


Today's third comparison is Manuscript Found in Accra by Paulo Coelho. The US cover has a light maroon background with the landscape of Jerusalem. The UK cover is bolder with a red background, gold trim and a gold object in the center. There is no question here. I really like the US cover more. It looks better on the bookshelf and shows the setting of the book.

Total: US 23, UK 21 

Which covers do you favor?

Quotes from Assata "She Who Struggles" Shakur "The Thankful"

Instead of writing a full review on Assata Shakur's autobiography, I am sharing a few quotes from the book. Think about the meaning of her words.

"We usually reach success by putting the simple truths that we know into practice." ~ pg. 201

"My roots run deep. I have been nourished well." ~ pg. 194

"I was tired of being grown and I wanted to be a kid again." ~ pg. 117
"But we are grown up now. And it is all so complicated when you dig somebody." ~ pg. 44

"Black women have been struggling and helping each other to survive the blows of life since the beginning of time. ~ pg. 17
"Each day was my last day on Earth. Each night was my last. After a while, I became accustomed." ~ pg. 10

Title: Assata: An Autobiography
Author: Assata Shakur (slave name Joanne Chesimard)
Published: November 1999
Pages: 274
Edition: PDF
Rating: ♥♥♥

May 26, 2013

Series Sunday: Guest Post: Tyrone M. Eddins Jr.

Author of the City High Series

Welcome to Literary Marie's Precision Reviews. Today we have a special guest post from Tyrone M. Eddins Jr., author of the City High series and CEO & Founder of Scripted Visions Publishing Group.
"For the Love of Crime and Violence..."
Who doesn’t love a good crime thriller?

    Well, I will be the first to admit that there isn’t much that I love more than to dive headfirst into a story about a gruesome crime that will keep me guessing and on the edge of my seat until the very end. Whether it’s a book, movie, or TV show, a crime thriller is always my choice for storytelling entertainment.  

    In fact, being a man that also enjoys good food, I can equate a well-crafted crime thriller to a delicious four-course meal at a five-star restaurant. Perfectly prepared and cooked by a Master Chef, stories about crime and violence make for some of the most delicious literary and cinematic meals around with each course of the meal served in thrilling fashion.

    Best of all, this recipe isn’t a complicated one at all. Start with a healthy dose of violence, stir in a cup of mystery, blend in some more violence, and add a pinch (or even a full scoop) of sex and you’ve got the makings of a pretty good meal. Beginning with an appetizer of action, good crime fiction takes hold of its audience from the opening pages or credits. It then moves quickly to serve the soup and salad portion of the meal as the story starts to unravel, revealing all of its main characters and plot points. At long last, here is the entrée. Time to get to the best part, the crux, the literal blood and guts of the story. By now the reader or movie/TV watcher is all in and fully ready to dig into the meat of the story. The storyline is all out on the table now, having been served on only the finest of china and silverware. Twists and turns are in full swing and around every corner. The main characters are all on the move and the action is “all you can eat” freight training towards an incredible climax. And finally…dessert is served…one last gunfight, one last murder, and one last gut-wrenching plot twist all leading up to an amazing and unpredictable ending to this story. At the end of this meal, everyone is left full and satisfied, yet wanting more...

    Maybe it’s the grisly allure of the macabre that draws us to the crime thriller genre and allows it grab on tight without letting go? Who knows? But whatever it is, so many of us enjoy great stories that revolve around an unspeakable crime and contain plenty of violence. From an entertainment point of view, crime and violence go hand in hand like burgers and fries, apple pie and ice cream, spaghetti and meatballs. Throughout history, people have been writing about crime and violence for about as long as it’s been occurring in real life. Detailed accounts of criminal escapades and acts of violence have been recorded in every form from no-nonsense non-fiction to sensationalized works of fiction based on real life events and people.

    Whether they want to admit it or not, people love crime and violence…so long as it’s not happening to them, of course. It’s like a drug. A morbid, but enjoyable obsession that provides a unique high. Take a second to think about what stories usually headline the news shows and newspapers. It’s usually something to do with crime and violence. And as much as we shake our head and say “mm-mm-mm” while wanting to turn away, change the channel or put the newspaper down…we just can’t. We have to know what happened and even the newscaster’s warning that “the following may not be appropriate for all audiences,” doesn’t deter us. Instead, it only serves to fuel our fascination and cause us to turn up the volume on the TV, shush the kids, and scoot closer. Yes, I’m guilty of it too…this strange love for crime and violence. It entertains and it sells. Having been on both sides of the Crime & Violence coin, as both a reader and a writer, I can tell you that there is nothing like it. No substitute for this guilty pleasure.

    It’s this twisted attraction that inspired my debut novel, BAD INTENTIONS, Book One of the CITY HIGH Series. As a writer, one of the first cardinal rules I learned was: “write what you read,” and I routinely gorge myself on the crime thrillers. Can’t get enough of it. Books, movies, and TV shows.

    BAD INTENTIONS and the CITY HIGH series is a story built on the most basic and animalistic of principles: family and the protection of its members at any cost. It’s this code that serves as the catalyst for the BAD INTENTIONS storyline and is also the driving force for the novel’s main characters, the Harrell Family. Over the course of the CITY HIGH Series, the Harrells will have the limits of their loyalty pushed to the breaking point. This story will test and ultimately reaffirm the timeless saying: “Blood is thicker than water.”

    As readers indulge themselves in the CITY HIGH series, it’s a safe bet they will see many different literary influences, but definitely no duplication. BAD INTENTIONS and the CITY HIGH SERIES is about more than just the crime and violence featured within its pages, but at the same time, an avid connoisseur of crime thrillers won’t be left starving on an empty stomach either…


Bad Intentions (Book One) Summary:
Beneath the historical monuments and high-priced politics of the Nation’s Capital, exists a shadowed empire known as The Syndicate. Reigning supreme over this juggernaut is The Harrell Family, a clan of criminal royalty that oversees the city’s narcotics flow with the efficiency of a billion dollar corporation. Seated at the head of the table is Ezra Harrell, the Family's patriarch and mastermind behind The Syndicate. Under the guiding hand of the respected and feared cartel boss, The Syndicate has corrupted some of the city’s most influential hierarchy and completely reshaped the city’s criminal landscape; making The Syndicate the most untouchable criminal organization Washington DC has ever seen…

In the Harrell Family, nothing is more important than blood. Anything threatening their tightly knit unit is dealt with in a ferocious manner, absent of all hesitation or mercy. Their family creed of “Nothing Before Family” is more than just a mere catchphrase or punchline. For the Harrell Family, those three words represent an unwavering, unforgiving way of life…

A ruthless killer is stalking the Harrells, slowly and methodically hunting his way to the top of their family. As the clock ticks, Ezra Harrell must do everything in his extensive power to escape his way of life and move his family to a safe place before time runs out. Ezra fears for his family’s safety, but his chief concern is his son, Santea, the heir apparent to the Syndicate throne. Ezra refuses to allow his only child to follow in his footsteps down a bloody path he wished he’d never walked himself…

BAD INTENTIONS is book one of the CITY HIGH series, a multiple novel saga chronicling the rise, fall and redemption of the Harrell Family. The debut novel from Tyrone Eddins Jr. promises to transport the reader on an entertaining ride into the depths of an underworld kingdom where greed, deception and the raw lust for power threaten to destroy not just a single man, but an entire empire. 

About the Author:
For more information on Tyrone M. Eddins Jr., CEO & Founder of Scripted Visions Publishing Group, please visit


May 25, 2013


My dear bookhearts, I have to share a neat program that I finally downloaded onto my MacBook. **dramatic drumroll**

Calibre is an awesome free program for eBook management. And it's multi-platform! You can add or get eBooks, edit the metadata, convert eBook formats, read eBooks and even fetch news! Yes, you can download news from the internet and convert it to eBook format. Another great feature is that it syncs to your eReader making it convenient to add/remove files on your device. 

Once eBooks have been added to your Calibre library, it automatically sorts books by Authors, Languages, Series Name, Formats (epub, mobi, pdf, etc.), Publishers, Rating and Tags. Searching for a particular eBook among hundreds in your library is so much easier now!

Maybe you were like me and figured you didn't need an eBook management program. But bookhearts, let me tell you. If you've heard of it but never downloaded, do me a favor. Click here to open Calibre in a new browser window, watch the demo, then download it on your computer or laptop. Now. Go ahead...I'll wait.

May 24, 2013

First Lines Friday

First Lines Friday is a bookish meme hosted by Literary Marie of Precision Reviews. I encourage all of my fellow book bloggers and bookhearts to play along.
  • Grab your current read(s).
  • Share the first line(s).
  • Include the title and author.

"Waitresses are adept at reading body language. So are wives who've lived under the same roof as angry drunks. And I had been both, a wife for fourteen years and a waitress for almost four."
~ S.E.C.R.E.T. by L. Marie Adeline


May 23, 2013

May eMags

I am Living La Vida NOOK with these May eMags:

Essence ~ Flawless Beauty - Get Hot Hair, Glowing Skin, Sexy Nails

Ebony ~ Jill Scott on Being a Single Mom, Taking on Hollywood and Loving Her Life

The Writer ~ Facing Freelance

Rolling Stone ~ Joe Biden: The Rolling Stone Interview

Elle ~ The Stars Come Out For Adele - Women in Music!

Vogue ~ The Greatest Gatsby: Carey, Leo, Tobey, Dazzling 3-D and a Jay-Z Sound Track

Marie Claire ~ Big Beauty Issue

US Weekly ~ Kim Kardashian: You Call This Fat?

Jet ~ Lauren London: The Game Changer

MacLife ~  Health Apps 

Real Simple ~ Spend Smarter, Live Better: How To Do More With the Money You Have

Entertainment Weekly ~ Your Guide to the Best Tours, Festivals and Albums


May 21, 2013

Manuscript Found in Accra

"And to those who believe that adventures are dangerous, I say, try routine; that kills you far more quickly." ~ pg. 54

Manuscript Found in Accra is the latest novel from internationally known best-selling author Paulo Coelho. It is set in Jerusalem on July 14, 1099. A community of Christians, Arabs and Jews assemble to seek guidance of a Greek philosopher named Copt. He summoned the people of Jerusalem to ask questions as they await the invasion of crusaders. The townspeople have questions about fear, defeat, love, loyalty, success, faith and many more topics we experience as humans. The Copt answers the questions in a precise, beautiful way. Simple wisdom at its finest. 

Manuscript Found in Accra follows the tradition of The Alchemist and of Paulo Coelho's tweets. The parables are brief lessons full of wisdom and spiritual themes that will inspire readers and maybe spur a moment of reflection. It may be a short novel at less than 200 pages but it is meaningful and guaranteed to impact readers' lives.

"Therefore, Lord, give us this day our daily miracle. And forgive us if we are not always capable of recognizing it." ~ pg. 137

Manuscript Found in Accra has certainly made my Best Books of the year list. It is a book I will definitely re-read because the knowledge within applies to my everyday life and actually changed my perspective on a couple things. I'm glad I did not hesitate adding this book to my personal library for reading pleasure and as a life reference. If you thought The Alchemist was a life-changing book, then you will appreciate this profound read.

"Solitude is not the absence of Love, but its complement. If you are never alone, you cannot know yourself." ~ pgs. 29-30

Check out the video below of Paulo Coelho describing the book and how it is relevant to humans today. Then visit your local bookstore, library or digital book shop for a copy. Thank me later.

Title: Manuscript Found in Accra
Author: Paulo Coelho
Published: April 2013 (English Translation)
Pages: 190
Edition:  Hardcover
Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥


May 19, 2013

Series Sunday: A House Divided

(Reverend Curtis Black #10)

Series Sunday is a bookish meme hosted by Literary Marie of Precision Reviews. I encourage all of my fellow book bloggers and bookhearts to play along.
  • Read an installment of a series.
  • Share your review/recommendation below.
  • Include the title, author and series name.

"Life would never be the same, and he'd be ruined." ~ pg. 56

My Series Sunday pick is A House Divided, the tenth installment of the Reverend Curtis Black series by Kimberla Lawson Roby. Eighteen-year-old Matthew and his girlfriend Racquel are expecting their first baby together. Even though his parents, Reverend Curtis and First Lady Charlotte, are disappointed in their son's life choices, they are excited and ready for the arrival of their first grandchild. But getting along with the in-laws is difficult. Charlotte cannot stand Racquel's mother and the feeling is mutual. When their tension explodes into a physical altercation, Racquel goes into premature labor because of the stress. Of course, Charlotte is the one everyone blames.

Meanwhile Curtis is confronted by a mysterious person from his past. Cryptic phone calls and threatening letters start rolling in. Whatever the secret is, he cannot afford to let it become public information.

If you've kept up-to-date on the Reverend Curtis Black series, you expect this latest installment to be full of drama, scandal and twists. Well you will not be disappointed. There were a few moments where my jaw literally dropped while reading. I didn't think this family had more scandalous skeletons in the closet but behold, they came falling out in A House Divided. 

The novel is fast-paced. I felt like I was on a train ride going full speed while reading. I buckled up at the first page and held on to the seat until the last page. Well written, Kimberla.

Title: A House Divided
Author: Kimberla Lawson Roby
Published: May 2013
Pages: 324
Edition: Hardcover
Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥


May 15, 2013

The Great Gatsby

I first read The Great Gatsby in middle school. As a young girl, I didn't appreciate its lessons of the great American dream. So when news of a new movie releasing hit, I knew I had to re-read this classic. Here's why:
  • Themes: Greed, lust, hedonism, corruption, freedom and social classes are explored. These themes are as prominent today as they were in the Jazz Age.
  • Movie Adaptation: I always like to read the book before watching the movie adaptation to see how it measures up. I have high hopes for Baz Lurhmann's film with a soundtrack produced by Jay-Z.
  • Summer Setting: The book takes place in a hot humid summer. Pool and lawn parties. Sundresses. Sailing boats. There is no better book to ring in the warmer seasons.
  • Read with Eyes & Mind of a Bibliophile: When I read The Great Gatsby before, I just wanted to finish so I could write my book report and turn in the assignment on time. But now as a matured reader, I can appreciate the character development, understand the plot and be affected by the tragic ending. This classic deserves to be a great American novel.

My official opinion of Baz Luhrmann's movie is two hearts up. I liked it. I enjoy the soundtrack and will likely play it all summer. Leo is a great actor in any role and he played Jay Gatsby well. The main character, Nick, was played by an actor I am not familiar with, but he held his own. The story the classic book. But to see the costumes and Roaring Twenties/Jazz Age style was what I liked best. Ain't no party like a 3D Gatsby party!

Title: The Great Gatsby
Author: F. Scott Fitzgerald
Published: April 1925 & May 2013
Pages: 134
Edition: eBook
Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥


May 14, 2013

I Would Die 4 U


Prince. The Symbol Formerly Known as Prince. The Purple Rain god. The Creator of Sexual/Spiritual Music.

Journalist and TV personality Touré uses in-depth research and interviews with former girlfriends, band members, and musicologists to decipher Prince's music and its influence on Generation X.

I Would Die 4 U: Why Prince Became an Icon is not a tell-all or biography. It is best defined as an unauthorized analysis of Prince and his music through research.

Title: I Would Die 4 U: Why Prince Became an Icon
Author: Touré
Published: March 2013
Pages: 176
Edition: Hardcover
Rating: ♥♥♥


May 12, 2013

Series Sunday: Sookie Stackhouse/True Blood

(Sookie Stackhouse #13 and #14)

Series Sunday is a bookish meme hosted by Literary Marie of Precision Reviews. I encourage all of my fellow book bloggers and bookhearts to play along.
  • Read an installment of a series.
  • Share your review/recommendation below.
  • Include the title, author and series name. 

My Series Sunday pick is Dead Ever After, the final book in the Sookie Stackhouse/True Blood series by Charlaine Harris. This book marks the end of the popular series and was just published on May 7. But don't worry, True Blood fans! The TV series spawned from the book series will not end. And as a bonus to fans, After Dead: What Came Next in the World of Sookie Stackhouse will release on October 29.


May 10, 2013

First Lines Friday + Free PDF

First Lines Friday is a bookish meme hosted by Literary Marie of Precision Reviews. I encourage all of my fellow book bloggers and bookhearts to play along.
  • Grab your current read(s).
  • Share the first line(s).
  • Include the title and author.

"The publication of this extraordinary autobiography provides a rare opportunity to see behind the carefully orchestrated distortions of fact concerning the life and motivations of Assata Shakur."
~ Assata Shakur: An Autobiography is available in full PDF for FREE. 


May 7, 2013

Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald

"We have never been what we seemed." ~ pg.13

Who is Zelda Fitzgerald? Born Zelda Sayre in Montgomery, Alabama in July 1900, she was an American novelist and 1920s icon. The wife of F. Scott Fitzgerald was nicknamed "the first American Flapper." She was the other half of the famous Jazz Age/Roaring Twenties celebrity couple. On the outside, the Fitzgeralds' marriage seemed golden. But behind doors, it was full of the harsh realities of alcoholism, lost identities, mental illness, infidelity and literary rivalry.

"Happily, happily foreverafterward—the best we could." ~ Zelda Sayre Fitzgerald

The beautiful southern belle first met Scott in 1918. They fell in love hard and fast. After F. Scott sold his first novel, This Side of Paradise, to Scribner's Zelda boarded a train north and married him. Their life became a wild train ride. From New York to Hollywood to Paris, the legendary couple lived a glamorous, yet doomed life. But married life for the famous miscreants wasn't always glamorous "Gatsby-like" parties, bottomless champagne, tuxedos and sparkling gowns. Real life kicked in and along with it, conflict between the Fitzgeralds. Women's roles in marriage was quite different than modern-day. But even then, Zelda had a tough time adjusting to being a dedicated housewife and not a career woman. Zelda was among the first to read F. Scott Fitzgerald's writing. But did you know she was often the author behind articles with only F. Scott's Fitzgerald's name in the byline? This is just one of the many things told in this novel.

F. Scott, Zelda & daughter Scottie
Author Therese Anne Fowler tells Zelda Fitzgerald's story the way Zelda herself might have told it. It is evident through the novel that the author has respect and affection for both Scott and Zelda. If you are a writer, you know that fiction is based on real people. Z takes readers on an imaginary journey through Zelda's life and thoughts. In the Acknowledgments, the author says this novel is an attempt to imagine what it was like to be Zelda Sayre Fitzgerald. The research is evident in passages that reflect known facts of the Fitzgeralds. Yet it has a personal spin to it that newspapers, media and gathered correspondence could not portray. Well done, Therese Anne Fowler. Well done.

Because facts are woven into imagination through words, there were moments where the story seemed to drag. However, it was often the case where back story was necessary to continue into the future of the plot. Z is an exceptional novel to read, especially while re-reading The Great Gatsby or watching the new movie which releases this Friday, May 10. Z is 380 pages of fiction based on reality that any Fitzgerald or classic literature fan will enjoy.

DISCLAIMER: This book was received directly from the publisher for review purposes only. In no way does it influence my review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Title: Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald
Author: Therese Anne Fowler
Published: March 2013
Pages: 380
Edition: Galley
Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥


May 6, 2013

I Can Barely Take Care of Myself

"I'm just going to come out and say it: this is the real reason lots of people end up changing their minds and having kids." ~ pg. 147

When asked why I don't have children yet, my answer is always "I can barely take care of myself." So when I saw this title and read a blurb of this book, I knew immediately that I had to read it. I already knew the author and I had a connection. I would "get" whatever Jen Kirkman was trying to say.

I Can Barely Take Care of Myself is a hilarious original debut from television writer and stand-up comedian Jen Kirkman. You may recognize her from regular appearances on Chelsea Lately and After Lately. Her first published book is comprised of funny detailed stories of her real life without kids.

This book is recommended to any woman who is child-free by choice. (Put your hands up!) This book should be read if you've ever rolled your eyes when asked, "But who will take care of you when you get old?" It is especially for those who sarcastically thanked every person who said, "But you'd be such a good mom!" (Or am I the only person who had such reactions to these questions/comments?) This book is not just for other women who choose to live child-free. It is for anyone whose life decisions have been questioned.

Author/comedian Jen Kirkman dedicated this book to her parents for "being so overprotective that I never got pregnant as a teenager." Although my parents were not overprotective, I thank them for being so trusting that I never got pregnant as a teenager and could therefore enjoy this funny good read.

Check out Jen Kirkman's appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno below. Then grab a copy of I Can Barely Take Care of Myself. Read it, relate to it, laugh through it.

DISCLAIMER: This book was received directly from the publisher for review purposes only. In no way does it influence my review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Title: I Can Barely Take Care of Myself: Tales From a Happy Life Without Kids
Author: Jen Kirkman
Published: April 2013
Pages: 226
Edition: Galley
Rating: ♥♥♥♥


Jackie Robinson #42

I Never Had it Made: An Autobiography of Jackie Robinson


I Never Had It Made: An Autobiography of Jackie Robinson

I Never Had it Made is Robinson's own candid, hard-hitting account of what it took to become the first black man in history to play in the major leagues. Read the book and watch the movie 42. I saw the movie yesterday with my Dad—a big baseball fan who also played baseball. We both enjoyed the film of how Jackie Robinson broke the racial barrier and changed sports forever. If you haven't seen 42 yet, go see it! The trailer is below. Brooklyn Dodgers, we go hard!