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The Tragedy Paper

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Tim Macbeth is a 17-year-old albino and a recent transfer to the prestigious Irving School, where the motto is, “Enter here to be and find a friend.” Tim does not expect to find a friend; all he really wants to do is escape his senior year unnoticed. Despite his efforts to blend into the background, he finds himself falling for the quintessential “it” girl, Vanessa Sheller, girlfriend of Irving’s most popular boy. To Tim’s surprise, Vanessa is into him, too, and she can kiss her social status goodbye if anyone finds out. Tim and Vanessa enter into a clandestine relationship, but looming over them is the Tragedy Paper, Irving’s version of a senior year thesis, assigned by the school’s least forgiving teacher.The story unfolds from two alternating viewpoints: Tim, the tragic, love-struck figure, and Duncan, a current senior, who uncovers the truth behind Tim and Vanessa’s story and will consequently produce the greatest Tragedy Paper in Irving’s history
Altar Ego: Becoming Who God Says You Are

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I read Altar Ego, in exchange for review from BookSneeze. The book was written by Craig Groeschel and published by Zondervan.I got the book a few days ago, in print format. The book discusses finding your Godly identity. People have identities, based on own and others' perceptions, but that's not what God called us to be. The book teaches us how to put on the Altar our false identities and selfish motives (p. 9). The book teaches us to live for God versus living for people. WE do not have to be defined by our past. Page 11 says I am who God says I am. God will give us a new name and a renewed purpose. God will give us freedom, grace, love, and a future. We have to change our thinking. Cast away lies, insecurities, and outdated perceptions. It won't be easy, but nothing is impossible through Jesus. Other highlights:God's power is bigger than your pastNo habit is too big for GodWhat's true now don't have to be true later. To learn who i am, i've had to learn who i am not. you are not what others think about you. you are not your past. you are not what you did. you are who God says you are.God will take one of your greatest weaknesses and turn it into one of your greatest strengths. Definitely can see how this applies to me. went from sex addict to celibate. from horrible mama to semi-decent motherIf you ever felt like a failure as a mom, seek the God of all and own it when he calls you great and Godly Mom.How I chose this book:I got an email from Booksneeze about upcoming releases. I was not done with the last book and review. As soon as I read the description of Altar Ego, I wanted this book immediately. I quickly finished the other book, wrote the review, and requested Altar Ego. The description talked about finding our identities in the Lord, versus being identified by self and others. I am working on reading more books, which can help me grow in the Lord, versus fiction. I love a good fiction book, but that was not what I needed (or need) right now. I need God. I have a past. God can help me heal past my past. The book was wonderful. Definitely Glad this is a hardback because I can write in it. I have highlighted passages and my labels (my own and others). Some labels included: selfish, antisocial, cheap, honest, reliable, bitch, not likeable, insecure, anal, dummy, smart, promiscuous. Some of these labels do not define me any more, but people still see me as the old me, versus the new me. I was a sex addict. I am now celibate. Some people still see me as the promiscuous one. Don't understand how I went from a lot of sex to no sex. My journey was not for them, but for me to grow. I think as you grow and change, you have to let things and people go. Not everyone can travel with you, as you progress through life. I loved reading this book. I am used to reviewing e-books, so I was taking notes, as I went along. Then something hit me, this is my book--my paperback book-I can mark, highlight, and write notes in the book. The book is excellent. I read over 50 pages since I got the book. Definitely what I am needing right now.
Time Control: How to Stop Time Destroyers, Eliminate Procrastination, Create an Effective Schedule and Reclaim Your Life

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I read Time Control, in exchange for honest review from Empowerment Nation. The book was written by Justin Byers and published by Empowerment Nation. First, the first sentence kind of irritated the grad student in me. I wanted to edit the sentence APA style (it, there, that). The second sentence is a little lengthy, which can lead to confusion. Other than that, people are drained by work, kids, and finding time for self. People also want to improve productivity and accomplish dreams, but first, we need to identify goals, schedule time to complete goals, and make a commitment to achieve goals. Goals also require a change. We have to identify goals, in addition to monitoring and identifying progress. We also have to find time to work on and complete goals. We also need to be honest with self, when accomplishing goals. Next, we need to identify why we want to accomplish each goal. Specify each goal, with details. For example, the book discussed finding a new home versus finding a better living situation. Next, the book discussed time destroyers. Some of mine included procrastination, pessimism, and not having a plan to tackle large tasks. I need to break goals into smaller tasks, schedule time to complete tasks, and focus on one task at a time. I am also subject to time distortion, or over estimating time needed to complete a task. I also rush into tasks without thinking. Finally, the book provides tips for being more productive. The tips include: Plan and schedule all tasks, including small, moderate, and large. Track daily activities to determine time wasters. Identify distractions (television, websites, online gaming, etc). Group and double up tasksset aside time blocks to workuse a friend as an accountability partnerreward self for achieving goalsset aside a dedicated work spacedon't let failures get to youAttempt tasks, even if you do a bad joblimit negative emotions. remind self of past successesget sleep and rest.
The Joy of Sexus: Lust, Love, and Longing in the Ancient World

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I reviewed the Joy of Sexus by Vicki Leon, in exchange for review from Netgalley. The book was published by Walker and Company. The book discussed the history of sex throughout the ages. I enjoyed reading about the different aphrodisiacs and anti-potency remedies. Some of the aphrodisiacs included mandrake roots, satyrion, red coral, and wormwood. People also used herbal potions and plants; amulets and rubs; and also inserted hair, excretions, and nail clippings to improve potency. On the other hand, sometimes people wanted to lower their mate's sex drive by using hippo forehead; mouse dung; wine, in which a mullet has drowned in; or male urine in which a lizard was killed. The book was an interesting read. I loved reading it. Definitely am thinking about buying a print edition.
Baby Bowl: Home-Cooked Meals for Happy, Healthy Babies and Toddlers

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I read Baby Bowl, in exchange for honest review from Edelweiss. The book was written by Kim McCosker and published by Atria Books.Offers ways to cook and make homemade baby food. I have read the 4 ingredients series from McCosker and love her. Next, I love the food characters towards the beginning of the book. The characters have names, with a list of their benefits. For example, Avocado is a source of protein and Banana is a source of fiber. McCosker also provides a list of kitchen tools and preparation methods needed to make baby food with. The author also discusses storage methods for fridge and freezer, along with use within time frames. She also discusses food allergies, reflux, gerd, intolerance, and the right time to offer certain foods like nuts and honey. I enjoyed the information more than the recipes. One of the recipes I did like was the Apple Cream--made with Boobie Liquor, rice cereal, and an apple. I have made something similar but I used jarred baby food. The added boobie liquor also keeps people from eating the baby's food out the fridge :-). All of the recipes are easy to make and healthy for the baby. I loved this book.
Mind of Her Own

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I read Mind of her own, in exchange for honest review from Tyndale Blog Network. The book was written by Diana Desire Brandmeyer and published by Tyndale House Publishers Inc.The book is about Louisa, who develops a case of amnesia after a knock to the head by a George Foreman Grill. (which is why I chose the book. The description was amazing). She can't remember her name or her life, with three kids.The book opens as Louisa is reading a romance novel, maybe she reading a steamy love scene. Anyway, she is entranced in the book, and jolted back to reality, when the kids start fighting and screaming. Nothing like children to mess up a little tranquility. :-) The scene continues as mama tries to diffuse the situation, with a smart-mouthed child too. Louisa is also in a relationship with Collin and they are currently not speaking or sleeping in the same bed because of a fight. This is just the beginning, in addition to a headache and an annoying grandma :-)I definitely felt Louisa's pain--the kids, annoying relatives, stay-at-home mom--the frustration--the need for a quick break. The book was a great read. Will continue to read until it expires.
4 Ingredients One Pot, One Bowl: Rediscover the Wonders of Simple, Home-Cooked Meals

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Finally, I read 4 Ingredients. One Pot, One bowl, in exchange for review from Edelweiss. The book was also published by McCosker and published by Atria Books. Once again, McCosker brings her simple cooking style into another cookbook. The recipes range from homemade lemon butter (never thought about lemon butter being this easy) to little cheddar pies. The book has quiches, sammies, bread bowls, and sloppy joes. Loved this book.
4 Ingredients Christmas: Recipes for a Simply Yummy Holiday

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I also read 4 Ingredients Christmas, in exchange for honest review from Edelweiss. The book was also written by Kim McCosker and Published by Atria Books. First, things first, the graphics were colorful, vibrant, and amazing. The first recipe, which stood out was the first recipe. The Reindeer Dust-simple, 3 ingredients, no cooking required, edible, and a decorative object to sprinkle on the lawn. The rest of the recipes require minimal ingredients and simple to make, like Almond Bread and Bacon and Avocado Bruschetta. The picture of the Bruschetta was simply divine. I also enjoyed the ham quiches, with the ham as the cup. You simply cook the quiches in muffin tins, but first lining each cup with a slice of ham. The brie and nut mixture was interesting enough to try. The cheese board requires no cooking, just preparation. I wonder if that would work with bacon. Ooohh the watermelon and feta bites. :-) I love simple cooking. I am a big fan of McCosker's simple cooking style.
Amidst Traffic (Short Stories)

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I read Amidst Traffic, in exchange for review by Michel Sauret. The book was published by One Way Street Productions. I received the paperback from Sauret. I also have the Kindle version and the Smashwords copy, I got on my own, so I can read it on my e-readers and the Kindle, of course. About the Author: paraphased from the back of the bookSauret, is an indie author, who was born in Rome, Italy. Sauret graduated from University of Pittsburgh English writing department. He published "Breathing God", his first novel at 18. He also served as a public affairs specialist and journalist for the United States Army since 2004. Sauret also has won several awards, including Army Journalist of the year in 2008. He also was featured in the Northside Chronicle recently, but I could not find the article online. My thoughts:The book is a collection of short stories. First, I liked the coding at the beginning of the book which signified language, violence, or sexual references. The codes were the first thing, which stood out. I wanted to incorporate something similar into my next poetry book, whenever that may be. I loved the stories from Eli and his strange dream in Three Straws. I also loved Voice with a Reason. Trevor's story was emotional and intense. Voice with a Reason details the story of Trevor, voices in his head, and a bank robbery. I was entranced from beginning to end, and the end was not what I was expecting, neither was the middle. Another good story was Blessed are the War People. The story was about Myron, a military journalist, heading to Iraq. He had his camera and ammunition, ready to work, yet getting angry at a woman at the airport. Myron also got angry at a few soldiers, but with the power of Christ, he forgave them. Though, Myron was in a war-torn country, he recognized the power of God and recognizing the enemy within ourselves. He seemed to be passive. I saw part of myself in him. Being angry on the inside and not doing anything about it, until it builds up. The stories were descriptive, graphic, and detailed. Definitely would want to see this book in audio format. Next, I loved the cover. It was simply beautiful.
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