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review 2018-03-12 15:45
All the Beautiful Girls - Elizabeth J. Church


When I first started reading this book, I thought it was more historical fiction, like Ruby Wilde was real. Especially what with all the name dropping, the mention of timely events and what Ruby was doing during them and all the Vegas hotspots.

It took a while into it before I realized it was just "true fiction". That word "just" in no way is meant to take away from this story.

I followed Ruby's (Lily's) journey through her highs and lows and had a great time! Well, I still want to kick that Spaniard's A double S though. What an A$$hole!! I think I just seethed up again at the mention of him. Grrr!

This was true entertainment that had me mesmerized.

Thanks to Random House Ballantine and Net Galley for providing me with a free e-galley in exchange for an honest, unbiased review.
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text 2018-03-12 07:53
Review: All the Beautiful Girls
All the Beautiful Girls - Elizabeth J. Church

We meet Lily, an 8-year-old girl who lost her family.  She moves in with her Aunt Tate and Uncle Miles.  Lily reveals that Uncle Miles is molesting her.  She tries to run away at 9 but her uncle says not to do it again because it will kill her aunt Tate. Lily’s classmates give her a hamster but Aunt Tate doesn’t like rodents so Uncle Miles breaks the hamster's neck. Lily spends the night with her best friend, Beverly Ann and is ready to spill the beans on what her uncle is doing to her but she’s afraid of losing her best friend.


  Lily loves to dance so when she graduates high school, she leaves Kansas for the bright lights of Vegas.  She also had become friends with The Aviator...   Lily also found out the accident that killed her family was caused by her father driving the wrong way on a highway and the Aviator took the blame for it.  Lily became a showgirl and was loving so she changed her name to Ruby Wilde.  Ruby was also doing drugs... like speed.  She couldn't work the night that MLK was shot and killed.


I loved all the characters especially, Lily, The Aviator, his boyfriend Jack and especially Lily’s daughter, Sloane. Highly recommend this book






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review 2018-01-26 00:07
A Brief History of Seventh-day Adventists (Adventist Heritage Series)
A Brief History of Seventh-Day Adventists (Adventist heritage series) - George R. Knight

Condensing over 170 years of history of a religious movement and denomination into a readable 156-page book seems daunting and the recipe for a sketchy history.  Yet George R. Knight, one of the foremost historians of the Seventh-day Adventist church, produced a very readable summary of the Sabbatarian Adventism in A Brief History of Seventh-day Adventists that is meant for an Adventist audience of both long-time members and those new.


Knight divides the book into 8 chapters that focus on different eras starting with the pre-Great Disappointment Millerite Roots of Seventh-day Adventists and with the maturity of the Church from 1955 to the present day with its achievements and challenges.  Focusing on high-points, both good and bad, and trends in each “historical” era, Knight gives the reader a barebones yet informative look at history and those who influenced the Church on both large and small ways.  Given the audience Knight is writing for, the book is filled with Adventist nomenclature but Knight ensures that newer members of the Church have an understanding of the terminology that is even helpful for those that have been Adventists all their lives.


If one is looking for an in-depth look at doctrinal developments and how the Church was structurally organized, this is not the book.  While both elements are discussed as part of the overall history, Knight makes it clear at the beginning of the book that those looking for emphasis on either need to turn to the other two book of the “Adventist Heritage Series”, A Search for Identity and Organizing for Mission and Growth.  Yet this book is an excellent first read to understand how each of those specific topics tie into the history of the Church in an overall scope.


A Brief History of Seventh-day Adventists does not pretend to be more than it is.  George R. Knight gives the reader an overview of the history of Sabbatarian Adventism in a very readable and quick format.  However, Knight does not leave those readers wanting more information hanging as at the end of each chapter he provides numerous books that go more in-depth in relation to the topics covered.  This is a highly recommended book for Seventh-day Adventists interested in understanding how the Church came about.

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review 2018-01-10 03:24
Sweet read, love conquers the past
First Street Church Romances: Love's Cure (Kindle Worlds Novella) (Sweet Grove Beginnings Book 4) - Emily Murdoch

A quick sweet story that brings two wounded souls together. Mariana's blindness has made her angry for most of her life. Gerald's one mistake follows him to Sweet Grove. Her need for independence from her family is encouraged by Gerald. Feelings grow fast with the help of a little faith. I enjoyed the characters and this small town as it grows.

I received a copy of this story as a gift, and this is my unsolicited review.

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review 2018-01-04 15:12
Rise of the Necrofauna by Britt Wray
Rise of the Necrofauna: The Science, Ethics, and Risks of De-Extinction - George Earl Church,Britt Wray

I spent quite a lot of this book wondering why I was reading it. A lot of its arguments felt presented back-to-front and it fell to two stars after it quoted the Bible. Yes, the science discussed is interesting but a reasonable argument  for wanting to bring back extinct mammoths in some form wasn't presented until a hundred or so pages in. Until that point I just couldn't understand why someone would think that bringing back a species that hasn't been around for 4000 years and died out quite naturally had a rationale. (It has to do with temperature regulation of the steppe and that environment actually being significantly colder with herd animals trampling the snow – good news for the methane trapped in the arctic permafrost). Pleistocene Park is a cool concept that I may have to look into more, although it's entirely possible that science behind it amounts to mostly wishful thinking.


Otherwise I feel that a quotation by Tom Gilbert about de-extinction that Wray used on page 77 was very much apropos:

"I think it is a very cool project technologically, but most of the environmental reasons people use to justify why we should do it are silly or wrong."

And some of them just weren't very compelling, or didn't seem to have been well thought out. Sure, 150 years is a very short period of time, but look at how the rural/urban landscape has changed in that time. What's the point of trying to bring something back if it'll just die out again? It's a waste of resources. People already complain about pigeons, so why would passenger pigeons be any different?


That said, Wray's conclusion is quite reasonable:

"I think our biggest challenge, if we are to pursue it fully and with increasing fervor, is to somehow couple de-extinction with improved strategies to overcome the larger structural issues that endanger species in the wild. Without expanding on the hard work that conservationists, environmentalists, and some politicians have been doing for decades, de-extinction risks being done in vain."

So yeah, the science is cool and should be pursued because of its potential impact on other areas of conservation, but I remain unconvinced in general.

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