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text 2018-01-03 02:48
I Won 3 Audiobooks on Audible!!

I won 3 audible audiobook giveaways from J. S. Bailey.


1. Servant (The Chronicles of Servitude, #1)

2. Sacrifice (The Chronicles of Servitude, #2)

3. Ordinary Souls


+ I won 1-3 in the Servitude series previously!

Surrender (The Chronicles of Servitude, #3)




I am very grateful to win this. I haven't been a member on Audible for a while and I've missed being able to get books on there. The reason we stopped is of course because of funds, like usual! It is one of the things we keep saying we're going to do again, but we keep forgetting.


This is the second giveaway for her books that I have won.I entered a giveaway for the same books a while ago and actually won the first 3 books in her Servitude series for my ereader.




Previous to winning these giveaways, I met J.S Bailey at The Half Priced Bookstore and bought a physical copy of Ordinary Souls from her.


I'm excited to get to them in the new year.




I feel bad because I've won two times, plus I've bought 1 book and I've yet to read any. It has just been a really hectic time and I am a mood reader. My husband is also interested in reading them, and now he'll be even more happy, because he mostly uses audiobooks!



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review 2017-10-17 00:00
The Case of the Missing Servant
The Case of the Missing Servant - Tarquin Hall My spouse thought I should read this book. It was a dead-tree book, but interesting, none the less. The interest in this book is that it is written about an Indian private detective, i.e. a private detective living in the country of India. Which is to say, this book is not at all like the books about Joe Leaphorn and Jim Chee, who are "Indian" private detectives living in the Four Corners area of the U.S.A. Now days, we refer to those "Indians" as being "Native Americans". Perhaps "Indigenous Americans" would be a better term, given that I'm a Native American by dint of having been born here. But I digress. Anyway, the interest for my spouse, was to learn something about the culture of India.

So, Vish Puri, aka "Chubby", is a private detective in India. He is hired to find some dirt on the potential son-in-law of a very rich guy. Obviously, the rich guy doesn't want him for a son-in-law. Then, a rich and powerful lawyer gets into a bit of trouble and hopes Vish will bail him out. It seems that he has been accused of being responsible for the rape and murder of a young woman who had been a servant in his household. The murder rap came some months after the body had been found. The servant girl went missing about the same time. It's not completely clear, however, that the body is actually that of the missing servant. It's just a similar size and shape...or something.

So, Vish, is to figure out whether or not the body is the missing servant, or if the girl is actually out somewhere hiding among the billion folks in India's hinterlands. It doesn't help that no one really knows the girl's origins, or anything much more about her than her first name. They don't even have a decent picture. But Vish, who runs The Most Private Investigator, and in his estimation, India's greatest detective, head and shoulders above lesser lights such as Sherlock Holmes, and his gang of helpers, Handbrake, Doorstop, Facecream, etc. pursue all leads ruthlessly and eventually figure out what's important to know about the prospective bridegroom and the missing servant girl. Quite fun!
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review 2017-08-16 16:43
Review: Love, Special Delivery by Melinda Curtis
Love, Special Delivery (A Harmony Valley Novel) - Melinda Curtis

The first half of the book is a solid 3 stars, but it falls apart in the second half. The plot moppets (Maddie's sister and Ben's godchild) grated on my nerves and sucked a lot of enjoyment from reading Maddie and Ben's story. And this is the second book I read this week that did not resolve the paternity question that is the heart of the hero's motivation - so frustrating!


Maddie is an okay heroine, although her constant smiling drove me up the wall. She has the stereotypical tragic back story, a little OTT for my taste. Her mother abandoned her and her younger sister to their grandparents, her grandmother died of cancer, her grandfather died from complications due to mismanaged diabetes and dementia, her sister is a cancer survivor, and since she had to take care of her younger sister after all that death, she never went to college and instead became a postal worker. She was given the promotion of postmaster in Harmony Valley, her grandfather's old post office that hasn't been open in more than a decade. The younger sister is a piece of work, closing in on 18 going on 8.


Ben's story isn't puppies and rainbows either. He left a fire station in Oakland, CA to move with his dying dad and mother to Harmony Valley so that his dad can finish out the 10 months left for a full retirement and benefits. Dad is the new fire chief, Ben is regulated to firefighter and to cover for dad's less than awesome health in front of the council and mayor. Oh and he is the guardian of a bratty seven year old after the brat's mother (and Ben's colleague) died in the line of firefighting duty. He is searching for said brat's father (named John Smith on the birth certificate) but there might be a chance the brat's his daughter. His mother "naps" a lot and the brat leaves the house to explore the town and find critters of the animal variety to bring home. Ben just wants to find the brat's dad, get his own dad safely to retirement, then leave this crap town for good and become a fire investigator.


Needless to say, I didn't warm to anybody in this book and I actively hated the sister and godchild/possible daughter by the end. Maddie and Ben love being in denial about their lives and constant crappy decision making. The arsonist villain got off with a slap on the wrist (excuse me "psychological evaluation") due to his advanced age. I have no interest in continuing reading this series.

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review 2017-03-30 02:37
Servant of the Underworld by Aliette de Bodard
Servant of the Underworld - Aliette de Bodard

Series: Obsidian and Blood #1


Servant of the Underworld is a fantasy mystery novel set in the Aztec Empire in the 15th century. Overall I liked it, but it was more of an intellectual liking than an emotional one. The concept of reading a Mesoamerican fantasy novel was interesting, but writing in a first-person POV distanced me from the narrative rather than engrossed me in it. It’s like I kept forgetting who was doing the talking, even though after a while I got used to the fact that it was Acatl. I’m not saying he had no personality, but I didn’t feel much of it when I was looking through his eyes. First-person POVs are tricky, and I don’t think this one entirely worked for me. Plus there was lots of sacrificial blood magic although it wasn’t too graphic.


Even though we’re introduced to the mystery (and the crime scene) almost immediately, it still felt like the book took a while to get going and draw me into the story. Things did finally start to pick up about a quarter of the way through. Anyway, if you want to try a mystery story in a different fantasy setting, you might want to check this one out. I plan on checking out the sequels (it’s part of a trilogy).

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review 2016-11-02 18:17
A Servant Like Jesus (Sea Kids #4) by Lee Ann Mancini
A Servant Like Jesus (Softcover) - Lee Ann Mancini

Charlie is a shy kid who hides behind the cleanup sink at school. However, after his teacher asks him to be her helper, he springs into action when the fire coral stings his friend Bernie. Charlie goes to bed a little bit early because he wants to make sure he gets a goodnight's sleep. He wants to be a good helper for Miss Stella. He had decided that it was way more fun to be a helper than to hide behind a sink! Before he falls asleep, Charlie prays, "Dear Jesus, thank you for my great first day of school, and thank you for my mommy and daddy, all my new friends and for Miss Stella. Help me to always help others. Amen." Charlie learns he can overcome his shyness and be a servant like Jesus.




Continuing on with my review of this series as the books are released. Today I am looking at A Servant Like Jesus, Book 4 of Mancini's award winning Adventures Of The Sea Kids series. If you're just now discovering these empowering and vividly illustrated books for young readers, I will try to remember to link my reviews for the earlier books down below. 


In this installment, Charlie the Crab is experiencing his first day of school and his nerves and shyness are getting the best of him. While the other sea kids play and learn, Charlie prefers to hide behind the classroom clean up sink. Charlie's teacher, Stella Starfish, hoping to coax Charlie out of hiding, asks him if he'd be willing to be her classroom helper. Charlie is ecstatic!


Charlie's eyes grew huge. He wiped his tears and said, "I can see all around with my crab eyes. I have great claws for carrying things, and though I only have six legs instead of eight, I can move really fast! Crabs can move sideways too. I help my mommy all the time! I'd love to be your helper, Miss Stella."


Charlie's unique abilities and honest desire to be helpful come in quite handy during a class field trip to a local coral reef bed. One of Charlie's classmates gets stung by a branch of fire coral but thanks to Charlie's quick actions, his fellow student is rushed to first aid in time to alleviate the pain pretty quickly without too much serious injury to the limb. Charlie immediately gives up a prayer of thanks that he was able to push through his shyness and get his friend medical attention in time! 


What makes this series so warm and lovely to read to or with a child are all the wonderful, spirit-strengthening messages and morals Mancini infuses into these simple stories. Just with this story alone, Mancini encourages her young readers to embrace their unique gifts and abilities, teaching them to see that each person plays a valuable role in making this world as a whole a better place. Charlie the Crab learns to have confidence in himself and his abilities and he loves the sense of joy he finds in embracing a life of serving / helping others. A message that never tarnishes!


Below is just a sampling of this installment's gorgeous illustrations! :




FTC Disclaimer: BookCrash.com & GLM Publishing kindly provided me with a complimentary copy of this book with a request that I might check it out and share my thoughts. The opinions above are entirely my own. 




My reviews for the previous books in this series:


Fast Freddy (Sea Kids #1)


What A Bragger! (Sea Kids #2)


I'm Not Afraid (Sea Kids #3)



And if you liked all these, there's a fifth in the series, God's Gift, that was just recently released. I haven't had a chance to read / review it yet but hope to have a review for you soon! 

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