Saturday, January 16, 2016

A review of The Whole Coconut Cookbook by Nathalie Fraise

The Whole Coconut Cookbook: Vibrant Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free Recipes Featuring Nature's Most Versatile Ingredient

The Whole Coconut Cookbook: Vibrant Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free Recipes Featuring Nature's Most Versatile Ingredient

How excited I was to see a cookbook from one of my favourite publishers, featuring one of my favourite foods! Coconut is rightly known as a superfood! It is packed with nutrients and can help with a variety of health issues. I know personally it will help counteract my fungal allergies as well as my tooth problems. Unlike all nuts, seeds, legumes and grains, coconuts do not contain phytic acid which is what causes mineral deficiences and in the end, tooth and bone decay! Needless to say, I love coconuts and wish I lived in the tropics in order to have better access to them! 
 This little cookbook would make the perfect addition to your library or collection. It would also be perfect in a gift basket for a wedding or shower! It is the perfect size for giving as a gift. It is also beautiful to look at and would make a sweet coffee table book. However, I can assume that it will mostly take precedence in the kitchen where you will be using it daily! Featured in this cookbook are all types of recipes, from soups and curries to desserts and snacks! You will not be disappointed. 
I received this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion. 
More about the book below:
This beautiful and inspiring recipe collection helps you incorporate nature’s perfect superfood—the coconut—into your everyday cooking. From tangy coconut yogurt for breakfast to creamy coconut curry for dinner, The Whole Coconut Cookbook showcases infinite ways to enjoy this nutrition-packed fruit.    

With all of their creamy goodness and adaptability, coconuts are an indispensable ingredient in many recipes, from smoothies and curries to cakes and salads. Moreover, they are an incredible superfood, providing essential nutrients and healthy fats in recipes that are naturally gluten-free and dairy-free. In The Whole Coconut Cookbook, this amazing fruit is celebrated in all its glory, from the familiar coconut water, coconut oil, and sugar, to creamy coconut milk and coconut aminos. These ingredients shine in delicious recipes like Coconut, Ginger, and Cilantro Mussels; Coconut Sesame Noodles with Baby Bok Choy and Tamarind Dressing; Spicy Coconut Chips; and Coconut Orange Cookies. With a primer on the different parts of the fruit and a guide for using fresh coconuts at home, this beautiful book is perfect for anyone looking to incorporate this nutritional powerhouse into their every day home cooking.

Fictional book review: I Hope You Dance by Beth Moran

I Hope You Dance

This new novel from author Beth Moran is very well written. Also, it captures the reader's interest from the first chapter with its humor and relatability. The book was fast-paced and interesting to read; one definitely understood each and ever character and didn't have a hard time following the tale.
Personally, I wasn't impressed with the story because I found that it lacked depth. Even if viewed as a non-Christian title, it seemed to lack purpose and meaning. The struggles the main character, Ruth Henderson went through were very real and understandable but although several of them were resolved I didn't feel like she had to do much at all. She must have been under much emotional stress yet I felt like there wasn't a moment or even a crescendo of change in her heart and mind. There is one aspect- friendship- which changes. Ruth does become more open to friendship. Just overall, this book has no impact. It has some chuckle-worthy moments and is well-written but there is really no Spiritual depth or basic growth or emotional value attached. Her daughter seems to advance more than she does. However, if this is considered a Christian novel I really am surprised as there is no moment of defining change. Everything just melds into the next....

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion. 
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Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Crazy Little Thing Called Marriageby Erin Smalley, Greg Smalley

Crazy Little Thing Called Marriage: 12 Secrets for a Lifelong Romance

Crazy Little Thing Called Marriage: 12 Secrets for a Lifelong Romance

  Another book from Focus on the Family and authors Greg and Erin Smalley, Crazy Little Thing Called Marriage is just what you need for your marriage! 
 I recommend this book for newly-married couples since this book is full of basic and practical advice. I loved how the authors told stories and examples from their own marriage to help explain their Biblical points. This was quite an easy and interesting read. Personally and rather surprisingly, I didn't learn as much from it as the authors' previous book Ready To Wed! Also, I am not even married yet but found the information within this new book a little too basic! That is why I recommend it for newly married (especially young) couples. I must say that the book is well organized and easy to read and study alone or with others. One also can't help but learn from the Biblical truths presented. But I would hope that the reader would go on to read other, more profound books on marriage. 
I received this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion. 
More about the book: 
Every couple who wants a happy marriage will appreciate the revitalizing secrets in "Crazy Little Thing Called Marriage." In it, Dr. Greg and Erin Smalley explore the traits of a healthy and thriving marriage.Based on research of thousands of strong couples across the country, the twelve essential elements outlined are not only biblically based; they also chart a course for a romantic adventure that will last a lifetime.With practical advice and stories from their own marriage and counseling experiences, Greg and Erin guide couples to find ways to work around roadblocks in their current relationship and to intentionally create communication patterns that will take them to emotionally safe places.Yes, marriage can have its twists and turns. But the detours don't necessarily have to lead couples off course. Greg and Erin help couples map out a journey for their marriages so that they can enjoy the passionate and intimate relationship that God has promised.

2016 book review Raising Grateful Kids in an Entitled World by Kristen Welch

Raising Grateful Kids in an Entitled World: How One Family Learned That Saying No Can Lead to Life's BiggestYes

Raising Grateful Kids in an Entitled World: How One Family Learned That Saying No Can Lead to Life's Biggest Yes

   From the first page of this book, I knew I could trust the author's sound Biblical wisdom and advice. The information contained within these chapters is reasonable and yet life-changing. Every parent would greatly benefit from reading this new book and putting into practice the truths within the pages.  Also, the adult reading it just may be convicted as to their own selfishness and sense of entitlement in life. Where there is Biblical wisdom, God will do great things. I am not even a parent yet I found myself excited and motivated as I read this book, knowing I can use the methods with my younger siblings and to change my own selfish attitudes! The author, Kristen Welch delivers her information in this book with both love and understanding and firmness. 
All families would greatly benefit from reading and putting into practice the wisdom in these pages.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.

More about the book...
"But everyone else has it." "If you loved me, you'd get it for me!" When you hear these comments from your kids, it can be tough not to cave. You love your children--don't you want them to be happy and to fit in?Kristen Welch knows firsthand it's not that easy. In fact, she's found out that when you say yes too often, it's not only hard on your peace of mind and your wallet--it actually "puts your kids at long-term risk." In "Raising Grateful Kids in an Entitled World," Kristen shares the ups and downs in her own family's journey of discovering why it's healthiest "not" to give their kids everything. Teaching them the difference between "want" and "need" is the first step in the right direction. With many practical tips and anecdotes, she shares how to help kids become hardworking, fulfilled, and successful adults.It's never too late to raise grateful kids. Get ready to cultivate a spirit of genuine appreciation in your family and create a home in which your kids don't just say--but "mean"!--"thank you" for everything they have.

Monday, January 11, 2016

2016 Book review: Strong and Kind by Korie Robertson

Strong and Kind: And Other Important Character Traits Your Child Needs to Succeed

Philippians: Discovering Joy Through Relationship by Sue Edwards STUDY GUIDE REVIEW

Philippians: Discovering Joy Through Relationship

Philippians: Discovering Joy Through Relationship

   This slim paperback book is a study guide for the book of Philippians. The author of this guide is Sue Edwards who seems to be qualified to teach on such a subject as relationships considering the work she does teaching others not to mention the six books she as written. This large yet slim book has an appealing cover making it pleasant for those women who, like me, want everything around them to reflect God's beautiful creation. The interior has plenty of room for notes and observations and answers to the questions given. The study is well thought-out and organized and goes through the book of Philippians carefully,    
   Personally, I didn't learn very much new from the explanations given because I have been blessed to learn from great Bible teachers and authors all my life. However, one cannot begin to count the lessons and convictions obtained when one works through a book of the Bible! Although the information in this book seems basic, who can say what God will teach through it! I also thought the side notes were helpful and interesting. 

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion. 
More about the book:
A "how-to" study for finding joy in authentic relationships and community
Women long for healthy, deep relationships with those around them. Knowing what those look like can be tricky, however. Where do we go to seek them? How can we approach them? How can we maintain those relationships, despite our own weaknesses?
Sue Edwards is happy to lead the way through Scripture to discover and maintain beloved, organic friendships. Paul's letter to early Christians is an ideal place to find these answers. This short letter highlights the skills that strengthen authentic connections--skills like trust, humility, healthy self-sacrifice, a generous spirit, and more. It also sheds light on how to overcome toxic connection-killers like envy, comparison, and critical attitudes.
Philipians: Discovering Joy Through Relationship works its way through Paul's words as a model for deep, authentic community and healthy relationships between believers. When readers reach the end, they'll have a thorough sense of the content of this ancient letter, and of its relevance for today. Although Paul was under house arrest, he was able to draw joy from his relationships, and we can do the same, no matter our circumstances. Edwards strives to ensure that this Bible study will do more than transfer intellectual information; it will also transform hearts and inspire practice and application.

Book review: Soaring Above the Circumstances by Dean Kilmer

Soaring Above the Circumstances
Soaring Above the Circumstances 
This is really a wonderful little book! I was able to read it in one evening and benefited greatly from it. The author captures the reader's attention from the first page, bringing them into the story and making them open their heart to other sufferers! Whether you are going through great trials or minor (such as myself), this book will help you and uplift your heart. The goal of this book is to bring the reader's eyes towards Jesus, and it certainly does just that. After reading the chapters contained within this little book, I couldn't stop seeing my blessings and praising God for them! I also felt miserable about all the times I complain although my trials are really nothing in comparison to other's!

My only regret with this little paperback is that it was too short! Also, I wish it had more discussion and study questions or a study guide to go with it! However, I am not suffering terribly and therefore have time and power to do studies. Not all readers will have the means for further study. 

With its small size and easy-to-read length, this book would make a perfect gift for someone suffering from an illness or going through any kind of trial. Man or woman, young or old, cared for or neglected, this book will reach and comfort a variety of individuals. Also, I will note that although this book is convicting it is very uplifting and even the most grumpy and unthankful suffererer won't be offended if you give them this book yet will probably- if it is the Lord's will- be changed by this book! 

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion. Thank you!

Book review of Bronner: A Journey to Understand by Sherri Burgess 2016

Bronner: A Journey to UnderstandBronner: A Journey to Understand 
The story cannot help but capture the heart and emotions of the reader. My heart wept for the mother and family and friends of Bronner. Yet, as the mother and author of the book would desire, I got a wonderful sense of God's presence and faithfulness and plan amidst the trial. This book is a marvelous testimony of God's love and faithfulness. Truly, Bronner's tragic tale will bring you closer to Christ. This book wasn't as preparatory for trials as I would have desired and it isn't entirely a book for healing after a is a testimony of God's goodness through tragedy and I think that is what the author wished her book to be. 

Life-changing book: Another Valley, Another Victory by Valetta Steel Crumley

Another Valley, Another Victory: Three Tragedies, One Faithful Woman, Victory in Jesus

Another Valley, Another Victory: Three Tragedies, One Faithful Woman, Victory in Jesus

This might not be on the top-selling list on Amazon and it may not be published by a well-known company, but it certainly is a must-read! 
  From the first page of this slim paperback book to the last I was captured by the story. I read this book in one Sunday afternoon and was so blessed by it. 
The author is Valetta Steel Crumley and this is both her autobiography and testimony of God's love and faithfulness. Without revealing the entire story, I will say that Valetta went through three major crises which I can't imagine having to suffer. It is also overwhelming to try to comprehend why she of all women should have not only one tragedy but three happen to her. This book is a must-read because of the perspective, depth and faith Valetta had and learned through those trials. It is also a good example and witness to read what the author went on and did following the pain and sorrow in her life. As you read this book, your whole view of life and why we are here will be changed for the better. This book is an amazing testimony to God's faithfulness and amazing love!
I really do recommend this book! It definitely changed my perspective on my life, which is so easy compared to the author's! Read this wonderful book. 
I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.