Monday, February 29, 2016

Book Review for Tree of Souls The Mythology of Judaism by Howard Schwartz Book 3 Part 3.10

General Information:

Name of Book: Tree of Souls

ISBN: 9780195086799

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

Year it was published: 2004

Overall theme:

"With only one God, heaven would be a barren place, at least in mythic terms. Yet the actual Jewish view of heaven is quite different. There are seven heavens, filled with angels and other divine beings, such as the Messiah [Not jesus!], who is said to have a palace of his own in the highest heaven. The clestial Temple can be found there- the mirror image of the Temple in the earthly Jerusalem- as well as an abundance of heavenly palaces, one for each of the patriarchs and matriarchs and sages, where he or she teaches Torah to the attentive souls of the righteous and the angels..." (xliii)

"Drawing on the full range of Jewish sources, sacred and nonsacred, ten major categories of Jewish mythology can be identified: Myths of God, Myths of Creation...Each of these categories explores a mythic realm, and, in the process, reimagines it. This is the secret to the transformations that characterize Jewish mythology. Building on a strong foundation of biblical myth, each generation has embellished the earlier myths, while, at the same time, reinterpeting them for tis own time." (xlv)

 Book Three: Myths of Heavens

 Part III: Heavenly Journeys

205. Adam is Taken Into Paradise

 Issue:At the end of his life, Adam begins describing the paradise he saw to his son Seth. G-d threatens his life, but Adam begs G-d not to cast him out. G-d listens to Adam's plea and promises Adam that his seed will always be with him. After the meeting, Michael brings Adam back.

206 Isaac's Ascent

 Issue: Just as Isaac is about to be slain, the soul flew away from him and began to study at academy of Shem and Eber. Isaac also had a chance to sample various treasures of G-d and even looked into the future. Abraham was also frozen but in a single instance was told not to slay the boy and Isaac's soul came back.

207. The Ascent of Elijah

Issue: Elijah and Elisha walked from Gilgal when Elijah asked Elisha to remain where he was and Elisha didn't listen. Then they traveled to Jericho where Elijah asked Elisha to stay there but he refused. Then they were sent on to Jordan where Elisha also refused to abandon Elijah and Elijah asks Elisha what he can do for him and the wish was granted.

208. The Four Who Entered Paradise

Issue: Four sages, Ben Azzai, Ben Zoma, Aher and Rabbi Akiba entered paradise, three of them suffered bad consequences while Rabbi Akiba departed in peace. Description of how Ben Azzai died, that his body couldn't endure the glory and his soul felt at home. Aher saw Metatron sitting on the throne and thought that two powers ruled instead of just one. Some students and a rabbi saw Ben Zoma walking by and he told them he was contemplating mysteries and was gone not long after. Rabbi Akiba made signs to know when to go back and was granted permission to look at G-d's glory. Out of the four sages who entered the paradise, only Rabbi Akiba ascended on high and descended in peace.

209. A Vision of Metatron

Issue: Aher's real name being Elisha ben Abuyah, he saw Metatron being seated and being served by angels and princes thus he thought that there were two G-ds instead of one. After the incident G-d commanded Anafiel to punish Metatron for not correcting Elisha's mistake, and Elisha became known as Aher because he lost faith.

210. Rabbi Ishmael's Ascent

Issue: A Roman emperor wanted to study Torah with sages and all went well until the passage in Exodus 21:16 where it talks about punishment and slavery which caused the emperor to remember the instance of Joseph's brothers selling him into slavery and not being punished. After hearing that the law applied to Joseph's brother, the emperor demanded execution and punishment of brothers or those who represented brothers. The emperor even created a decree for execution of the ten sages and among them were Rabbi Akiba, Rabbi Ishmael, Rabbi Hananiah ben Teradion and seven others who ever lived. In a cell the rabbis begged Rabbi Ishmael to use the Holy Name to overturn the decree, and Rabbi Ishmael said he could but first they must find out the purpose. Rabbi Ishmael began praying and went to sixth heaven where he was greeted by the angel Gabriel. Gabriel assured him that the decree came from divine and mentioned that their deaths will serve a greater purpose. When he came back, he told others about the vision thus they bravely went to their deaths.

211. The Entrance of the Sixth Heavenly Palace

Issue: If someone comes upon the door of the sixth hekhal then it looks as if the entrance is engulfed by waters, although its not waters but radiance of marble stones and doorkeepers destroy anyone who does not have permission to be there. The gatekeepers are angels named Dumiel and Kaspiel and a lengthy description of them follows. Mention of Ben Azzai and how he cried out "water, water!" and got his head cut off. Those who are protected by angel Lumiel are able to go through various heavens and their doorways and the angel bears a gift for those that deserve it which is a privilege of not being questioned by everyone.

212. Before the Law

Issue: A man stands guarding the door and someone from the country comes over to question the man over whether or not he can be admitted and he can, but it will be later. The man gets curious and wants to look, thus the doorkeeper encourages him but warns him that he is very mighty, although he is the lowliest of the doorkeepers. The man from the country continues to wait for days and years and to chat with the doorkeeper, all to no avail. The man continues to wait and beg for years until his life almost runs out. He finally asks the doorkeeper about why others haven't asked to get in, and the angel replies that besides him no one else could get in and that the entrance was intended only for him.

213. A Journey to the Stars

Issue: Rabbah bar Bar Hannah went on a voyage where the waves were very high that he could see the resting place of the smallest star, and if the waves lifted the boat any higher, the heat of the star would have burned him.

214. A Jewish Icarus

Issue: A boy by the name of Yozal Frandrik grew up during the days of the Temple and one day he cut off the Shem ha-Meforash and placed it in his sandal and sewed it shut and he then grew wings. While he flies through heavens, angels pour water on him and his wings vanish and he tumbled onto the ground and never went flying nor he did he return the name.

To be continued...

G697 Book Review of Seven will out by JoAnn Spears

Name of Book: Seven Will Out

Author: JoAnn Spears

ISBN: 978-1-5147-7589-9

Publisher: Createspace

Type of book: Tudors, astral plane, visit, Shakespeare plays, secrets, gossip, sleep over, drinking, revelations, intrigues, court, royalty, family, forgiveness, late 1500s early 1600s, rivalries, jealousies, claimants, rulers, queens

Year it was published: 2015

Summary:

If you thought "Six of One: A Tudor Riff" was the most fun you could have with your nightdress on, wait until you see what "Seven Will Out: A Renaissance Revel" has in store. Get ready for one 'ruff' night! Tudorphile Dolly thought that the night she spent on an astral plane with Henry VIII's six wives, learning their heretofore unknown secrets, was a one-time thing. Not so! In "Seven Will Out," Dolly finds herself back in the ether with the women of later Tudor times: Elizabeth I, 'Bloody' Mary, Bess of Hardwick, Mary, Queen of Scots, and Anne Hathaway Shakespeare, to name a few. They too have secrets that will turn history on its head, and comic sass that will keep you laughing. You've read all of the traditional, serious and romantic takes on the legendary Tudors. Why not try your Tudors with a new and different twist?

Characters:

I honestly feel it will take me a very long time to go through all the participating women, and even then I remember some but not the others, thus I will focus on Dolly, Mary Queen of Scots, Bloody Mary, Elizabeth I, and the Grey Sisters by name of Jane, Katherine and Mary. Dolly is a Tudor scholar fanatic who has written a ground-breaking book about the wives of Henry VIII, and is currently involved in production of Shakespearean plays. She prides herself on her knowledge but is no match for the well-read and intelligent Tudor women. Mary Queen of Scots is best known as Elizabeth I and Mary I's cousin that got executed by Elizabeth I because she posed a threat to her throne. In the astral plane she is forgiving to her cousin and the two of them seem to get along. Mary I is portrayed as a sympathetic character that has regrets of what she has done and she also struggles with issues of sibling rivalry, romance, and being torn away from her mother. Although the women are on an equal plane, it seems as if Elizabeth I is still in charge and is a queen. She is a bit vain, haughty and loves to stand out. The Grey sisters were distantly related to Elizabeth I and Mary I and were in line for the throne should Elizabeth I die childless. However, two of the sisters got married and ended up being in prison and dying. One of the sisters suffers from low self esteem as I recall, while the others were strong and extremely clever women who didn't let anything beat them down.

Theme:

Things are not as they seem

Plot:

The story is in first person narrative from Dolly's point of view and although the book is a sequel, its definitely stand-alone and prequel is only required if you're curious to see what happened on her previous visit. The story starts out in the real world and then moves on to the astral plane where the reader meets the latter Tudor women after Henry VIII passes away. In some cases I did chuckle when I read the book, but a lot of time the story is focused on suspense and half the time I am wondering whether or not the revelations are real and that they have been plotted to be kept away. Also as well, if the reader wants to learn a bit more about Shakespearean plays, then they're in for a special treat because the story discusses plays as well. I do admit that at some points it did drag on, but other than that, no complaints.

Author Information:
(From HFVBT)

AMAZON (KINDLE) | AMAZON (PAPERBACK) | BARNES & NOBLE

About the Author

JoAnn Spears couldn’t decide whether to major in English or History in college. Life stepped in, and she wound
up with a Master’s Degree in Nursing instead. A twenty-five year nursing career didn’t extinguish that early interest in books and history. It did however stoke a decidedly gallows sense of humor.
The story of the six wives of Henry VIII was JoAnn’s favorite piece of history. Over the years, she read just about every spin on the story that there was. It occurred to her that the one spin that hadn’t been brought to a full length novel about the Tudors was a gallows sense of humor. The Tudors certainly qualified for it, and JoAnn had plenty to spare.
The first ‘real’ book JoAnn ever read was “The Wizard of Oz”. She returned to the Yellow Brick Road for inspiration for a new kind of Tudor novel, and “Six of One” was born.
“Six of One” was begun in JoAnn’s native New Jersey. It was wrapped up in her new Smoky Mountain home in northeast Tennessee, where she is pursuing a second career as a writer. She has, however, obtained a Tennessee nursing license because a) you never stop being a nurse and b) her son Bill thinks she should be sensible and not quit her day job.
While “Six of One” is a different kind of historical novel, JoAnn is a downright stereotypical lady author. She admits to the usual cats, flower beds, needlework, and frightfully complete collections of Jane Austen and Louisa May Alcott.

FACEBOOK | GOODREADS | AMAZON PAGE


Opinion:

Like general population I know very little of the Tudors; Henry VIII had six wives and three kids, two daughters and a boy; one daughter was universally reviled while another was eternally beloved. Henry VIII never became a grandfather. Also I know of Shakespeare and his plays that began around Elizabethan Era and other than that, well, nothing. What attracted me to this book is the promise of lightheartedness and comedy because I have to admit that I read tons of historical fiction novels, and to my knowledge, I never encountered any comedic novels within my travels. In fact, the ones I read are very serious in nature. The book did not disappoint, and I can imagine that a novel like this would be a Tudor fanatic's dream; imagine traveling to another plane where you will meet Elizabeth I, Mary I, the Grey Sisters, Mary Queen of Scots and so forth, and along the way, the burning questions and rumors surrounding the women get answered. The author does go into details and information about the various men/women from that era so the reader doesn't get lost with all the intrigues that were going on, and yes this novel is perfect for someone starting out with historical fiction because the reader isn't required to know things beforehand, and also, Tudors, the family that has fascinated people for the last five hundred or so years. I'm not a Tudor expert yet I never felt lost or shamed, and I learned a lot of cool facts by the way. Now my curiosity is really piqued about the prequel and King Henry VIII's wives giving love advice.

This is for HFVBT

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, February 15
Spotlight & Giveaway at Unshelfish
Tuesday, February 16
Review at Turning The Pages
Wednesday, February 17
Review at Book Nerd
Thursday, February 18
Spotlight & Giveaway at CelticLady’s Reviews
Friday, February 19
Interview at Historical Fiction Addicts
Giveaway at Passages to the Past
Monday, February 22
Review at A Holland Reads
Guest Post at Boom Baby Reviews
Tuesday, February 23
Review & Giveaway at Historical Fiction Obsession
Wednesday, February 24
Review at Rambling Reviews
Friday, February 26
Guest Post at Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus More
Sunday, February 28
Review at The Tudor Enthusiast
Monday, February 29
Review at Svetlana’s Reads and Views
Review at With Her Nose Stuck In A Book


4 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

Friday, February 26, 2016

G688 Book Review of Evanthia's Gift by Effie Kammenou

Name of Book: Evanthia's Gift

Author: Effie Kammenou

ISBN: 9780692471838

Publisher: Self-published

Type of book: Greece, single parenting, marriage, second chances, childhood love, soulmates, 1956-2000s, Greek identity and culture versus American identity and culture, wealth, travel, dreams, life, death, secrets, immigration, New York

Year it was published: 2013

Summary:

In the year 1956, Anastacia Fotopoulos finds herself pregnant and betrayed, fleeing from a bad marriage. With the love and support of her dear friends Stavros and Soula Papadakis, Ana is able to face the challenges of single motherhood. Left with emotional wounds, she resists her growing affection for Alexandros Giannakos, an old acquaintance. But his persistence and unconditional love for Ana and her child is eventually rewarded and his love is returned. In a misguided, but well-intentioned effort to protect the ones they love, both Ana and Alex keep secrets - ones that could threaten the delicate balance of their family.

The story continues in the 1970’s as Dean and Demi Papadakis, and Sophia Giannakos attempt to negotiate between two cultures. Now Greek-American teenagers, Sophia and Dean,
who have shared a special connection since childhood, become lovers. Sophia is shattered when Dean rebels against the pressure his father places on him to uphold his Greek heritage and hides his feelings for her. When he pulls away from his family, culture and ultimately his love for her, Sophia is left with no choice but to find a life different from the one she’d hoped for.

EVANTHIA’S GIFT is a multigenerational love story spanning fifty years and crossing two continents, chronicling the lives that unify two families.

Characters:

There are, literally, a whole lot of characters that had a lot of importance in the story, but I'll focus on Ana, Alex, Dean, and Sophia, although those aren't the only ones. Ana is a young woman who has been badly betrayed by a man she at first married and is struggling with raising her daughter Sophia and trying to open herself up to vulnerability with Alex. Alex has always had a crush on Ana and he is extremely focused and determined to become the man that Ana is searching for. Dean is a son of Ana's closest friends and is Greek-American. Personally for him the struggle is his Greek identity versus American dream and when he rebels he makes very unfortunate choices. Sophia is Ana's daughter and believes herself to be Alex's biological daughter as well. She has a very soft spot for Dean despite the troubles he puts her through but she is also firm and is full of surprises. She is talented in dancing and desires to find love that she experienced with Dean when they were teens. As mentioned, there are other characters such as Dean's younger sister Demi, then their parents, Ana's family that's back in Greece, and some friends as well but it would take a whole lot to go through all of them.

Theme:

True love in second chances

Plot:

The story is in third place narrative in beginning from Ana's and Alex's points of view, followed by Dean's and Sophia's points of view. To find out the mystery of Evanthia and whom she might be or come from, one has to wait until almost the very end of the book. The way the book is written has a power to suck the reader in and one feels part of the story rather than apart. What I mean is that despite the fact it takes place in 1950s to 2000s in America, there is something eternal and timeless in the story where time simply marches on without alienating the readers, There is a bit discussion on WWII and the sacrifices that were made, but its only a small part and doesn't dominate the entire story. In fact the entire story is multi-generational and focuses on how the characters grow and thrive and learn from the passage of time. Oh yeah, I do wish that there were more scenes with Ana's sister because I felt that its extraneous information and in the story we only get to see her twice.

Author Information:
(From Pump Up Your Book)


Effie Kammenou is a first generation Greek-American who lives on Long Island with her husband and two daughters. When she’s not writing, or posting recipes on her food blog,cheffieskitchen.wordpress.com, you can find her cooking for her family and friends.
Her debut novel, EVANTHIA’S GIFT, is a women’s fiction multigenerational love story and family saga, influenced by her Greek heritage, and the many real life accounts that have been passed down. She continues to pick her father’s brain for stories of his family’s life in Lesvos, Greece, and their journey to America. Her recent interview with him was published in a nationally circulated magazine.
As an avid cook and baker, a skill she learned from watching her Athenian mother, she incorporated traditional Greek family recipes throughout the book.
She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theater Arts from Hofstra University.
For updates on the release of Book Two of The Gift Saga
Follow Effie on Twitter @EffieKammenou,
Contact Effie at effiekammenou@gmail.com
For More Information

Opinion:

When picking up the book, don't let its size intimidate you, because despite it being 500+ pages, its easy on the eyes and the story as well as the pacing is extremely well done. Also as well, there are Greek recipes interspersed within the pages for those who want to experience the food that the characters are consuming. The book definitely qualifies as women's fiction and there is more focus on the characters rather than the historical aspects. Reading the book really reminded me of White Girl in La Casa because I know that this story isn't something that will be forgotten easily and that sooner or later I'd want to pick it up and read it again, so yes, I really loved and enjoyed the story. There are some romantic aspects in the book that weren't exactly timely for me, but they didn't ruin reading the story for me, although I did find an annoyance with them. I guess one could say I'm not a believer in romance or true love. Aside from that, if the reader is looking to pick something up for Valentines Day or for an inspiring love story that reaffirms true love then this is a story not to be missed.

This is for Pump Up Your Book Tours

Tour Schedule

Monday, February 1 – Interview & Tour Kick Off at The Literary Nook
Tuesday, February 2 – Guest Blogging at Confessions of an Eccentric Bookaholic
Wednesday, February 3 – Interview at My Bookish Pleasures
Thursday, February 4 – Book Review at Happy Ever After Book Reviews
Thursday, February 4 – Book Featured at What Is That Book About
Friday, February 5 – Interview at The Writer’s Life
———-
Monday, February 8 – Interview at Sexy Between the Covers
Tuesday, February 9 - Book Review at Books Reviews ETC.
Wednesday, February 10 – Book Featured at My Bookish Pleasures
Thursday, February 11 – Interview at Fantasy Pages
———-
Monday, February 15 – Interview at I’m Shelf-ish
Tuesday, February 16 – Book Review at Deal Sharing Aunt
Wednesday, February 17 – Book Featured at Authors & Readers Book Corner
Thursday, February 18 – Guest Blogging at Lori’s Reading Corner
Friday, February 19 - Interview at As the Page Turns
———-
Monday, February 22 – Book Featured at CBY Book Club
Tuesday, February 23 – Book Featured at Around the World in Books
Wednesday, February 24 – Book Review at 3 Partners in Shopping
Thursday, February 25 – Book Featured at Bound 2 Escape
Friday, February 26 – Interview at Virginia Beach Publishing Examiner
Friday, February 26 – Book Review at Svetlana’s Reads and Views

4 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

Monday, February 22, 2016

E-Reading G699 To Be a Child

Title of the book: To be a Child

Author: Debra Schoenberger

Publisher: Blurb

Publishing Date: 2015

ISBN:978-1364706685

Summary:

Give a child a cardboard box and his imagination will turn it into anything but!

Today, it is less common to see children playing in the streets, especially in urban areas. The plethora of ready-made toys should make any child happy.  What usually happens is that the box the toy came in becomes the toy!

This book documents children at play (and at times at work) from 10 different countries. A child's ingenuity never ceases to amaze me and I hope you will share these images with your children as well.

Author Info:
(From iRead Book Tours)

Buy the book:   Website   Amazon   iTunes
Debra Schoenberger author pic
Meet the author / photographer:  

Debra Schoenberger aka #girlwithcamera

"My dad always carried a camera under the seat of his car and was constantly taking pictures. I think that his example, together with pouring over National Geographic magazines as a child fuelled my curiosity for the world around me.

I am a documentary photographer and street photography is my passion. Some of my images have been chosen by National Geographic as editor's favourites and are on display in the National Geographic museum in Washington, DC.  I also have an off-kilter sense of humour so I'm always looking for the unusual.  Plus I usually have a lot of scars on my knees.
​(le sigh...)

I live with my creative director, Miss Pickles (my budgie) in Victoria, BC, Canada.

Connect with the author:  Website   Twitter  Facebook   Goodreads
Connect with the photographer's website:   Website  

Personal Opinion:

I enjoyed looking at the pictures of children doing various activities from playing to curiosity to working and even being quiet, and what also impressed me is the common theme on how children are more alike than different no matter what part of the world they come from. The book really brought a smile to my face if one enjoys looking at their photographs and at the same time the book teaches lessons in how children tackle their world as well as the diversity and how similar they are no matter where they come from, be it Canada or Tibet or India or Mongolia. The photos are gorgeous and capture beauty of children during various activities and they also focus a lot on the children and their surroundings. There seems to be a balance between the background and children, although its obvious that the little ones dominate the picture a lot more.

This is for iRead Book Tours

TOUR SCHEDULE:

Feb 1 -   Corinne Rodriguez - book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
Feb 1 -   Amie's Book Reviews - review / author interview / giveaway
Feb 2 -   Giraffe Days - review
Feb 2 -   Library of Clean Reads - review / giveaway
Feb 3 -   Collecting Moments - review
Feb 4 -   Working Mommy Journal - review / giveaway
Feb 5 -   Collecting Moments - guest post
Feb 7 -   Alexandru Ciobanu - review 
Feb 8 -   T's Stuff - review / guest post / giveaway 
Feb 8 -   Deal Sharing Aunt - book spotlight / giveaway
Feb 9 -   Room With Books - review / author interview / giveaway
Feb 10 - Bound 4 Escape - review / giveaway
Feb 11 - Readers' Muse - review / author interview
Feb 12 - Anne - Amazon Reviewer - review
Feb 12 - Pretty Panda Reads - review
Feb 15 - View from the Birdhouse - book spotlight / giveaway
Feb 16 - Fantastic Feathers - book spotlight / guest post
Feb 17 - Writer with Wanderlust - review / giveaway
Feb 18 - Grant Oakes Photographer - Amazon Reviewer - review
Feb 19 - Book and Ink - review / giveaway
Feb 22 - Svetlana's Reads and Views - review
​Feb 22 - Ali - the Dragon Slayer - review / guest post
Feb 23 - Life As Leels - review
Feb 24 - Novel Escapes - review
4 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

Thursday, February 18, 2016

G690 Book Review of Taming the Twisted by Jodie Toohey

Name of Book: Taming the Twisted

Author: Jodie Toohey

ISBN: 9780692449653

Publisher: Wordsy Woman Press

Type of book: Iowa, tornadoes, survival, mystery, abandonment, death, creating life, surrogacy parents, siblings, mysterious disappearances, sins, secrets, 1860

Year it was published: 2015

Summary:

"Taming the Twisted" is written in a similar style to Laura Ingalls Wilder's "Little House" books though updated for modern times. It might read as if she'd left in all of the juicy tidbits about things people didn't talk about during the time when she was writing. "Taming the Twisted" is a story of destruction, romance, mystery, and deceit set against a back drop of an actual historical event.

In early June, 1860, Abigail enjoyed a peaceful home life with her parents, younger sister, and twin toddler brothers. Their home in Camanche, Iowa, where they’d emigrated from Pennsylvania, was almost complete and her beau, Joseph Sund, had recently proposed marriage.

That changes the evening of June 3rd when a tornado rips through town, killing her parents. At the mass funeral for the over two dozen people who perished in the storm, she learns Marty Cranson, with whom Abigail witnessed Joseph having a heated argument, died, but at the hands of a person rather than the tornado.

In addition to being faced with raising her young siblings, Joseph has disappeared without a trace and a stranger, Marshall Stevenson, appears, offering to help Abigail repair the families’ home and cultivate the newly planted farm crops.

Abigail, while developing romantic feelings for Marshall, tolerating the scorn of town woman Pamela Mackenrow, and working as a seamstress and storekeeper to support her siblings, becomes obsessed with finding out who killed Marty, hoping that and not that he no longer loved her, was the reason Joseph left without saying goodbye.

Characters:

Main characters include Abigail, a young woman who at beginning is happy with loving parents, younger sister and brothers and who also is about to begin a new life with fiance. There is also Joseph who happens to be Abigail's fiance but then due to mysterious circumstances seems to vanish overnight without a word to anyone. Marshall Stevenson is another young man that Abigail and her siblings rescue and take care of, and in return he becomes a surrogate father towards the siblings. Alice, Samuel and David are Abigail's younger siblings, and while Samuel and David are allowed to enjoy childhood, a lot of responsibilities fall on Alice's shoulders. There is also another woman named Pamela who seems to really dislike Abigail and who has her own secrets.

Theme:

Sometimes there aren't answers to questions

Plot:

The story is in third person narrative from Abigail's point of view. While the author has clearly done research in constructing the tale and creating admirable characters in both men and women, I do feel that there seemed to be something missing within the scenes, that while they tried to be similar to Little House series, there wasn't a spark that Little House series had. I also did try to understand the mystery that was going on, but I think I felt it was a little bit too long.

Author Information:
(From HFVBT)

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | BOOK DEPOSITORY

About the Author03_Jodie Toohey

Jodie Toohey is the author of four additional books, two poetry collections – Crush and Other Love Poems for Girls (2008) and Other Side of Crazy (918studio, 2013) – as well as two novels, Missing Emily: Croatian Life Letters (2012) and Melody Madson – May It Please the Court? (2014).
When Jodie is not writing poetry or fiction, she is helping authors, soon-to-be-authors, and want-to-be authors from pre-idea to reader through her company, Wordsy Woman Author Services.

WEBSITE | BLOG | FACEBOOK | TWITTER |GOOGLE+ | GOODREADS | PINTEREST


Opinion:

While it did take me awhile to get into the story, and when I did, I found it an enjoyable and interesting read that is clearly written by someone who is passionate about history, although I do feel that the author needs a little bit practice in livening the story. Something that sold me on reading this book is the fact that this book focuses on things that Little House series never did, or something along the lines. Some parts are true because Little House series never focused or advocated being part of community, at least in my memories Little House characters were portrayed as independent people and who only got help when necessary and when it was needed. While a few things that the story does go into wouldn't be considered scandalous by modern generations (namely a man and a woman living together on one property) but I have to remember that way back then something that is trivial for modern times would be equated to pornography back then. Kind of shocking to realize how desensitized I seemed to become.

This is for HFVBT

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, February 8
Review at Beth’s Book Nook Blog
Spotlight & Giveaway at Rambling Reviews
Tuesday, February 9
Guest Post at Just One More Chapter
Wednesday, February 10
Review at Book Nerd
Thursday, February 11
Guest Post & Giveaway at A Literary Vacation
Friday, February 12
Review at Back Porchervations
Character Interview at Boom Baby Reviews
Monday, February 15
Review at Eclectic Ramblings of Author Heather Osborne
Tuesday, February 16
Review at Book Drunkard
Wednesday, February 17
Review at A Holland Reads
Thursday, February 18
Review at Svetlana’s Reads and Views
Friday, February 19
Interview at Author Dianne Ascroft’s Blog

4 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)
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