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Hearts for Home 10/20

Welcome to the Hearts for Home Blog Hop

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Last Week's Most Clicked Post

Musings of a Dance Momma - Gauteng Dance Festival, shared by Momma Jo 
Most clicked on Hearts for Home Oct 20

Now for this week’s Hearts for Home Blog Hop!

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Worth Fighting For {Book Blitz & Giveaway}


A Lady of High Regard...A Book Review

A Lady of High Regard

Tracie Peterson

After spending quite a bit of my summer flying through YA fantasy and NA contemporary books, I found myself noticing the gorgeous covers of the Historical Fiction/Christian Fiction as the seasons began to change. When I pick up a book of this genre, I have expectations of something that will grip me as much as the action-packed fantasy stories as I know there are such amazing historical events that can really drive a story.  That and I want to see how the author creates characters, and these books tend to have very complex characters.

I have read some of Peterson before, and was more than ready to give this book a try.

A Lady of High Regard by Tracie Peterson  A Book Review on Reading List

Story Overview

Mia Stanley is used to the comfortable life as a daughter of a successful businessman. Yet, unlike her peers, she does not dream of getting married and basking in the easy life. She has a heart for others, and a knack for writing, so when she takes the position as a writer for a lady's magazine, her parents are less than thrilled. When a new writing assignment puts Mia directly into the abysmal and heartbreaking reality of the seaman's wives along Philadephia's docks she refuses to walk away, even after her father convinces her to stop her position at the magazine. 

All the while, Mia is trying to find the perfect match for her big-brother-like next door neighbor, Garrett. She has successfully matched up a few of her friends and knows that Garrett would make a wonderful husband and father, so she sets her sights on eligible women for him. Of course, her focus on other women for him, get her own feelings stirred up. All the while Garrett is running the family business, watching his father succumb to illness, and dreaming of his true love finally noticing him. 

Personal Likes

I liked the setting - Philadelphia in the 1850's was certainly mixed on societal classes, so to have a taste of the richest right next to the poorest was interesting. So adding in an independent, yet wealthy lady to the mix was very intriguing.  

I also appreciated Garrett as a man who was looking forward to having a family, simply because his family was so important to him. It is always refreshing to get male characters who are goal-driven in career and family at the same time. Too often we are given male characters that are either workaholics or simply not trying, let alone a man who actually wants to have a family!

A Lady of High Regard  by Tracie Peterson a Book Review on Reading List

Personal Dislikes

Overall, I was disappointed. This is a slow moving story with very little action to drive the plot. Even the words slow the pace, and the dialogue drags in an attempt to show the time period. I realize this isn't the quick paced genre like some, but why can't there be a little more push from the characters to do and act. The overabundant use of passive voice screamed at me through the entire book, and as an editor minded person, that is just never a good thing.

I have said it before, and I will say it again. Christian fiction cannot stuff the Bible and God at people in superficial ways. Throwing in a few prayers or comments about faith will not move a person to seek out the God of the Bible. It comes across false. If only there were a way to create a character who would really wrestle with an idea or characteristic of God throughout the story, similar to how so many contemporary character wrestly with a soceital worldview...

Reading List Rating

I am giving this book three hearts.  I appreciated the characters and unique setting.  The story fits the genre well, however, I personally didn't love it. 

My Suggested Audience

I would suggest fans of the Christian Historical Fiction genre pick up this book, as it completely fits in.  That and Tracie Peterson is a great author to follow in the genre, this just might not be her best... but then again that could just be me!  As far as age appropriate, really it's a clean novel, if your teen is interested in this genre, it should be fine.  The only warning is that there are some hard scenes that could trigger domestic abuse victims, or even assult victims as the only actions spawns from the conditions of the seaman's wives, and the greedy men who require payment no matter if money is available or not. 

Wondering Questions to Consider

Books like this always make me wonder how many people get into journalism nowadays in order to bring justice about? Or to make a different? Compared to how many go into the field simply to famous, or get on TV.  As believers, what do you do with your career to reach those who need help?  Do you believe God put you in your career path to do something for Him?  If you are not a believer, what drives you to help someone else?  At what point would you risk yourself in order to help someone else in need?

God is not slumbering. #ALadyofHighRegard #TraciePeterson @Reading_List1

My daughter's heart is bigger than her common sense. #ALadyofHighRegard #TraciePeterson @Reading_List1

Do you read Historical Fiction? What do you think of the pace?  Do you have a recommendation in this genre that will hook me?

I'd love to hear from you, please leave me a little note!

Marissa @ Reading List

**If you are considering purchasing this book, please consider using the affiliate link here and support Reading List in the process... at the time of this posting (Oct 2016, this ebook was free!) 

***If you're interested in writing a book review on Reading List, please message me on the Facebook page! If you're curious about a book, ask me...  I love to hear from you! If you would like your book reviewed on Reading List, email me: the link is at the bottom of this page.

**** Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher, BethanyHouse. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


Moonlight Masquerade... A Sneak Peek

Welcome to Sneak Peek Saturday on Reading List! 

Sneak Peek Saturday on Reading List  a glimpse into what I am reading currently

Current book:

Moonlight Masquerade

Ruth Axtell

Moonlight Masquerade by Ruth Axtell  a Sneak Peek on Reading List

Goodreads Summary:

Lady Celine Wexham seems the model British subject. French by birth but enjoying life in 1813 as a widowed English countess, she is in the unique position of being able to help those in need--or to spy for the notorious Napoleon Bonaparte. When Rees Phillips of the British Foreign Office is sent to pose as the countess's butler and discover where her true loyalties lie, he is confident he will uncover the truth. But the longer he is in her fashionable townhouse in London's West End, the more his staunch loyalty to the Crown begins to waver as he falls under Lady Wexham's spell. Will he find the proof he needs? And if she is a spy after all, will he do the right thing?

Sneak Peek:

He set the pole on a rack with all the others, the Scripture "be not unequally yoked with unbelievers" flirting through his mind. He had no idea what Lady Wexham's Spiritual beliefs were, but he had seen no evidence of her attending church while in London." p146

Initial Thoughts

I had this on my TBR list for a long long time, so I finally grabbed it on a trip to the library, and I have had to renew it twice... so for me that isn't the best sign.  While I am determined to get to the end of the book, simply because I want to figure out how these two get together, it's a slow story. But it has so far fulfilled all of the typical points of a Regency Romance book... so if you're a fan...

Meet the Hosts of Saturday Sneak Peek:

Marissa @ Reading List

Marissa, writes book reviews from a variety of genres and  shares thoughts on motherhood & life on Reading List. She loves to see what others are reading to grow her to-read list.  Marissa also enjoys photography and a new journal to fill. 

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Alyssa @ Sunrise Avenue

Alyssa reads a variety of genres and writes about it at Sunrise Avenue. She is always looking for new bookish friends and recs'! Besides reading, Alyssa loves to bake and anything Doctor Who.

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Karen @ Dino Hero Mommy

Karen is a reading teacher who loves to listen to books as she commutes to and from work. She prefers crime thrillers and mysteries but enjoys a good book from any genre. She blogs about her life as a wife and mom at Dino Hero Mommy.

Here are some rules if you decide to join in:

• Pick up whatever book you are reading (non-fiction, fiction, children's... really the sky is the limit)
• Open to any page you have already read
• Share a few “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page - make it interesting without flipping to a ton of different pages. 
 BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away -- You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so we can all add your book to our To-Be-Read lists!

You can leave your teaser, author, and title in the comments (click over to the web version if you're on the mobile site). Or write up your own post and join us weekly!  Then you can share your link in the comments, and I will stop over and leave you a comment!!!  YAY!

Marissa at Reading List

Linking up with these fun hops, check them out!


What I've Been Reading {October Edition}

What I've Been Reading

  October Quick Lit Reviews

What did you think of last month's quick reviews?  Were they more enjoyable?  Did you miss it? Oh, well then, check it out!  

What I've been Reading - October Quick Lit Reviews on Reading List

Oh my, what a month I have had!  While I now I have two kiddos in school I had thought I would find some more time to read, and the opposite has proven true!  Oh well. There is always a period of adjustment.  As far as books go, I have been trying to read a variety so I can share with you some of different genres, but I have noticed, my patience for slower moving stories is not very high. So please for give the harsher ratings of some of the books as my season of life is demanding some speed to the plots lines.  Isn't it wonderful how there are so many options in books that allow us to pick depending on our moods, or seasons?

Raising Human Beings by Ross W Greene

Raising Human Beings by Ross Greene  a quick lit review on Reading List
It has been a while since I have shared a parenting book on here.  There are so many voices out there telling us parents how to parent, that to be honest, I have avoided them for years now, in order to get my own stride.  However, Raising Human Beings jumped out at me, and I figured it was worth a try.

This is a book that all people need to read who might have any contact with children: teachers, principals, coaches, church volunteers, and especially parents and grandparents.  While Greene might be an authority on working with "difficult" children and families, this book is for everyone.

He walks you through, and I mean spoon-feeds you how, steps on how to really communicate with your kid, no matter their age, so that your child will start to build the life-skills to problem solve the hurdles in front of them.  I cannot do this book justice with my review, just believe me, this one is worth owning - maybe even buy copies for the other adults your kids are around...

I have to give this book four and a half hearts (the half is because it is still another adult giving you advice on your family...) and completely recommend it.

I wrote an in-depth review here, if you are on the fence on this one, stop by.

Everland by Wendy Spinale

Everland by Wendy Spinale a quick lit review on Reading List
Everland is a new genre for me, steampunk... an off-shoot of fantasy, this one is very YA as well.  And as you can guess, it's a retelling of Peter Pan.  That is why I went ahead and picked it up. A fairy tale retelling... I mean that can't be too horrible.

To be honest, this was a fun, cute read.  It was interesting how Spindale used the war as her starting point and then the idea of biological warfare, again interesting. But as a whole, this book fizzled by the halfway point.

It is very cliche when it comes to the characters, maybe a little too much like the Disney movie, and not enough real meat to the characters?

Overall I can only give this book three hearts.  If you are big Peter Pan fan, you could really enjoy this, at least it's a quick read. Or if you enjoy steampunk or YA fantasy it could be worth the read. Otherwise, you might want to pass on this one.

How to Party with an Infant by Kaui Hart Hemmings

How to Party with an Infant by Kuai Hart Hemmings a quick lit review on Reading ListHow to Party with an Infant was on a list of adult contemporary fiction for August as a possible best seller so I thought I'd give is a shot.

Oh man, this one was not what I expected.  I didn't finish it, in fact.

Fair warning, this is full of adult language and adult scenes, of all kinds for that matter.

The story started off really funny, sort of like an off-colored comedian, I even laughed out loud in the gym.  But by the fourth chapter I was tired of the language and lack of any real substance, just a lot of whining adults wishing their lives were different.  Needless to say, I put it down.

Granted Hemmings is a best-selling author, and the reviews on this one are pretty mixed.  If you are a fan of hers, just be ready for something different, I think.

I can only give this book one star, mostly because I didn't even finish it.  I would not recommend this to teenagers for sure, and as for adults, well, it's up to you.

Paper Princess by Erin Watt

Paper Princess by Erin Watt a quick lit review on Reading List
First off, Erin Watt is a pseudonym for Elle Kennedy and Jen Fredrick who co-wrote this trilogy. And in order to be fair, this is most certainly an R-rated book series, maybe more.

While some of the scenes are a bit much, I mean leave some of it to the imaginations ladies, this story line moves at such speed you can barely keep up. These are the kind of books you keep reading well past bedtime because you just need to know what happens next.

Ella Harper (a modern take on Cinderella...) finds herself in a new home with the Royals, and this is not your typical family.  Money is everywhere. While many reviewers commented on how ridiculous this was, so much money, so little involvement from the father, I'll be honest, it wasn't that much of a stretch from the high school I went to.  Sure it was embellished, but not all that much.  It's a good look into how corruptable the American teenager can be when given everything plus an extra $1,000 just for fun.

Overall I am torn on this book, I officially gave it a three heart rating, simply because of the racy nature of it, but somehow the story hooked me none-the-less. I would recommend it to those who do not mind reading racy stories, and simply want to pick up a fun read - just fair warning the cliff-hangers in this series will demand you read the rest of the series.

For even more on this book, check out my sneak peek

Broken Prince by Erin Watt

Broken Prince by Erin Watt a quick lit review on Reading ListSo this is the second book in above mentioned series.  While the first book focused on Ella and how she adapts to her new environment, this second book spends more time on the "ring leader" of the Royal boys, Reed.

Imagine a handsome, rich, popular, high school jock, then multiply that by at least 100 and you might start to get an idea of this guy. He is completely over the top, all the time, yet deep down he just wants to know he belongs and is loved by his family.  When I started reading the book I really disliked him, but by the halfway point I had changed my mind.

Again, this is really not a teen book so much as an adult book, so while the characters are in high school, maybe this should be a New Adult book? Just be prepared for adult scenes, behavior, and language in this series.  As such, I can only give this book three stars too.  I really wish these were not marketed to teens, as I would really not want my young teenagers reading this book while in high school.  On the flip side, I read this book in maybe two days, and am anxiously waiting for the final book in the series to come out.

For more on this one, check out my sneak peek!

The Artisan's Wife by Judith McCoy Miller

The Artisan's Wife by Judith Miller a quick lit review on Reading ListIn this Christian Historical fiction, Ainslee becomes the less than willing manager of a tile work copy in West Virginia as part of an expanding family business. While she is fully capable of running the company, her emotions are running high as she takes on a new responsibility, in a new town without the assistance of her sister, which she had been counting on.  All in all, she is just like many of the women I know, who start out on a plan, but when life throws curve balls allow their emotions to run high (you know I am talking about myself right?)

Overall this is a sweet story, but I never really connected with the characters or their goals. I could only give this book three hearts, because it is well written and has some beautiful scenes. Also, fair warning, the Christianity scenes are really repetitive as it appears like the author is trying to drive home some scriptural points, which for me just was too much. I will read the Bible for scripture, show me how the Truth in the actions of your characters... but again personal feeling here.

If you are still curious, stop over and check out my in depth review!

Tenderfoot by Abby Drinen

Tenderfoot by Abby Drinen a quick lit review on Reading ListThis new author has set up quite the world and story in Tenderfoot.  This is for the fans of fantasy teen books. The tenderfoots are a group of teens who wake up to find themselves in a whole new world, nothing at all like earth. They have abilities, if they train to use them...

As the first book in a series, quite a bit of the book is world building and character development. Once the actions starts, it gets more interesting, which could mean the rest of the series will be very engaging.  The downside, there are way too many characters and they each get to share their own POV. This results in some chaotic transitions between chapters.

I gave this book three hearts because for me it was too hard to keep up with all the POVs. This is certainly a teen book, while I can't say it's incredibly clean, it is nothing that wouldn't be in a typical teen TV show. Overall this could be a fun series for book lovers who enjoy a good fantasy world.

If you want more on this book, check out my review

Check out what I read this past month & let me know what you're reading! #Bookfanatics @Reading_List1 #Currentlyreading

What have you been reading?   What caught your eye above?  What should I read next?  

Marissa @ Reading List

*** Hey guys, did you know I am on Instagram?  I share fun book-themed pictures as well as my daily Women Living Well SOAKing.  I would love to see you there!  If you want to join in, stop over, and let me know you are following!   

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