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Showing posts from August, 2015

Book Spotlight: Teera: A Life of Hope and Fulfillment | Teera de Fonseka

Genre: Memoir Paperback: 234 pages  Perspective: First Person Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (February 22, 2015)  Language: English 

Teera’s life was beautiful. Having grown up in the splendor of a beachside paradise, Teera settled down in a good home with the love of her life and their two gorgeous children. Filled with love, joy, and a promising future, Teera’s world was nearly perfect, until the night her husband was violently murdered while the two of them lay in bed sleeping. The assailant intended to kill her too, but Teera survived. Devastated by loss and disfigured from a gruesome facial wound, her infants still to care for, Teera learned to endure and to carry on. Yet the murder was only the beginning. It would be years before Teera escaped the turmoil she faced in Sri Lanka, finding refuge for her family in a far away land. This is Teera’s life of hope and fulfillment, a declaration of faith and of love. Honest, inspiring and heart-rending, Teera…

Hotel Cuba | Brian White

Genre: Fiction/Erotica Number of Pages: 274 Perspective: First person Location:Long Island/Cuba
Don has always loved his wife, but as a sex addict, he loves sex more. He dreams of making a resort in Cuba where married couples can go to live out their wildest fantasies together. For a complete summary, you can go here.
I know this is a book, but I’m going to compare it to some movies since I’ve never read a book like it before. You have a narcissistic sex addict, like in Don Jon—the lead character is also conveniently named Don…what’s with Dons? Then you have the indie film vibe that takes a behind the senses of strip club culture, like in Magic Mike—but with mostly female strippers. Then I kept thinking about the movie Couples Retreat. There are two islands: one island is for the couples to work on their relationship together, and the other island is crazy lusting and partying. This book is what the combo of those two islands would look like. 
This is one of those books where I hated eve…

Q & A with Author Dr. Aaron Smith

After reading Dr. Aaron Smith's book Awakening Your STEM School, I needed to know more about this school and what inspires Dr. Smith. Check out our interview!
Why did you get into education?
I was inspired by two wonderful math teachers who taught math with enthusiasm. I enjoyed coming to class to learn which made a positive impression on me that led me to become a math teacher.
Does your STEM school offer non-STEM classes?
Yes, we do! We have English and Social Studies classes.
What is your favorite lesson that you have ever taught or seen?
When the students are in our Maintenance Lab and are working on their plane. While there, students circle together looking at the blueprint and then begin to work on the objective as one unit. The teamwork and pride seen here is truly priceless.
What is your favorite part about education?
Watching and working with kids to reach their fullest potential and seeing the fruits of their labor come to life are one of my favorite parts of education. In …

A Spool of Blue Thread | Anne Tyler

“For years, she had been in mourning for the way she had let her life slip through her fingers. Given another chance, she’d told herself, she would take more care to experience it. But lately, she was finding that she had experienced it after all and just forgotten, and now it was returning to her.”
Genre: Women’s Fiction Number of Pages: 368 Perspective: Third Person Location: Baltimore, Maryland
A Spool of Blue Thread is a novel about three generations of one family. They fight, laugh, and cry together, but they embrace the unpredictable journey of life as a family. For a complete summary and to read an excerpt, you can go here.
This book is about nothing, and yet it is about everything. There is a loose plot, but the story bounces through three generations of one family. It’s not a happy book. It’s not a sad book. It’s just real. It is about family, love, and life.
I am always leery of books that are hyped up, but I was drawn into this book from the first page. The characters are all ex…

Awakening Your STEM School | Dr. Aaron L. Smith

Genre: Non-fiction—Education Number of Pages: 222 Perspective: First and third Location:Coastal Virginia
Awakening Your STEM School is a book of ideas, examples, and tools for successfully running a STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math education) school. Its main focus is preparing students to work in those fields. For a complete summary, you can go here.
I want to tell you all a little background about myself before I review this book. I actually live very close to the STEM school featured in this book in Coastal Virginia. I just recently moved here, but it is already very easy to why a STEM school would perform exceptionally well here. We have Navy bases with tons of Navy ships, plus large jets flying overhead, nearby airports, many science-related museums, crazy underwater tunnels, and an engineer's paradise. We actually moved here because my husband got a job working at an engineering firm. 
My background is in early childhood education, so I am not an expect in high s…

The Longest Ride | Nicholas Sparks

"We shared the longest ride together, this thing called life, and mine has been filled with joy because of you." 
Genre: Contemporary Romance Number of Pages: 398 Perspective: Alternating First and Third Location:North Carolina
The Longest Ride is a love story that follows two different couples. One is a flashback of Ira’s marriage with Ruth as he is fighting for his life in the aftermath of a car crash. The second is Sophia, an art history major, who falls in love with Luke, a rodeo rider, who risks his life to save his mother’s ranch. For a complete summary, you can go here.
Nicolas Sparks has written a lot of books—a few really awesome ones, but he’s also written a lot of okay books. One thing is certain, the style of his books is definitely recognizable. Besides love, his books usually have a theme of tragedy for one person, so that another person can have a happy ending. They also contain strange cases of serendipity that bring those circumstances/people together. That is no …

We’re Human Therefore We Tell Stories

This is a guest post by Lydia Sherrer.

“Stories are as hard to create as they are inevitable; good ones are as elusive as they are necessary to hungry souls” – N.D. Wilson
Theories abound as to what makes us different from animals (some would say we're not). It's not that we have society, or technology. Animals have both of those, in some fashion or another. Some would say it's our intelligence. But wouldn't that just make us really smart animals? So what's different? What makes us human?
The answer is more simple, and profound, than I ever imagined myself before I became a writer. We're different because we tell stories. We imagine, we revel in the made-up, and we use stories as tools just as much as a hammer or a nail.
"Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind." - Rudyard Kipling
We are a story-telling species, from authors to reporters to your ordinary mom and dad telling bedtime stories to their kids. Why are we this way? I belie…