A New Dark Thriller For You, Bookworm

A New Dark Thriller For You, Bookworm - An Eye For An Eye by Caroline Fardig

An Eye for an Eye (Ellie Matthews Novels Book 2) by Caroline Fardig

Beauty Brite Disclosure

A New Dark Thriller For You, Bookworm

I love finding new authors to read, but any bookworm out there will understand when I say that choosing a new author to read can be daunting. Walk into any bookstore and you will find row after row of books of all genres with widely-ranging topics. It can easily be an all-day endeavor to stand there reading the backs or inside covers for a quick summary of what a book is about when choosing which one(s) appeal to your interests.

I read authors that are new to me all the time, and it’s just as gratifying as reading (or re-reading) the work of authors I know well. An Eye For An Eye by Caroline Fardig is the newest in a long line of authors I’ve read for the first time in recent years. I have enjoyed this book so much that I will definitely be picking up one or more of the other novels to her credit very soon.

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Lose Yourself In A Good Book

Lose Yourself In A Good Book - My Last Love Story by Falguni Kothari-What Doesn't Kill You by Aimee Hix

What Doesn’t Kill You by Aimee Hix
Print Length: 266 pages
Publisher: Midnight Ink (January 8, 2018)
Language: English
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My Last Love Story by Falguni Kothari
Print Length: 304 pages Publisher: Graydon House (February 1, 2018) Language: English

 

Beauty Brite Disclosure

One of my all-time favorite hobbies is reading. I have a few favorite authors, but am always looking for new ones to expand my horizons, so to speak. I love to read everywhere — in bed, while waiting for the kids to be done with sports, on the beach or while out on the boat … there is no such thing to me as a place it’s not good to read.

I wanted to share two new books I’ve read recently by authors that are new to me. My Last Love Story by Falguni Kothari is a love story, but not just any old love story. The plot has a pretty great twist to it and it also incorporates something else I love, a foreign culture. What Doesn’t Kill You by Aimee Hix also involves a love story of sorts but it’s wrapped up in a thrilling murder mystery.

I read the murder mystery first and was completely hooked and thrilled throughout that story. It was nice to have a book to follow it up with that was of a different sort of engagement style. Both of these books are really good and were well worth the time I spent living within them!… [read more]

Seven Ways To Beat The Winter Blues

Seven Ways To Beat The Winter Blues-Pine Mountain-American Home-Progresso Organic Soup-Prismacolor Colored Pencils and Markers

Beauty Brite Disclosure

With winter weather right around the corner, it makes me think of ways that we can stay cozy and warm as the cold settles in for a stay. When it’s nasty outside, some people can also find themselves falling into what I call the “winter funk.” This is when you feel confined, your mood can sometimes be depressed, and it is hard to find the motivation to do things and find joy in life.

When the weather turns cold and nasty and the days start to get shorter I love nothing better than curling up on the couch under a warm afghan, sometimes with the fireplace glowing and emanating warmth throughout the main area of the house. I have a variety of personal pleasures that I like to engage in to occupy my mind and provide entertainment and contentment when it’s not nice enough to be outdoors.

There are many ways to stay warm, but here are a few of my faves…. [read more]

Books That You Will Love

Books That You Will Love-House of Shadows by Nicola Cornick-Last Chance by Gregg Hurwitz

Beauty Brite Disclosure

I love to read. I have since I was a kid. I remember the highlight of one evening was waiting in line for the last Harry Potter book to come out. We waited for three hours and were first in line. I had that sucker read in about two days. (Yes I’m well aware how much that dates me) As a parent reading is my time that I set aside for myself and gives me a chance to breathe and recover from the day.

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Great Toy Options for Your Little One

Great Toy Options for Your Little One

Beauty Brite Disclosure

With more than one child, I find myself constantly looking for something they can all play with and enjoy. Sometimes it’s hard to know what to get especially if one has a birthday close to the holidays like my oldest does. Well, I’ve come up with several products I’d like to share that your little ones can enjoy.

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If My Dog Could Talk

If My Dog Could Talk - The Perfect Give for Pet Lovers & Owners

Beauty Brite Disclosure 

Let me tell you a story about my beloved rescue puppy, Morgan Rayne. She wasn’t the first dog I ever had, but she was the first dog that was all mine. You see, I had grown up with dogs. Since I was very little, there was always a dog, or two, in my family. They even made appearances in our family pictures. As a grown-up, I knew I wanted my own dog, but the time never seemed right.

Then one day, I finally decided it was time. I didn’t know what kind of dog I wanted, I just knew it would be a rescue. There are way too many dogs in shelters and I wanted to help save one. So, I went to shelters and looked online and one day I found her. This sweet, goofy boxer face I couldn’t resist.

Morgan Rayne

I still remember meeting Morgan, or Rayne as was called at the time, for the first time in a big field in Atlanta. I really hoped we would connect. You never know what a rescue has been through so it isn’t always a guarantee they will like you or warm up to you. This was not the case with Morgie. As I bent down to get a good look at her and to pet her, she crawled into my lap and gave me kisses. That was it, I was a goner.

On December 1st, 2009, Morgan Rayne became mine. She was sweet, full of energy, goofy, a total bed hog, and followed me where I went. I think she may have been left by her previous owners because she had some issues with separation anxiety.

We had many adventures together. She loved the snow, well eating it, and going to the beach. Although she didn’t really love going in the water. She also loved to ride shotgun in the car wherever we went so she could look out the window. She had a pension for wine, apples, bread, and Trader Joe’s Goddess Dressing. She would sneak on my mom’s couch, even though she wasn’t allowed up there.

Morgan Collage

 

I had her for six years before she unexpectedly passed away from bloat. I still miss her to this day. Although I keep my favorite picture of us by my bed, I always wanted a way to honor or celebrate her. Now, thanks to my personalized book, If My Dog Could Talk, from I See Me! I can. The book, written by Maia Haag and illustrated by Susan Batori, tells the story of you and your dog. (Or the pet lover and their dog if you are giving the book as a gift.)

If my dog could talk set

 

If you’re not familiar with I See Me!, they are known for their personalized children’s books. They have a wide variety of books and gifts for babies, kids, adults, and pets. I was thrilled when they offered me the chance to customize their pet book, which also came with a personalized placemat & bandana.

I See Me! makes customizing your book so easy. I love that they offer the option to choose from your current pet or to honor a pet that has passed away. First, I choose a dog, from their illustrated examples, that closely matched Morgie.

Next, I answered a few questions to help personalize the book even further, such as my name, my dog’s name and gender, and anyone else that loved Morgan. I also chose a dedication from their extensive list and included a couple of my favorite photos of Morgan. Then I waited for my goodie box to arrive.

If my dog could talk inner pages

As you can see, my book turned out amazing. I love the story and seeing mine and Morgie’s name throughout the book. There are so many great little extra touches, like seeing her name on the dog bed, or our hand/paw prints in the background. It’s little things like this that make If My Dog Could Talk such a treasure. It also makes for a great gift for kids and adults alike. It’s a nice way to celebrate your current pet or honor one that has passed away.

Intro to If My Dogs Could Talk

I shared Morgie’s book with Coda, my parent’s dog. He had the privilege of knowing Morgan and using her as a pillow on occasion. I think he might have been annoyed that I didn’t make the book about him, but he still enjoyed reading it. Plus, I assured him I would be getting him one of his own, as well as one for my dophew, Cooper.  I also promised him a few extra treats which sealed the deal.

Coda reading Morgan's book

If you are looking for the perfect personalized gift, now is the perfect time to shop I Seem Me!. During the month of October, they are partnering with the Anti-Cruelty Society in Chicago. Use code DOGS to receive 10% off your purchase and a percent of the proceeds will be donated to the organization. They will be partnering with The Humane Society of Missouri in November.

In November and December, they will also be partnering with the Children’s Cancer Research Fund. A percent of every purchase during those months will be donated to the national nonprofit.

Connect with I See Me!: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

What’s your favorite pet memory? Which I See Me! book would you like as a gift?

 

 

 

 

Fall In Love With These Children’s Books

 Fall In Love With These Children's Books--Batty Betty by Kathryn Hast-Otis Grows By Kathryn Hast-The Santa Thief by Alane Adams

Beauty Brite Disclosure

As a parent, I always try to look for ways to encourage my children to learn. Reading or being read to is one of the best ways I know how to make that happen. It is my goal to make sure they are engaged and getting the best out of what I can offer them while making sure they are having fun. Reading is one of the biggest nighttime habits in our house. It gives them all a chance to get comfy and relax from the day.

It makes me so proud as a parent when my kids see a new book and their little face lights up with joy as they pull a book out for us to read every night. Here are three new books we are currently enjoying.

There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island.” —– Walt Disney

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Who Do You Trust?

Who Do You Trust? - The Trust by Ronald H. Balson

Series: Liam Taggart and Catherine Lockhart (Book 4)
Hardcover: 368 pages
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press (September 19, 2017)
Language: English

Beauty Brite Disclosure

If you already follow the Beauty Brite Blog you may have read quite a few book reviews I’ve written in the past. I would never call myself a professional reviewer of the written word or say that my opinions and impressions are any better or worse than anyone else’s. But, I’ve been an avid book worm all my life, from the time I could pay attention long enough for my mother to read to me I’ve been entranced by words, characters, and their stories (both fiction and non-fiction).

When I read a new book, particularly one by an author with which I’m not already familiar, I always pay attention to the pace of story development and how the story progresses to its conclusion and make a mental (or sometimes literal) list of questions that occur to me while reading to see if they get answered by the time I finish the book. Most books leave me with one or two questions that I’d ask the author if I were to ever meet them, some leave me with many questions. Whether I’m left with questions or not doesn’t directly impact my overall impression of the work, per se. But, a book that leaves me with few questions is one I generally consider a good book.

As I read The Trust [Liam Taggart and Catherine Lockhart #4] by Ronald H. Balson (an author I’ve not read before) I mentally compiled my usual list of questions while progressing through the narrative. When I finally closed the back cover and set the book aside, I was genuinely surprised to find that I could not think of a single question that I had while reading that was left unanswered. That almost never happens!… [read more]

New Author To Fall In Love With

New Author To Fall In Love With-The Wood by Chelsea Bobulski

Print Length: 320 pages
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends (August 1, 2017)
Publication Date: August 1, 2017
Sold by: Macmillan
Language: English

Beauty Brite Disclosure

 

Gripping cover art with a mysterious and catchy phrase? ✓

Main character with a clearly defined purpose and an untra-cool name? ✓

Potential for further exploration of the characters beyond the confines of this story? ✓✓✓

 

The Wood by Chelsea Bobulski (Feiwel & Friends-MacMillan) is everything I like about reading work by an unfamiliar author. The story drew me in almost immediately with the impression left by the first few chapters. The characters and their story developed at a great pace, just enough to keep me thinking I had them figured out until – Bam! – a new nugget of information wove its way into the narrative for me to chew over. (And I do like chewing, as evidenced by the snack stash on hand, as you can see!)

I love a book that not only occupies my mind while reading it, but also when I’m away tending to “real life.” I know a book is good when I find myself pondering over it while doing dishes, folding laundry, or other mundane daily tasks – chomping at the bit all the while to finish up already and get back to the story…. [read more]

Between Lost and Found: A Novel of Love in South Dakota

Beauty Brite Disclosure

The story of a far-gone city girl traveling to a new place–and discovering redemption, and herself, along the way–is by no means an original one. However, such a plot-line deserves some repetition. It’s satisfying, sweet, and serves as a more tangible example of the search for self that we all strive towards. So, knowing that the book Between Lost and Found (whose heroine, Janelle Marshall, finds love and closure while searching for her missing grandfather in a little South Dakota town called Mammoth Falls) would involve said plot-line, I was excited and pleased to read the story. Shelly Stratton’s book, Between Lost and Found, has all the pleasurable cliches of a typical find-yourself-novel–but none of the typical brattiness that also comes along with it.

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