Monday, March 27, 2017

When Tides Turn by Sarah Sundin Book Review

When Tides Turn by Sarah Sundin
From back cover:
Tess Beaumont is tired of being thought of as just a pretty face. Eager to do her part for the war effort, she joins the Navy's newly established WAVES program for women. Perhaps there she can convince people that there is more to her than meets the eye.

Lt. Dan Avery has been using his skills in the fight against German U-boats and hoping to make admiral. The last thing he wants to see on his radar is a girl like Tess. Convinced that romance will interfere with his goals, Dan is determined to stay the course, no matter how intriguing a distraction Tess is.

But love, like war, is unpredictable. When Dan is shipped out at the peak of the Battle of the Atlantic, he finds himself torn between his lifelong career goals and his desire to help the beguiling Tess root out a possible spy on shore. Could this fun-loving glamour girl really be the one?

I've always had a bit of an interest in World War II history and the 1940's and 50's, so this book was right up my alley!

There was a lot going on throughout the book, but I never felt lost. And there are so many historical details, all of which are explained well (and not in a boring way!). You can tell a lot of research goes into writing these books. 

I wasn't too sure about Tess, as she is kind of portrayed as a bit of a flirt in the previous books, but it was nice to see another side of her and learn more about her.

And Dan was a bit of a jerk for a while, but you were given just enough backstory to know that there was more to his story so you didn't totally give up on him. I did feel like his point-of-view was a bit boring at times compared to Tess. I mean, it's hard to compete with her spy mystery!

While this does have romance angle to it, I didn't find it to be too cheesy or annoying. There was definitely some tension with Dan and Tess's friendship/relationship, and some serious ups and downs, but I liked how it all came together. And not in an obvious way either. 

Actually, I liked how all of the story lines ended. Everything came together in a unexpected but satisfying way.

Overall I really enjoyed this book!

This is the third book in the Waves of Freedom series, but you could read these out of order and not feel lost. I have read all the books and enjoyed every one. 

I received this book from Revell Books, a division of Baker Publishing Group in exchange for an honest review.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Five for Friday

Hello and welcome to my Five for Friday! I am linking up with Cup of Tea Bright on a Budget, and  Della Devoted!

1. My mom subscribed to The Magnolia Journal a while ago, and we just received our first copy in the mail. Inside there were these neat flower prints that you could download from their website, so I thought I would share! You can download those for free here!

The actual prints look better, but you get the idea! I just need to find a place to hang these!
2. I found these Cadbury Crunch & Creme eggs at Target earlier this week and they are delicious. They're sweet, but really good!
3. My sister and I bought the new Zelda game a couple of weeks ago. We have had a lot of fun playing! I would't really consider myself a gamer, but I do enjoy playing the Mario games (Super Mario Bros, Mario Kart, Mario Party) and I've always enjoyed playing the Zelda games, so it was fun to have a new one to try! It's taken quite a bit of getting used to. Even though it's one player, my sister and I have been playing it together. There are some things we like, and also some really annoying things. But otherwise it's pretty fun!
4. I got my hair cut yesterday, and let me tell you, it feels SO much better! I'd been putting it off for a while, because I just didn't want to spend the money. I just wanted a simple trim, so I just went to a salon at the mall. She did just as good of a job (she cut it dry, so no wash and style.) and it was less than half the cost of the salon I typically go to. SO much cheaper and just as good! 

5. I finally went to the car wash and got my car washed and vacuumed out (it was pretty bad from winter!), and what does it do the next night? It rains. So now my car is dirty again! Not as bad as it was, but still. So much for having a nice clean car!

Do you have any fun plans for the weekend?

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Still Life by Dani Pettrey Book Review

Still Life by Dani Pettrey
From back cover:
Blacklisted in the photography business over a controversial shot, Avery Tate answered an ad for a crime-scene photographer. She expected to be laughed at, but crime-scene analyst Parker Mitchell hired her outright-and changed her life. But six months ago, when feelings for Parker became too strong, she left his employ to sort out her heart.
     Now, for the first time, Avery is facing the world that rejected her to attend the gallery opening of a photography exhibit for which her friend modeled. But the only image of her friend is a chilling photo of her posing as if dead-and the photographer insists he didn't take the shot. Worse, her friend can't be found, and so Avery immediately calls Parker for help. As Avery, Parker, and their friends in law enforcement dig into the mystery, they find themselves face-to-face with a relentless and deadly threat.

I've read other books by this author, so I am familiar with her writing, but this book was a big miss for me.

I always try to read books in order, and thought I had read the first book in this series, but I must not have because I was quite lost!

Generally, it's not too big of a deal to read books out of order, sometimes there are a few things you miss, but usually the gaps are quickly filled in. But there was so much referencing to the first book, I felt lost at times trying to keep up with what was going on. I understand that part of that is my fault, but on the other hand, this is a separate book. It's one thing if you are referencing things occasionally, but it's a little annoying when you are constantly referring back to the other book. So if you are interested in this book, definitely read the first one first!

I'm a photographer, so I was pretty interested in this story. I really could not understand why Avery was 'blacklisted'. The reasoning is explained so briefly, and it just didn't make sense to me. But I have learned that it is elaborated more in the first book, so I am just basing this off of what I read in THIS book.

I found there to be too many characters and point-of-views, it was hard to keep straight sometimes. After I was about halfway through, I kind of got it figured out. But it was definitely frustrating. I also just didn't feel invested in any of the characters, you knew from the very beginning that Avery and Parker were going to end up together. It was so painfully obvious. It would have been nice to have some sort of tension or something, but unfortunately there wasn't.

Overall I found this to be a just okay book. Wasn't really great, wasn't terrible either. I thought the overall plot line was interesting, but this book just focused too much on emotions and relationships/romance and not enough action/mystery/suspense.

I received this book from Bethany House Publisher in exchange for an honest review. 

Monday, March 13, 2017


Working on - Editing pictures. I'm getting quite a few pictures on my computer I need to edit, print, and then save to disks. It's a task that always takes me a while to do, but it's nice to get my computer cleaned up and get the prints back.

Looking forward to - Spring time! It will be nice to start seeing some flowers blooming and the trees turning green again. Everything has been so dead looking and ugly lately, it will be nice to finally see some signs of spring!

Watching - Madam Secretary started up again, so we have been watching that. As well as Little Big Shots (the kids on there are just too cute sometimes!), Shark Tank, The Voice, and Fixer Upper.

Eating -  I've been really into eating taco salads lately. They're pretty quick and easy to make, and just taste so good! 

Reading - I just started When Tides Turn by Sarah Sundin, so far it's been okay. I'll be posting a review when I finish it.

What have you been up to lately?

Wednesday, March 8, 2017


I'll preface this post by saying I know this is a random post, but I really wanted to share these pictures! ;)

We live in town, so we don't get much wildlife in our yard. One day I would love to live out of town somewhere and see deer roaming through the yard, but for now I'll have to settle for the squirrels!

My dad built a squirrel feeder a few years ago, and they are pretty cute and entertaining to watch! 

I took these earlier this winter, (hence the fact it's snowing!) I never got around to getting any more pictures, so I thought I would share these!

And while I was taking the squirrel pictures, I happened to notice a woodpecker in a tree nearby, so I took some pictures of that too!
So what do you think? Are squirrels cute or annoying?

Monday, March 6, 2017

Some Scrapbooking

I haven't shared any scrapbooking in quite a while, but I finally finished this scrapbook so I thought I would share a few of the pages! I'm trying to get caught up, so these are all from July 2015-March 2016.

Apparently it's been a year since I last shared any scrapbook pages!