Spring Fling!

bouquet-tulips-books-white-hat-carafe-juice-green-grass-spring-garden-against-background-cherry-53447938Spring is in full swing, and to my delight I’ve done a lot of reading over the last couple weeks. While on a wonderful extended weekend trip to beautiful southern California, I was even able to completely read one book and start two others. A total of five books since spring officially began,
I like the way this is going!

Here is What I’ve Been Sipping on this Spring:

Proof of Heaven
by Dr. Eben Alexander
Rated 4.3 on amazon.com
This is a story that would be remarkable no matter who it happened to, but the unique and intriguing circumstances make it all the more enchanting. A highly trained and respected neurosurgeon contracts (mysteriously) an extremely rare brain disease, has an extensive and scientifically unexplained near death experience, and then miraculously makes a statistically impossible full recovery.
That it happened to Dr. Even Alexander makes it revolutionary. This is even truer of this new edition, in which he expands upon the lessons he learned from his experience, adding new insights and guidance for a world more in need of them than ever. Reading this book inspires a whole new way at looking at life and one’s self; that is both comforting and enthralling.

Playing with Fire
by Tess Gerritsen
Rated 4.3 on amazon.com
I bought this book completely on a whim, because while purchasing it for a friend I read the first page and instantly knew it was my cuppa tea. This musically inspired thriller was also a romantic historical fiction.
It had an air of antique ambiance that I was quickly and completely absorbed in. To my surprise it also happened to take place in pre-WW2 Italy, did she write this just for me!

This book is deeply personal to the author and her musical background, which added an intimacy to the reading experience that was wonderful. The story also inspired/compelled her to compose a peace of music “Incendio” that has been performed by international violinist Yi-Jia Susanne Hou.

The Five People You Meet in Heaven
by Mitch Albom
Rated 4.6 on amazon.com
Eddie is a wounded war veteran, an old man who has lived, in his mind, an uninspired life. His job is fixing rides at a seaside amusement park. On his 83rd birthday, a tragic accident kills him, as he tries to save a little girl from a falling cart. He awakes in the afterlife, where he learns that heaven is not a destination. It’s a place where your life is explained to you by five people, some of whom you knew, others who may have been strangers.
One by one, from childhood to soldier to old age, Eddie’s five people revisit their connections to him on earth, illuminating the mysteries of his “meaningless” life, and revealing the haunting secret behind the eternal question: “Why was I here?”

Here is a new go to favorite of mine I tried on my trip

Book Bean: Green Tea Lemonade
3c1b4d4cfc6a01ca57759a20c4a6c940Add some old school charm to your afternoon tea! Make some iced green tea and add a splash of homemade or prepared lemonade for a lightly sweet twist. Serve with lemon slices and mint leaves. Find a place under a tree or on a porch swing to lose yourself in a book while sipping this crisp and refreshing drink, and enjoy the added benefit of a healthy boost of energy!

Papillon
by Henri Charrière
Rated 4.5 on amazon.com
A young man called “Papillon,” for the butterfly tattoo on his chest, was convicted in Paris in 1931 of a murder he did not commit. Sentenced to life imprisonment in the penal colony of French Guiana, he became obsessed with one goal: escape. After planning and executing a series of treacherous yet failed attempts over many years, he was eventually sent to the notorious Devil’s Island, a place from which no one has ever escaped .
His flight to freedom remains one of the most incredible feats of human cunning, will, and endurance ever undertaken.

The Count of Monte Cristo
by Alexander Dumas
Rated 4.6 on amazon.com
Dumas’ classic novel of wrongful imprisonment, adventure and revenge. Thrown in prison for a crime he has not committed, Edmond Dantes is confined to the grim fortress of the Château d’If. There he learns of a great hoard of treasure hidden on the Isle of Monte Cristo and becomes determined not only to escape but to unearth the treasure and use it to plot the destruction of the three men responsible for his incarceration.

I love Dumas’ storytelling; he is romantic, witty, and poetic, and yet the way he can spin an intriguing adventure cannot be matched! This story (as is customary to his writing) has it all.

I’ve also been trying this new coffee out, and it is fantastic

BookBean: Seabrook Blend
by Grounds for Change
 images (2)A perfect match for my current nautical reading selections! Full-bodied, rich, and so deliciously smooth; with noticeable notes of hazelnut and caramel that are a pleasant delight. Each cup is interesting and full of flavor and culture, a perfect blend.

So what have you been reading/sipping? Do share!

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WISO: The Christmas Sweater

“Silence is important; it’s the only time you can hear the whispering of truth.”

I’ve been extra vigilant on the Christmas book lookout and I found a gem!

Here’s what I’ve been sippin on:

The Christmas Sweater
by Glenn Beck
This #1 New York Times bestselling author and renowned radio and television host delivers an instant holiday classic; about boyhood memories, wrenching life lessons, and the true meaning of the gifts we give to one another in love.

If You Could Change Your Life by Reversing Your Biggest Regrets, Sorrows and Mistakes…Would You?

converse-x-sns-teaser-video-1 - Edited.jpgRated 4.5 on amazon.com

I couldn’t help myself I had to do an extra post to share this book. I started reading it a few days ago and I haven’t been able to put it down. It has been very heartwarming and moving; the perfect holiday read. I will warn those out there who are prone to water works, it’s a good tearjerker.
The Christmas Sweater is a book I know I will re-visit in future years.

“Silence makes you think, and thinking makes you realize that
not all problems are caused by someone else.”

WISO: Let It Snow

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This year I decided to stray from a few of my favorite Christmas reads and read some new books. I’ve had quite a number of them piling up in my tbr list and new ones pop up every year.


Here’s What I’ve Been Sipping on:

Let it Snow

Last week I stumbled across this book; a compilation of 3 short intertwined stories written by 3 popular author’s. The stories were well written and I liked how the stories intertwined. However, it was not necessarily my style book; it was too focused on teenage romance for my taste. Contemporary fiction (especially romance) is probably my least favorite genre, but still it was entertaining enough, and a quick read.

Rated 4.4 on amazon.com

“I may have been a complete lunatic, but I was a complete lunatic
with manners.
0e3f21ce-4da6-4d14-813a-31d56f918c51~Maureen Johnson

Book Bean: Peppermint Mocha – No Whip
One of my two go to favorite drinks this time of year


I am now reading :
The Christmas Sweater
by Glenn Beck.

I started reading a sample and decide to keep with it. So far it is very well written and has a very intriguing beginning. I am looking forward  to seeing how it unfolds.

“You can either complain about how hard your life is, or
you can realize that only you are responsible for it.”
~Glenn Beck

make-starbucks-eggnog-latte_coffee-step-10Rated 4.5 on amazon.com

Book Bean: Eggnog Latte/Cocoa – Extra spice 😉
The second of my holiday favorites, been drinking
a lot of these!


Click here for an update on The Christmas Sweater

What have you been sipping on?

Profound Paragraphs: WISO

“A rogue does not laugh in the same way that an honest man does; a hypocrite does not shed the tears of a man of good faith. All falsehood is a mask; and however well made the mask may be, with a little attention we may always succeed in distinguishing it from the true face.”

I know I just did a “What I’m Sipping On” but I’ve been managing my time well lately which in turn means, more time for reading!

5174cycw8glThe Three Musketeers
by Alexandre Dumas

Published in 1844

The Three Musketeers is a historical novel by Alexandre Dumas. Set in 1625–1628, it recounts the adventures of a young man named d’Artagnan after he leaves home to travel to Paris, to join the Musketeers of the Guard.

Rated: 4.4 on amazon.com
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This book despite it’s sexism and class/rank subjugation (which was clearly and unfortunately acceptable at the time in which it was written) is still a very well written and entertaining read. Dumas has a knack for adventure that enthralls me. However I also found a few subtle gems of wisdom among the escapades.

“..the merit in all things consists in the difficulty.”

I also find myself laughing quite often when reading this book; the witty banter and subtle humor quite amuses me. Here is just a little example:

“Porthos: He thinks he can challenge the mighty Porthos with a sword…
D’Artagnan: The mighty who?
Porthos: Don’t tell me you’ve never heard of me.
D’Artagnan: The world’s biggest windbag?
Porthos: Little pimple… meet me behind the Luxembourg at 1 o’clock and bring a long wooden box.
D’Artagnan: Bring your own…
Porthos: [laughs]”maxresdefault-1-edited

I do love a book full of variety and this one most certainly has it; adventure, comedy, romance, and more! It also reads poetically, it’s almost as though you are reading a Shakespeare play. It’s the perfect lighthearted read for me right now.

Attention e-book readers: This is Free on Kindle click picture
above or HERE for link, AND the audible add-on is only .99!

b4b7bca7f94a45c092b468bb2d30bf3c
Book Bean:
Light Eggnog Latte
So while I’ve been reading this I have been sipping on one of my holiday favorites; a latte cut slightly with eggnog! mmm good 🙂


“Time, dear friend, time brings round opportunity; opportunity is the martingale of man. The more we have ventured the more we gain, when we know how to wait.”
~Alexander Dumas, The Three Musketeers

So, do share, what have you been sipping on?

Check out Mochas and Musketeers for more swashbuckling madness!

WISO – Cinder

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Today I have been reading Cinder while sipping a Flat White Lattecup2       IMG_20160113_165950.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 


Here are my thoughts so far:

Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles book 1) is a pleasant read so far, it is what you would expect from a YA book; easy, fast read. I haven’t been overwhelmed with delight by it, yet, but it’s also not a genre or style I’m usually drawn to. I decided to read it only because of all the hype, I didn’t like being out of the loop. I can see how fans of Twilight, and books of that nature, would be drawn to this series. So far it is interesting enough, although quite cliche and very predictable. I already feel like I know how the whole book is going to play out, and I prefer a little more mystery and intrigue to my reads. It is however a unique take on a classic fairytale, and I give the author kudos for that. Overall I think it is a well written story with a plot and style typical to YA literature. It is a worthwhile book to read if you like this style. If I feel overwhelmingly different when I complete the book, I will be sure to post an update.

“Cinder – The Lunar Chronicles” by Marissa Meyer
NF6zoQho-2400-2920Rated 4.6 on amazon.com
Book Bean:
 I ‘m drinking a Flat White from Starbucks

If you like your drinks unsweetened, and really want to taste the coffee flavor, this is a great drink.
Originating in Australia, it is made with 2 short shots, whole milk steamed fast, and no sweeteners.

Thank you Molly @mollysrealestateadventure
for bringing me my little pick me up today!


Has anyone else read Cinder?
What were your thoughts?

The Nightingale Gift

It has just arrived:

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah
A historical novel set during WWII. This story is about
the survival, love, and freedom of two sisters in German-occupied,
war-torn France.

nightingale.jpg
Somehow I got off the naughty list long enough to be gifted the #1 book on my wishlist. I am bubbling with excitement to read this book! “The Nightingale” has gotten rave reviews, it takes place during WWII (you know I’m a sucker,)  and it is just so beautiful. I wasn’t anticipating reading this book after “Midnight in The Garden of Good and Evil,” but now that I have it in my grasp,  I’m not sure I can resist. I was supposed to be reading “Cinder” and “Outlander” next…
I really should make a concrete book schedule for myself, I’m terribly undisciplined.

Book Bean: Café au Lait 
Coffee with lots of milk; the traditional French breakfast drink,
a very milky coffee.

Updates to come as I dive head first into this epic tale.