Month: April 2020

Friant’s Video Friday: Allies by Alan Gratz

Today Kim brings you a video review of Allies by Alan Gratz.

Author: Alan Gratz

Published: October 15, 2019
325 Pages

Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 4 stars

Book Description:

June 6, 1944: The Nazis are terrorizing Europe, on their evil quest to conquer the world. The only way to stop them? The biggest, most top-secret operation ever, with the Allied nations coming together to storm German-occupied France.

Welcome to D-Day.

Dee, a young U.S. soldier, is on a boat racing toward the French coast. And Dee — along with his brothers-in-arms — is terrified. He feels the weight of World War II on his shoulders.

But Dee is not alone. Behind enemy lines in France, a girl named Samira works as a spy, trying to sabotage the German army. Meanwhile, paratrooper James leaps from his plane to join a daring midnight raid. And in the thick of battle, Henry, a medic, searches for lives to save.

In a breathtaking race against time, they all must fight to complete their high-stakes missions. But with betrayals and deadly risks at every turn, can the Allies do what it takes to win?

Kim’s Video Review:

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

Finding Charlie

Finding Charlie
Author: Katie O’Rourke

Narrator: Kaitlin Chin
Published: December 15, 2015

Reviewed By: Jessica
Jessica’s Rating: 3 stars
Dates Read: March 18-25, 2020

Book Description:

It isn’t like Charlie to stay out all night without calling, but maybe Olivia doesn’t know her little sister as well as she thought.

When Charlie vanishes without warning, the people who love her are worried sick. Even if the law considers her an adult at nineteen, Charlie’s still the baby of her already broken family. Older sister Olivia is determined to figure out what’s happened. She finds a lost cell phone, an abandoned car and a shady boyfriend she’s never met before. And he’s not the only secret Charlie’s been keeping.

This disappearance feels uncomfortably familiar, reminding Olivia and her father of another loss years before. But this will be different, Olivia swears. Charlie’s coming back.

Jessica’s Review:

Olivia and Charlie’s mom left them with their father 12 years ago and have not seen her since. And now Charlie is nineteen years old and has gone missing, which is unlike her.  Olivia starts searching for Charlie in her own way, as the police won’t really do anything yet, as Charlie is of age.  During her search Olivia learns more about Charlie than she ever expected. 

This is an unhurried, character driven novel with multiple narrators to give you the story of this family.  The novel’s name has a double meaning as Olivia is searching for Charlie while Charlie is trying to discover who she is.  This novel shows the family life and relationships that all members have.  There is no action involved in the story, so Finding Charlie was slow moving for me and I was losing interest in it, though I did finish the novel. You guys know I Iove a good thriller, but also read other genres (including women’s fiction/contemporary fiction such as Finding Charlie), so this was nothing to fault the novel or author. It just wasn’t really a novel for me. I will be giving O’Rourke another try by reading her collection of short stories Still Life, which is free on Kindle.

Many thanks to the author for granting me an audible copy in exchange for a review. 

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK


Earth Day Blitz: A Zero Waste Life

Happy Earth Day! Today I am taking part in the Earth Day Blitz for the book A Zero Waste Life in Thirty Days by Anita Vandyke. This book is available now!

This blitz also includes a giveaway for a Mermaid Straw and a copy of the eBook courtesy of Rockstar Book Tours. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

About The Book:

Author: Anita Vandyke
Publisher: Apollo Publishers
Formats: Paperback, eBook, audiobook
Pages: 192

Find it: Goodreads, Amazon, Audible, B&NTBD,

A practical guide to improving your life–and your impact on the world–in thirty simple days by radically reducing waste without losing your lifestyle.

Overwhelmed by clutter, anxious about your environmental footprint, and looking to make a change? You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to reconfigure your consumption–still, it doesn’t hurt that Anita Vandyke is. A qualified engineer and the eco-luxe lifestyle champion behind the popular zero-waste Instagram @Rocket-Science, Anita Vandyke has made the change to a zero-waste life, and through hands-on advice and charming illustrations, she shows us that with ease and style, we can too.

By incorporating thirty simple rules one day at a time, A Zero Waste Life is a manageable guide to forming a more conscientious, intentional life in just one month. Offered inside is guidance for tackling waste and making ethical choices when it comes to shopping, eating, travel, beauty, and more. With her signature elegance and encouraging voice, Vandyke proves that we can stop depending on plastics, tidy our homes, and clear the way for a cleaner future–and that when we stop wasting, we start living.

When people hear of the conservationist lifestyle, it sounds idealistic and undesirable—a life spent sacrificing conveniences and laboring over smelly compost. Not quite so, according to stylish lifestyle expert, social influencer, and qualified rocket scientist Anita Vandyke, whose popular Instagram (@Rocket_Science) documenting her hip, conservationist lifestyle has amassed more than 82,000 followers, and who is the author of the upcoming, much anticipated, beautifully illustrated, and highly readable guidebook A Zero Waste Life in Thirty Days.

 A Zero Waste Life in Thirty Days makes it easy—even convenient, fun, and envy producing!—to become a conservationist. Inside, Vandyke elegantly and encouragingly invites readers to follow a simple, manageable plan that will incorporate sustainable techniques into their lives one day at a time over a 30-day period, and leave them with a more intentional, fulfilling, and Earth-friendly lifestyle.

Vandyke focuses on incorporating practical ways to reduce waste, such as with:

  • food and shopping (become a better cook, reduce costs from packaging, and spend less eating out);
  • beauty and cleaning (DIY organic beauty and cleaning products to avoid toxins);
  • and recycling and composting (the basics and why it isn’t as daunting (or smelly!) as it seems).

Vandyke says quitting her corporate job helped her find her path, and that her financial savviness during her “funemployment” is what led to a zero waste lifestyle. “I don’t have all the answers to living a 100% zero waste life,” she says. “It’s a goal, nothing more. I believe we can all be everyday activists and take little steps to reduce our waste.

About the Author:

Anita Vandyke is a qualified rocket scientist (graduated with a Bachelor of Engineering – Aeronautical Space) and runs a successful Instagram account (@rocket_science) about zero waste living.

She was born in Guangzhou China, raised in Australia and currently splits her time between studying Medicine in Sydney, and living with her husband in San Francisco. She regularly blogs about her passions of zero waste switches, minimalism, travel and all things green living.

Anita’s first book A Zero Waste Life: a thirty day guide published by Penguin Random House, Australia is available at all good book stores. Her second book is coming out in 2020.

Contact Anita:
Sign up for Anita’s newsletter!

Website | Facebook | Instagram

Giveaway Details:

**US Only**
3 winners will win a Mermaid Straw and a copy of the eBook.
The giveaway will be open until April 30th at 12:00 a.m. Eastern.