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Welcome! The ultimate luxury for me is curling up with a good book and a warm blanket. The next best thing is reviewing books and sharing them with others.

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17 07, 2016

Blog Tour: The Mind-Gut Connection by Emeran Mayer, MD

By | July 17th, 2016|Categories: Diet & Weight Loss, Disorders & Diseases, Health, Mind, & Body, Personal Health, Self-Help|Tags: , , , , |4 Comments

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the mind gut connection book coverPlease join Emeran Mayer, MD, author of The Mind-Gut Connection, as he tours the blogosphere with TLC Book Tours!

Reviewed by Poppy Johnson

If you are interested in learning more about your gut, this book was written with you in mind. According to Dr. Mayer, the gut communicates with the brain, and when there is a miscommunication, it can lead to psychiatric issues, chronic diseases, and other physical problems–all of which can be prevented.

Today, there is a never ending supply of books telling us how to change what we eat, lose weight, balance our bodies, and so on and so on. I found The Mind-Gut Connection to be different. It focuses specifically on the gut in its role on a variety of things that happen in our bodies. Dr. Mayer does try to explain everything carefully, and I mean in precise detail. This is a book that is best read with a notebook on hand because you will want to take copious notes if you want to understand and remember the topics covered. And you will want to know what’s being said since scientific studies show that your gut and your brain are pretty much running the show in your body and control its various bodily functions each and every day.

7 07, 2016

Review: I Have a Voice by Tyler Williams

By | July 7th, 2016|Categories: Arts & Literature, Health, Mind, & Body, Memoirs, Nonfiction, Self-Help|Tags: , , , |3 Comments

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i have a voice book coverReviewed by Kelly Ferjutz

Some people are very fortunate – they discover what it is they want to do fairly early on in life and find a straight path to that goal. Others of us are not so certain that we’re headed in the right direction. Or we may think we are, but then a newly-discovered pathway leads us in a different direction. Maybe it’s only a temporary detour, but still–we’ve lost our way in the meantime.

After trying several different career paths without the satisfaction that he’d hoped to find, twenty-something Tyler Williams changed his direction. He planned on the next step, and through the good fortune that we all hope for, plus the discipline that we all have (if we care to use it) he made important changes to his life plan.

31 05, 2016

Review: Digesting the Universe by Nan Lu

By | May 31st, 2016|Categories: Diet & Weight Loss, Health, Mind, & Body, Nonfiction, Reference|Tags: , , , |4 Comments

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digesting the universe book coverReviewed by Poppy Johnson

Okay, where to start? Digesting the Universe by Nan Lu is immensely helpful, wholly appropriate and capable of opening the reader’s eyes to a life-changing discourse as to how your body really works, what you should be aware of to live longer, and how you are probably eating all the wrong things that will potentially kill you faster. The book is a bit technical so be prepared to get the nitty gritty on all your bodily functions, including the ever popular metabolism and its impact on weight loss, or the lack thereof.

Digesting the Universe is written in eight sections, with a ninth section/appendix that includes author biographies, references, quoted sources and more. The sections review everything from our metabolism and the relationship between organs, to traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) and the role of the mind and spirit in the metabolic functions. As I mentioned, the book is technical but readers with no prior knowledge of the subject matter will still understand the content. You do, however, need to give this book its full attention–taking notes is helpful too.

20 05, 2016

Review: Overload by Joyce Meyer

By | May 20th, 2016|Categories: Christian Living, Health, Mind, & Body, Nonfiction, Personal Health, Religion & Spirituality, Self-Help|Tags: , , , |2 Comments

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overload book coverReviewed by Poppy Johnson

For anyone who is not familiar with Joyce Meyer, let me introduce her to you right now. She is a survivor of an abusive childhood who is raising four children while also running her Christian ministry. She is a television and Internet minister through podcasts who regularly reaches millions with her positive messages of hope, peace and advice for living a Christ-filled life. But she also has a way with words, and is not afraid to share her life story with a reader to make a point. Now that you know the background on the author, you can better appreciate where her advice is coming from–from her experiences and her heart.

Overload is set in 15 chapters that are meant to define stress, help us identify who is in charge of our stressors, show what can be done to relieve

20 04, 2016

Blog Tour: Eat Dirt by Dr. Josh Axe

By | April 20th, 2016|Categories: Diet & Weight Loss, Disorders & Diseases, Exercise & Fitness, Health, Mind, & Body, Personal Health|Tags: , , , , , |4 Comments

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eat dirt book coverPlease join Dr. Josh Axe, author of Eat Dirt, as he tours the blogosphere with TLC Book Tours!

Reviewed by Amanda Schafer

Everywhere we go we see hand sanitizers and antibacterial soaps claiming to kill off 99.9% of the germs we could potentially come in contact with and stating that they will help keep us safe. But have we as a society gotten so obsessed with being anti-germ that we’ve gone too far? Dr. Josh Axe has written Eat Dirt to help show us that instead of running away from germs and dirt we need to be embracing the dirt and getting it back into our lives. By exposing ourselves to small amounts of local dirt and micro-organisms, we allow our body to build up the good bacteria which then helps it to naturally fight off the

31 03, 2016

Review: The Wander Society by Keri Smith

By | March 31st, 2016|Categories: Crafts, Health, Mind, & Body, Hobbies & Home, Nonfiction, Reference, Self-Help|Tags: , , , , |1 Comment

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the wander society book coverReviewed by Alisha Churbe

The Wander Society is a call to action. A call to action, an invitation to join an anonymous organization that includes members of the literary community, as well as other famous people. The invitation is to join the society and conduct research. The first page asks a list of questions and invites you to join The Wander Society. The rest of the book describes the organization, provides quotes of inspiration, and ‘how-to’ guidance to home make items to assist you in conducting your research.

“You probably haven’t heard of The Wander Society because its members don’t want to be known.” The premise is intriguing and secretive. The Wander Society invites you to walk and explore. Not walk to the store, or to the bus for work, but to walk aimlessly without a

20 03, 2016

Blog Tour: The Well Path by Jame Heskett M.D.

By | March 20th, 2016|Categories: Diet & Weight Loss, Health, Mind, & Body, Self-Help, Women's Health|Tags: , , , , |3 Comments

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the well path book coverPlease join Jame Heskett M.D., author of The Well Path, as she tours the blogosphere with TLC Book Tours!

Reviewed by Poppy Johnson

Let me just start out by saying that there are entirely too many self-help/wellness/diet books out there, with a new fad diet or “challenge” popping up each month to make us feel worse about our long journey with weight loss (for those of us on that daily journey). Some fads are ridiculous (such as using a vertical piece of paper to measure your waistline challenge), and some are stupid (is eating tofu to lose weight really worth it if it is now rumored to be made of plaster of paris and epsom salts?). Other fads are just more of the same old tired advice  – eat much less, exercise much more – masquerading

9 02, 2016

Review: Letters for Lucia by David Brown Jr.

By | February 9th, 2016|Categories: Happiness, Health, Mind, & Body, Memoirs, Motivational, Nonfiction, Self-Help, Spiritual|Tags: , , , , |3 Comments

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letters for lucia book coverReviewed by Lauren Cannavino

It is often said that the true test of strength is how we react in situations of strife and even tragedy. Letters for Lucia is the work of one such critical and heartbreaking test for David Brown Jr. Placed in a terrible situation that would have caused so many to head in the opposite direction, in a way almost rightfully so, David instead shifts his focus to opening his heart, mind and life to love and light. The book is a story of forgiveness, of lessons and growth and offers proof that even in times of terrible hardship, it is possible to not only go on, but also to thrive.

David Brown Jr. was young, successful, ready to have fun and looking for love. Coming from a close, warm family, David wanted to

7 02, 2016

Review: Drop the Act, It’s Exhausting! by Beth Thomas Cohen

By | February 7th, 2016|Categories: Health, Mind, & Body, Humor, Love & Romance, Nonfiction, Self-Help|Tags: , , |3 Comments

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drop the act it's exhausting book coverReviewed by Poppy Johnson

Drop the Act, It’s Exhausting! might be inspirational for some people. It might even spur a few women – those looking for that unknown “it” – on to action. The title of this book says it all–that we need to be freer in order to be ourselves, and that we need to drop the act of having “it” altogether, especially if we really don’t have a clue. Unfortunately, for me, the book lacked luster and I didn’t agree with much of the advice. You see, I don’t have an axe to grind, a complaint to make, or an “act to drop.” In short, I just couldn’t relate.

The book has nine well thought out chapters with hefty titles such as relating to being a gestating supermom, about forty being the next twenty,

21 01, 2016

Review: Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes

By | January 21st, 2016|Categories: Biographies, Entertainment, Health, Mind, & Body, Humor, Memoirs, Nonfiction, Self-Help, Success|Tags: , , , , , |4 Comments

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year of yes book coverReviewed by Meg Massey

Shonda Rhimes is the mastermind behind popular TV shows like Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal. She’s created complex and bold characters like Meredith Grey and Cristina Yang–strong women that have encouraged their audience to live with passion and boldness. But in the Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person, Shonda admits what some would never believe: she’s an introvert!

Shonda’s story begins in Thanksgiving 2013 when her sister spoke these words to her: “You never say yes to anything”. This exchange set events in motion that Shonda could have never predicted. Her sister’s words challenged her to step out of her comfort zone; to make a commitment to saying yes to everything that terrified her for one year.

This memoir is equal parts poignant