Thursday, November 30

In the Middle of the Mess: A Book Review

In the Middle of the Mess by Sheila Walsh

This was my first book by Sheila Walsh, and I picked it up on a whim. She has written a lot - and I mean, a lot - of books. In her newest book, she reveals how her hardened defenses kept her from allowing God into her deepest hurts and share how she fought against those defenses to open the door for God to reach her heart.

Words cannot fully describe how much I loved this book. It's by far the best book I've read all year, maybe even the best book I've EVER read in the Christian self-help/living category. I can talk about how raw and genuine Sheila writes about the walls we put up and the hard times, not sugar coating a single thing, but I would never be able to accurately describe the depth to which she does this. She takes the feelings of anger, hurt and pain we've all experienced from a close family/friend's death or job situation, or marital disppointment, or chronic illness, or bankruptcy, or whatever painful life circumstance, and pushes aside the classic Christian response "It was God's will" or "it has a purpose" to simply invite the reader to grieve it fully to God, pouring out the very real and very unfiltered emotions to a God who loves us enough to handle any emotion.

It was so good that I devoured it in one sitting, feeling equal parts crying over being welcomed into the inside world of her clinical depreciation and downright encouraged to look into what pain I'm holding back from God (and pulling some tips from her chapters about how to take this to God). So, so, so good.


Disclaimer: This book was provided to me free of charge in exchange for my honest review. All the opinions expressed are completely my own.

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Wednesday, November 29

Staying Stylish: A Book Review

Staying Stylish by Candace Cameron Bure

To start, I have to say this book is LOVELY. It's larger than a regular book, more like a coffee table book, measuring approximately 7"x9" with thick glossy pages and a nice hardcover (with a gold foil border). It feels great to hold as I flip through the chapters.

The author, Bure, is best known as DJ Tanner from Full House. This book is more like a guide book for staying stylish and has the tagline "cultivating a confident look, style and attitude." She shares tips about stocking your closet, packing a suitcase, airport outfit planning, doing your makeup, taking care of your skin and hair, workout tips, book suggestions and more. The topics covered span a lot of topics surrounding well-living.

I found the tips she shared interesting. Some of which were already things I had incorporated into my life, and others were great that I jotted down a note to make small adjustments in my daily beauty routine, or routine in general.

Overall, I would recommend this guide! The personal photos and styled photos sprinkled throughout the book were fun to look at with each tip or trick...plus, Candace looks fabulous!


Disclaimer: This book was provided to me free of charge in exchange for my honest review. All the opinions expressed are completely my own.

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Monday, November 20

100 Days of Brave: A Book Review

100 Days of Brave by Annie Downs

The author, Annie Downs, keeps it real. This 100 day devotional is aimed to help the reader fight their fears and face down their challenges when life feels overwhelming. Downs walked through a season where her challenges felt too difficult, too scary and too much, so her words feel natural and not forced or stiff. Those type of authors are always more enjoyable to read. Pick up this book to see that fear holding onto you can be tackled!


Disclaimer: This book was provided to me free of charge in exchange for my honest review. All the opinions expressed are completely my own.

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Sunday, November 5

The Sacred Slow: A Book Review

The Sacred Slow by Alicia Britt Chole

There's an interesting shift happening in our culture. Being on the old side of the millennial generation, I haven't lived long enough to be a first hand witness of such a shift before. I've read about them in the history books, and it's quite fascinating to be able to see it occurring in front of my eyes. Things were focused on fast - fast food, quick fixes - and now slow is starting to take its place. The author has thirty plus years as a spiritual mentor. This book is formatted into fifty-two experiences (perhaps done on a weekly basis?) and is an invitation to unhurried honest before God, with the reminder that God doesn't just want to use His people, He's always wanted to love them.

I liked this book a lot. I feel the pull back to "slow" more heavily day by day. It's more than a pull to return to a simple lifestyle. It's truly stepping back on the quick nature of relationships, always moving and busy, fast religion.


Disclaimer: This book was provided to me free of charge in exchange for my honest review. All the opinions expressed are completely my own.

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Wednesday, November 1

Capital Gaines: A Book Review

Capital Gaines by Chip Gaines

Chip is one half of the duo from the wildly popular HGTV show Fixer Upper. He and his wife, Joanna, wrote a book last year, which for some reason, I still haven't read! The library hold list on that book is exceptionally long.

This book is just like Chip. It's funny, slightly self-deprecating and full of stories of this crazy antics and lessons learned along the way. I love inside stories, and this book is a nice collection of stories inside the life of one of my favorite TV couples. It's a quick read with more of an autobiographical feel. I enjoyed it.


Disclaimer: This book was provided to me free of charge in exchange for my honest review. All the opinions expressed are completely my own.

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Thursday, October 26

The Daily Question: A Book Review

The Daily Question: My 5 Year Spiritual Journey

This daily journey is similar to other daily journals with prompts/questions at the top of the page and then lines for you to answer for that specific day over the next five years. The book itself is small (purse size), with a hard cover (a little good foil-ish look on part of the design). It's not spiral bound, which makes me wonder how easy it will be to write on the pages in the middle of the year, and the text is slightly small. Overall, I thought it was darling! I can live with the small text given that the book's overall small size will be easily fit in my bag to carry daily or travel with - which would make sense since you're supposed to answer a prompt/question each day for multiple years. If that's the goal, why would the publishers make it any larger?


Disclaimer: This book was provided to me free of charge in exchange for my honest review. All the opinions expressed are completely my own.

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Friday, October 13

Be The Gift: A Book Review

Be The Gift by Ann Voskamp

The tagline on this book is "let your brokenness be turned into abundance."The book is square, hardcover with thick pages inside. The readings aren't dated, so it's not a devotional. The structure is almost like a coffee table book - short stories/essays/thoughts contained to one or two pages paired with a photo. The back of the book has blank lines to journal "how did I live given today?" followed by a list of sixty gift ideas (and by gift, I mean ways to bless people that aren't all material) and the dust jacket on the back cover of the book has a set of gift tags included. The gift tags are simple with a "to" and "from" on the one side and a photo on the back.

Having never read any of Voskamp's books before, all the material in this book was new to me. If you're read any of her book The Broken Way and her blog. I love how Ann writes and am thoroughly enjoying what I'm reading!


Disclaimer: This book was provided to me free of charge in exchange for my honest review. All the opinions expressed are completely my own. Also, affiliate links used. This means that if you purchase a book via the Amazon links, I'll receive a small percentage. Thank you for supporting my blog!

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