An Open Book – July Edition #openbook

Open Book

I’m joining with Carolyn Astfalk and Catholic Mom for An Open Book. Here’s what I’ve been reading:

Joan of the Everglades by David Athey

Amazon synopsis:  Joan Dior is an edgy teen artist who finds a corpse in a Florida lagoon, vows to find the killer, and becomes the target of a billionaire and his death cult who believe they have regrown the “Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.”  Joan and her best friend, Mia, along with their two guy friends, Dontey and Rico, get drawn into the middle of the Everglades and must battle not only the cult but also giant pythons, alligators, and a Komodo dragon . . . during a killer storm . . . while methane gas bursts into hellish flames all around them. Good times. Everyone will probably die. Unless . . .

My review: I’m still reading this, but enjoying it immensely.  David Athey is an excellent writer and never disappoints.  His characters are quirky but real and I find myself laughing out loud many times at his little notes to the “Reader.”

I loved Athey’s first book, Danny Gospel.

Fire of Love by Cassandra Poppe

Amazon Synopsis: Part conversion story, part tragedy-to-triumph, Fire of Love is a story that begins with the horrific moment when Cassandra Poppe’s 4-year-old son Fulton was severely burned in a homestead accident. Faced with the possibility of losing him forever, the weeks and months that followed offered her many opportunities to reflect on how her earlier years leading up to, and after, her conversion of faith prepared her for the moment in time where her faith would be tested to its limit. And how embracing the crosses that came her way, and surrendering all suffering to God, she was able to sift through the ashes to uncover the love and joy He intends for us all to discover through our suffering.

Fire of Love shows you:
There is always hope for the sinner.
There is always room to grow.
Our Lady, through the rosary, can bring you through any trials that come your way.
Practicing discerning God’s will in the little things can better prepare you for future sufferings.
No matter how intense the pain, how exhausting the moment, or how alone you may feel, there will always be One who remains close by.
And that suffering with love can truly bring a peace beyond all understanding.

My review:  I’m looking forward to reading this book.  I attended a presentation given by the author at a conference and her story was very compelling and uplifting.

Turning in Circles by Michelle Buckman

Amazon Synospis: Savannah and Charleston, two sisters living in a small Southern town, have always been close. They’ve shared everything with one another…until Dillon, the one boy in school who’s bad news, sets his sights on Charleston. As she’s drawn down his dark, destructive path, Savannah panics, knowing this isn’t a relationship destined for anything but trouble.

She turns to her lifelong best friend, Ellerbe, for help, but there’s a shift in their relationship. The connection they’ve shared is taking a turn toward something more, something deeper. And Savannah isn’t sure she’s ready for a romance while trying to save her sister.

As Savannah’s foundation begins to crumble, every decision becomes an unchangeable step toward an outcome that could have tragic repercussions.

My review: This has been on my “To Read” list for a while.  Looking forward to reading it within the next month!

An Open Book

Open Book


I’m linking up with Carolyn Astfalk and Catholic Mom for “An Open Book.”

Here’s what I’ve been reading:

Angels All Around Us by Anthony DeStefano

I received this review copy last year and have finally gotten around to reading it.  It’s a beautifully written book that’s hard to put down.  I am thoroughly enjoying it and will be passing it on to others in my family when I’ve finished.

Angels All Around Us


The Family Tree Problem Solvers: Tried and True Tactics for Tracing Elusive Ancestors

I haven’t read this yet, but I’m hoping this book will help me to trace two lines of my family tree that don’t seem to have any information on Ancestry.

Family Tree


Full Cycle by Christopher Blunt

There aren’t too many novels that both parents and kids can read and enjoy equally. Full Cycle is one of those few. Despite a physical disability that makes him one of the least-athletic kids in school, 11-year-old Alex Peterson sets his sights on something crazy: doing the 200-mile Seattle to Portland bicycle ride in a single day. The only way he can get there is to convince his father to return to the sport and train with him as a real partner, and this leads to some of the plot’s most captivating twists. Full Cycle is not just a story about a bicycle competition. It’s a story of a father-son relationship; it’s a story of the importance of working together as a team, about encouraging our children to reach beyond their limits. It’s a wonderful story about focusing on abilities, not disabilities. This would be an ideal novel for a parent and child to read together. Highly recommend.

Full Cycle


That’s it for me, although I’ve been reading submitted manuscripts and projects for editing.

Check in at Catholic Mom or Carolyn Astfalk’s site for more posts!