Doing the best she can to raise happy, healthy children

Monthly Archives: March 2015


The Expats by Chris Pavone

Kate Moore and her family moved to Luxemburg for he husband, Dexter’s job. Her life in Luxemburg started off good, playdates and coffee shops. Then she begins to suspect her husband’s honesty. She begins to worry her own past is catching up to her. she begins to worry her new friends are not honest. Her life changes from mundane to dangerous.

Chris Pavone lived as an expat and stay at home parent. His first hand knowledge of Luxemburg and expat life made that part of the story very believable. I enjoyed the details of life in Luxemburg. The book jumps around in time giving it a “movie” feel to it. The CIA and spy aspects of the book were a bit far-fetched but most spy novels and such usually are.

There were a few things that could be improved with this book. The first is the characterization of Kate. there was something a bit off about her. I’m not certain what it is, but I think it may be they way she thought about things seemed to masculine. Woman and men think differently, I believe with the author being male, he had some challenges with this. The book seemed a bit choppy as it bounced from past to present. As I got further in the book, this was easier to follow.

Overall, I was disappointed by this book. It wasn’t a bad book, I just wanted a bit more. I was looking forward to a great spy book with a female main character. And this one fell a bit flat.

This book would be appropriate for an adult. I do not recommend it to a teenager due to the sexual context and situations. There is also alcohol drinking in the book.

On a scale of 1-5 Bookends with 5 being fantastic, I give this book a 3.

I did receive a copy of this book for free from the publisher for an honest review.

I went out on a four-mile run today. As I ran, my mind wondered. It jumped from why I started running and my initial fears about running to what I’d accomplished. I thought about the running community and how welcoming and embracing it is. I thought of all the people the supported me and gave me encouragement.

I started running on a whim while sitting around my cousin’s table having a couple of glasses of wine. I do believe a lot of my best ideas come after having a few glasses of wine. This resulted in my training for running my first 5K. I was pretty nervous about running in front of people. What would people think if I came in last? Well, several races later, I will say no one has pointed and laughed at my slow running. I’ve come in dead last at a race and again no one cared. Well, no one but me because I was too proud of myself that I finished my first 10K.

It took a while for me to call myself a runner. I still revert back to saying a jogger. I don’t know if it really matters except in my mind. When I call myself a jogger it’s usually when I’m fell down about my abilities. But I am a runner. I go out there and do it. I’m slower than some and faster than others. Running isn’t about my competing with others, it’s about my competition with myself and beating my last time.

I’ve found the running community to be more than welcoming. I was nervous about talking with other runners. I don’t look like a running. My times are much slower than many of my running friends. The more runners I talked to I began realizing most runners love when other’s embrace their sport. Most are willing to give out their advice and recommendation. Most will help cheer you on and encourage. Granted, there are some who don’t fall into this category, however, they have been few and far between.

If you are thinking about starting to run. Do it! It has so many rewards. And none of my worries or fears were ever validated. I found running to be therapeutic. I find it gives me energy and makes me happy. One last time, if you’re thinking about running, Just Do IT. You won’t regret it.

I’m chipping away on my backlog of books! My life will get a bit more complicated in a couple of months, so I must finish my reading list soon! But, how does one finish a reading list when it keeps getting longer! I seriously think I have a problem. 😉


Beyond All Dreams by Elizabeth Camden

Anna O’brien is one of the few female librarians working at the Library of Congress. she leads a quiet life and has no desire to change. She grew-up an orphan and was raised by her aunt. Due to a childhood injury her voice is unique. Luke is a congressman with career intertwined with scandal. The two begin working together to solve the mystery of the Culpepper.

I really enjoyed the book. The characters are beautifully flawed which gives them depth and makes them more realistic. Luke’s love for his family despite their flaws is refreshing. Anna’s determination to solve the mystery of her father’s ship is commendable. The main underlining themes in this book are the following: forgiveness, friendship, and determination. Christian themes of God’s love and forgiveness is also an ongoing theme.

This historical novel was quite enjoyable filled with lovable characters. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian or historical novels. The book would be appropriate for anyone in highschool up.

On a scale of 1-5 bookends, I give this book a 4.

I received this book from Bethany House Publishing for an honest review.