Wednesday, March 9, 2016

The Newsmakers, by Lis Wiehl

The world of journalism is fast-paced, adventurous, and apparently far more glamorous and cutthroat than we knew.

Erica Sparks, an overnight sensation, discovers just how corrupt the world of television news is when she makes the "big time". Her light-speed rise to fame catapults her into a dark world of crime and evil, and puts her life and the life of her daughter in danger.

Sound interesting? It is. There were some good points: character development was thorough and well done, and the general idea that people can rise above their circumstances, failures and upbringing was refreshing. Beyond that, I was totally disappointed.

Here are the cons:

  • The book is written in the present tense, which can be a bit confusing and jolting. 
  • p. 87 "But Erica doesn't cry. No. Uh-uh." I can almost hear that being read in the voice of someone doing baby talk. In fact, there were several places in the book where it almost seemed like a child's tale. "Weep and weep", "wail and wail"..... Again, just no. 
  • Erica is amazing. She can remain calm, cool, and collected when dealing with a bloody, catastrophic event on live TV, or when someone is dying in her arms, but she freaks out at some bugs, or a rat on her desk...!? 
  • The plot was over-the-top, verging on ridiculous. Totally unbelievable. 
  • Sloppy-sweet, predictable lines. 
  • The ending was eye-rollingly cheesy. 

My biggest disappointment was in the situations and language portrayed in the book. Intimacy between unmarried people, swearing, unnecessarily dark and disturbing sexual themes.....

There is nothing remotely Christian about this book. At all. I don't understand how Thomas Nelson can publish it as Christian fiction. I will not be reading any more in this series.

2 out of 5 stars.

I received this book from BookLook Bloggers in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. 

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

The Bee-friendly Garden

When it comes to gardening, I am ignorant. Completely and totally. Still, I know how crucial bees are to gardens, and to life itself, but how can they be encouraged to hang out in a garden? What draws them...or repels them? In The Bee-friendly Garden, the benefits of bees and helpful tips on how to draw them to your garden space are laid out in beautiful detail. 

I learned quite a few interesting tidbits about these amazing creatures from this book! There is so much useful info packed in this book. The life cycles of bees, types of bees, what they need to survive, types of plants that attract them....  

In addition to how-to's for creating a bee-friendly space is a regional plant list, and info on how to become a "bee activist". Suggestions on which plants, flowers, vegetables, and trees work best, to building nesting areas--it's all here! 

5 out of 5 stars.