Heart of the Matter (Book Review)

7114761.jpgTHIS DIDN’T END THE WAY I WANTED IT TO TO BE HONEST.

I will be upfront, I was so bored with one of the main protagonists, Tessa, that I didn’t really want her to have a happy ending. Also, I come from a single parent household so I really wanted the single mother, Valerie, to finally get the happy ending she deserved. She almost did but Nick, the gorgeous surgeon who is married to Tessa and will end up having an affair with Valerie, had a change of heart. I honestly think that he just took an L.

This books starts off slow, so to summarize, Tessa Russo, wife of surgeon Nick, decides to leave her job and become a stay at home mom. Cool, nothing too drastic here. Her mom warns her of the negatives of this action and how it will damage her relationship with her all star husband. Tessa, decides to dismiss her mothers claims and proceeds to live her stay at home mom life. She quickly realizes that staying at home isn’t as easy as it looks and her marriage does begin to become strained. Uh-oh.

Valerie is a lawyer and a single mother who lives with her son and her brother, who we later on learn is gay. Her whole life is her son and she does her best to protect him. One day, she agrees to let him go to a sleepover where he accidentally gets pushing into a camp fire while two other boys were rough housing near it. Her son’s skin gets badly burnt and her life comes crashing down.

As Valerie’s son is getting treatment for his wounds, she and Nick become very close, having many one on one conversations…since he is the doctor here after all. When they are released, Nick continues to make at home visits (when this is truly not necessary) which ends up in intercourse between Valerie and Nick.

Nick feels guilty and realizes that he “loves” his wife so after one time, he ends things with Valerie and confesses to his wife Tessa. Tessa kicks him out for a while but the book ends with them reconciling because she essentially doesn’t want her kids to live a life without a dad, thus sacrificing her happiness even more.

In my opinion, Nick should have ended up with Valerie. Tessa, who was becoming super insecure anyways, could not get the same attention or affection from her husband that she used to. He had disconnected and began to fall in love with another. She can stay but their marriage will never be the same and they will never be truly happy again. Valerie honestly wins either way. If she gets Nick she wins the prize of the accomplished man but has to deal with the backlash of the divorce. If she doesn’t get Nick, she can keep her head held high and be confident that she can still attract a man even if she doesn’t get to keep him under the circumstances.

I give this book a 2.5/5. Its a great book for reading in a Starbucks cafe when you’re bored. It needed more action and drama. Tessa bored me to death and the best part was seeing Nick and Valerie’s love grow. I still wish it didn’t have to die even in light of the circumstances.

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“Man’s Rejection is God’s Protection”

“Man’s rejection, is God’s protection”

This is a quote that I have been living by lately.

Last week, I was listening to an episode of the Lady Gang podcast featuring Jeannie Mai from The Real. As I was listening, she was discussing a lost opportunity years prior to her success and how that rejection allowed her to find something better and more fulfilling. This quote was enlightening to me and I began to think about all of the times when rejection has spawned an otherwise positive outcome for me.

For example, I had been working in the same seasonal job position from my mid teens into my early 20’s. For the first time in 6 years, I was blindsided when I got an email that stated that my services would not be needed for that upcoming summer. I became frantic and depressed. I took the first job that was offered to me because I was so nervous to be unemployed, even though it wasn’t related to my field. When I went to job orientation, I became suddenly depressed and I knew that it wasn’t for me. I went home and cried but then I suddenly woke up and decided to apply to every job opportunity so that I could focus on my career and not my loss. When I opened my email, the company that I had previously interned at had a position open for me and I jumped at it! I have been there now for 3 years, working in my field of study and loving it.

The rejection in this case was my protection as it allowed me to grow in my career instead of basking in my comfort.

I think about my break up with my ex as well. His rejection was my protection. His rejection allowed me to self reflect and work on the parts of myself that weren’t so great. It also allowed me to learn that self love is the most important factor in life and that we can achieve this through a belief that we have the power to do all things because of a higher power (Call it God or not). I began to believe in the universe and this manifested into me believing in myself. I began to love the others around me more. Mostly, I learned to let go of people and negative situations that no longer served me.

I also learned what I did and didn’t want in a man so that hopefully I will get the chance to get love right in the future.

These were lessons I had to learn.

So, the next time you feel that getting declined for something is the worst thing in the world, always remember this: Man’s rejection is God’s Protection. You won’t see it right away, but you will soon see it manifest into a different and better opportunity.

Some articles:

http://theprayingwoman.com/sometimes-rejection-is-gods-protection/

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/maddisen-k-krown/coping-with-rejection_b_2586145.html

Let Them Go

This is my Health and Wellness tip of the day: let them go.

Let go of the people who no longer serve a purpose in your life in order to grow.

Don’t get bitter and think that they weren’t for you and that’s why they are gone. Think about the fact that they were for you for a time and that you now need to let them go because you both need to grow.

Thank them, whether internally or externally, for the time and role they spent in your life and then keep on letting your heart be thankful for them walking in and out when they did. Every one you meet that touches you has the power to transform and change your life. Grow and show yourself the power you have gained from their presence. Do not dwell in their non existence in your space, but flourish in YOUR gratitude of their existence in the world. For you would not have had the lessons you had if they were not there, nor would you have been able to find the tools to grow that you needed.

Be thankful and let them go. More people will come, that is a fact. Learn and let go of the ones who have finished teaching you how to be good to all the others.

O Come All Ye Faithful

Every Holiday season, I like to let you know what I am listening to as a way to get into the spirit of things. This year, I have really gotten into this one song from Pentatonix. I am not a fan of acapella performances but this version of O Come All Ye Faithful was truly well done. If you need a pick me up song for the holiday season, then this is it for sure!

 

Book Review #7 – The Homecoming

“This ARC was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review”

The Homecoming by Stacie Ramey is a novel about finding yourself in times of insecurity and emotional strife.

John, thc975dc79924bab42d8efe55968f0e4e4e main protagonist, has been kicked out of his home and seen as the problem child ever since his brother got into an accident. His life hasn’t been the same since and he spends his time living with his other family members while he deals with his personal demons that are back home. In his last year of high school, John moves back home and back in with his mom, sister and brother. Angry most of the time, John yearns to run away from this life and to never look back. Along the way, he realizes his academic talents, develops a stronger bond with his little sister, falls in love, realizes that his parents aren’t all bad, and most importantly, he comes to terms with his ‘old’ brother being gone.

While this book did deal with heavy subject matter and the dark emotions of the protagonist, it failed to follow some form of flowing story-line throughout. It was well written and engaging, but felt more like a guide trough John’s self realizations than an actually dramatic novel. There was really no climax. While his feelings about the situation with his brother are resolved by the end of the novel, the death of his previous girlfriend is all but thrown at the back burner and we are left wondering, “What about her and all the pain he felt throughout the first 75% of the novel?” It was strange that the only resolution he had with that was telling her relative about his new girlfriend.

This book was an interesting read but it was not memorable. The beginning of the book was great and really explored the protagonist in depth. By the middle I had a full understanding of his struggles emotionally and his life. At the end, I was very confused as to what was going on and how he came to all of these conclusions and realizations. How did he resolve the issues in his life? This was not clearly gotten to. Also there was a lack of climax in this book. There were a bunch of little bumps to ride over, but no big hill and that took away from this novels potential.

The book had a lot more potential for growth. It had great components but left me wondering a lot towards the end. Having said that, I do not think that this book needs a sequel. Maybe a prequel so that I can understand the relationship he had with his deceased girlfriend with more clarity.

I would give this book 2.5/5 stars,  for as well written as it was, it was missing that kind hamburger style of writing (not saying that this is the only model), and it was more of a bun to meat to bun kind of book. Great intro, great middle, lack of a substantial ending.

 

Summer Reads!

Thanks to NetGalley, I have been bestowed with the wonderful gift of free (e)books!!!

I read many blog posts on “How to get free books” that stated that it would be difficult to get my book requests approved on NetGalley, but, due to my current blog, wonderful readers and current book reviews section (I assume these reasons), I have already been approved for 25 of the books I have asked for. Well, that’s a ton of reading to do in the next 6.5 weeks (and maybe into the school year depending how it goes). In order to remember how many books I am reading will be reading and reviewing, I am listing the ones I have to read and bolding (or highlighting) the ones I have read and reviewed. This will definitely be a summer of stellar subway reads and I can already tell.

Reading List:

  1. Everything I Don’t Remember (By: Jonas Hassen Khemiri)
  2. 21 Myths (Even Good) Girls Believe about Sex (By: Jennifer Strickland) – Currently Reading
  3. The Homecoming (By: Stacie Ramey)
  4. 100 Days (By: Nicole McInnes)
  5. Imperfect Love (Book 1 of The 4Ever series) (By: Isabella White)
  6. Serena’s Plight (By: Carol Madison)
  7. Points of Departure (By: Emily O’Berine)
  8. The Bossman (By: Renee Rose)
  9. How Many Wrongs Make a Mr. Right? (By: Stella Hervey Birrell)
  10. Operating on Faith (By: Matt Weber)
  11. Fool for You (By: Rina Gray)
  12. Edge the Bare Garden (By: Roseanne Cheng)
  13. The Movie Version (By: Emma Wunsch)
  14. Correlation (By: Mia Grace)
  15. Nina is Not OK (By: Shappi Khorsandi)
  16. Secretly Hers (By: Jamie Beck)
  17. Hell Bent (By: Karen Crompton)
  18. This is What Goodbye Looks Like (By: Olivia Rivers)
  19. The Animators (By: Kayla Rae Whitaker)
  20. Gone to Drift (By: Diana McCaulay)
  21. Cutter Boy (By: Cristy Watson)
  22. Gone Wild (By: Jodi Lundgren)
  23. You Before Anyone Else (By: Julie Cross, Mark Perini)
  24. Unnatural Deeds (By: Cyn Balog)
  25. The Hundred Lies of Lizzie Lovett (By: Chelsea Sedoti)

Follow me on my summer reading journey!