Friday, September 20, 2013

Sequel is better.

Though My Heart Is Torn (The Cadence of Grace #2)Though My Heart Is Torn by Joanne Bischof
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I had previously read and reviewed Be Still My Soul which I had enjoyed so I was excited to find book two in this series. Be Still My Soul was good but Though My Heart Is Torn was "I can't put this down" good. Lonnie and Gideon have developed a warm, loving marriage only to have the life they have built torn apart. They both independently work on putting their broken lives back together and yearning to follow God as best they can. Very well written! The third book in The Cadence of Grace series, My Hope is Found, will be released on October 15. Watch for a review to be posted soon.

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Needing Some Inner Happy? Read Renewed

Some time ago I received a copy of Lucille Zimmerman's recent release Renewed: Finding Your Inner Happy in an Overwhelmed World. I was apparently very overwhelmed as it took quite a while for be to have the time to actually sit down and read this book. Once I was able to read it, I was very glad I did and I'm certain you will be too.

Lucille Zimmerman is a licensed counselor as well as a professor and sought after speaker. The wealth of her experiences comes through in her book Renewed. Her writing style is very personal, yet includes enough citations and a biblbligraphy for readers to know there is solid evidence behind her words of wisdom. While reading, I felt like Zimmerman understood the issues I and other women face but did not talk down or belittle us for dealing with them. She also avoids the dualistic debate between working moms and stay-at-home moms.

After an introduction discussing why self-care is important, Renewed delves into a different self care topic in each of the 14 chapters. While many of the types of self-care mentioned aren't new, Zimmerman reminds readers that they are important and worth the time needed to pursue them. I particularly enjoyed the examples and tips given at the end of each chapter which provide examples of how to put more of that specific type of self-care into your life. Feeling in need of a little solitude but needing some new ideas? Turn to page 79-80.

This book would be an excellent choice for a ladies' book group to read and discuss the entire book in one sitting or for a study group to read and discuss one chapter per week. A one chapter per week format would definitely encourage readers to put the strategies into practice. Counselors may find this a useful resource to have available as suggested reading for clients or as a reference for the great self-care suggestions. Recommended for women of all ages but particularly for younger women who are learning to balance multiple demands.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Abingdon Press. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Life Changing Resource

When I first picked up the book Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain, I was hooked from the second sentence on the back cover referencing those “who innovate and create but dislike self-promotion” and thought to myself “I’m not alone in the world!” As I began reading the book, I found myself repeating this response frequently. Being a book lover, I typically abhor writing in books, but I found myself underlining and starring many important points Cain makes throughout this work. I can honestly say I loved this book and it has impacted me more than many other books I have read recently.

Cain begins by describing the temperaments of introversion and the “extroverted ideal.” While not putting down this ideal, she describes how the extroverted ideal and the culture of personality were not always seen as ideal and how society has shifted from valuing the characteristics of quieter introverts to the current emphasis on loud extroverts. For example, in today’s culture individuals who talk more are seem as leaders and are more likely to have their ideas accepted even if the idea isn’t that great. I imagine many introverts related to the examples of being passed over for jobs or promotions because they were quiet rather than loud. Cain researched Quiet very thoroughly and includes 271 endnotes. While including many examples and anecdotes, every concept is backed up by research as well.

Since receiving a copy of Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain to review, I have heard references to this ground-breaking work in a variety of conference presentations and in conversation with others. Originally published in 2012 in hardback, the copy I received was published in 2013 as a paperback and includes a reader’s guide. Quiet is a book that needs to be read by teachers, leaders, professors, and anyone who interacts with others in any manner. After reading Quiet, introverts will understand themselves much better and realize they are not inferior or less of a person for being introverted. Extroverts will have a better understanding of their introverted colleagues and be better able to work with them.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Blogging for Books (http://waterbrookmultnomah.com/bloggingforbooks/). I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”