Category: Historical Perspectives

Blog Book Tour | “You’ve Got This” (How to Look UP when Life has you DOWN) compiled by Elise Hahl feat. Al Carraway and Hank Smith

Posted Monday, 14 November, 2016 by jorielov , , , , , 0 Comments

Book Review Banner using Unsplash.com (Creative Commons Zero) Photography by Frank McKenna

Acquired Book By: I am a regular tour hostess for blog tours via Cedar Fort whereupon I am thankful to have such a diverse amount of novels and non-fiction titles to choose amongst to host. I received a complimentary copy of “You’ve Got This” direct from the publisher CFI (imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc) in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Why I wanted to read this collection of inspiring stories:

I was invited to this blog tour by the author Elise Hahl of whom I was thankful who introduced me to this inspiring non-fiction collection of human interest stories and affirmations of positivity which can inspire teenagers to find courage and strength in their growing years. I find these kinds of collections cross-relatable and cross-applicable – as the wisdom and truth of what is being shared is timeless. When your growing up there are moments where you like to have self-reflection and self-motivating modes of inspiration to guide you on your path. You can have a wonderful support system within your family and/or community but there are times where it is best to withdraw internally and seek out the answers  you’re pursuing through your continuing journey where you lean on your faith most directly.

As I will be adopting out of foster care in the future – I am keenly interested in finding books I will one day be recommending to my children. Either for fiction or non-fiction interests and pursuits as the joy of reading and seeking solace in literature is one of the blessings I want to instill in my children. You can gain so much through books – it’s something that I look forward to sharing with them. Therefore, this is one of those motivational books I was keen to read and become acquainted with in case down the road it would become quite handy to have knowledge of whilst giving me the chance to share it with my child(ren).

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Blog Book Tour | “You’ve Got This” (How to Look UP when Life has you DOWN) compiled by Elise Hahl feat. Al Carraway and Hank SmithYou've Got This
Subtitle: How to Look UP when life has you DOWN
by Al Carraway, Elise Hahl, Hank Smith
Source: Direct from Publisher

Life is tough, but so are you! Learn how to work through life’s trials with advice from popular youth speakers, including Hank Smith and Al Carraway, who have endured a few challenges of their own. This encouraging book will help you see trials as essential stepping-stones to becoming who you’re destined to be.

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9781462119424

Also by this author: More than the Tattooed Mormon

Genres: Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Memoir, Non-Fiction, Spirituality & Metaphysics


Published by CFI (imprint) Cedar Fort Inc

on 1st October, 2016

Format: Paperback Edition

Pages: 128

Published By: CFI (imprint) of Cedar Fort Inc (@CedarFortBooks),

an imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc (@CedarFortBooks)
Available Formats: Paperback, Ebook

Converse on Twitter via: #LDSFaith and #INSPY #nonfiction

About Al Carraway

Al Fox Carraway

Al Fox Carraway has spent the last four years inspiring the world with her story of conversion, redemption, and finding faith. As a blogger and award-winning public speaker, her message has reached millions. This up-close look at her life will show you what it means to truly trust in the Lord.

Photo Credit: Al Fox Carraway headshot by Beka Price Photography.

About Elise Hahl

Elise Hahl

After serving as a missionary to the Brazil Manaus mission, Elise Babbel Hahl completed her studies in English at Stanford University, married her mission pen pal, and went on to earn a master’s degree in writing from Johns Hopkins University. Her work has been published in Choosing Motherhood, Whereabouts: Stepping Out of Place, Education Next magazine, Do NOT Attempt in Heels, and recorded on “The World in Words” podcast. She lives with her husband and four children in the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania area.

About Hank Smith

Hank Smith

Hank Smith has been a full-time religious educator for the Church for 12 years, teaching seminary and in the Religion Department at BYU. Hank is a favorite speaker with Especially for Youth, BYU Education Week, and Time Out for Women. With his trademark sense of humor and his captivating stories and examples, Hank makes it fun to learn gospel principles and strengthen personal testimonies.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

The collection itself is portable – not only for the slimline publication but because it is broken into different sections by each of the contributing authors – each of whom have something unique to share about how their faith re-energised their hope and provided grace in their lives through their adversities. Each of them has a new perspective to offer and a life lesson to impart on the young reader who might be seeking advice but isn’t as sure about the kind of advice that needs to be sought. Sometimes you read inspiring stories just to let you mind wash over something positive even if the pursuit of the story isn’t readily known at the time. Read More

Divider

Posted Monday, 14 November, 2016 by jorielov in Balance of Faith whilst Living, Biblical History, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Cedar Fort Publishing & Media, Christianity, Historical Perspectives, Indie Author, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Inspired by Stories, Lessons from Scripture, Mormonism, Non-Fiction, Questioning Faith as a Teen, Religious History, Short Stories or Essays, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Vignettes of Real Life, World Religions

Blog Book Tour | “The Land of Look Behind” by Aaron Blaylock

Posted Monday, 22 February, 2016 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

Ruminations & Impressions Book Review Banner created by Jorie in Canva. Photo Credit: Unsplash Public Domain Photographer Sergey Zolkin.

Acquired Book By: I am a regular tour hostess for blog tours via Cedar Fort whereupon I am thankful to have such a diverse amount of novels and non-fiction titles to choose amongst to host. I received a complimentary copy of “The Land of Look Behind” direct from the publisher Bonneville Books (imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc) in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

*Note: This novel came with a happy small surprise: the Marketing Manager enclosed his card within the pages of the book and I thought – how clever! On two counts: to have a calling card for a publisher I appreciate reviewing for and hosting their authors, and secondly, it makes a curiously portable ‘bookmark’! I spy the bookmarks for the novels on author blogs and social media feeds but this is as good as that for me! Plus, all the imprints at Cedar Fort are listed and it’s a nice bit of memorabilia for a book blogger who appreciates the publisher.

Why I was curious to read this one:

Mr Blaylock pitched his novel to me before I caught sight of it myself, and through his initial contact with me, I learnt a few insights about how an author reads my Review Policy. In other words, he gave me a lot of lovely compliments and he genuinely understood my selection process as a book blogger! I was quite chuffed to have seen the ‘other side’ of my blog and how what I am leaving behind in this niche of mine is being translated to both readers and authors alike. It was the kind of note your thankful to receive as it introduced you to a new author and allowed you to receive feedback on your own ‘pitch’ to authors who may be seeking a book blogger.

Sharing a portion of my response where I began by explaining why I would be open to reading an LDS focused story-line:

As you might have inferred from my previous Cedar Fort reviews, I’m a non-LDS Protestant but this doesn’t affect how I approach reading LDS Fiction or Non-Fiction as I review both styles on my blog. Quite happily so, as I am finding some of the best fiction today is coming out of Cedar Fort, not just for the discernible adult reader but for young adults and children (as reflected in my Story Vault; you’ll find many CF authors spilt through the genres).

I’m happy to make your acquaintance and I was especially surprised you’ve pitched me your book by going through my Review Request page! That spoke volumes to me on how your approaching your career and your willingness to interact with book bloggers and reviewers. It’s a compliment to you, in other words! Well done.

What drew my eye to CF in the first place was knowing I would be seeking out a wide spectrum of fiction wherein I would find stories that were writ with a gentler voice than most contemporary releases. Herein I refer to my discourse in highlighting the unnecessary need to use vulgarity in telling stories for today’s audience. I never felt I was a ‘clean fiction’ reader until I started to see such a surge of overt instances of both vulgarity and explicit violence (another no-no in my opinion) in stories for young adults and adults alike. For YA I’m quite particular about what I will accept as far as visuals, tone, voice and expression of story even moreso than adult because I believe YA should spare certain inclusions that are rampant in Adult Lit.

I personally love adventure novels, one of the last ones I’ve read was Ian Quicksilver by a fellow CF author; it re-established my desire to read more of it’s kind, as who doesn’t want to jettison off on a quest?  Previously it was Uncovering Cobbogoth that set my sails for seeking stimulating worlds where characters have to overcome an adventurous oft arduous journey.

At first glance, I love how the symbol or crest attached to your world is a watermark addition behind the overlay of text for your title. It’s a very cleverly pieced together book cover, which I will mention on my review.

Ooh! You’ve given me a time slip narrative where I can soak inside two timescapes at once? I love discovering parallel stories where there are two folds to the context of where we’re taken! Hence why I was so very appreciative of reading A Fall of Marigolds (review).

I was quite chuffed realising this novel is centered around your own personal experiences in Jamaica and how you were inspired by the country which hasn’t left your heart. I can relate to this, as I have a personal connection to Mexico and the Mayan ruins, of which I have blogged about on different reviews; giving out a bit of information about my adventures on each one. The latest was on the cookbook Daily Tortilla. (review)

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

It should be mentioned Uncovering Cobbogoth was my first blog tour with Cedar Fort and my entrance into wicked sweet adventure fiction for Young Adult Lit! It set the bar high and gave me a new standard of what I was personally seeking inasmuch as what I hoped to find in the genre as a whole. So much of what I loved about Cobbogoth has directly influenced me to understand what I’m looking for the most in other works by authors who are focusing on a young adult audience. Upcoming this year I will be a new contributor to a Steampunk blog wherein I will be reading a heap of Steampunk spilt between my new venture and Jorie Loves A Story. The ones I am hand selecting for the new blog will have a specific list of ‘must haves’ I will be disclosing at a later point in time. The rest I’ll populate on my blog but will save the majority for Sci Fi November and the Sci Fi Experience where I purposely showcase a heap of science fiction loveliness each year (since I started in 2013).

The reason I remain transparent on my blog about my choices of what I read for review and the reasons behind what goes into my process to make a selection is to help my readers understand what first draws my attention first and foremost, but also, to a lesser extent to keep an open dialogue with my readers about what keeps us curious about the books we’re reading and the authors we continuously are discovering who are attempting to inspire us to such a level of an experience we will all but beg for more of the same to continue to enlighten us in their future releases.

As I move further into 2016 and beyond, you will find my selections growing more select as I enter into my Renaissance stage of Jorie Loves A Story. Hence why when an author takes the time to reach out to me via my blog’s Contact Form, by email or directly on Twitter (or through DMs) I take stock of how well they understand my reading life and the way in which I blog my literary adventures. If your an author following a book blogger, don’t shy away from talking to us. We’ll all bookishly geeky in our own ways, why not take the chance to open up a convo with us and see where that conversation might lead?

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Notation on Cover Art and the symbolism of The Land of Look Behind:

On the cover and back cover copy is an embedded symbol which follows into the story itself as it’s on the Chapter Headers (whilst alternating with a second symbol just as important and pertinent to the story-line); the way in which the publisher had it as a textural raised (although subtle) symbol is what originally stood out to me about the cover, as it’s three in one: the image of the adventurer in the cave’s opening going into the light of; the typography of the title of the novel; and this symbol that nearly looked like a watermark from afar. In person it has more of a presence and isn’t flat. As it exists in it’s own dimensional space and draws your eye into being pensive of it’s significance.

It took a bit of digging around the internet but I learnt one important bit of trivia: ‘the land of look behind’ is a direct reference to Jamaica as soldiers used to keep their advantage whilst travelling through the country best by never yielding a look-out point in any one direction. They went so far as to ride horses where both riders were never facing forward as one looked forward as ‘one looked back’. This is gives a bit of new insight to the titling of the novel as I personally did not understand the title at first glance, second look or the third reading of it when I sat to read the story outright.

Blog Book Tour | “The Land of Look Behind” by Aaron BlaylockThe Land of Look Behind
Subtitle: A Jamaican Treasure Worth Dying For
by Aaron Blaylock
Source: Direct from Publisher

Jarvis tried to collect himself.
He needed a plan of action.
Captain Willard had given him strict orders -
but what weight should he give the orders of a dead man?

Three hundred years ago, a soldier named Jarvis journeyed deep into Jamaica and discovered a land of myth, treasure, and danger. Now Gideon, who served in Jamaica as a missionary, returns armed with Jarvis's journal to follow the enigmatic clues with his best friend. But they quickly discover there are forces who would kill to keep the treasure secret.

Travel into Jamaica's treacherous cockpit country in this spine-tingling thriller.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9781462117956

Also by this author: , The Unsaid

Genres: Action & Adventure Fiction, Historical Fiction, Historical Thriller Suspense, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Men's Fiction, Thriller, Time Slip and/or Time Shift, War Drama


Published by Bonneville Books

on 1st February, 2016

Format: Paperback Edition

Pages: 320

Published By: Bonneville Books (@BonnevilleBooks),

an imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc (@CedarFortBooks)
Available Formats: Paperback, Ebook

Converse on Twitter via: #LandOfLookBehind

About Aaron Blaylock

Aaron Blaylock

Born and raised in Arizona, Aaron is proud to call the desert home. He came of age in the suburbs of Sacramento, California and as a missionary in Jamaica, where he fell in love with the people and their culture, but he has always been drawn back to the valley of the sun.

He married his childhood crush, and the girl of his dreams, in 2001. Together they are raising four beautiful and rambunctious children. He worked as a freelance sports reporter for The Arizona Republic for nearly ten years, combining his love of writing and sports. In his storytelling he draws heavily on his love of history, adventure, his faith and his own life experiences.

*NEWSFLASH*

Don’t forget to read my *special announcement*

at the end of this review! Read More

Divider

Posted Monday, 22 February, 2016 by jorielov in 17th Century, 21st Century, Action & Adventure Fiction, African-American Literature, Ancient Civilisation, Art, Balance of Faith whilst Living, Biblical History, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Bookish Discussions, Cedar Fort Publishing & Media, Christianity, Content Note, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Equality In Literature, Fly in the Ointment, Historical Fiction, Historical Perspectives, History, Illustrations for Stories, Indie Author, Indie Book Trade, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Jamaica, Lessons from Scripture, Literature for Boys, Men's Fiction, Military Fiction, Modern Day, Mormonism, Multi-cultural Characters and/or Honest Representations of Ethnicity, Realistic Fiction, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Time Slip, Treasure Hunt, Warfare & Power Realignment, World Religions

Blog Book Tour | “More than the Tattooed Mormon” by Al Carraway This should have been renamed to better describe the internal light Carraway ebbs out of her spirit and onto the page!

Posted Saturday, 13 February, 2016 by jorielov , , , 2 Comments

Ruminations & Impressions Book Review Banner created by Jorie in Canva. Photo Credit: Unsplash Public Domain Photographer Sergey Zolkin.

Acquired Book By: I am a regular tour hostess for blog tours via Cedar Fort whereupon I am thankful to have such a diverse amount of novels and non-fiction titles to choose amongst to host. I received a complimentary copy of “More than the Tattooed Mormon” direct from the publisher CFI (imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc) in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Note:

My copy of this non-fiction release was delayed in reaching me, however it was due to illness (December) and the sudden death of my cat (January) that prevented me from being in a position to review this title prior to now. I am thankful the publisher understood my absence from the blog tour directly and allowed me the grace to pick up this book at a point in time where both my mind and my heart was clear to enjoy reading it at long last.

I decided to write Ms Carraway before I read her book:

When I participate in a blog tour, odds are in good favour I’m going to do a lot of research in regards to the author and the story prior to accepting the tour. Sometimes I take a leap of faith and go blind into reading a book based on a blurb or an expanded synopsis; sometimes it’s the mere idea of what I will find inside a book that is enough to draw my eye curious enough to yearn to read it’s contents. In this regard, I happily wanted to know more about the ‘girl’ outside of the moniker of “Tattooed Mormon” as I had a feeling there was a ‘story’ in of itself within the name!

Through my readings of her blog, I felt compelled to reach out to Ms Carraway on Twitter and happily sat thoughtfully before composing a series of tweets I hoped she see and realise someone was trying to send her a bit of an uplift of joy tucked inside a bit of reassurance.

It reminded me of the random acts of kindnesses I like to give to people in my community, as we never know when we are going to be someone’s light of grace or a shelter in a storm they haven’t yet shared with us. We all need a lift of spirit and a bit of extra joy to help encourage us if we’re feeling a bit low or if appearances get us feeling a bit bogged down. The tweets I wanted to send Ms Carraway were the impressions of a book blogger who was soon to be a reader of a memoir I hoped would become one of my treasured discoveries, as when it comes to real-life biographies and autobiographies; the memoir is slowly becoming my favourite. Especially when it falls into a category of “Creative Non-Fiction” where the voicing of the narrative within reads more easily than traditional non-fiction, as it’s more like reading a story of fiction than a true account of a person’s life.

I don’t remember receiving a reply or seeing her account mark my tweets with a favourite, but I hoped perhaps, even if she only read them in a fleeting glance, in some small way she knew to me she was already ‘more than’ the Tattooed Mormon. She was a woman whose light is brightly shining to everyone who walks a life full of faith and the blessings it bestows to all of us. Rock on, Ms Carraway and never feel like your light is dimmer due to your tatts; if anything they are a happy signal of your artistic spirit and the joy of artistic expression during a time in your past they meant something to you. None of us are limited by appearances or choices we made in the past we might regret lateron; the best we can do is embrace all of who we are and hope that people ‘see us’ rather than ‘see past us’ or ‘through us completely’.

Blog Book Tour | “More than the Tattooed Mormon” by Al Carraway This should have been renamed to better describe the internal light Carraway ebbs out of her spirit and onto the page!More than the Tattooed Mormon
by Al Carraway
Source: Direct from Publisher

Being baptized and following the Lord has made Al's life harder than it ever was before. She endured criticism from friends and family for becoming Mormon. She faced harsh judgements from Church members for her appearance. She gave up everything and felt more alone than she ever had in her life. All because she chose God.

Now she shares an up-close look at how trusting God has led her to places she never expected. As a blogger, YouTuber, and award-winning public speaker, her message has reached millions. Sharing her love of the Savior, Al goes beyond her own conversion and encourages readers to choose God above everything else.

This uplifting book inspires readers to build a true relationship with the Lord that will bring them real, lasting happiness.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9781462117208

Also by this author: You've Got This

Genres: Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Memoir, Non-Fiction, Spirituality & Metaphysics, Women's Studies


Published by CFI (imprint) Cedar Fort Inc

on 17th November, 2015

Format: Paperback Edition

Pages: 176

Published By: CFI (imprint) of Cedar Fort Inc (@CedarFortBooks),

an imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc (@CedarFortBooks)
Available Formats: Paperback, Ebook

Converse on Twitter via: #TattooedMormon, #BookOfMormon, & #LDSFaith

#INSPY #nonfiction

About Al Carraway

Al Fox Carraway

Al Fox Carraway has spent the last four years inspiring the world with her story of conversion, redemption, and finding faith. As a blogger and award-winning public speaker, her message has reached millions. This up-close look at her life will show you what it means to truly trust in the Lord.

Photo Credit: Al Fox Carraway headshot by Beka Price Photography.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

I would imagine the Ms Carraway I met inside More than the Tattooed Mormon would be the very same woman I’d meet in person. Her personality is electric and it leaps off the page as if she is standing right beside you and chattering with you about her life’s story rather than having a copy of a transcript version of that story in your hands. I wanted to wait to pick up her book when I had come through the stressfulness of the past few months with a clearer mind where I could soak inside her memoir and appreciate reading it with genuine interest. Read More

Divider

Posted Saturday, 13 February, 2016 by jorielov in Ancient Civilisation, Art, Balance of Faith whilst Living, Biblical History, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Calligraphy, Cedar Fort Publishing & Media, Children's Literature, Christianity, Creative Arts, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Historical Perspectives, History, Illustration for Books & Publishing, Illustrations for Stories, Important Figures of Ancient Times, Indie Art, Indie Author, Indie Book Trade, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Inspired by Stories, Juvenile Fiction, Lessons from Scripture, Literature for Boys, Mormonism, Naturalist Sketchings, Non-Fiction, Re-Told Tales, Religious History, Short Stories or Essays, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, World Religions