Three Weddings & a Bar Mitzvah Review

PUB DATE: August 2009

Thank you to Audra at B&B Media group for sending me this book and to First Wild Card Tours for allowing me to be a part of the tour yesterday.

This is the fourth and final book in the 86 Bloomberg Place series by Melody Carlson.

This was my favorite quote in the book and laughed when I read it:

It’s always happy hour somewhere.

That was on page 30. Kendall had just found out her parents were going to come and help with the wedding and she was asking if her mother was drinking.

(I had to insert this picture I took when I was in Lake George this summer. So now I know its true LOL.)

Anyways, if you read her previous three books in 86 Bloomberg Place then you are familiar with the characters in the book. If this is the first time you are hearing about this series then please let me introduce you to Megan, Anna. Kendall and Lelani. They are all living at 86 Bloomberg Place in Kendall’s grandmother’s town house.

Lelani has just returned from Maui with her daughter Emma and she is excited to marry Gil and live happily ever after. We all that is impossible and there is going to be twist and turns to test the faith of these two people. Lelani is hoping to have a simple wedding but she soon realizes that is next to impossible when choosing a date, that will fit into her friends calendar because on the weekend she chooses there is a bar mitzvah, and two other weddings, to her soon to me Latin mother in law who wants this to be the wedding of the century, to Lelani reaching out to her mother and then to Lelani suddenly hearing from Emma’s father. Will Lelani have the dream wedding she is hoping for or will be it out of her control?

Megan is dating Marcus. Marcus has told Megan that he wants to go on a mission to Africa to try and help them. When he announces suddenly that he is all set to go before all the festivities, Megan begins to question her relationship with Marcus. While he is in Africa she doesn’t hear from him apart from a letter the church receives. Then the night before his sister’s wedding Marcus calls Megan to tell her he will be home for the wedding. Why didn’t Marcus write to Megan while he was in Africa?

Anna is Gil’s sister and she is helping plan and organize the wedding. Anna is acting as referee between Lelani and her mother. You can slowly see Anna coming apart. She is questioning her job and her relationship with Edmond when a new intern is brought in and flirts with Edmond. She feels as though she is loosing Edmond until he shocks her. He has a little help from one of her roommates.

Finally Kendall is pregnant and in love. While she was in Maui (previous book) she meets Killiki and falls in love with him. From my understanding in previous books I guess Kendall had an affair with a well known married man and is carrying his baby. Kendall is young, care free and doesn’t have a care in the world or responsibility until she found out she was pregnant and fell in love. Killiki surprises Kendall. Kendall’s world is about to get turned upside down when her parents come to visit and her grandmother dies. Her grandmother has a surprise that no one was really expecting. That shocks Kendall and her family.

First off if you are new to this series then I suggest you don’t read this before reading the previous three books. While I was reading it I have to admit I felt like I was missing so much of the story. I have to say that I didn’t fully enjoy the book as much as I would have liked too. None the less it was a good book. I plan on looking for the previous three books to read.

copyright 2010, Cindy (Cindy’s Love Of Books)
If you are reading this on a blog or website other than Cindy’s Love Of Books or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.

**Always Watching Review

PUB DATE: May 2009

This is the first book of the mother-daughter collaboration of Brandilyn and Amberly Collins. There is a second book called Last Breath which is due to be released on October 2009. Which I have to say that I will be dying to read.

This book is part of the First Wild Card Tour that is taking place today. I am going on record for saying that I LOVED the book. It was a page turner for me from the first page. I admit I had to read it all in one day. I tried to put it down several times but I couldn’t because I had to read what was going to happen next.

Always Watching is about teenage girl named Shaley O’Connor. Her mother is a rock star named Rayne O’Connor. The book opens with the concert and Shaley getting ready to leave for the airport to pick up her best friend, Brittney. She is waiting for Tom, who is her mother’s make up artist. As the time is getting closer to leave Tom is now where to be found. Shaley and Mick, a body guard, go looking for him. Shaley discovers Tom’s body in one of the rooms. At first she thinks he is joking but then realizes that he was murdered.

The next day she receives a package she opens it up to disover a white rose wrapped in green paper tied with a red ribbon with a note that says “Always Watching”. She thinks its from her father, she has no idea who her father is, and doesn’t really worry about it until she heads to the local mall with Brittney and Bruce, another body guard. She is then surrounded by paparazzi asking all kinds of questions about the murder. Finally getting out of the mall and into the limo she finds a photo that was taken the night before as they were entering the hotel with “Always Watching” written on the back.

In the next town another murder happens and the victim is Bruce. Thinking its another body guard who is responsible Shaley puts her trust in the wrong person but then realizes that she is actually with the killer.

I have to say the suspence in the book was great. Reading the book I had no idea who the killer was until he revealed himself in the end. I was wondering why Shaley was targeted and I wondered who the person was that had hired the killer to watch out for her and why? I guess that will be revealed in Last Breath.

You can buy the book directly from Amazon

copyright 2010, Cindy (Cindy’s Love Of Books)
If you are reading this on a blog or website other than Cindy’s Love Of Books or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.

**Murder By Family Review

PUB DATE: September 2008

I first heard about Kent Whitaker and Murder By Family when he appeared on the Oprah show recently. After watching the show I really wanted to read the book. This is a true story and it happened to the Whitaker Family.

The story is about the Whitaker family, (mother)Tricia, (father) Kent, and their two sons Bart and Kevin. The story starts out when the family went out to celebrate what was thought to be Bart finishing college. Unfortunately this is the last time that they will be together. When they return home there is a masked gunman waiting in the house. Tricia and Kevin are shot and killed instantly, Kent gets shot in his shoulder, and Bart one in the upper arm, fracturing the bone. The gunman escapes.

Kent had wondered who would do this to his family. They had no enemies.

The motive for the shootings was that the family interrupted a robbery in progress and that it gone wrong. That theory didn’t seem strong as nothing has been touched and the house didn’t look like it.

As Kent goes on trying to live through the next few days and weeks he begins realizes that the police are zeroing in on Bart as their prime and only suspect. With Bart’s trouble past the fingers point to him. A part of Kent doesn’t believe that Bart could actually do this to his family and another part wonders what went wrong to make Bart want to do this. When Bart discovers he is about to be questioned he takes off to Mexico and lives there for 15 months until he is arrested and returned home.

When Kent realizes that Bart is wearing a mask. Meaning that Bart was one way around the family, one way around his girlfriend and her family and one with school and friends. He begins to realize that maybe Bart did have a part in the murders.

Murder by Family is a remarkable book and I truly enjoyed reading and I had a hard time putting it down. Kent Whitaker is a very remarkable man. For a person/father to not only show great courage in writing this book, (which he was reluctant to write at first cause he just wanted privacy after his ordeal, but God played the part in him writing the book) but he also showed forgiveness for the actions of his son.

Kent is a deeply religious Christin man and it is through those convictions that he is able to forgive his son for the deaths of Tricia and Kevin. You can see his strong faith through out the book.

What surprised me about this story was that Bart had tried twice before to have his parents killed. Both times they were warned and didn’t really seem to take the threats seriously. Also what kind of surprised me was how long it took the police took to build their case. I spoke with a friend who is a police officer and he told me that yes sometimes it can take that long to build up their case and that it sometimes doesn’t happen over night. This is real life and not a tv show.

To this very day Bart sits in cell on Texas’ Death Row awaiting his death by lethal injection. This was another blow to Kent and the family because Kent argued long and hard for Bart to be given life imprisonment rather than the death penalty.

Also included in the book is some great photos of the family young and old. It makes the story seem that much more real.

You can buy a copy from Amazon.

You can also check out Kent’s website.

Also I want to send congratulations to Kent and Tanya Youngling who will be getting married this upcoming weekend May 9th.

copyright 2010, Cindy (Cindy’s Love Of Books)
If you are reading this on a blog or website other than Cindy’s Love Of Books or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.

New York Debut (Carter House Girls BK 6) Review

PUB DATE: May 1 2009

This is book six in the Carter House Girls series called New York Debut.

I am really enjoying this series. These are great books for young adults. There is nothing graphic in them. They are very good reads with a message in each one. I find that these books need to be read in order so that you can understand the characters and storyline.

The book begins were book five, Lost In Las Vegas left off. We know that Taylor went into rehab in LA for her drinking problem.

The book opens with “Where is our Taylor?” asks Grandmother pleasantly. She doesn’t know about Taylor going into rehab. DJ begins to tell her Grandmother why she went to rehab. DJ thinks she is somewhat responsible for it all happening. The only ones who know where Taylor is, is Casey, Connor and Rhiannon. She makes them promise not to say anything to the other girls because she thinks its Taylor’s place to tell them.

Kriti has come back from Christmas vacation not her normal self which the girls seem to notice right away. When DJ discovers what is really wrong with Kriti she gathers Rhiannon and Casey and they plan an intervention. There would be no story if nothing happened to a character or characters right?

When Eliza returns from Europe she wants to know where Taylor is and will stop at nothing to find out. With New Years Eve approaching Eliza asks Mrs Carter if its okay if she can help out Harry and have a New Years Eve party. Mrs Carter agrees once Eliza says she will take full responsibility for it. Knowing there will be trouble the other girls decide they want no part of it and make other plans. We all know it wouldn’t be a story if nothing happened right? Well lets just say the police were involved and Eliza went to jail. Mrs Carter puts her under house arrest and she has to clean up the house.

With New York Fashion Week approaching Mrs Carter begins to prep the girls for the fashion show. They have been invited to Fashion Week and model for a new and upcoming designer Dylan. Mrs Carter decides to open up the training for other girls in the community to give them a chance to go to NY. Of the girls who will be training is Madison and Tina. If you remember from previous books they are the mean jealous girls who go to the same school as the Carter house girls.

Who will go to Fashion Week? Will Taylor come back from LA? What will happen in New York?

I mentioned before that I am really liking this series by Melody Carlson. The characters are all believable. This time for some reason I didn’t like Eliza. I think it was her whole attitude of being better then everyone else. I didn’t really like her throughout the series but this time she seemed to rub me the wrong way. Its nice to see Casey turning herself around.

Book 7 & 8 are in the works. I can’t wait to read book seven called Bikini Breakout. What will happen when the girls go on spring break?

copyright 2010, Cindy (Cindy’s Love Of Books)
If you are reading this on a blog or website other than Cindy’s Love Of Books or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.

**Stop The Traffik People Shouldn’t Be Bought & Sold Review

PUD DATE: April 1 2009

I had just seen a documentary of trafficking the night before First Wild Card Tours had announced this book so I really wanted to read it. Its not really a book its sort of like a magazine. Its filled with all kinds of photos, charts and graphs. There is also stories from the girls and women who were bought and sold.

The book is produced by the United Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking.

We hear stories every day about this and its sad to see it still goes on in every part of the world. It was sad to read that parents and family members were actually selling their children for a little bit of money. As a parent I could never sell my child no matter how badly I needed money. Its also sad to see that as humans we have no repect for other humans and that we are looked at not as humans but was objects to be bought and sold.

Stop the Traffik was formed in 2006. Their mission is to put an end to people trafficking, preventing the sale of people, prosecuting the traffickers and protecting the victims.

They estimate that for every minute two children are trafficked for sex and that roughly 1.2 million a year. They also report that 98% of the ones that are trafficked are girls and women. To date this is the most common form of trafficking.

Other forms of trafficking are domestic slaves, child soldiers. organ and forced labour.

To find out how you can be a part or for more info go to

The book was okay it had some interesting facts and to read the personal stories of the victims was interesting to see why and how they were sold. The majority was sold because the were in poverty and either wanted to support their families (they thought the money was being sent home which it wasn’t) or they had drug, alcohol or medical problems and they needed quick money.

copyright 2010, Cindy (Cindy’s Love Of Books)
If you are reading this on a blog or website other than Cindy’s Love Of Books or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.