Thursday, 29 April 2010

2009 Whitney Award Winners

Best Romance

Counting the Cost
Liz Adair

Best Mystery/Suspense

Methods of Madness
Stephanie Black

Best Youth Fiction

The Chosen One
Carol Lynch Williams

Best Speculative

Servant of a Dark God
John Brown

Best Historical

The Last Waltz
G.G. Vandagriff

Best General Fiction

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet
Jamie Ford

Best Novel by a New Author

I am Not a Serial Killer
Dan Wells

Gravity vs. the Girl
Riley Noehren

Lifetime Acheivement Award

Gerald Lund

Outsatnding Achievment Award

Dave Wolverton

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Secret Sisters by Tristi Pinkston

"Ida Mae Babbitt, president of the Omni 2nd ward Relief Society, didn't mean to become a spy. But when visiting teaching stats are low and she learns that one family under her care is in financial trouble, she'll do whatever it takes to make sure they have what they need. If that includes planting surveillance cameras in their home and watching them from a parked car in the woods, well, isn't that what any caring Relief Society president would do?

With the help of her counselors Arlette and Tansy, Ida Mae soon learns that there's more to the situation than meets the eye. It's all in a day's work for the Relief Society." (from the back of the book)

Tristi Pinkston's new book Secret Sisters is a hilarious tale of a Relief Society presidency that takes the responsiblility of watching over the sisters in their ward a little too seriously. The main character, Ida Mae Babbitt, just wants to take care of people, and when her nephew uses his knowledge of electronic gadgets to help her find out more about the financial problems of a certain family in the ward, Ida Mae and her friends find themselves learning more than they expected. They can't convinice the sheriff to take them seriously and obviously they can't go to the bishop without explaining that they aquired the information through spying. So they take matters into their own hands.

It's interesting how Ida Mae, Arlette, and Tansy justify their actions. What is really funny is when reading the book, I couldn't think of a single Relief Society president who would go to the lengths Ida Mae did to "watch over" the members of her ward, but I could think of several women who wish they could. The story revolves around the characters and their antics. Tristi has developed lovable women who could be your next door neighbors and who you want to know more about. My only complaint about this book was that it was just to short. I can't wait for the second installment in the Secret Sisters series so I can find out what Ida Mae and her friends are up to next.

You can order the book here, and learn more about Tristi here.

I was given a copy of this book for review purposes.

Monday, 12 April 2010

I'll Know You By Heart by Kimberly Job

From the back cover: "The day Stephanie Roberts met Jared Wakefield, she didn't realize they'd met before. Running from an abusive marriage and trying to safeguard her children, she turns to Jared for support, but he needs more from her than she might be capable of giving. With her abusive husband looming in her past, the difficulties they must overcome to be together seem insurmountable.

Is it possible for love to conquer all? I'll Know You By Heart is a timeless romance that explores the possibility that relationships span the entire realm of eternity. A story about abuse, hardship, and betrayal, it is ultimately a story about the healing power of everlasting true love."

I've been looking forward to reading this book since I first read the back cover. Once I got over the eerie coincidence of reading a book about a woman with my name, who is in an abusive marriage, and who has a sister with the same name as one of my sisters, I was drawn into the story. There were moments in the book when I cringed and wondered at some of the choices Stephanie made, but her thoughts as she works through her decisions, seem to acurately describe the emotions and struggles that women go through when they are abused for extensive periods of time.

The story had enough suspense to keep me flipping the pages and cheering for Stephanie and her children, and enough romance to balance out the tension. I half expected the book to be similar to other LDS books I've read where the abusive relationship is glossed over and the abused wife recovers too quickly from her experiences. Instead, Kimberly doesn't shy away from the pain and suffering of her main character. She writes the experiences in a realistic manner and doesn't sugar-coat them in any way.

This is Kimberly Job's first novel and I'll be eagerly watching for her next book. You can purchase I'll Know You By Heart here.

Saturday, 10 April 2010

Easter Break Score Card

Just day-to-day stuff:
  • 1 easter picnic with the extended family
  • 6 loads of laundry washed and folded
  • 1 family home evening activity in the city with the kids
  • 6 dinners cooked
  • 1 grocery shopping trip in the city
  • 1 date night in the city
  • 1 blog written
  • 1 migraine
  • 1 sewing room cleaned
  • uncountable hugs given
  • 1 pair of pants hemmed for a neighbor
  • 1 hoodie mended after a run-in with a band saw
  • 0 school work
For the play:
  • 1 play practice attended
  • 6 skirts sewn (with help from my lovely assistants/daughters)
  • 8 pairs of pants sewn
  • 6 vests sewn
  • 3 pirate shirts sewn
  • 6 sashes made
  • 6 eye patches made
  • 1 felt pirate hat sewn complete with blood-red plume
  • 40+ metres of fabric used
And writing/editing:
  • 2 very short hours
Oh well, there's always next week, right?
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