Friday, June 29, 2012

The Fight of Our Lives

I received a copy of The Fight of Our Lives Knowing the Enemy, Speaking the Truth, and Choosing to Win the War Against Radical Islam by William Bennett with Seth Leibsohn from BookSneeze in exchange for an honest review.
Want to know the dirty little secret in the war on terror? Some of us have already surrendered.
Since the dreadful events of 9/11, America has waged an international war on terrorism. But are we prepared to win, or are we practicing surrender? We have foiled dozens of terrorist attacks since then. But while the Fort Dix terrorists were stopped, an Islamist terrorist at Fort Hood unleashed hell on American servicemen. Despite Maj. Nidal Hasan’s shouting “Allahu Akbar” as he pulled the trigger, the official Pentagon report refused to mention Islam or use the word Muslim. And said the army chief of staff, “As horrific as this tragedy was, if our diversity becomes a casualty, I think that's worse.” As William J. Bennett and Seth Leibsohn show, for lack of clarity, conviction, and determination, America is on the verge of declaring preemptive cultural surrender in the war on terror. The Fight of Our Lives will reinvigorate the discussion and embolden those who wish to win the war on terror.
I'm trying to be more informed before the next presidental election and reading books like this have been very helpful.  The Fight of Our Lives is an eye-opening book on the evolution of American policy toward Radical Islam and Terrorism.   It is an amazing wake up call to all who care about America, and the great Nation she once was.  This book by Bennett and Leibsohn chronicles the 10 year period between September 11, 2001 and now. It shows what has happened, what could happen, and what needs to happen to be sure this never happens again.  It is both a history lesson and a call to action.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Dog Is My Copilot

I received a copy of Dog Is My Copilot from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Dog Is My Copilot tells the story of Pilots N Paws, a high-flying animal-rescue operation founded "accidentally" in 2008 when a private pilot offered to fly a mission of mercy to save an abused dog for a friend. Once on the ground, the pilot asked his friend if there was a big need to transport shelter animals from one part of the country to another. She responded, "You have no idea." Since that time, Pilots N Paws has grown to include thousands of pilots who have transported tens of thousands of "death-row dogs" (and a fair amount of cats and other animals), sometimes more than 1,000 miles away to new homes or no-kill shelters, where they have a much higher chance of adoption.

The true heart of Dog Is My Copilot are the 24 real-life rescue stories collected from pilots and their animal-rescue counterparts on the ground. The short, captivating stories are accompanied by more than 100 charming, poignant, color photos—most taken by the pilots themselves—of their canine passengers in flight.

Unexpected things can happen when dogs reach cruising altitude, and the stories in Dog Is My Copilot run the emotional range from hilarious to heart rending—but the endings are always happy. These dogs are the lucky ones, and most of the pilots will tell you that when they get on the plane, they know it. After all, waiting for them on the ground hundreds of miles away is a second chance at a happy life with a loving forever family.

Before reading this I never thought about how animals were moved around.  I didn't realize that there were people out there that would be willing to get an aminal from a shelter many states away just to keep it from being put down.  I think it's amazing that there are pilots that would donate their time and plane to help an animal.  Another thing that amazes me is that the animals seem to know that the people and planes involved are there to help them.  This is a great book that has opened my eyes to what it takes to save an animal.

Friday, June 22, 2012

The Girls

I received a copy of The Girls by Helen Yglesias from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
These days the news is full of reports about the graying of America, yet it's rare that old people appear in contemporary fiction except as stock characters: the indulgent grandmother, the wicked witch. In her first novel in a dozen years, the acclaimed author of How She Died and Sweetsir gives us four grand old ladies, sisters, each unique and indelibly real, in a poignant and very funny story about the last American taboos, old age and dying.

As the novel opens, Jenny, the youngest at eighty, has flown down to Miami-that gaudy, pastel-hued haven of the elderly-to look after her two failing oldest sisters: Eva, ninety-five, always the family mainstay, and Naomi, ninety, who is riddled with cancer but still has her tart tongue and her jet-black head of hair. The fourth sister, Flora, still has her black hair too, straight out of the bottle, but no head for the hard decisions facing Eva and Naomi. An energetic eighty-five, Flora spends her time dating ("He's mad about me, I only hope he can get it up!") and making the rounds of the retirement homes with her standup routine, the Sandra Bernhard of the senior set.

The Girls gives us these four full-if-wrinkled-fleshed women with all their complaints and foibles, their self-absorption and downright orneriness, their unquenchable humor and immense courage. Aches and pains, wrinkles and hearing aids, wheelchairs and walkers-out of these, and out of the human spirit, Helen Yglesias fashions a novel that moves us, opens our eyes, and makes us laugh out loud.
This book wasn't as funny as I was hoping it would be.  Having 2 sisters I could relate to much of the interactions that Eva had with Flora.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Truth Be Told

I received a copy of Truth Be Told by Larry King from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
A surprisingly candid look inside the monumental career of one of the most powerful and legendary talk-show hosts, and the final year of the nightly television program that has been close to all our hearts.

After more than a half century of asking questions, in 2010 Larry king suddenly found everyone wanted answers from him. why was Larry King Live, CNN's highest-rated program, ending after three decades? was Larry getting divorced again? Truth Be Told is a deeply revealing look at the broadcast legend as he dealt with marriage upheaval, the ensuing paparazzi and tabloid controversy, prostate cancer, the twenty-fifth anniversary of Larry King Live, and ultimately, his decision to leave the show to pursue a secret dream -- stand- up comedy.

Larry reflects on how much the world has changed around him over the course of his fifty-year career, and the riveting conversations he's had with the most compelling figures in politics, entertainment, medicine, and technology. in these pages, Larry also shares his most memorable moments with singers and songwriters (from Sinatra to Lady Gaga); actors (from Marlon Brando to Al Pacino); billionaires (the high-profile Donald Trump and the low-profile Carlos Slim); world leaders (Barack Obama, Vladimir Putin, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad); crooks (Bernie Madoff, the interview that got away); comedians (from Lenny Bruce to Jerry Seinfeld to Chris Rock); and a host of others.

I knew of Larry King but hadn't watched his show.  I honestly didn't know it had been cancelled.  I thought the things he told about the people he interviewed to be very interesting.  The layout of the book was a bit odd.  It seemed to be written in a random manner.  Kind of like Larry was sitting around reminiscing and wrote what ever came to mind about who ever he thought of.  At times I found it hard to follow because he bounced around a lot.

Friday, June 8, 2012

My Story, My Song

I received a copy of My Story, My Song by Lucimarian Roberts as told to Missy Buchanan with reflections by Robin Roberts from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
In this heartwarming memoir, Lucimarian Roberts, mother of Good Morning America’s coanchor Robin Roberts, tells how God has sustained her throughout life, guiding and encouraging her through people of all ages and races. In her late 80s, Mrs. Roberts still enjoys playing the piano and singing hymns and spirituals from her childhood. She credits hymns with helping her live faithfully through the Great Depression, segregation, and the loneliness and prejudice she experienced as the wife of a U.S. Air Force officer.
My Story, My Song brings together key moments of Lucimarian Roberts’ intriguing life with personal reflections from her daughter Robin. Their story will inspire and challenge you.
This book was different than I expected.  Lucimarian tells different things about her life.  They really aren't in chronological order.  Lucimarian is a strong woman that has many opportunities that other black women her age were not as fortunate to have.  She made the most of every opportunity she was given.  She passed this determination on to her children.

Saturday, June 2, 2012


I received a copy of MOMumental by Jennifer Grant from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Celebrating the joyous art of being a mother, MOMumental offers an inspiring, honest, and infectiously humorous look at the perils and pleasures of raising a family in the real world.

Once a devout believer in the myth of the perfect mother, author Jennifer Grant now has a more realistic yet still upbeat view of parenting and families. Instead of focusing on creating a conflict-free home, raising picture-perfect kids, and being an ideal mother, Grant offers a wiser and more down-to-earth way to love your children that makes room for mistakes and imperfections. She says, "I share stories about family life and how I've come to appreciate the mess of it. I am grateful for my own happy, idiosyncratic, and imperfect family."

MOMumental is one mother's account of the unpredictable, creative, sometimes hilarious, and always rewarding process of raising a family. It's filled with funny and poignant stories from her everyday life--a life that mothers everywhere can identify with.
As a mom it's nice to know that I'm not the only one who has had moments that are testing to say the least.  Jennifer uses her humor to keep events in her life in perspective.  I wish I could do that more often.  This is a great book for any parent - especially moms.