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Thursday, June 20, 2019

Review: Don't Feel Stuck in Love!: Journaling Methods to Transform Your Mindset & Manifest Your Ideal Relationship

Don't Feel Stuck in Love!: Journaling Methods to Transform Your Mindset & Manifest Your Ideal Relationship Don't Feel Stuck in Love!: Journaling Methods to Transform Your Mindset & Manifest Your Ideal Relationship by Jaclyn Johnston
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

This is a book that gives you the usual law of attraction/manifesting your best life spiel. While I came into this reading with as open a mind as I could possible have, I've been burned by this process before and it's simply not for me.

Let me be perfectly clear--some of the things in this book I already do believe, and do practice. I believe the universe is a living, breathing entity that helps nudges things along when it sees fit. I believe that going into situations with a positive attitude can make a difference. I just can't subscribe to the idea of manifesting your future (based on the steps described in this book) because the whole law of attraction thing is completely contradictory. You need to spend time thinking and believing that specific things will happen (just not depending on when, because that's the universe's job), but you are also supposed to take a set-it-and-forget-it approach at the same time.

In my previous practice of these types of systems, I've either wasted a lot of precious time picturing an ideal future while ignoring the here and now, or on a few occasions I've been lucky enough to manifest the perfect relationship--and I got to watch it unfold right in front of me, but without me in it. Am I psychic? Do I have the power to manifest joy and happiness and bright, sunny soulmate matches to others, but not myself? Probably not. But that's the point--I see what I want, I'm just kept at arm's length. Do I think that the universe will change its mind about this? Maybe, but just thinking and wishing won't make it true.

That's the biggest issue I have with these books. They never tell you that you still have to go to work everyday. You still have to deal with people and places and things that will drag you down. You don't get sunshine and rainbows just by imagining them. You have to work at something outside of yourself, and then the universe will take notice.

*Book provided by NetGalley

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Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Review: 30-Day Travel Challenge: How to Make Your Travel Dreams a Reality

30-Day Travel Challenge: How to Make Your Travel Dreams a Reality 30-Day Travel Challenge: How to Make Your Travel Dreams a Reality by Kaila Yu
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

This is a book that doesn't exactly provide what it claims, unless you are the type that's willing to blindly follow bad advice like taking out dozens of credit cards for bonus mile opportunities, creating a vision board, or take some half-heard advice from someone else's life coach (no, really). It is simply a vehicle for the authors to promote their own travel-themed social media. This is a pretty solid example of why BookBub/FreeBooksy and other email lists need to do a better job in vetting free books that only suspiciously have 5-star reviews on Amazon.

My advice? Take the time you would have to read this disappointing book (hopefully you didn't actually get stuck paying for it) and go earn some extra money. That's the only real way to get closer to your dreams of traveling.

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Thursday, June 6, 2019

Review: The She Book

The She Book The She Book by Tanya Markul
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

The She Book is a collection of poetry that tries to reach the audience with the message of female empowerment and rising above it all to find the strength within yourself. However, this collection did not speak to me.

Put Markul down as another of the Instagram Poets. I don't say that in a negative way, because this poetry movement brought the likes of Rupi Kaur and Amanda Lovelace. The biggest issue I have with this collection that I didn't with the others is that it's playing mimicry--it is trying to say the same things that these other collections have said, but it doesn't contain the same magic that made me want to read more so I can find new connections to myself and to the work. This collection can be boiled down to "I'm broken. I fixed it. You look broken. I'm going to tell you that you are great so you can fix yourself too."

Let's just say I'm hoping to see the Instagram Poetry bubble burst soon, but because people want simple language and stuff they don't have to pick apart to find meaning, I think it will be around for awhile. This collection isn't for me, but I'm sure there are plenty out there who can find a bit of solace or empowerment from it.

*Book provided by NetGalley


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Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Review: Only in New York. 36 True Big Apple Stories Spanning 55 Years and Five Boroughs

Only in New York. 36 True Big Apple Stories Spanning 55 Years and Five Boroughs Only in New York. 36 True Big Apple Stories Spanning 55 Years and Five Boroughs by M G Crisci
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Only in New York is a memoir told in vignettes spanning a lifetime of the author. It starts with his humble beginnings and ends with reminiscing about all that has happened during his years in New York before relocating to the west coast.

The title of this collection is a bit misleading in that most, if not all of these stories actually are not unique to New York. Living in large cities, maybe, but not specific to one place. I did enjoy the first few stories of his childhood where he worked and schemed with friends like so many do, but it kind of dropped off from there. Many stories were about his days as an account man at Y&R, and most of them just sat there like a not-so-humble humble brag. Playing up the obvious Mad Men comparisons probably would have made it a bit more interesting for me.

For other stories, there were tales without a point. It was a simple recollection, but led to no revelations or realizations for the main players.

*Book provided by NetGalley

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Sunday, May 12, 2019

Review: Rouge

Rouge Rouge by Richard Kirshenbaum
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Rouge is a deep dive into the beginnings of the modern beauty industry where two rivals go head to head to outdo each other, and to get beyond their humble starts. Constance is a Canadian who sees the world for the taking, though she has to often deal with her brother's secrets. Josephine is a Polish immigrant living in Australia, just waiting for her big break when it comes to selling her beauty creams. Throughout the decades they are both faced with successes, marriages, children and failures in all aspects, creating a strange bond, even within a deep professional rivalry.

This book is being compared to The Swans of Fifth Avenue, which I've read and don't think measures up to the same type of historical fiction. For one, this book tries to mask a real story under fictional characters. The Swans of Fifth Avenue used as many real-life figures as possible, making it more interesting and intriguing. This book didn't do the same for me. Instead of wanting to read more of this, I just wanted to find something to read that would tell me the real story of this rivalry instead.

*Book provided by NetGalley

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Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Review: The Drum That Beats Within Us

The Drum That Beats Within Us The Drum That Beats Within Us by Mike Bond
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Drum That Beats Within Us is a collection of poetry that explores the elements of nature, what nature can provide, what nature can take away, and how humans are connected to it all. The best way to describe the feeling of the collection is if you wander through a shaded forest that opened up to a clearing, and you sat in the soft grass while watching the clouds roll in.

Not every poem is based in nature, and all have unique qualities. There are rhyming poems, free verse, as well as varying lengths. I tended to enjoy the shorter ones, though the long ones take their time to explore the topic at hand.

*Book provided by NetGalley

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Book Spotlight: BDD CONFUSION: Using Behaviour Driven Development for Acceptance Criteria

Category:

Business/Technology


Synopsis:

This is the fourth semi-fictional story in the Carnsa Development Series set in the life of the quirky business analyst Claudia. This book focuses on BDD (Behaviour Driven Development) to support writing acceptance criteria and testing. It also takes a brief look at TDD (Test Driven Development) and Continuous Integration to support test automation.

You can purchase BDD Confusion from these retailers:

Amazon
Amazon.co.uk 

Apple
Barnes &Noble
Kobo
Scribd

For more information, please visit https://www.carnsadev.com.