Why every household with a teen should read and watch 13 Reasons Why by Jay Asher.

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As you all know by know, this blog is run by both myself, Helen, the mom and Destiny, the daughter. We both pretty much read the same books and decided which one is going to type of the review, although I've been doing it a lot lately since she's been preoccupied with school and sports, tests, and college planning.

About two years ago I bought the book, 13 Reasons Why by jay Asher. I was so intrigued by the synopsis of the book. She read the book in one sitting and immediately came over to me gushing about how good it was and how this book needs to be read by every teen in every school. It peaked my interest so then I picked it up and began to read the words that this brilliant author had written on these pages.

My heart ached. My eyes were sore from the tears that had fallen from them. My heart was racing from the events that occurred. I felt the anguish. I felt the pain. I felt the raw emotion. I questioned how he came up with the idea to write such a book. I asked myself what would undo if Hannah Baker was my daughter?

Everything written goes on in schools today and we sometimes turn a blind eye to this. I know it happens in schools. It happened when I was in high school which wasn't that long ago. I graduated in 2002. I have read some negative comments on the show. I understand their reasoning behind it. However, on the other hand, can we think about how if this is spoken about then awareness is never going to raised.


Sexual assault, bullying, drugs, suicidal ideation, etc. We all have our own perception of things and our own truth. And we all have fears. Maybe we don't speak up about them because we are afraid of the next step. I was the victim of sexual assault when I was 13. I didn't tell anyone until I was in my early 20's. We all cope our own way. We all handle situations our own way. And we all fear the unknown. The next step of reality.



Moving along to the show. Destiny and I watched this show together. The show was much more intense. It was slightly different than the book and some names were changed and some characters were much more prominent than they were in the book. Which I found to work out amazingly beautiful. The representation of these characters came alive onscreen. Again the book and the show had some differences but they were both equally great.

This show opened up a dialogue with Destiny and myself. At the end of each episode, we sat there and processed what had happened and we spoke about it. We discussed the hard parts, the funny parts, the cutesy parts, and the dialogue between the characters.

Towards the middle, it began to get more intense. Which is where our conversations grew deeper, more meaningful, and had more value. The scene that was the hardest to watch would have to be the assault scenes. Being that I went through that and having her watch it and process that I went through the same, made her a bit uncomfortable. I was here to comfort her and reassure her that I am okay. I am here to talk and answer any questions.

Talking to your children about consent and suicide should be number 1 in every household. I'm glad that in my household, we are very open about that and can talk about that comfortably. I want her to know the signs in case she needs to help a friend or herself. If you have a teenager, please think about reading this book, and watching the showing. This will open up a lot of doors and will strengthen that bond. Lastly, I would like to add that I do wish that there was a warning added to the beginning of every episode because everyone reacts differently to situations. I am a survivor and reacted fine but that doesn't mean that the next survivior will react the same. 

If you or someone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, call 1-800-656-4673 and head to www.rainn.org for more information.

If you or someone you know feels that you are in crisis and in need of someone, please call the National Suicide Hotline 1-800-273-8255 and head to suicidepreventionlifeline.org for more information.

Gilded Cage by Vic James Book Review!


Thank you Netgalley for providing me with an ARC in exchange for my honest review.

This is one of the best debut's I've read. Vic James did an excellent job with this story. Reading this reminded me of some of the older stories I would read in my high school English class. The setting was absolutely beautiful but it did remind me of other books.

The characters were carefully developed and carefully picked apart making the reader fall in love with them and also break into pieces with certain parts.

I found many strengths but also a few weaknesses. I do love a good romance in a story and if that is what you are looking for, you will not find it in this book. Even Harry Potter had a little love in it.

I did like this book but I did not love it. Maybe it was just me, I don't know. This was a very short review. I don't know what else to say but that I did like it but not enough. I give this book 2.8/5 stars


A MUST READ ***Book Review*** Revelry by Kandi Steiner!

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Thank you, Kandi Steiner, for providing us with ARC in exchange for our honest review. You never cease to amaze us.

This book spoke to me like no book has ever spoken to me before. This is going to be the most personal book review I have ever done. I will bare my soul and my personal life. For the last 11 years of life, I have been in a relationship. That relationship ended this past winter. Like all relationships, It was beautiful in the beginning and full of promises and hopes and dreams. In the middle of that, I started to become someone different. I started to lose myself, I lost sight of my dreams and became the person that was always doing things to satisfy my partner. I felt like a prisoner. I hid behind smiles, lies, and doors. Yes, doors.


This story was about growth and loving yourself again. Both of what I am in the process of doing. Something I had begun to do just 3 short months ago. So when Kandi announced this book and I read the blurb, I knew I had to read it. I cried and cried because I related to Wren so much. Too much. That need to always feel that you had to prove yourself to someone, to satisfy them just to make them feel better while you're feeling like shit because once again you have put yourself aside for them.


Destiny and I had a candid conversation about this book. Yes, this book had sex scenes but she and I are very open about this topic. You see, I got pregnant with her at 16 and had her at 17. So I told myself that I will always be open with my kids about the subject so that they wouldn't be scared like I was and go down the same path I did. We talk about everything and discuss everything in detail. How did certain chapters make her feel, what did she learn, so on and so forth?

So when the subject about her stepfather and myself came up, it wasn't awkward but it was difficult to put into words. How do I find the right words to explain that the intimacy between her stepfather and I had died a long time ago? And by intimacy, I don't mean sex. I mean, those intimate moments where you have with your partner during conversations, connecting on a spiritual level, and just intimacy overall. We both still love him. I don't think that will ever go away. But when it comes to her seeing how bad I needed to find myself and love myself again, she didn't hesitate in telling me. There were similarities between Wren and myself. Wren's mother and mine.  This might very well be my longest review to date and for that, I apologize....or maybe I don't. Because for the first time in 11 years, I love ME again. I see ME again, I feel FREE again.


The structure to Revelry was absolutely strong, steady and captivating. I loved that the setting of the book happened in the mountains with Wren and Anderson connecting in the cabins. There is a sense of freeness and a connection with nature and love that makes it beautiful and whimsical.

I loved all of the characters. They each had a strong back story. Momma Von reminded me of my old work supervisor. Who was caring, compassionate and always there for me and had all the right answers. Ron reminded me of my dad. A man with not so many words but when he speaks, he speaks volumes. Anderson was completely broken and so was Wren but they both found themselves and needed each other, not to heal but just needed each other.


The strength of this book was the entire story of how our perception of marriage, how it should be and it really is, is completely different from those who we are in that marriage with. It showed raw emotion. It gave us heartbreak, it gave us love, it gave us everything we never wanted and everything we needed.

I love this book. I love this book with every ounce of my being. I love that this book opened up more discussions with my daughter. I love that this book is helping me move on and heal from something I thought would take me years to get over. Kandi, I love you. I thank you, and I will forever hold this book near and dear to my heart. I will remember every single tear drop that fell as I read this book, I will remember every deep breath I exhaled, and I will remember the feeling I felt when I woke up this morning when I finally felt the air rush back into my lungs.

I give this book a hundred stars!

Author Info:

Kandi Steiner is a bestselling author and whiskey connoisseur living in Tampa, FL. Best known for writing “emotional rollercoaster” stories, she loves bringing flawed characters to life and writing about real, raw romance — in all its forms. No two Kandi Steiner books are the same, and if you’re a lover of angsty, emotional, and inspirational reads, she’s your gal.

An alumna of the University of Central Florida, Kandi graduated with a double major in Creative Writing and Advertising/PR with a minor in Women’s Studies. She started writing back in the 4th grade after reading the first Harry Potter installment. In 6th grade, she wrote and edited her own newspaper and distributed to her classmates. Eventually, the principal caught on and the newspaper was quickly halted, though Kandi tried fighting for her “freedom of press.” She took particular interest in writing romance after college, as she has always been a die hard hopeless romantic, and likes to highlight all the challenges of love as well as the triumphs.

When Kandi isn’t writing, you can find her reading books of all kinds, talking with her extremely vocal cat, and spending time with her friends and family. She enjoys live music, traveling, anything heavy in carbs, beach days, movie marathons, craft beer and sweet wine — not necessarily in that order.

Facebook - facebook.com/kandisteiner
Website - www.kandisteiner.com

The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel Book Review!


The minute I read the blurb to this book, I knew I needed to read it! Thank you Blogging for Books for providing me with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

This book was dark, dysfunctional, and captivating. The Roanoke family had dark secrets that go back generations. I could not put this book down. I read this book in one sitting. I literally did not go to sleep until 4 am. It left such an impression that I could only hope a show comes out of this book

The structure of this book was strong and steady. I loved how it was written with the then and now alternating views. It was hard to believe that this all happened in one short Summer. Amy Engel was so descriptive with her writing, it made the reader feel as if they were living in the story. 


“Roanoke girls never last long around here. In the end, we either run or we die”

I loved that the subject matter was dark and haunting. Some may have missed the point, others seemed to catch on quick. No matter what, dark haunting secrets will come out and there's something always so fascinating about them. There is no perfect family. Dysfunctional families pretty much describe all of the families across the world. Some are far worse than others as The Roanoke family proved to be one of the latter.

The characters were so beautifully and carefully developed. Engel made sure that all of these characters were perfectly imperfect and special in their own way. I was drawn to each and every single one of them. I felt empathy for them, I felt a sense of compassion. 

"Sometimes you have to pass the pain around in order to survive it."

This book was a strong book overall that had no weaknesses whatsoever. I think this is one of the best books I have read so far in 2017. I reminded me of my favorite book of 2016, The Summer That Melted Everything by Tiffany McDaniels. It's a book that's odd but catches your eye and holds it until it's finished with you.

I definitely recommend this book. If I could give this book a 10 star rating, I would. 


***Cover Reveal*** Revelry by Kandi Steiner!

Title: Revelry
Author: Kandi Steiner
Release Date: April 20, 2017


From the bestselling author of Weightless and A Love Letter to Whiskey

Wren Ballard is trying to find herself.

She never expected to be divorced at twenty-seven, but now that the court date has passed, it’s official. The paperwork is final. Her feelings on it aren’t.

Spending the summer in a small mountain town outside Seattle is exactly what she needs. The peaceful scenery is a given, the cat with the croaky meow is a surprise, but the real kicker? A broody neighbor with nice arms, a strange reputation, and absolutely no interest in her.

Anderson Black is perfectly fine being lost.

He doesn’t care about the town’s new resident — he’s too busy fighting his own demons. But when he’s brought face to face with Wren, he can see her still-fresh wounds from a mile away. What he doesn’t see coming is his need to know who put them there — or his desperation to mend them.

Sometimes getting lost is the way to find yourself. Sometimes healing only adds a new scar. And sometimes the last place you expected to be is exactly where you find home.



I stared at the piles of bags, debating which to tackle first before slowly loading them onto each arm one by one. Once I was red-faced and struggling and decided there was, in fact, no way I’d get them all in one trip, I turned to make my way inside the cabin. But I stopped short.

There was a man at the end of my driveway.

He was just standing there, staring at me, a large, rusted toolbox in one hand and rolled up sheet of paper in the other. Everything about him was hard — the bend in his brows, the edge of his jaw, the line of scruff that framed it. And because I was me, of course I noticed what he was wearing, and it was the first time in a long time that I’d seen someone who dressed for efficiency, not for style. His jeans were worn, but not dirty, with plenty of pockets that I could tell were each used in their own way. He donned a simple, deep red thermal with sleeves pushed up to his elbows and slight stains that ran down his chest and abdomen, and a charcoal gray hat sat low over his eyes, shielding them from the sun.

He was tan, and even from the distance his eyes sparked against the warm hue of his skin. They were bright — blue, maybe? Or green? I couldn’t be sure, and I let his potent appearance mesmerize me for just a moment more before I shifted, hoisting the bags in my right hand up enough for me to attempt a half wave.

If possible, his brow lowered further, and he simply stalked off, clearing the view of my driveway in seconds.

I frowned.

“Well, hello to you, too.”


Kandi Steiner is a bestselling author and whiskey connoisseur living in Tampa, FL. Best known for writing “emotional rollercoaster” stories, she loves bringing flawed characters to life and writing about real, raw romance — in all its forms. No two Kandi Steiner books are the same, and if you’re a lover of angsty, emotional, and inspirational reads, she’s your gal.

An alumna of the University of Central Florida, Kandi graduated with a double major in Creative Writing and Advertising/PR with a minor in Women’s Studies. She started writing back in the 4th grade after reading the first Harry Potter installment. In 6th grade, she wrote and edited her own newspaper and distributed to her classmates. Eventually, the principal caught on and the newspaper was quickly halted, though Kandi tried fighting for her “freedom of press.” She took particular interest in writing romance after college, as she has always been a die hard hopeless romantic, and likes to highlight all the challenges of love as well as the triumphs.

When Kandi isn’t writing, you can find her reading books of all kinds, talking with her extremely vocal cat, and spending time with her friends and family. She enjoys live music, traveling, anything heavy in carbs, beach days, movie marathons, craft beer and sweet wine — not necessarily in that order.