Blog Tour Book Review: The Decent Proposal by Kemper Donovan

The Decent Proposal cover

About The Decent Proposal

• Hardcover: 320 pages
• Publisher: Harper (April 5, 2016)

A humorous, heartfelt love story built on a tantalizing premise: would you agree to spend two hours a week with a stranger—just talking—to collect half a million dollars at the end of a year?

Struggling Hollywood producer Richard is twenty-nine, hungover, and broke. Ridiculously handsome with an easy charm, he spends his days procrastinating at the Coffee Bean and nights hanging out with his best friend, Michaela, aka “Mike.”

At thirty-three, Elizabeth is on track to make partner at her law firm. Known as “La Máquina”—the Machine—to her colleagues, she’s grown used to a quiet, orderly life with no romantic entanglements of any kind. (Her closest friend is an old man who discusses Virginia Woolf with her at the beach. Enough said.)

Richard and Elizabeth have never met before, but their paths collide when they receive a proposal from a mysterious, anonymous benefactor: they’ll split a million dollars if they agree to spend at least two hours together every week for a year. Both are shocked and suspicious, and agree the idea is absurd, but after Richard anxiously considers the state of his bank account and Elizabeth carefully conducts a cost-benefit analysis of the situation, they agree to give it a try.

As these two perfect strangers wade awkwardly into the waters of modern courtship, discovering a shared affection for In-N-Out burgers, classic books, cult-hit movies, and various Los Angeles locales, they realize that uncovering the secret identity of their benefactor will not only make clear what connects them but change them both forever.

This delightful tale is full of twists, revelations, and above all love in its multitude of forms.

Praise

“A sharp, wise, and hilarious novel. Think Entourage meets Tom Wolfe with a touch of Indecent Proposal. . . . We loved it!”—Lucy Sykes and Jo Piazza, authors of The Knockoff

The Decent Proposal is as clever as it is hopeful. Whether talking about the secret menu at In-N-Out or matters as grand as life and death, Kemper Donovan’s voice is original, captivating, and assured. This book is both a moving love letter to Los Angeles and a thoughtful rumination on what people can mean to one another.”—Taylor Jenkins Reid, author of Maybe in Another Life

“Impossible to put down, this character-rich, breakout novel will make your heart burst with love. You’ll turn the pages so fast you might get a paper cut.”—Claire Bidwell Smith, author of The Rules of Inheritance

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Hello all and welcome to my stop on the blog tour for The Decent Proposal written by Kemper Donovan. I’d like to give a big thanks to the author, TLC Book Tours and the publisher Harper Collins for giving me the chance to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

The Decent Proposal is a contemporary romance about a man and a woman, living two very different lives that are brought together by a proposal that requires them to spend a specific amount of time together in a year for a prize of $500,000 each. Although that is the basic premise there is so much more than that to this story.

I will start this review by saying that I am giving this book a full five stars which is not something I have been doing alot of this year. I loved this book and I immediately loved it when I first started reading it, I couldn’t put it down. I was glued to each page from the very beginning. I thought it was a really fun read. For some reason when I read the description I thought maybe it would be a little cliche but it actually wasn’t so I was pleasantly surprised at that.

I really loved the characters in this book, not just the main characters but I found something to like about pretty much every one we encounter. I felt like the story itself was really well written, I am a fan of this author’s writing style. I am a fan of books that have multiple perspectives and I thought that gave this book a really fun element that I quite enjoyed, I thought this author did that really well and each voice was very distinct. Also, can we talk about the cover? It’s beautiful! I actually have an ARC copy and I love the cover on it too. I’m torn as to which cover I like more but they are both just gorgeous.

I could actually see this book made into a movie. I think it’s something that everyone can enjoy and has a little bit of everything for everyone – humor, romance, drama. I love the atmosphere and I really think that I read it at the right time with summer right around the corner. Also, I am going to Los Angeles next month so this book definitely caught me in the right state of mind because all my thoughts are about California right now.  Loved this book, I definitely recommend it and think it’s one you won’t want to miss. This is a perfect beach read for this summer!

Kemper Donovan APAbout Kemper Donovan

Kemper Donovan has lived in Los Angeles for the past twelve years. A graduate of Stanford University and Harvard Law School, he worked at the literary management company Circle of Confusion for a decade, representing screenwriters and comic books. He is also a member of the New York Bar Association.

Follow Kemper on Twitter.

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Blog Tour Book Review: Lone Star by Paullina Simons

Lone Star coverAbout Lone Star

• Paperback: 640 pages
• Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks (November 24, 2015)

Falling in love was the easy part . . .

Chloe and her three best friends are weeks away from finishing high school and beginning their new grown-up lives apart from one another. They have been friends since they were kids, their families and lives intertwined, but this is their last summer together. They plan a magical trip to sun-drenched Barcelona, with its possibility of adventure and passion. But first, Chloe has an old family promise to keep, and the four of them must detour through historic Eastern Europe.

In this fledgling post-Communist world, Chloe meets a mysterious American vagabond named Johnny, who carries a guitar, an easy smile, and a lifetime of secrets. From Treblinka to Trieste, from Carnikava to Krakow, the unlikely band of friends and mismatched lovers traverses the Old World on a train ride that becomes a treacherous journey into Europe’s and Johnny’s dark pasts—a journey that jeopardizes Chloe’s plans and all she ever thought she wanted.

The ties that bind Chloe to her friends and her future are about to be put to the ultimate test. Whether or not they reach Barcelona . . . their lives will never be the same again.

A sweeping, beautiful tale of old friendships and new love that mesmerizes and enchants, Lone Star will linger long in the memory even after the final page has been turned.

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Good morning friends and welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Lone Star by Paullina Simons. I’d like to send a huge thank you to the author and TLC Book Tours for the chance to read this book in exchange for an honest review of it.

When I read the synopsis for this book I immediately started looking forward to reading it. This author is new to me and I am glad that I have finally read and experienced a book by her. I have definitely heard of The Bronze Horseman and will now be anxiously awaiting the day that I can get my hands on a copy (hopefully soon). As for this book, I absolutely loved what I read. I gave this book five stars. I thought the writing was beautiful and poetic. There were definitely one liners and even paragraphs that just grabbed my heart and fed my soul. I thought it started off slow with not really alot happening but I think that foundation needed to be set in order for the story to have more impact later on. I started to get into it right around pages 92/93 which I think turns out to be a pretty good ratio given the  actual number of pages in the book. After that I was pretty much hooked and couldn’t put it down. This book was definitely a larger read for me this year but I read it like it was maybe a two hundred and fifty page book. I loved that this book was not only a romance but a coming of age story. I loved the detail, the history and how romantic it was.

I went through alot of emotions reading this book and by the end I had cried more than a few tears. I loved pretty much everything about it, minus the slow beginning (but again, that didn’t take away from my feelings or experience with this story at all). The way it started I actually thought it was going to be an okay read for me but somewhere along the way it just sucked me in and I came out on the other side with tears on my cheeks. I really liked the characters in this book, I felt like all of them had really great dimension. I loved the interactions between Chloe and her parents. Their dynamic felt so real to me…it was reminiscent of the way I talk to my parents and vice versa.

This is definitely a top read for me this year and I am actually looking forward to rereading it in the near future in 2016. I give this read five stars!

Paullina SimonsAbout Paullina Simons

Paullina Simons is an internationally bestselling author whose novels include Bellagrand and The Bronze Horseman. She was born in Leningrad in 1963. As a child she immigrated to Queens, New York, and attended colleges in Long Island. Then she moved to England and attended Essex University, before returning to America. She lives in New York with her husband and children.

Find out more about Paullina at her website, follow her onTwitter, and connect with her on Facebook.

Audiobook Review: The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

22529254Title: The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
Genre:  Fiction – Thriller
Publisher: Penguin
Length: 10 hours 59 minutes
Format: Audiobook
Publication Date: January 13, 2015
Rating – 5/5, loved it!

Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. “Jess and Jason,” she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost.

And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel offers what she knows to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next, as well as in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?

Compulsively readable, The Girl on the Train is an emotionally immersive, Hitchcockian thriller and an electrifying debut.

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Happy Wednesday everyone! I wasn’t sure if I was going to get to complete any books in these last few days of the month but I did! I’m actually hoping to complete one more but we will see how that goes. In the past I haven’t been a big fan of audiobooks, I was actually pretty against them in the past. I had tried them before but I just could never get into them. I would always feel like I was missing things or I would get annoyed by the narrators voices. I decided to give them another chance and bought The Girl on the Train on audiobook. I’m really glad I did because I ended up really loving this book.

My reading/listening experience of this book ended up being a pretty great one. I gave the book itself a 5 star rating because I thought it was fantastic. I’m normally not one to gravitate towards thrillers but when I read the summary for this book, it just struck me.

The Girl on the Train is told through the point of view of three different women whose lives overlap. Rachel is our main point of view and is an alcoholic divorcee struggling with a few issues like her alcoholism and getting over her ex husband. Anna is the current wife of Rachel’s Ex husband whom is struggling with motherhood and Rachel’s continued presence in her life. Megan is a young married woman living a few houses down from Anna with alot of external and internal struggles of her own. Megan’s disappearance on a fateful Saturday night throws each of their worlds into chaos.

As mentioned above, I loved this book. Absolutely loved it. It was beautiful written with haunting narrative and descriptions. I loved the air of melancholy throughout. I’ve heard that this is a book that you either hate or love and I just found this book to be so spellbinding. I was on the edge of my seat which was so surprising to me since I am not an audiobook fan. This just makes me want to rush out and buy the physical copy which I definitely will do in the future because I would reread this book.

Aside from my loving this book, there were actually a slew of characters that I did not like and that’s probably because every single character in this book is majorly, majorly flawed. They’re human! I’ve read a few reviews that stress the fact that this book is depressing but I just really think even if it is dark and troubling, it is also starkly realistic. I love how each character has their own conflict going on within themselves and their lives. It reminds me of the “grass is always greener on the other side” idiom. Each of these characters at one time in the novel has wondered what someone else’s life is like and gotten it grossly wrong, ultimately forgetting that the other person is just human. My favorite character starting out was Megan  but we learn things about her that made me not like her so much towards the end. Rachel at the beginning and the end was not my favorite but she definitely grew on me the deeper I got into the novel and I just straight up never liked Anna. These characters were ALL very complex characters and I applaud this book and author for that…there wasn’t one character that wasn’t well developed.

What a ride. This was a whirlwind of suspense for me. It had the feel of Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl but altogether, different. I’m trying hard not to compare them though I actually think I may have enjoyed this book more. I highly recommend this book whether on physical copy or audiobook. I only really liked one narrators voice but I enjoyed listening to it nonetheless. I was so engrossed in it and found myself wanting to listen to it when I wasn’t. Also, I just heard this is being adapted to film…I will be there on release night. Yes!! I’ve also heard rumors that Emily Blunt may be on board to play Rachel…if this is true…yes, yes and yes!!!

Book Review: Veganish by Mielle Chenier-Cowan Rose

51GNHRvHXjL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_Title: Veganish by Mielle Chenier-Cowan Rose
Genre: Cookbook
Publisher: Viva Editions
Page count: 240
Format: PDF (Edelweiss)
Publication Date: October 14, 2014
Rating – 5/5

Tens of thousands of people have put down their knives in favor of a vegan or vegetarian diet for weight loss or to control blood pressure and cholesterol. Many people got exactly what they were looking for, along with a few surprises, such as loss of bone density and dental issues. Mielle Chenier-Cowan Rose has experienced much the same in her journey as a vegan chef raising her child vegan. This utterly unique “vegan +” cookbook offers over 100 easy-to-make vegan recipes and many basic methods and cooking techniques, as well as advanced options. A trained chef, Mielle Chenier-Cowan Rose also offers sage advice about food and nutrition, along with her personal story about transitioning from a 20-year long vegetarian diet to eating some animal-based foods. Chenier-Cowan Rose has dedicated herself to making sure vegan and vegetarian folks are aware of vital and important information about the vegan diet, including the nutritional elements that are essential to good health, especially for families and children. Veganish is necessary reading for anybody considering this lifestyle and a must-have for veggie families with children.

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I received a copy of Veganish from the publisher through Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review! Thank you to the author Mielle Chenier-Cowan Rose and the publisher Viva Editions!

As an ethical vegan there are definitely things said in this book that I do not agree with by any means at all but the book is called Veganish so I should have grasped that the ish part was literal. There is a lot of good “clean eating” information here for an omnivore but if you’re exclusively an herbivore this book may not be the absolute best book for you but do keep in mind that these recipes are really great plant based recipes and there may be some information in here that you may find useful. The author does preface this in her introduction by saying “If you already follow a Vegan diet, you’re going to love my recipes, but you may not like my story.” That’s pretty accurate but I do appreciate the information the author includes on factory farming and farming practices, as well as other subjects like GMOs and Organic foods.

This book did teach me a little about nutrition and vitamins regarding which ones vegans should be sure to include in their diets that resonates with what I’ve read in other Vegan centric books like Vegan For Her. I do like how the author did mention that cashews and other nuts can be used to make yummy cheeses. I wholeheartedly agree with this. Some of my favorites are Chao coconut milk cheese and Treeline Treenut Cheese and you can also make your own. I also liked that the author called to attention the fact that such phrases as free-range, cage free and naturally raised are misleading. I can’t even begin to tell you the amount of times people always offer the sentence, “well I only eat cage free eggs” or “I only eat grass fed beef” with the belief that these animals are allowed to happily wander acre after acre of beautiful farmland soaking in the sun’s rays which is totally not the case.

There are also some really good cooking and grocery shopping tips in this book that I found really helpful. This book also taught me the differences (and in some cases harmfulness) in different types of cookware and food storage items. These are things that I had never really considered before.

I did check all the recipes and they are technically Vegan. The only reason I say technically is because the recipes sometimes allude to nonvegan items you can use like honey or organic feta. If you are Vegan though you know that you can use Beeless Honey or Agave Nectar and Vegan Feta crumbles. I think an omnivore would do good with this cookbook if they are trying to approach a healthier lifestyle or are veg curious. Also this is a good transitioning cookbook that I wish I had when I was transitioning.

I tried a few of the salad dressings and they were absolutely delicious. I’m a big fan of Vinaigrettes so my favorite was actually the “Follow Your Heart Vinaigrette” on page 52. I tried it with a few different vinegars and the result for each was different and amazing. There is a handy dandy reference guide at the bottom of the page that describes the flavoring of the different vinegars so accurately. I had also been looking for a good Pesto to try out and the Parsley-Almond pesto on page 60 was magnificent.

My favorite recipe of all was the Spicy Roasted Cauliflower on page 105…it was most delicious and offered the right amount of flavor and spiciness. It was so yummy. I did opt to garnish with the nut parm and it really did make such a difference. One thing I want to try so bad that I haven’t gotten to is the Chicken Fried Tofu. Reading over the recipe, it sounds like it will turn out deliciously.

I’m a huge fan of Lemon and Lime flavors so I tried the Lemon Cashew Cheesecake on page 174 and that has fast become one of my favorite desserts. I’m not Raw Vegan but I do like to eat Raw Vegan desserts and this one is deliciously tangy and pretty easy to make. At some point I will get up the courage to try the Heavenly Chocolate Cake. I’m usually not much of a baker but I will try just for this cake. I’m hoping to make it for my 1 year Veganniversary which just so happens to also be my birthday!

I do definitely recommend this book to veg curious omnivores, transitioning vegans and even experienced vegans looking for some good recipes to try. The ones that I have tried so far came out really well. I usually steer clear from cookbooks that don’t have any pictures just because I’m still so new to the cooking game and I get anxiety that anything I make will suck (even with detailed instructions lol) but I had a lot of luck with these recipes turning out what I imagine they are supposed to be. Although there were things in this book that I did not agree with, there is a good amount of health information as well as information about why vegans choose to live compassionately coming from an animal rights focus. That said, the book is definitely Veganish so if you are Vegan for the animals  keep in mind that you will see ingredients in the *optional* section that would make the food not vegan but there are Vegan subsitutes for everything! I gave this book five stars because I do feel that it holds helpful information and also has some really great recipes for vegans and nonvegans alike (and if this books helps someone go Vegan, right on!). I will be adding this book to my cookbook collection!

Blog Tour Book Review: A Reunion of Ghosts by Judith Claire Mitchell

A Reunions of GhostsAbout A Reunion of Ghosts

• Print Length: 400 pages
• Publisher: Harper (March 24, 2015)

Three wickedly funny sisters.

One family’s extraordinary legacy.

A single suicide note that spans a century …

Meet the Alter sisters: Lady, Vee, and Delph. These three mordantly witty, complex women share their family’s apartment on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. They love each other fiercely, but being an Alter isn’t easy. Bad luck is in their genes, passed down through the generations. Yet no matter what curves life throws at these siblings—and it’s hurled plenty—they always have a wisecrack, and one another.

In the waning days of 1999, the trio decides it’s time to close the circle of the Alter curse. But first, as the world counts down to the dawn of a new millennium, Lady, Vee, and Delph must write the final chapter of a saga lifetimes in the making—one that is inexorably intertwined with that of the twentieth century itself. Unspooling threads of history, personal memory, and family lore, they weave a mesmerizing account of their lives that stretches back decades to their great-grandfather, a brilliant scientist whose professional triumph became the sinister legacy that defines them.

Funny, heartbreaking, and utterly original, A Reunion of Ghosts is a magnificent novel about three unforgettable women bound to each other, and to their remarkable family, through the blessings and the burdens bestowed by blood.

Praise

“What if the man who invented chemical weapons was also a grandfather, and what if his great-grandchildren grew up to be three hilarious, introverted, deeply-haunted sisters? And what if those sisters co-wrote a fascinating, funny, and deeply sad 350-page suicide note? Then you’d have A Reunion of Ghosts. This is a triumphant, beautiful, and devastating novel about coincidences, family, and the sins of our fathers.”
— Anthony Doerr, New York Times bestselling author of All The Light We Cannot See

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Happy Tuesday and welcome to my stop on the Blog Tour for A Reunion of Ghosts written by Judith Claire Mitchell. I’d like to give a big thank you to the author and TLC Book Tours for giving me the opportunity to read this book for review!

A Reunion of Ghosts is about three sisters who are planning to commit suicide and this book is their suicide letter. Interestingly enough, they come from a pretty lengthy line of ancestors that have also left this world by their own choosing. The story discusses their familial history, their individual problems, and their feelings towards family and most importantly towards one another.

This was definitely a unique book, the concept of it (the book as a suicide letter) was really intriguing. I did really like it although it did lose me a couple of times but I’m a completionist and just have to finish every book so I soldiered on and ended up really liking it and glad that I did hold on. The way the narration was written felt a little awkward to me at first but it didn’t take away from the story at all.

My absolute favorite thing about this book are the three sisters. They were all very quirky and witty. I felt sorry and sad for each one of them when reading about their problems and reasons for wanting to commit suicide, and just really felt like their whole lives they’ve had just this sort of cloud hanging over them, especially when we take into the account the “curse”. But this book also had really heartwarming and tender moments as well. Not only that though, it was also darkly funny. The sisters themselves are a complete riot and I loved them so much.

I thought this book was very well written and interestingly, my experience of reading it gravitated from reading a historical fiction piece to reading a tragic comedy. I love it when books transcend genres and this one does just that. I never really thought that I would read a book that dealt with death that was also funny and witty but reading this book has accomplished just that.

This was a reall good book. It’s definitely not light reading but I love that about this book…it makes you chuckle, makes you reflect, feel slightly depressed and is also heartwarming at the same time. I gave this book 4 stars, great read!! (Also, the cover of this book is absolutely gorgeous! I am also in love with the deckle pages!)

Judith Claire MitchellAbout Judith Claire Mitchell

Judith Claire Mitchell, author of the novel The Last Day of the War, is an English professor at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, where she directs the MFA program in creative writing. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, Judy has received fellowships from the James A. Michener/Copernicus Society, the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing, the Wisconsin Arts Board, and elsewhere. She lives in Madison, Wisconsin, with her husband, the artist Don Friedlich.

Find out more about Judith at her website, and connect with her on Facebook.

Blog Tour Book Review: Fiercombe Manor by Kate Riordan

Fiercombe ManorAbout Fiercombe Manor

– Hardcover: 416 pages
Publisher: Harper (February 17, 2015)
– Rating: 4 stars

A house as old as Fiercombe Manor holds many secrets within its walls. But which dark chapter of its history is haunting Alice, a young woman staying there during the course of a fateful summer?

In 1933, naive twenty-two-year-old Alice is pregnant, unmarried, and disgraced. She can no longer share her parents’ London home, so her desperate mother concocts a cover story and begs her old friend, Mrs. Jelphs, for help. The housekeeper at rural Fiercombe Manor, Mrs. Jelphs is moved by Alice’s “plight” as a new widow and agrees to watch over her in the secluded English countryside until the baby is born and given up for adoption. Because the manor house’s owners, Lord and Lady Stanton, no longer live there, Alice’s only company will be Mrs. Jelphs and her skeleton staff.

Thirty years before Alice’s arrival, Lady Elizabeth Stanton awaits the birth of her second child, fervently hoping he will be the boy her husband desires. But as her time nears, she is increasingly tormented by memories of what happened with her first baby and terrified that history will repeat itself . . . with devastating consequences.

At first, Fiercombe Manor offers Alice a welcome relief from her mother’s disapproving gaze. But she begins to sense that all is not well in the picturesque Gloucestershire valley. After a chance encounter with Tom, the young scion of the Stanton family, Alice discovers that Fiercombe’s beauty is haunted by the clan’s tragic past. She is determined to exorcise the ghosts of the idyllic, isolated house.

Nothing can prepare Alice for what she uncovers. Can she escape the tragic fate of the other women who have lived in the Fiercombe valley?

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Happy Tuesday and welcome to my stop on the Blog Tour for Fiercombe Manor! Thank you to Kate Riordan and TLC Book Tours for giving me the chance to read and review this book!

Fiercombe Manor is a work of historical fiction that is told through the dual narratives of Elizabeth and Alice. These two women live in completely different time periods but their stories connect across time. The bulk of the story takes place on Fiercombe Manor and it’s surrounding area.

In general I tend to love stories that are told through multiple perspectives and it was a really great way to connect the stories of both of these women. I loved seeing the differences in their lives and in their feelings and I was always especially interested in Alice’s feelings about Elizabeth throughout the book.

The thing that really interested me while reading this book though was the manor and the property around it itself. I found the descriptons of the manor to be irresistible. It felt so real to me as I was reading it, I could definitely picture walking down it’s hallways and hearing the creaks of it’s old floorboards and doors. What a wonderful setting for this story!

This story was a bit slow to develop but it did keep me interested in it as part of the beauty of historical fiction novels is the amount of detail given to the geography and the historical elements in the stories. It was definitely well written and descriptive with a light yet somber feel. It really did have a historical feel to it. It was also creepy in the perfect places. This book was interesting as it can be classified under a few genres that I love: women’s fiction, mystery, supernatural and overall, historical fiction. I do think that historical fiction fans will enjoy reading this book as I very much enjoyed it. I was glued to it’s pages from start to finish and felt very much transported to a different time.

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Kate RiordanAbout Kate Riordan

Kate Riordan is a British writer and journalist who worked for the Guardian and Time Out London. She is also the author of Birdcage Walk and is already at work on her third novel. Born in London, she now lives in the Gloucestershire countryside.

Find out more about Kate at her website and connect with her on Twitter.

Blog Tour Book Review: An Uncomplicated Life by Paul Daugherty

An Uncomplicated LifeAbout An Uncomplicated Life

• Hardcover: 384 pages
Publisher: William Morrow (March 17, 2015)

A father’s exhilarating and funny love letter to his daughter with Down syndrome whose vibrant and infectious approach to life has something to teach all of us about how we can better live our own. Jillian Daugherty was born with Down syndrome. The day they brought her home from the hospital, her parents, Paul and Kerry, were flooded with worry and uncertainty, but also overwhelming love, which they channeled to “the job of building the better Jillian.” While their daughter had special needs, they refused to allow her to grow up needy—“Expect, Don’t Accept” became their mantra. Little did they know how ready Jillian was to meet their challenge.

Paul tells stories from Jillian’s mischievous childhood and moves to her early adulthood, tracing her journey to find happiness and purpose in her adult life, sharing endearing anecdotes as well as stories about her inspiring triumphs. Having graduated from high school and college, Jillian now works to support herself, and has met the love of her life and her husband-to-be, Ryan.

In An Uncomplicated Life, the parent learns as much about life from the child as the child does from the parent. Through her unmitigated love for others, her sparkling charisma, and her boundless capacity for joy, Jillian has inspired those around her to live better and more fully. The day Jillian was born, Paul says, was the last bad day. As he lovingly writes, “Jillian is a soul map of our best intentions”—a model of grace, boundless joy, and love for all of us.

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Welcome to my stop on the tour for An Uncomplicated Life! Thank you to the author and TLC book yours for letting me read this book for review!

An Uncomplicated Life is a memoir that is written by a father about his daughter who was born with Down Syndrome. It is a beautiful memoir that reads like a fathers love letter to his daughter.

I was really excited to read this book and I ended up loving it. Reading about Jillian made me feel a lot of things! This book made me smile and laugh. I love how Jillians parents approached her life from the start with not wanting to set limitations for her life but working hard to give Jillian every opportunity they could. An immense amount of love is evident through the telling of Jillian’s story, not only from  how her family loves her but also from how Jillian loves them and how she loves life. She sounds absolutely amazing and super funny. I’m really grateful that her father has shared the story of their family with us, I feel that my life has been touched just by reading about Jillian which is powerful!

This book is beautiful, warm, funny and even sometimes sad but mostly just beautiful and inspiring. A beautiful testament to the beautiful character of a girl named Jillian without whom I’m sure the world would be a far more dreary place. Awesome book, five stars!

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Paul DaughertyAbout Paul Daugherty

Paul Daugherty has been a sports columnist for the Cincinnati Enquirer since 1994. He has covered nearly every major American sporting event, as well as five Summer Olympic Games. He is the author of Fair Game, a collection of his sports columns, and coauthor of books with Chad Johnson and Johnny Bench. He blogs daily at The Morning Line on Cincinnati.com. He lives in Loveland, Ohio, with his wife, Kerry.

Connect with Paul on Facebook and Twitter.

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