Thieving Weasels by Billy Taylor

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Cameron Smith attends an elite boarding school and has just been accepted to Princeton University alongside his beautiful girlfriend, Claire. Life for Cameron would be perfect, except that Cameron Smith is actually Skip O’Rourke, and Skip O’Rourke ran away from his grifter family four years ago…along with $100,000 of their “earnings” (because starting a new life is not cheap). But when his uncle Wonderful tracks him down, Skip’s given an ultimatum: come back to the family for one last con, or say good-bye to life as Cameron.

“One last con” is easier said than done when Skip’s family is just as merciless (and just as manipulative) as they’ve always been, and everyone around him is lying. Skip may have given up on crime, but there’s one lesson he hasn’t forgotten: always know your mark. And if you don’t know who your mark is . . . it’s probably you. 

 

I’m going to start by saying I really need to stop having expectations for books, because it’s sort of ruining my life. Why books ? Why? The world keeps turning while I’m over here dealing with the crushing reality that thus far this year- books are disappointing me. I don’t understand what’s happening to me, am I becoming unpleasable? Who can know ( and the answer is always- not me).

Moving forward or rather just focusing on the book at hand – Thieving Weasels by Billy Taylor.

What I Liked:

  1. Male Protagonist : Don’t ask me why but I love reading and writing in male POV.
  2. Cam Smith or Skip O’Rourke : Is the most adorable thing ever. I love his moral character and how he is honest about it not being easy to be …..well honest. Growing up in a family of weasels makes him know how the world of cons works, but he also knows how to be better than them.
  3. All Characters stayed in Role : Nothing is more annoying than reading a book and characters changing mid way through. I understand character development, but I’m talking about just changing for no real reason. Despicable relatives stayed despicable , Cam did what he had to do but still kept true to his beliefs in being a better person.
  4. Cam and Claire : equals total cuteness. The way they met was totally adorable and I just loved every moment they were together.
  5. Dialogue was witty and funny. I wasn’t bored reading their conversations or Cameron’s thoughts for that matter.

What I Disliked :

  1. This book was full of triggers: I know different things bother different people so I wanted to name some of the things just for other readers benefit. These include : Mild swearing, drinking (and underage drinking), smoking pot, a gentleman’s club ( or a cross between Hooters and a Strip -club), Suicide attempt, car accident where someone dies, infidelity. Those are the main ones I can think of. However nothing is graphic  or highly detailed.
  2. The Cover : I don’t judge books by their cover, I judge by content. That being said what’s so wrong with pretty covers? 

It was actually good besides the above named things I would consider triggers. Though the book wasn’t what I expected it was still an enjoyable read. I liked the view into the con artist family life.
Forever & Always ,

Emily

Have you read “Thieving Weasels” ? Do you like books about con artists and the world of thievery? Do you ever read a book and it disappoint you but still be good?

 

 

 

The Noble Servant by Melanie Dickerson

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She lost everything to the scheme of an evil servant.

But she might just gain what she’s always wanted . . .

if she makes it in time.

The impossible was happening. She, Magdalen of Mallin, was to marry the Duke of Wolfberg. Magdalen had dreamed about receiving a proposal ever since she met the duke two years ago. Such a marriage was the only way she could save her people from starvation. But why would a handsome, wealthy duke want to marry her, a poor baron’s daughter? It seemed too good to be true.

On the journey to Wolfberg Castle, Magdalen’s servant forces her to trade places and become her servant, threatening not only Magdalen’s life, but the lives of those she holds dear. Stripped of her identity and title in Wolfberg, where no one knows her, Magdalen is sentenced to tend geese while she watches her former handmaiden gain all Magdalen had ever dreamed of.

When a handsome shepherd befriends her, Magdalen begins to suspect he carries secrets of his own. Together, Magdalen and the shepherd uncover a sinister plot against Wolfberg and the duke. But with no resources, will they be able to find the answers, the hiding places, and the forces they need in time to save both Mallin and Wolfberg?

 

Thank you Netgalley for the review copy of Noble Servant by Melanie Dickerson.

I missed posting last week because I usually write my posts on Monday and then review and edit one last time Tuesday morning. So last week was a little crazy and I just didn’t get to it or feel up to rushing a post Tuesday. That being said I decided to post this on Monday to make up for it 🙂

I am a huge fan of Melanie Dickerson! So when I got approved for this book I was extremely excited.  I wish I could tell you I immediately fell in love with this book but that’s just not the case. I was a quarter of the way through before I really got interested and it finally held my attention. That being said , once the pace picked up I didn’t put it down till it was finished.

What I Loved:

  1. A+  Character Development. Magdalen and Steffan start the book both very entitled, and selfish. But as the book progresses the reader gets to see them both evolve into compassionate, sweet and humble characters. The struggle is shown though about how tough it is to change one’s self.
  2. Supporting characters had personality and depth. My favorite being Lenhart, who was the sweetest little thing ever. I love how Magdalen protected him.
  3. Spoiler free : The romance was cute, both character’s were so unsure of themselves and not willing to be hurt. It was so relatable. But once they admitted their love, the adorable couple-ness (shh that’s totally a word) made me smile.
  4. The characters had solid background stories that played deep in the plot. They were so different and it made the emotional baggage they carried contrast to each other.
  5. The plot was so well thought out and written perfectly! Though it started out slow it eventually picked up pace and then went along nice.
  6. It quotes Scripture! I love when books do this.

What annoyed me :

  1. Magdalen’s relationship with her mother, while it served the plot was quiet tedious to read about. I mean I’m not stupid, so after the second time of explaining why Magdalen would not want to go home because of how her mother treated her, I got it. No need to remind me ten more times.
  2. How slow the beginning was , and maybe this is just me I don’t know but it took awhile to get into for me.
  3. Magdalen’s oblivion to the fact there was a trader amongst her friends. Like even I saw it coming a mile away.

Over all this book was cute and I loved the characters , you know once they got over the whole entitled brat thing. Easily a four star.

Forever & Always,

Emily

Have you read any Melanie Dickerson books? What’s your favorite? Do you give books a chance to redeem themselves if they start a little slow ? Let’s chat, let me know your thoughts in the comments.

 

 

Shaken by Tim Tebow

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Who are you when life is steady?
Who are you when storms come?
 

 Most of us have been on the receiving end of rejection, a broken dream, or heartbreak. And while this is not an easy space to go through, when we are grounded in the truth, we can endure the tough times.
  In this powerful book, Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow passionately shares glimpses of his journey staying grounded in the face of disappointment, criticism, and intense media scrutiny. Following an exceptional college football career with the Florida Gators and a promising playoff run with the Denver Broncos, Tebow was traded to the New York Jets. He was released after one season. 
  In Shaken, Tebow talks about what he’s learned along the way, building confidence in his identity in God, not the world. This moving book also features practical wisdom from Scripture and insights gained from others who have impacted Tebow in life-changing ways. 
 Though traveling hard roads is not easy, it’s always worth it!
Your Circumstances do not Define You,
Your Identity Does.

I was so excited to read this book, and it honestly could not have come at a better time in my life. Last year I had lost myself, a major part of who I am was no longer there. I had given up talking to God and I had given up on myself, not really caring who I was anymore.

Then I got this book for Christmas. I love Tim,  not only what he stands for but who he is as a person. I can’t tell you how much this book encouraged my heart. I finally felt like it was time to be me again, and I knew how. Shaken helped me remember my goals in life and who I wanted to be in Christ.

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I feel like the reader gets to see a different side of Tim Tebow in this book, a more real , honest and raw version. He walks us through his disappointment’s and also gives encouragement .

One of my favorite quotes from the book (besides the  above pictured )is : “When we ask questions, when we doubt, when we wonder if God is going to pull through, or wonder why He didn’t pull through, or wonder why our miracle is  taking so long, or why the miracle never came at all, remember that doubt is normal. God isn’t scared of your questions. Bring them to Him. It’s better to vent to Him than to run from Him.”

Easily five stars! Something everyone should read.

Forever and Always ,

Emily