Book Review: Mind Secrets: A Science Fiction Telepathy Thriller (Perceivers Book 1) by Jane Killick

Mind Secrets: A Science Fiction Telepathy Thriller (Perceivers Book 1) by Jane Killick

A Science Fiction Novel published by Amazon Digital Services LLC (01/11/16)

Summary:

Michael wakes up with amnesia, but he knows the agent in front of him is up to no good. Trusting his instincts, he flees. Getting away from the agent wasn’t too hard, but living without memories, identity, money, or a place to go prove much harder. The world he finds himself in is torn between those who can perceive emotions and those who are afraid of the Perceivers. Michael falls in with one of those groups of Perceivers and wants to help them as much as he wants to find out who he was.

Keywords:

Telepathy, Thriller, Mind Power, Sensing, Thoughts, Emotions, Sanctuary, Teenagers, Power, Memory, Friends, Destruction, Confrontation, Secrets, Deception

My Review:

This book was full of action and scenes of chase and destruction. It was a fun read about a possible science fiction future where society is split between those who have a power and those who resent and fear those with that power. Of course people would turn to laws and legislation to bind those with telepathy and to erase whatever part of their minds houses the telepathy with no regard to their identity and opinions. It made me grind my teeth at times how insensitive those in power were for trying to suppress the use and future of telepathy, even when it was ingrained into the person’s identity like another sense.

I did find it hard to believe that the teenagers would be able to oppose the government like they were able to in this book. They also seemed to be able to source whatever they needed in this opposition, such as access to a lab.

I really liked the angle this book took on ‘mind control’ as it was a very soft version of telepathy, like the beginning stages of the evolution of mind control.

This novel was published by Amazon Digital Services LLC 01/11/16 and is available on Amazon here.

TL;DR Star Rating: 3.75

Links for more information:

Goodreads

Jane Killick’s Website

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Book Review: Guild of Immortal Women by David Alan Morrison, H.L. Melvin

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Guild of Immortal Women by David Alan Morrison, H.L. Melvin

A Women’s Fiction Humor Novel published by Book Publishers Network (10/12/14)

Summary:

Abbey doesn’t remember who she was before the ‘accident’ but she does have vivid dreams of drowning as well as burning. As she tries to recover her memories in a mental hospital, her ‘aunts’ are preparing for her return to the Bastille. It is imperative that Abbey remember who she was and what she is capable of before the faire that the Guild of Immortal Woman, AKA Abby’s aunts, put on every year.

Keywords:

Humor, Satire, Fantasy, Misdirection, Immortality, Women, Detective, Power, Comedy, Home, Castle, Home, Family, Friendship, Insane Asylum, Dead Bodies, Tapestry, Secrets, Amnesia

My Review:

This story’s plot line was so different from any other fantasy/paranormal/humor book that I’ve read. There were witches. There was a guild. There was a bad guy and a deadline. But everything in between these elements was surprisingly different.

The writing style of switching POV and not tagging all the dialogue made it a bit confusing to figure out who was speaking at times.

I loved seeing Abbey from other characters’ perspectives and to see the world through her eyes.

This was a fun and interesting read.

This novel was published by Book Publishers Network on October 12th, 2014 and is available on Amazon here.

TL;DR Star Rating: 3.50

Links for more information:

Goodreads

Twitter

Foodie Fridays: One Week LEAP diet – What I Ate

What I spent on a week’s worth of groceries: $182.22 (one of the trips was halfsies and I also bought some bathroom supplies from Amazon). This does not include my monthly supplements.

My new favorite gluten free/dairy free finds:

 

Without further ado – a week in meals

Bonus:2018_MyfitnessPal_FoodLog_Dec23-Jan3

 

All About the Donuts: Local Donut Shop Review – Lafeens Donuts Ice Cream And Espresso – Burlington, WA

Lafeens Donuts Ice Cream And Espresso

Burlington, WA

320 N Burlington Blvd, Burlington, WA 98233

(360) 755-0195

Review criteria:

Most popular donut at the shop: Blueberry Fritter
Signature shop donut: Bigfoot
Most popular US donut: glazed
2nd most popular US donut: Boston crème
Donut Hole: Yes

What I tried:

$7.91 total for a Glazed, Bismark, Maple Bigfoot, and Blueberry Fritter.

What to expect:

This is your stereotypical donut shop with all the classics and not much creativity. The shop even has some ice cream (they don’t make it in house).

My favorite:

I was very unimpressed with this donut shop and don’t recommend it. I would never eat another one of their donuts. They were not fresh (the donuts tasted a day old) and I bought these donuts before noon! It’s all about the donuts and theirs were underwhelming.

 

Book Review: Game of Hearts: A Geek Girl Rom Com (Fandom Hearts Series) by Cathy Yardley

Game of Hearts: A Geek Girl Rom Com (Fandom Hearts Series) by Cathy Yardley

A Romantic Comedy published by RYW Publishing (01/30/18)

Summary:

Kyla runs a mechanic shop with her brother Billy, one they inherited from their now retired parents. Billy is happy to let Kyla do the paperwork and work out in the shop as well as take over all operations when he needs to take a vacation. After he breaks his arm, though, all responsibilities fall to Kyla. She had other plans. She wanted to submit costumes for a contest that’s coming up in a few weeks. This is her dream, so she calls the only person she knows to help. Jericho Salomon hasn’t been in town for years, for good reason, but he can’t ignore his childhood best friend’s little sister.

Keywords:

Mechanic, Snoqualmie, Bookstore, Geeks, Convention, Contest, Family, Friendship, Romance, Sex, Auto-Repair, Motorcycle, Family Friend, Biker Gang, Business Owner

My Review:

I loved absolutely everything about this book. Breakout Novels don’t just happen. Not every published novel out there is a breakout novel. Breakout novels are 10/5 stars. They are books you can’t put down. They are books you read entirely in one sitting. They are books you remember and enthusiastically tell everyone about. Every single one of Cathy Yardley’s books has been a breakout novel. The plot is excellent. The characters are larger-than-life, but also endearing and realistic. The stakes are real.

I adored the relationship between Kyla and all her friends. I loved the fact that the previous books’ characters showed up in this book as well as all the other Fandom Hearts books.

I got really mad at Billy for assuming that Kyla was better suited for the business paperwork than he was and for assuming her hopes and dreams weren’t as important because they were artistic based.

I can’t wait to get the next Fandom Hearts book to read!

I received a free copy of this book. This is my honest opinion.

This novel was published by RYW Publishing on January 30, 2018 and is available on Amazon here.

TL;DR Star Rating: 5.00

Links for more information:

Goodreads

Cathy Yardley’s Website

Book Review: A Family Woman by T.B. Markinson

A Family Woman by T.B. Markinson

A Romantic Fiction Novel published by T. B. Markinson (12/13/17)

Summary:

Lizzie is back, and this time she has just a few short months until her pregnant wife gives birth to their twins. Lizzie has never had the greatest relationship with her family and would rather not see them, but Sarah has other plans. Lizzie will become a family woman.

Keywords:

 Romance,  Tension, Holding in Feelings, Chain, Parents, Soon-to-be-parents, twins, Lesbians, Sex, Family, Parenthood, Reconciliation, Secrets, Contemporary, Complicated Families, Pregnancy, Relationship

My Review:

The first half of the book – before the twins arrived – had quite a few sex scenes. They were very interesting to read because they were between two females, but there was quite a bit of it.

I loved how Lizzie and Sarah interacted with each other in their day-to-day lives. Lizzie’s devotion and love for Sarah, the mother of her unborn children, the love of her life, her partner in everything was amazing. I felt my heart patter every time Lizzie thought about Sarah before she spoke or went out of her way for Sarah. I want that deep, satisfying, unconditional level of love!

Lizzie’s relationships with her brother, her father, and her friends were so interesting to watch. The dynamics were fascinating. Especially as the subplots became more and more complex.

This book was humorous and fun, just like the first two in the series. I found the level of detail in the actual birth of the twins completely fascinating, as most movies and books gloss over birth.

This novel was published by T. B. Markinson 12/13/2017 and is available on Amazon here.

TLDR Star Rating: 4.25

 

Links for more information:

Goodreads

T.B. Markinson’s website

All About the Donuts: Local Donut Shop Review – Daily Dozen Doughnut Company – Seattle, WA

Daily Dozen Doughnut Company

Seattle, WA

93 Pike St #7, Seattle, WA 98101

(206) 467-7769

Review criteria:

Most popular donut at the shop: the mini-donut!
Signature shop donut: maple bacon
Most popular US donut: Not available
2nd most popular US donut: Not available
Donut Hole: No

What I tried:

$5 for the assorted half dozen

What to expect:

A line. The daily dozen is well known and everybody wants a bite! There’s always a line and they only take cash – so come prepared! They are just around the corner from the fish-throwers. They only have plain, powdered sugar, cinnamon, chocolate sprinkles, maple, and maple bacon.

 

My favorite:

The machine that makes the donuts is super cool and you get to watch them getting made as you wait patiently in line for a fresh donut.

Book Review: EXOTIQA (YA Robot Cyberpunk Dystopia) (EXOTIQA WORLD Book 1) by M. Black

EXOTIQA (YA Robot Cyberpunk Dystopia) (EXOTIQA WORLD Book 1) by M. Black

A Sicence Fiction/Cyberpunk Novel published by Amazon Digital Services (03/01/17)

Summary:

The technology of the world in 2055 has given humans the ability to easily connect with others using integrated robotic parts. The technology has also created robots that are more human-like than ever. For Fione, as a human, she doesn’t think that the robots are still obeying their fundamental laws. For Maci, as a robot, she has found a way to elevate her consciousness outside of the parameters of the robotic laws. And now her creators are out to shut her down.

Keywords:

Cyberpunk, Robots, Dystopia, Technology, Canada, Human-like, Online, Consciousness, Artificial Intelligence, Identity, Self-Awareness, Politics, Life, Death, Living, Escape, Running, Futuristic

My Review:

The difference in thought, character, personality, and dialogue/speech patterns between the humans and the robots was very distinct. I loved the very different voice of Fione versus Maci and very much appreciated having both distinct voices in alternating chapters. I loved how even Pix differed in personality and thought process from Maci, even though both were robots. Not all ascended robots are equal and this novel does a great job layering in their personalities seamlessly with their voices and not overpowering the ongoing plot.

This book contained a lot of action. The setup for the main premise of the story happened a bit abruptly at the beginning, but the storytelling was fairly seamless from that point on. Fione does not jump at the chance to help Maci immediately and she has her doubts. Fione’s character is built on the mistrust of the robotic infiltration into her world. She is sympathetic to them, as her best friend is also a robot, but she distrusts them as a whole.

I loved the subtle hinting of a potential romance between Fione and her best friend Pix, as if he really is a human.

I did feel that Fione’s overpowering of her mother was a bit off-putting and her mother’s inability to think for herself made her a flat character, but other than that this book was a sound and juicy addition to science fiction and cyberpunk in particular.

This novel was published by Amazon Digital Services on 03/01/2017 and is available on Amazon here.

TL;DR Star Rating: 4.25

Links for more information:

Goodreads

Rachel’s Recipes throughout 2017!

Healthy No-Bake Chocolate-Peanut Butter Cookies

Ingredients (3314 calories total)
• 1 cup peanut butter (1680)
• 6 tablespoons cocoa powder (72)
• 1/2 cup of coconut oil (940)
• 1/4 cup maple syrup or honey (258)
• 2 teaspoons vanilla (24)
• 2 cups Gluten-free quick oats or 1 cup steel cut oats (339 for oats and 340 for steel cut)
Instructions
1. Combine peanut butter, cocoa powder, and coconut oil in a sauce pan
2. Heat over low heat until oil is melted
3. Remove from heat and add honey or syrup
4. Stir in vanilla
5. Add oatmeal and combine well
6. drop by the spoonful onto parchment paper
7. Let cool until they set up
8. Store in a lidded container in a cool place


Butterbeer Jello Shots

Ingredients
1 cup creme soda
2 envelopes unflavored gelatin
1/3 cup vanilla vodka
2/3 cup butterscotch schnapps
Colored large crystal sugar, for garnish, if desired

Directions
• Pour soda in a medium saucepan and sprinkle with gelatin. Allow to soak for a minute or two.
• Heat over low heat, stirring constantly, until the gelatin is dissolved (about 5 minutes). Remove from heat.
• Stir in the vodka and schnapps.
• Pour into standard loaf pan (non-reactive metal or glass, approx. 9 x 5). Refrigerate until fully set (about 3 hours).
• To serve, cut into desired shapes.
Immediately before serving, dip in colored crystal sugar, for garnish, if desired.

2017 Physical Activity – Dance/Volleyball/Running/Bootcamp

2016 Physical Activity Blog Post Breakdown

2015 Physical Activity Blog Post Breakdown

How do you work out?

Pole Dancing Highlights:
1. I performed three times in three distinct routines (Here’s my Risky Donetta routine and Here’s my Prohibition Donetta routine)
2. I took 139 classes total
3. I spent $2594 total
4. I spent 226 hours in class
5. I worked with 20 different instructors

Lifetime money spent (just for pole classes): $4882.84
2014 – $90
2015 – $422.21
2016 – $1777
2017 – $2594

Lifetime total pole classes:
2014 – 6
2015 – 19
2016 – 109
2017 – 139

Total time spent poling:
2014 – 10.5 hours
2015 – 37.5 hours
2016 – 173.5 hours
2017 – 226 hours

Class Breakdown at different studios for 2017
Divine – 72/139 = 52%
Spinderella – 35/139 = 25%
P3 – 19/139 = 14%
Pole Camp – 9/139 = 6%
Writhe – 3/139 = 2%
Polelattes – 1/139 = 1%

Class Type breakdowns for 2017
Intermediate Inversions = 30
Basic Inversions = 19
Intermediate/Advanced Spins = 20
“Intermediate” classes = 18
Level 3-1 = 14
Level 2-2 = 11
“Advanced” classes = 7
Level 2-1 = 5
Open level drop ins = 5
Other = (pole power hour, Open choreography session) = 3
Basic Spins = 2
Level 3-2 = 2
Ayesha workshops = 2
Boudoir Classes = 1

In other fitness accomplishments:
1. I went to 51 bootcamp classes
2. I went to a single Thriller refresher class before the Flashmob dance
3. I went to only 4 volleyball drop ins
4. I went to 6 KokoFit sessions (cardio and strength in a modern gym)
5. I went to 13 Bar Method classes
6. I ran 64.2 miles and spent 11.78 hours running with my fastest mile at 9:26
7. I took my bike out twice for 24.5 miles (and commuted from my house into work once)
8. I went to 24 stretch classes
9. I went to 7 KJC Booty Dance classes
10. I took a pole silks class

 

Fitness stats:

 

My favorite fitness photos: