Friday, November 29, 2013

Christmas Book Countdown: An Advent Calendar


Christmas Book Countdown!!!

Hello Bookworms!!

          This is one for all you bookworms with kids! While I was looking at Christmas Ideas, I came across an Idea: The Christmas Book Countdown!! It’s a fun twist on an Advent calendar with books! 


What You’ll Need:

Christmas books

A Box

Wrapping Paper

Labels or a Marker

Here’s How it works:

First, parents should pick out children’s story books that fit the Christmas theme (These can be of a religious nature or not). You can start your countdown at any time, but, for the purposes of this post, we’ll assume that you start the countdown on December 1st.

So, if you start at December 1st, you’ll need 24 books (Remember, you can start at any time meaning if you wanted to start the week before you’d only need seven. You can adjust the Christmas Book Countdown to suit your budget J )!


Next, wrap each of the books in the wrapping paper you chose.


As you wrap, label each of the books with the numbers 1 through 24 using a label you made or just writing the numbers with a marker (careful when using markers that the ink doesn’t bleed through the paper and mark the front of the book).


Now place the wrapped, labeled books into the box or on the shelf you chose making sure that number 24 is the first book and number 1 is the last book.


Each night your child picks up the correct book, unwraps it, and you and the child (or the whole family) reads the story together. As the days go on, the numbers get smaller as Christmas gets closer.


This in a fun way for you and your children to bond as Christmas gets closer and share the joy of books and the Christmas season. Plus it’s an activity that can be done inside where it’s warm. J

Thinking about making your own Christmas Book Countdown?

Here are some links to children’s Christmas books that may help!:


Merry Christmas and Until next time,

                                                          Lizzie <3

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Nicholas Sparks Christmas Giveaway!

Hello Bookworms!

          I got so excited I couldn't wait til midnight so I'm starting it an hour early! It's the See Lizzie Read Black Friday Book Giveaway! This giveaway is three –in-one!! I am giving away The Nicholas Sparks Holiday Collection! Featuring True Believer, At First Sight, and A Bend in the Road!!

How do I enter?

Follow me on Twitter at @LovelyLizzie10 and retweet any of my tweets about the #BFGiveaway all Black Friday long!!


Go to the link to the See Lizzie Read Facebook page and Like or Comment on the post  here!

One winner will be chosen at random! You’ll be notified on Saturday, Nov. 30th if it’s you!

This giveaway is open to all countries!
Can't wait to give one of you a fun Christmas gift! :D
                                                     -Lizzie <3

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Songs of the Shenandoah by Michael K. Reynolds

Hello Bookworms,

            Today I have super special review for you all! I was recently blessed to receive and read an advanced reader copy of Songs of the Shenandoah by Michael K. Reynolds, the epic finale to the Heirs of Ireland series!  I can't wait for you all to get to read it!!



            At the tail end of the California Gold Rush the United States is still going through many changes. There is unrest among the people of the nation and all too soon it will turn to war. The Underground Railroad is in full swing. Poor Caitlin is twisting in the wind in a string of unsuccessful pursuits of love. Davin is no longer the happy, carefree child he once was. He is a changed man after having made his fortune through hydraulic mining in California. Seamus and his family have fallen on hard times just as Clare and Andrew have. Clare’s writing continues to be controversial at the Daily but now it is drawing the wrath of the Irishmen in their city. The Hanley children came to New York with dreams of escaping hardship…but it seems hardship will find them anyway. How will the Hanley family survive when they are divided from one another by a war and threatened by their neighbors at every turn?


          2 things that you need to know: 1. Do not read the books out of order or you will ruin surprises from the previous book(s). 2. This review contains 1 spoiler, but it is only in reference to one scene and does not spoil any major plot twists.

          I really enjoyed reading Songs of the Shenandoah. When I read, I get to a place where I feel like I know the characters and I begin to worry what will happen to them so to get my hands on the conclusion was wonderful!

            There were so many wonderful things about this book. There are twists and turns that will keep your mind racing and your eyes scurrying across the pages reading chapter after chapter! There are your old favorite characters and new ones that you will come to love!  There are moments in this book that will snatch you from elation, to sorrow, move you to tears, and back again.

            There are points in this book that are incredibly suspenseful (which I love) and in one particular chapter the plotline becomes incredibly intense. There is one section that for me was a bit too intense.  I am only going to mention this moment here in the review because I want to warn parents and the faint hearted: In chapter 44, titled ENEMY LINES, there is an incredibly graphic 2 or 3 paragraphs that describe a horrible lynching that Clare witnesses in New York. This moment occurs when we are hearing about other horrors and listening to the tortured thoughts of Clare Hanley and for me that moment was extremely disturbing. I still cannot think about it much.  Shortly after that, in the same chapter, there is an intense, suspenseful beating that occurs. So be warned that chapter is a bit hard to take and if you are an extremely compassionate heart or you have children reading this series just keep an eye out to deal with any reactions that may be had to those scenes. I do commend Mr. Reynolds for depicting an accurate picture of the horrible injustices committed during the Civil War (on both sides). I also commend Mr. Reynolds for accurately depicting what it was like for families divided on either side of the war and the confusion about how to deal when you have loved ones living on either side. There is a particular quote from a conversation between Davin and Clare that I think very accurately sums up the fear and stress that was experienced by families and friends forced to make tough decisions during the civil war:

                “ ‘You know,’ Clare said, ‘I believe confused is a good place for us to be with all of this.         Anyone who has clarity during times such as these is someone we should fear.’ ”

            Not only are the main characters (the Hanley and Royce families) captivating, the less central characters were amazing as well. Reverend Zachary and Cassie Bridger are an amazing pair of people. Sweet Owen warmed my heart with his optimism, hard work, and humble spirit. Muriel totally shocked me and yet I love her character. And Jacob! Dear Jacob! I can’t say anything about him without revealing major plot spoilers but oh how I love Jacob!! And then Percy Barlow….My heart breaks for Percy…people who have read the second book but not the third will think I’m crazy but trust me, by the end you will understand…what a tragedy.

            The sweeping conclusion to Heirs of Ireland is so worth the read! If you haven’t begun the series, please do! And if you have, please keep reading to the finish! You won’t want to miss any of it! Get your copy of Songs of the Shenandoah by Michael K. Reynolds when it releases on January 1st, 2014!

Buy Songs of the Shenandoah Here
Buy All Three of the Heirs of Ireland Series Here

Have a Happy Thanksgiving!!
Until next time,

            Lizzie <3
p.s. Don't forget!! Tomorrow is the special See Lizzie Read Black Friday Giveaway! Don't miss it! Get all the details here!

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Book Review: In Golden Splendor by Michael K. Reynolds

Hello Bookworms!!

          I have a new review for you all today! Some time back I read a novel called “Flight of the Earls” by author Michael K. Reynolds. Later, I posted an interview with Mr. Reynolds! Today, I have the review for the second book in the Heirs of Ireland trilogy “In Golden Splendor”. Be careful though, If you haven’t read “Flight of the Earls” this could contain SPOILERS!!!



          Seamus Hanley’s life has never been easy. His father was a cruel man. His brother Keavan drowned and it was all Seamus’s fault. Now he is a defector from the United States Army living in a cabin that isn’t exactly up to standard for Rocky Mountain Living. When a United States Soldier has an accident on the mountain side, Seamus’s life takes another sudden turn.

          A letter, a picture, and an inner pulling from an unknown source lead Seamus to San Francisco in the middle of the gold rush and the events that follow change Seamus in ways he never thought possible.



          I am going to say first off that this is not a book that you should read without having read the first book first. It will ruin LOADS on surprises from the first book if you read them out of order. Now, to my thoughts on ‘In Golden Splendor”:

          I greatly enjoyed the book. The characters are numerous but none of them are lost in the story. Each and every one of their personalities are distinctive and are just as important to the story as the main characters! No detail is wasted (which is personally something I LOVE in a book. It can get tiresome to read tons of detail that doesn’t further the story). As far as the main characters (Seamus, Ashlyn, Henry Parnell, Annie, Cade, Clare, Davin, Brother Chuck, and others) stories, they braid together better that a little girls pigtails. Michael Reynolds ability to tie details together from the very beginning to the very end (and from book one to book two) reminds me of the writing of J.K. Rowling with the Harry Potter Series.

          There are so many twists in this story that one can never get bored. Something amazing happens, you get a few pages to breathe and process the information along with the character and then BOOM! Something else happens (They’re not all bad things though so don’t panic and jump ship before you start ;) ). Two of my favorite themes that were dealt with in the story had to be the damage that parents can do to their children when they choose not to parent properly and does God really love us no matter what we’ve done (the answer is yes by the way J ).

          I am forced to ask why we have such crappy movies coming out when there are great novels out there that could make amazing movies. Flight of the Earls and In Golden Splendor would make awesome movies! I can see it as I’m reading! Please if you are a movie maker or you know how to contact one, give these books some consideration!

          All that being said, I HIGHLY recommend this book and its predecessor (Flight of the Earls) to everyone! Even to guys! I know that sometimes it’s difficult to get boys to want to read (no offense to any boys and men who do love to read <3 ), but I think these books especially Seamus’s story will be one that they will enjoy following.



Read my review of Flight of the Earls here!

Read See Lizzie Read's Interview with Michael K. Reynolds here!


Until Next Time!!!,

                   Lizzie <3

Friday, November 8, 2013

Book Giveaway!!

Hello Bookworms!!,
        I have an exciting announcement!! In just 2 weeks from today I will be announcing a book giveaway!! Entry will be very simple!


Simply go to my Twitter, @LovelyLizzie10, on Black Friday and RT my post about the giveaway


Go to the See Lizzie Read  Facebook page on Black Friday and "Like" or "Comment"

One lucky winner will be chosen at random!

There will be a post up at 12:00 am EST on Black Friday to remind everyone and I will be tweeting and facebooking reminders throughout the day!!

The giveaway is open to all countries! :)

Stay tuned for the announcement of which book!! (I know you'll love it :) )

The Boscome Valley Mystery - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Hello Bookworms!,

            I have another review from the world of Sherlock Holmes. This time it’s The Boscombe Valley Mystery by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.


            A young man’s father has been murdered. All the evidence points to the young man and he has been arrested. The young man and the authorities now look to Sherlock Holmes to prove whether or not the young man really could’ve killed his father. According to the evidence, it is improbable that anyone other than the young man really committed this crime. But at Sherlock says, when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains however improbable must be the truth. The question is not can Sherlock Holmes solve the mystery, its can he solve it before the young man goes to trial and is hanged for murder.


            I liked The Boscombe Valley Mystery because it was not only a mystery but it was a bit suspenseful. Unfortunately for me it was a tad bit slow moving in the middle even for a short story. But the ending made up for it. I would recommend the Boscombe Valley Mystery to mystery lovers everywhere.

** This is the book I am using to read the Sherlock Holmes stories. I like the layout of the book, the only drawback is that it is not a complete version of the original Sherlock Holmes works some of the short stories were not included. However, it does include the whole novel “The Hounds of Baskervilles” and the short stories are published in the same fashion as they originally were in The Strand with all the illustrations by Sidney Paget. At just $10 I recommend it to anyone who wants to become acquainted with the original Sherlock Holmes works for the first time like myself.

Links to Buy:
Until Next Time,
        Lizzie <3