Monday, March 31, 2014

The Five Orange Pips - By Sir Arthur Conan Doyle


Hello Bookworms!,

            As you know I am reading through the Sherlock Holmes stories. Since my last post, I have read several more stories and I am ready to continue reviewing starting with The Five Orange Pips from The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes.


            Two generations of men in John Openshaw’s family have been killed. Each time, the man of the house has received an envelope with five orange pips in them. Both men have died by “accidents” that they never saw coming Now John Openshaw received an envelope with five orange pips. There is one request the sender has, but John knows it cannot be fulfilled. Can Sherlock Holmes help Mr. Openshaw find a way to stop the murderers before Openshaw’s number is up?


          Okay, I love it when a mystery story is so well written that it keeps me guessing without adding so many twists and turns that it’s too confusing for a trained spy to follow. I got that with The Five Orange Pips. From the first, I had no clue how this was going to be resolved. As the story went on, rather than having more ideas of how this could work out, every time I thought I had a handle on it, something changed and it kept me guessing! The end came as a total shock to me and I loved it because it was out of the ordinary (that is my favorite thing about the Sherlock Holmes stories, they’re so out of the ordinary!)!! I really recommend that you read this one!


These are the books I'm Using:
Buy a copy Here
Buy a Copy Here
Until Next Time,
                     Lizzie <3

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Titus Andronicus by William Shakespeare

Hello Bookworms,

          I know I'm a little late on this one, but last summer I decided to read one of Shakespeare’s plays. Rather than reading some of the more obvious choices, like Romeo and Juliet or Julius Ceaser, I chose Titus Andronicus.



          Shortly after a war, Tamora, Queen of the Goths is subjected to heartache as her son is murdered despite her plea for mercy. The heartbroken Tamora is now on a revenge mission. Titus Andronicus’s daughter, Lavinia, was to be the new queen but another lover has carried her off leaving the position to Tamora and giving Tamora the perfect stage to exact her revenge against Titus Andronicus for the death of her son.

          Titus Andronicus is forced to suffer heartache after heartache as he loses sons, his son in law is murdered, and his daughter is attacked and mutilated at the hands of Tamora’s surviving sons.

          With all the bad blood between the members of this play, revenge is being plotted all around and people will get hurt.



          Okay, I chose this play for particular personal reasons, but in general, I would not recommend this play to anyone. The content of the play is so gruesome and depressing that I don’t think it is a good read for the general public and ESPECIALLY not for young people. In truth, the play’s namesake, Titus Andronicus, was one of the most annoying characters in the whole play refusing to be a good role model for his surviving family members. Instead he chooses to continue to spiral down deeper into his depression and to attempt to drag anyone he can down into depression with him. The best character to me was Titus’s brother, Marcus Andronicus, who seems to be a voice of reason throughout the play, and the only character who ends the play with a shred of the innocence he had at the beginning. Frankly, I don’t recommend Titus Andronicus to anyone. If you just want to be familiar with Shakespeare’s and some of his works, look to his other plays like Julius Ceaser, the Taming of the Shrew, The Tempest, or The Merchant of Venice (mostly for the Quality of Mercy Speech).
       However, I do still plan to read more of Shakespeare's works. There are some I've read in the past that I have enjoyed, so I'm not going to mark this one play against the famous playwright. Rarely does one like every book that a single author publishes. To continue my readings of Shakespeare, I was happy to add this lovely collection of all of Shakespeare's plays. (For those of you trying to save a little money, I managed to score this copy on sale for about $8)


 Buy William Shakespeare: Complete Plays HERE!

Until Next Time,

                 Lizzie <3

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

The Confident Woman Devotional by Joyce Meyer!



Hello bookworms!,

        I usually do this sooner in the year, around January. However, it is better late than never. If you are still looking for a devotional book to use for this year, or you're already thinking about what to use next year, why not consider The Confident Woman Devotional by Joyce Meyer! Here's Why:



        Are you struggling with confidence in any area of your life? Have you been searching for answers  or need a little pick-me-up to help you get through the day? Then the Confident Woman devotional is for you! If there is an area in your life that you struggle with having confidence take just five to ten minutes each morning to read the scripture, explanation, and prayer provided by renowned evangelist Joyce Meyer. Apply the principles and lessons to your life and watch your fears, guilt, and low-self esteem melt away and be replaced with a confidence that will bring more peace  and joy to every area of your life!


        This is the second devotional that I have read by Joyce Meyer and they have both enriched my daily life and relationship with God. It helps my day to go better when I focus on the word first thing in the morning, and this devotional provided me a wonderful, easy way to do it. Not to mention that it helped me change my negative thought patterns to develop more confidence in my life that allowed my anxiety level to drop. The scripture and study each day helped me understand the Word of God and how it applies to my life and my confidence issues. The prayers with each one provided examples about how to pray over my issues. I hope that if you are struggling with your confidence that you will give this devotional a try. I think it will really be a help to you.


Buy The Confident Woman Devotional Here!
Until next time,

        Lizzie <3

Monday, March 3, 2014

The Sherlockian by Graham Moore

Hello Bookworms,

            I cannot what to tell you about today’s book! I loved it for so many reasons and I can definitely understand why it became a New York Times Bestseller and has gotten rave reviews from everywhere including the New York Times Book Review, the New York Post, Los Angeles Times, the Dallas Morning News, even Edward award-winning creator of The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Rupert Holmes, just to name a few. It’s The Sherlockian by Graham Moore!!


January 2010

            Harold isn’t what you’d call an adventurer. He has a normal job, an apartment in California, four friends that he has lunch with once a month, and the one event he looks forward to every year. The big Sherlockian convention in New York! But this year the convention is even more special: Harold, at 29 years of age, is to be the youngest member inducted in to the Baker Street Irregulars since Alex Cale (the greatest Sherlockian alive). A great honor indeed. Soon, something is going to happen that will shatter the monotony of Harold’s life.

October 1900

            Arthur Conan Doyle is doing his best to put “The Great Detective” behind him. “If I had not killed him, he certainly would have killed me” Arthur complains to his friends. Seven years since he threw Holmes off the Reichenbach Falls, people are still mentioning him. But at least at Arthur’s new home in Hindhead, it’s starting to slow down…that is, until now…until this visit to his mailbox to look at the day’s post…what happens next will change Arthur Conan Doyle in ways he never expected.

What do these two events have to do with one another? Find out in The Sherlockian by Graham Moore!


            I’ve been really excited to read The Sherlockian since I read a description of it in Daedelus. Now that I’ve read it: I’m so glad that I did! Here’s why:

            First, there is Harold. Harold is the kind of character with whom we all identify. The person who does enjoy their life, is proud of their accomplishments, and definitely would not mind a break  from the “same old, same old”. Then, he gets the opportunity that all true Sherlockians have dreamed of: a chance to use Holmes’s methods in real life. Following his story from zero to unlikely hero is really a joy.

            Second, the way that Graham Moore writes Arthur Conan Doyle and his friends as a character in his book is truly brilliant. You can really tell that Moore did his research when developing Arthur’s personality for the purposes of The Sherlockian. The writing made me feel like if I had known Arthur Conan Doyle in life that might have been his real personality. That was fun to think about as I read the book.

            Third, the Sherlockian details. Oh my goodness! All the real elements from the Sherlockian world that Graham Moore included were amazing! The Baker Street Journal, the conventions, the societies, London, the museums, The Reichenbach falls, Undershaw as it was in the past and the present, and so much more! Even Jeremy Brett gets a proper mention! I couldn’t help grinning from ear to ear like a complete dork while reading!

            Fourth, the plot twists! Holy cow! While some twists I may have seen coming, others took me completely by surprise! But I love that! I enjoy not being able to predict the entire course of the book even when I’m more than halfway through.

            Fifth, were the beginnings of each chapter. Graham Moore uses quotes from the original Sherlock Holmes canon, Arthur Conan Doyle’s other writings and speeches, friends like Bram Stoker (author of Dracula) etc. to foreshadow at the beginning of each chapter. That was a really fun detail.

There are only a couple of drawbacks with The Sherlockian. First, there is the issue of spoilers. If you are reading through the Sherlock Holmes Canon or some of Agatha Christie’s work (particularly The Murder of Roger Ackroyd) be warned that certain stories will have major details or endings ruined. However, I can’t blame the author because it is necessary to the story and many people that will read this book will have already read most of those mysteries. Second, this book has some very strong language as well as some brutality (only seen after the fact not during). Also, there was a lot that revolved around prostitutes (no sex scenes just their trade and people’s attitude about them) and their side of town, so while this is a great book, it’s definitely not for the children.

            The Sherlockian was a pleasure to read! I definitely recommend this book to adults. If you’re a fan on murder mysteries, history, Arthur Conan Doyle, and especially Sherlock Holmes, you really want to read this book! You’re going to love it!

Buy The Sherlockian Here

Until Next Time,

          Lizzie <3