August 20, 2014 | By: Cynthia Marcano

Review: Love Finds You in Romeo, Colorado by Gwen Ford Faulkenberry

Love Finds You in Romeo, Colorado
Author - Gwen Ford Faulkenberry
Time It Took for to Read - 3 Days
Rating - 4 out of 5 Stars
Would I Recommend: Yes
Claire Caspian is a first-rate professor, teaching even the most cynical student to find beauty in literature. But with her own personal story, she isnt as successful. Having recently lost her husband, Claire returns with her young son to the tiny desert town of Romeo, Colorado, where she grew up. There she settles in with her feisty old Abuelita, the richest woman in the county and attempts to rebuild her life. But love comes searching for Claire in the form of attractive local doctor Stephen Reyes. Will another tragedy prevent her from accepting love the second time around? Or will she embrace her new Romeo and finally find a happy ending?

What I Loved...

I have never read a book, within the genres that I love to read, where there is a Puerto Rican hero (I am of Puerto Rican descent) and Spanish spoken throughout. Never say never. Although I had no clue based off the back cover, I was so pleasantly surprised as I read it.

I loved the Spanish spoken throughout and although I am not from Colorado or of Mexican descent, I still felt like I had better understanding and deeper connection to the characters than I usually do.

What I Liked...

This was a nice love story and I really enjoyed most of the characters. I think they were written well and I could see them as real people. I think my favorite character was a tie between Stephen Reyes and Abuelita who were boht sincere and funny. They were easy characters to like.


There were many times throughout the first half of the book that I felt the author was a novice author. I found myself wishing she would have worded things differently. The sad part was that I didn't go into reading it that way, but it seemed so obvious to me. After a few chapters of being distracted by some of the writing, I looked and found that the author does not have many novels (I admit that I did not do a thorough search) and can only attribute some of the quirks to being a novice author.

The book does get better later on and I found myself more and more into the story and in the second half can't recall being distracted by the writing style at all. I don't know if it was due to the
storyline or improved writing style.

The one character that was a bit disappointing was the son Graeme. He was five years old and spoke like a ten year old. While the story did mention him as smart, it didn't say much after that and I just couldn't see a 5 year old having such conversations just because he was "smart." he was not a believeable character. This story needed a kid, even a 5 year old kid to make the story work, but it was forced. It just didn't flow.

The end of the book was clever but disappointing for me. I felt cheated.

Having said all that, there were a few funny moments and swoon moments, so I gave this one a 4 out of 5 stars and I would read Gwen Ford Faulkenberry again. She redeemed herself in the second half of the book, even if I particularly didn't like the ending.
August 6, 2014 | By: Cynthia Marcano

Review: A Trusting Heart by Mary Anderson

A Trusting Heart
Author - Mary Anderson
Time It Took for to Read - 3 Days
Rating - 4 out of 5 Stars
Would I Recommend: Maybe

The untimely death of Susannah Smith’s dear husband left her fumbling to pick up the pieces and mend her broken heart. With her financial situation growing increasingly desperate, Susannah finally determines to sell her late husband’s candle shop. Never could she have anticipated what she would find within its walls when she entered the abandoned building. Nor could she erase from her mind the image of the stranger’s dark, haunted eyes staring back at her. Will he prove to be the answer to her prayers, or the cause of her complete and utter destruction?

Josiah Richards is a man with a past. The horrors he has seen and endured shadow every step he takes. When a vibrant, young widow tries to heal his wounds and his black heart, the pain is nearly unbearable. Will he ever be able to trust her with his darkest secrets? Or will his past catch up to him and end his only chance at happiness and love?

Why I Decided To Read This...

I am a member of Goodreads and found this wonderful game named Scattegories. Its all about finding and reading books with a certain criteria. I decided to read A Trusting Heart because the heroine's name is Susannah Smith and our categories criteria was Female Main Character Name and the letter S. So I get two points baby!

Yep, thats the reason I'm reading it. Nothing to do with the cover, athough I like it. Nothing to do with the back cover description, although it sounded like a good read. Nope, none of the typical things most readers look for in a book. Sorry if that diappoints you.

What I Loved...

I loved how deep and profound Susannah loved. She was a wonderful heroine to read.

What I Liked...

This love story is so touching and real. I hurt when they hurt. I was happy when they were happy. I wanted to cry when they cried. It is a really nice heart warming story. I have never read a Christain Historical Fiction of Colonial era (not that I recall anyway) and I was a little skeptical, but I was pleasantly surprised and I plan to read more by author Mary Anderson and this era.


I realize that the more I read, the pickier I become. I used to be so easy to please. I wish it weren't so. I liked reading almost anything and being content. I always try to find the best in every book I read but lately its been harder finding the things that I love in book. I can like a book plenty, but finding what I love has become like digging for gold on the East Coast of the US. (For some reason I pictured the animated movie Pocahontas when the settlers are digging for gold and not finding any.) Forgive my ranting, I am usually a night writer and its only 10 am.

Anyway! I didn't read the first book in the series and I should have. I always feel like I am the new kid in school when I read a book in a series and didn't read the one prior. I feel like I am missing some important information that happened last year in school when I didn't attend.

This book most certainly does that. While the main characters are minor characters in book 1, their story began there and leaves you wanting to know what happened.

So my advice is read the first book in this series first. I know its common sense to do so, but I thought I'd mention it anyway, in case there is any one out there like me. =)

August 1, 2014 | By: Cynthia Marcano

Review: Middle School: The Inside Story by Cynthia Tobias and Sue Acuna

Middle School: The Inside Story
Author - TCynthia Tobias and Sue Acuna
Time It Took for to Read - 1 Week
Rating - 5 out of 5 Stars
Would I Recommend to My Friends:Yes
Remember middle school? Many parents would rather not. It's often a rough ride, filled with insecurity, peer pressure, awkwardness, and world-rocking change. This book provides practical, hands-on advice for helping your child through this minefield--with information about what he or she is really going through, but isn't likely to share.Best-selling learning-styles expert Cynthia Tobias and veteran teacher Sue Acuna reveal what they've found by listening to kids when parents aren't around--and give you insider tips on how to bless your middle-schooler with success in class, at home, and in relationships. Topics include advice for keeping communication lines open, predictable physical and social issues, and solutions for problems like self-centeredness and over-the-top emotions

Why I Chose This Book...

So my daughter is 10 years old and is entering the fifth grade in September. She is entering Middle School (Dun Dun Dun)! She is excited and I am freaking out!!! Things are just different in middle school. Hormones and feelings come into play, as well as more independence. I am not quite ready, but I doubt I would ever be. So I found this book and a light clicked. I hadn't even thought to read about how to deal with this upcoming journey that will effect not just my daughter but our family life as a whole. I know its not what I typically review, BUT I know that there are many of you out there that are probably experiencing what I am and I wanted to share this with you all.

What I Loved...

First and foremost, I loved that this book was written from a Christian perspective. I am always leery of advice that is not rooted in biblical principles. Second, it includes real life quotes from middle schoolers. These authors didn't just write what "they" think. They studied and worked with middle schooler, interiewing them and using what they learned to help us lost parents understand our middle schoolers better.

Speaking of lost. You may be thinking that you are not, as had I. This book opened up so many things that I realized that I was lost. There were so many things that described my daughter and then I learned why she behaved in such ways. A real eye opener. I actually felt convicted of so many things. Don't get me wrong, my relationship with my daughter is strong, but I am hoping to keep it that way. Middle School changes our kids and I want to keep our relationship strong even through the middle school years.

What I Liked...

The direct quotes from the middle schoolers were cute. While I sometimes went into Mom mode, I realized that these were their true feelings whether I agreed or not. Again a real eye opener.


My husband is not a reader as I am, but I told him that he definitely had to read this book. While I feel like I can now be more understanding to my daughter's needs and actions, if my hubby and I aren't on the same page, chaos is sure to ensue in our home.

The book is not about letting your middle schoolers get away with whatever because they are changing phyically and emotionally, but teaching parents how to deal with the change while still being productive parents and not pushing our kids away.

I plan to use this as a resource guide for all upcoming middle school situations, as they arise.