The Little Girl With the Big Voice

An inspiring story about overcoming bullying and achieving dreams


No one wants their child to experience the torment of bullying. If they do encounter this behavior, are they prepared to handle the situation? Knowing how to cope with bullying is a much needed life skill our children must learn to successfully navigate conflict.

The Little Girl with the Big Voice, written by Wė (pronounced Way) McDonald, is a book your child can relate to and may be helpful in starting conversations regarding bullying. The book teaches valuable lessons such as how to overcome adversity, and building self confidence. Written in Wė’s own words, the book is a powerful story about a girl who courageously embraces her uniqueness and finds her voice.

The book was engaging and illustrations well-done. My niece was completely attentive and asked questions as Wė’s experiences unfolded.  The Little Girl with the Big Voice is fresh and timely. However, I believe the book could have given just a little bit more strategy on conflict resolution. The book’s focus shifted from bullying to Wė being a contestant on the television program, The Voice. Definitely two books in one, which may be good thing for some parents.

Rating: 3.5/5 stars

Donna Andrews

Super aunt of a 7-year-old girl

When I’m Feeling Kind – Childrens Book


By Trace Moroney

Helping people, listening to your friends, feeling good about yourself—feeling kind is all of these things and more. When I’m Feeling Kind (Insight Editions / $9.99 / March 2015) teaches young children about being kind and how to develop skills to identify and understand their feelings.

Each of the books in this series has been carefully designed to help children better understand their feelings, and in doing so, develop confidence and self-esteem as they grow. Talking about feelings teaches children that it is normal to feel sad or angry or scared at times. With greater tolerance of challenging feelings, children become free to enjoy their world, to feel secure in their abilities, and to be happy.

The When I’m Feeling series has been a worldwide success, translated into sixteen languages with more than 2 million copies sold. Each book includes notes for parents and caregivers explaining positive thinking and sharing simple examples of how to foster it.

About the Author:

Trace Moroney is an internationally acclaimed children’s author and illustrator. More than 3 million copies of her books have been sold worldwide, and they are translated into 16 languages. Her best-selling When I’m Feeling series and the phenomenally successful The Things I Love About series have been met with extraordinary enthusiasm. Focused on creating “books with a conscience,” Trace Moroney embraces the principles of positive psychology. She lives in New Zealand.

About Insight Editions:

Insight Editions is a publisher focused on creating superlative illustrated books on photography, music, and popular culture. Lavishly produced and visually stimulating, every volume from Insight is dedicated to the skillful interplay of word and image. The books produced are unique works that combine the highest quality print production values with time-honored traditions of publishing and rich subject matter. Elegant and informative, books from Insight showcase the best of art and photography in exquisite presentations of the bookmaker’s craft. For more information, visit

The Ideal Woman – New Book About Finding Oneself

The Ideal Woman, a new book by Roy Espiritu, is not about what you might think.  It sounds like it might be about looking for the woman that one finds ideal, or who the ideal woman is, or how to become the ideal woman.  Instead, it is one woman’s journey, torn between two worlds and two cultures, two countries and two lives, where she is often put on a pedestal because of her looks but then looked at sideways due to her heritage.  She is often forced to walk a fine line, and trying to find herself and what she wants for her life.

The book follows the life of a woman named Pearl and her family.  It centers on Pearl, but because of the importance of her heritage, her family is a big focus as well. Pearl has a Filipino mother and white father, which causes strife between both families, although both adore Pearl. Pearl spends her time mostly in the USA, but also spends plenty of it in the Philippines, where many people apotheosize her for her looks. One family fixates on her, and wants her for their son.  A courting process begins, and Pearl has to decide how she wants to live her life and what she really wants. How she “behaves”, dresses, thinks, acts, dresses, even her family’s history comes into play.
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At the Crossroad – new book

I recently finished reading the book At the Crossroad.   For me, it was a real page turner, hard to put down, with engaging characters and a good storyline. Perhaps I should stay “story-lines”, as the book follows 4 people.  All four are quite different from each other, yet their lives are intertwined deeply.  None of their lives go as planned or as you think they would- which honestly kept the book very interesting.  It also seemed realistic to me, no wild and crazy plots that made it seem implausible, and you find yourself genuinely interested in the characters and wanting the best outcomes for them.

The outcomes are not what you would expect, the lives take them where you would not necessarily think they would- which is one of the reasons the book was so interesting.  Set at a time of military unrest, which seeps into the book but is not it’s major theme, the characters fight to find themselves, their place in the world, and to a sense of justice and happiness in a time when those are hard to find.

Tempting though it may be- do not judge this book by it's cover.  The cover is awful, so very unprofessional and poorly done- but the book itself, the writing is good.  The story is unique and compelling, you will be drawn to the characters.  Ignore the cover- read the book.

Tempting though it may be- do not judge this book by it’s cover. The cover is awful, so very unprofessional and poorly done- but the book itself, the writing is good. The story is unique and compelling, you will be drawn to the characters. Ignore the cover- read the book.

I, too, was hesitant to read this book after I saw the cover.  When I see shabbily done covers, it usually means “vanity press” or “self published” and that the book is going to be a hot mess, full of spelling and grammatical errors, and mostly a just the author strutting and fluffing his own feathers in print.  I am not a fan of most vanity press.  However- this book is NOT along those lines.  It is well written, and I truly enjoyed it.  This is one of those cases that you truly should not judge a book by it’s cover- literally.  Normally I would not dedicate time to discussing a cover, but I know I wouldn’t have given it a second glance had I not known what a good book it was, so I wanted to mention it.

About The Book

The decisions we make at every crossroad in our lives shape our destiny. In her first novel At the Crossroad, Olfet Agrama pens a romance/adventure book filled with passion, forbidden love, faith and power – – the perfect book to give that special woman for Valentine’s Day or Mother’s Day.
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The Tale of the Proud Chicken – book for kids

The latest book in the Tales of Little Overhill series is now available.  The new book, Tale of the Proud Chicken is a fun read for kids that also gives a moral.  It has a good plot that kids can benefit from, learn from, and enjoy as well.  The images are beautiful, and having animals as the main characters is fun for children.

pic4I first read this to my son, then sent it in with him to his school.  His class really enjoyed the book, and they thought that the chicken was funny and silly.  They liked the chicken’s adventures, and were relived when he went back home.  Being a bunch of 7 year olds, they all pointed out that he wasn’t really a proud chicken, but a proud rooster- which is true, little rats, lol.  After we read the story, we tried to guess what Bible story The Proud Chicken was most like.
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Southern Living- “What’s For Supper” 5-Ingredient Weeknight Meals cookbook review

I am not a creative cook.  At all.  What I am is good at following directions.

I live by my cookbooks- but some of them like to get all “fancy” on me, and during the week, who has time for that?  Really.  Not your average mom with kids, not your working parents- not many people.  Sure, you bust out the fancy cooking now and again, but for regular nights- you need something that is fast, easy, and that everyone will eat (but still has nutritional value and is good for them).

That’s why I love this particular cookbook- Southern Living’s new “What’s For Supper” 5-Ingredient Weeknight Meals compiles fast and easy meals for those busy weeknights spend doing homework, driving the kids hither and yon, and getting home from work later then we really wanted to (or in my case and the case of those who work at home, not getting it all done as fast as I had hoped to), and still trying to get the laundry done. This really is a “must have” for busy parents- yes, you can always play on pinterest or get your google on, but this is just so easy to have it all in one place for easy access- and the meals are so easy to prepare without having to have a culinary degree to make.  (Those books just make me nuts…I don’t have time to learn cutting techniques, I just want to get dinner on the table.)

If you are in the market for a new cookbook, want to try out some new recipes to shake up your dinners (hey, we all get in ruts), or just love to cook- try this one out, it has become a favorite in my house. (It really is fast!)  Pick yours up on Amazon or wherever books are sold.
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Messy Beautiful Love- a book review

pic5All of us who are (or have been) married know that there are times when we wonder if we are “going to make it”.  We hit those spots, those impasses, and we don’t know if we can get through them- or if we even want to anymore.  This book is about one couple’s road to recovery, and why this wife feels there is hope for any marriage.

This book is very, very Christian- as a Christian myself, it was pushing the lines of my own personal beliefs. The author has very strong beliefs that I personally do not share, and for this reason, the book was not my “cup of tea” so to speak.  It offered good advice, and if you do share the beliefs of the author, you might find that you are able to get more out of it then I was.

Here is more information about the book-

Messy Beautiful Love: Hope and Redemption for Today’s Marriages.

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The Walk-In Closet by Abdi Nazemian

A great summer book, this story is a fun, quick read.  The heroine of the story, so to speak, is in a very close relationship with her homosexual male best friend.  So close, in fact, that most of his family and friends believe they are dating seriously and will be married.  He is closeted with them, and afraid to tell them who he really is for fear of rejection and because they have roots outside the country.  Her relationship with him is so close that it hampers her having any others besides a few close female friends who know what the “real story” is.
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