This little book one can read in a single sitting. This little book one can read on a Sunday afternoon.

One of the most outstanding features of this little devotional book is the “personalized scriptures” An Weiss has added to each story. The “version” of each scripture is her own. The reader can read one story a day until she finishes the book, or, as I did, read through the book in an afternoon . The hugs, or embraces from Jesus are as follows: His Restoring Embrace, His Refreshing Embrace, His Redeeming Embrace, His Reviving Embrace, and His Replenishing Embrace.

My favorite story was about Mary, the Mother of Jesus. In this story of Jesus on the cross, turning his mother to the beloved disciple, John, assures us that the embrace or “hug” sometimes comes from someone else, but it is always from God. D. M. Street wrote, “Let God love you through others, and let God love others through you.

I have to admit I felt hugged by each story. It was a perfect book for my Day of Rest.

Photo by Bruno Thethe on


Just as Saturday morning TV programming in the 50s and 60s was full of cartoons for kids, PWR reserves Saturday mornings for books aimed at young readers. Today features a fun-style book with captivating illustrations that also presents a bit of history.

Subtitled “A Very Improper Story” with the letters arranged in a pink, lacy corset, Amelia Bloomer’s biography is presented in this fine little picture book. My copy is a paperback from Scholastic. Repeating the phrase “What was proper about that,” the story describes how ladies and their wieldy dresses and corsets struggled to do the simplest things in life, the book shows Amelia Bloomer making the first pair of women’s pants–bloomers! What an improvement, and what a response. Every woman wanted a pair, and the rest is history…

I highly recommend this book which will give your girls and boys alike a fit of the giggles!

RAE 5/26/23


Literacy and Me

It was my pleasure recently to hear Ada Limon read from her latest collection, The Hurting Kind, in Houston as part of the Inprint series of author appearances and readings.

I received a signed copy of this interesting. collection, which I confess I have not read yet.

Instead, prior to the reading, I read her recent collection, The Carrying, to get a taste of her style of poetry.

Just this past week, I finished this collection, which took considerably more time than reading novels or any kind of prose, not because it was difficult reading, but because I took the time to meditate on and ponder what I had read, poem by poem.

I found that my favorites were her “prose poems,” which were mini-essays written in a poet’s language. There were not many of them in The Carrying, but the ones I found in this slender volume moved me…

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As I was shelving books at Rae’s Reads (my bookstore) the other day, putting out romances, I came across a book described as a “Regency Romance.” It is something I have purposely avoided reading until now, historical fiction with romance at its core. The plots are “standard” in these romances, no surprises, with clipped “veddy British” dialogue, and almost no character development occurring in the novel. (definition my own)

I did a bit of googling and came up with the name Georgette Heyer as the “queen of Regency Romance.” Fortunately, I had one of her books on the shelf, so I took it home to read it to see what all the hoo-ha was about.

Frederica, a 2018 publication, is, according to Nora Roberts in a blurb on the front, “A lovely and affectionate study of a family.” It tells the story of Frederica and the Marquis of Alverstoke, a thirty-seven-year-old very eligible bachelor, and how they found true love in each other.

Frederica’s little brother, Felix, who has become the object of the Marquis’ attention, falls ill at the Marquis’ house, and of course, his spinster sister, Frederica, is called to come and live in the house and nurse Felix back to health. Frederica is described by another character as ” strong and independent but she never thinks about herself.” During this time, there are many encounters and miscommunication between Frederica and the Marquis. These progress and then hinder a budding attraction and romance as the plot progresses.

The novel has been described by critics as “witty,” “lighthearted,” and “a treat.” I found this to be true to a degree but must confess I did a bit of skipping and skimming throughout my reading of this large book. Now that I can say I have read and enjoyed a Regency Romance, I do not wish to repeat this experience any time soon.

THE PARIS APARTMENT by Lucy Foley: A Review

This 2022 published novel was a real thriller. It was set in a Paris apartment building which was as much a character as the many residents who inhabited it. “Every resident has something to hide” says the back cover blurb: Jess, sister of the missing Ben shows up at his apartment building only to find that he has disappeared, and no one knows anything about it.

“The longer Ben stays missing, the more Jess starts to dig into her brother’s situation, and the more questions she has.” Her startling clues found and the evasiveness of those who knew him sends Jess on a journey where good guys are revealed as bad, and clues and help come from the most suspicious characters. Because there are multiple characters, there are multiple suspects, which leads to many twists and turns in the plot, some of them very surprising.

“Everyone’s a neighbor. Everyone’s a suspect. And everyone knows something they’re not telling.”

I enjoyed this mystery and was surprised, yet satisfied at the ending. I recommend it for enjoyable, entertaining reading.

Uncover the Awesome You! | Utkarsh Shukla | Book Review

Bookish Fame

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ BEEJA HOUSE (13 January 2023)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Perfect Paperback ‏ : ‎ 171 pages

Book Review

Uncover the Awesome You! by Utkarsh Shukla is a self-help book that aims to inspire its reader to discover their best selves. Through a bunch of anecdotes and introspective questions, this book propels the readers to think through their experiences and grow beyond their self-imposed limits.

Divided into 10 chapters, the book follows through the author’s life events as he talks about a variety of experiences. Be it years of his childhood, at school, and more, each experience teaches a lesson to him which is refined in the chapters of this book. The primary intention of the book is to move in the direction that makes you your most awesome self.

The lessons on self-awareness, self-expression, uncovering one’s natural passion and more, sound simple but are extremely important in…

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TODAY’S RECOMMENDATION, “I read it in one sitting because I couldn’t put it down.

AGE APPEAL: fifth graders and up

ACTION: “Roy drew a deep breath and dashed after them. He heard a honk, but he kept on going, hoping that the police officer wouldn’t jump out and chase him on foot…”

MYSTERY AND INTRIGUE: “If you can get a picture…all we need is one lousy picture of one little owl…”

HUMOR: “Mr. Muckle, looking drained and defeated, and suddenly very old…’This is over! Done!…The councilmen …and the man from the Chamber of Commerce stealthily retreated to their limousine…” It was a rout and a riot! What a hilarious scene.


WHO COULD RESIST THOSE PRECIOUS EYES LOOKING UP FROM A HOLE IN THE GROUND? “Mother Paula’s All American House of Pancakes,” That’s who!

Read this for the strong environmental message and the pure entertainment it offers!

Salvation Army

Annette Rochelle Aben


Went with

Her brother

To the food bank

They were so hungry

In between food stamp days

Her stamps were cut by two thirds

Because she dared to take a job

That pays her but ten dollars an hour

They can only use her twelve hours a week

She is also her brother’s caregiver

For which she makes one hundred dollars

So, they stand at a desk waiting

To see if they qualify

For a bag of free food

Anything will do

Meat, butter, cheese

Veggies, fruit



©2023 Annette Rochelle Aben

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Although I awoke at 4 a.m. to watch the coronation, I am up late reading a good book, Circe by Madeline Miller. I have always loved myths and stories about Greek and Roman deities, having read Edith Hamilton’s classic, Mythology, in seventh grade.

I have neglected my reading for several weeks, finishing the semester at my university and preparing for an author event at Rae’s Reads, my bookshop taking place tomorrow.

After standing, making cookies and finger sandwiches all evening after a 5 hour stint at the.bookshop, I am ready to read and relax.

I think since the topic of this book is classic, I will bend the “rules” a bit and count it towards my goal of reading six classics during 2023. It could also count toward my goal of reading books from my TBR shelves for the “Back from the Backlog” Challenge.