Review – We Just Clicked

We Just Clicked by Sophie Childs

we-just-clickedPublished: February 2016

Book Blurb: Erin Cochrane loves the gossip and the countless bizarre stories about her best friend Bex’ adventures with online dating. Not that she’d ever sign up for the site herself. Erin’s far too busy planning her dream wedding to her gorgeous fiancé, Tyson.

But when Tyson decides that he is not ready for marriage, Erin’s world is turned upside down. Forced to move back in with her eccentric mother, things couldn’t get any worse. Thrust back into the singles’ scene, could online dating be the escape Erin needs from it all? Or will it be just another disaster?

From stalkers to cheapskates, Erin feels as though she’s become a magnet for every loser around, until she opens one message that changes everything.

An intriguing novel about modern dating and unexpected encounters that will keep you entertained right up to the very last page.

Book Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Goodreads

My Review

We Just Clicked was a fun girly read. I found it quite appropriate that I finished reading this book on ‘Galentine’s Day’ [the day before Valentine’s Day]! Sophie Childs pens a fun light-hearted, heart-warming girly novel. Filled with themes of lessons learned in life and love, and supporting one another through tough times with humor and laughter, the story of Erin and her mystery man will have you laughing and hoping for a happily ever after.

I enjoyed the way the story was written, and the online dating escapades were hilarious! Although it may have been a little far-fetched that someone of his background would be on a public dating site, the story was very enjoyable and sweet. Great girly read!

5/5 stars

I received a complimentary review copy via NetGalley. All reviews 100% reflect my honest opinion.

Arielle Joy

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Beauty Review – Maybelline Dream Cushion

One of the best things about having a lifestyle blog is that every so often I get to try out products for free! Influenster is one of my favorite companies that provides free products to social media influencers so that they can test the product and share their opinions. Through Influenster I recently got to try the new Dream Cushion foundation from Maybelline. Read on to find out what I thought!

maybelline-dreamcushion

Before I became knowledgeable about makeup, I used to have the hardest time finding makeup that matched my skintone well. Part of the problem was that people always think I’m much darker than I am because I have a bit of natural coloring but they don’t realize that my face doesn’t have a lot of color. It’s no wonder that I wear makeup for a natural ‘no-makeup’ type look.

Nowadays I know myself better and I know how to shop for makeup. Everyone learns over time and I’m happy to report that Maybelline makes it easy for everyone to find their perfect match because the Dream Cushion comes in 8 shades for a variety of skintones. It’s super easy to pick a color that matches well, and the coverage is medium and buildable. The Dream Cushion has an interesting application because it’s basically a sponge that has foundation in it and you get the liquid by using a small applicator pad that is stored inside the container. There’s no mess and it makes it very portable for ladies that do their makeup on the go.

The DreamCushion has found itself a home in my daily beauty routine. Take a peek at the photo below for more of my daily go-to products.

dreamcushion-now-part-of-my-daily-beauty-routine

I’d Love to Know: What foundation do you wear and what are your favorite products that you use on a daily basis?

 

Disclaimer: I received a sample of the Maybelline DreamCushion for free to test the product and provide an honest review. I was not paid for my review or any social media sharing and receiving the product for free did not influence my opinion of the product. If you’re interested in learning more about Influenster, use my referral link to sign up so that you can start getting free products for testing too!

Arielle Joy

 

 

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Review – Lipsticks and Lattes

Lipsticks and Lattes by Tracy Krimmer

lipsticks-and-lattesPublished: October 2016

Book Blurb: Whitney only needs two things to survive — a steaming cup of coffee and the opportunity to create art with makeup. But until her big break comes along, she’s stuck selling makeup at the mall.

While out at a nightclub dancing her cares away, Whitney catches a fleeting glance of a man she’s convinced is Prince Charming himself, but she misses her chance to talk to him. How will she find him now? Taking a wild chance, she places an online ad and her dreams come true when he appears.

Only fairy tales aren’t what they seem. As Whitney struggles to deal with the vast amount of changes in her life, her Prince is up against some losses in his, widening the gap between them. The only answer to their problems lies right in front of their faces. Can they figure it out before it’s too late?

Book Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Goodreads

My Review

I loved this novel so much I forgot to take notes the way I normally do while reading! Lipsticks and Lattes is a story about a young woman trying to find her way in the world. Everyone in her life can see what she’s meant to be doing, except the one person that matters, herself. Fate plays its hand and while she’s trying to figure out her life, she unexpectedly meets a man that takes on a new role in her life.

I enjoyed witnessing Whitney’s journey on the path to finding herself.  Mix in a brutally honest roommate and a fun-loving glam best friend, and you’ve got yourself a recipe for an entertaining story. Things aren’t always how they first seem and it’s important to remember  that life doesn’t have to be a picture perfect fairytale in order for it to be perfect for you. Filled with lipsticks, lattes, and a whole lotta laughs, this novel will have you laughing out loud and licking your lips with desire for a delicious dose of caffeine, love and more novels by Tracy Krimmer!

5/5 for another laugh-out-loud romantic comedy, poured to perfection

 

I received a complimentary review copy via the author. All reviews 100% reflect my honest opinion.

Arielle Joy

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Review – Christmas Under a Starlit Sky

Christmas Under a Starlit Sky by Holly Martin

christmas-under-a-starlit-skyPublished: October 2016

Book Blurb: Neve Whitaker loves managing the Stardust Lake hotel. She gets to work alongside her wonderful family and she’s spending Christmas on the most enchanting, snow-covered island in Scotland. So why is her heart so heavy this festive season?

It might have something to do with the gorgeous actor Oakley Rey, the man she finished with before he left for California and the man she loves more than anything. With Oakley’s career in Hollywood soaring, Neve is convinced she’d only hold him back. She had to end it with him – at least that’s what she keeps telling herself.

But now she has a secret she’s struggling to keep, and when Oakley arrives on Juniper Island determined to win her back, Neve is thrown off balance. Will Neve’s fear of having her heart broken again push Oakley away for good, or is it time for her to take a leap of faith?

Book Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Goodreads

My Review

Christmas under a Starlit Sky is a charming story filled with lots of love, laughs, drama and chaos. Although quite entertaining, it’s sad that Neve continued to let her head get in her way of being happy in the present and letting the past scare her into not enjoying the potential future. On top of getting stuck in her head, Neve has quite a secret that she’s been keeping under wraps. Although it’s always a bad idea to lie (especially to those you care about), it’s somewhat understandable that she’s trying her best to keep this secret to herself, but it ends up creating so much chaos and havoc. Another charming read from Holly Martin.

4/5 Stars

I received a complimentary review copy via NetGalley. All reviews 100% reflect my honest opinion.

Arielle Joy

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Review – That’s What Friends Are For

That’s What Friends Are For by Marcie Steele

thats-what-friends-are-forPublished: December 2015

Book Blurb: Best friends tell each other everything… right?
Sam and Louise have been best friends since they hung their coats side by side on the first day of primary school. Now in their thirties, they’re just as close, but life is a little bit more complicated…

On the outside, thirty-something Sam seems to have it all; the gorgeous husband, the beautiful home and the flourishing business. But things are not quite as rosy as they seem. So when handsome stranger, Dan, walks into her life, Sam finds his attentions hard to resist.

Louise might seem like life and soul of the party, but her outgoing exterior hides her sadness about the heartbreak in her past. She just wants someone to love – but all Louise gets left with is a quick fumble with an ex at the end of the night.
the-little-market-stall-of-hope-and-heartbreak
When a glamorous face from the past returns to shake things up, things get even more complicated for Sam and Louise. And just when they need each other the most, they’ve reason to wonder whether they ever really knew each other at all.

Book Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Goodreads

*Please note that changes were made from the time I received an ARC and the time the book was published. The title of the published novel is The Little Market Stall of Hope and Heartbreak. I believe the title and cover artwork much better depict the story than the previous cover and title.

My Review

Please note that there were likely many changes from the ARC I received and read to the book that was published. My review is based on the ARC I received from NetGalley.

I enjoyed the basic guts of the story but the execution and writing style had room for improvement. I was a bit bored while reading the story and almost didn’t finish reading it half way through. I hate not finishing a book in case it does get better, but this one really didn’t click for me.

The basic themes of the novel were admirable. The story was filled with the idea that secrets kept between friends and family can come around eventually and hurt you. True friends will always find a way to work through their troubles. There was the theme of love; new love taking off on the beginning of life’s adventure and old love dying with no hope for tomorrow. There was also the theme of infidelity and that notion that you shouldn’t take the people in your life for granted, because they aren’t always going to be there if you treat them like they don’t matter. I thought the themes presented in the story were all important but I thought the reading was a little slow-paced for my liking.

3/5 Stars

I received a complimentary review copy from NetGalley. All reviews 100% reflect my honest opinion.

 Arielle Joy

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Review – A Slice of Life

A Slice of Life by Margaret Lake

a-slice-of-lifePublished: 2012

Book Blurb: Originally published in the anthology, A Walk in the Woods, with six other stories.

Grace Coulter has been hiding in the kitchen of her family restaurant since she was eight years old. That’s when the name-calling began. Stretch, skinny-minny, boy in girl’s clothes, all because of the slender height that had her towering over even the tallest boys in the class.

Now, nearly thirty years later, Grace is head chef of the failing restaurant and still hiding in the kitchen. Like many businesses during the current recession, Coulter’s may have to start laying off employees or even close. But Grace has a plan to save the restaurant and the people she’s known all her life; a plan that will force her to go out into the world and face her fears.

Book Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Goodreads

My Review

Grace is a painfully shy individual. She’s 37 and has never been on a single date, ever! Her parents thought she might have been agoraphobic but the psychiatrist deemed her as extremely painfully shy. She hides in the kitchen of her family’s restaurant. She’s finally venturing out a bit because in an efforts to help her family’s business.

This was short and sweet and I read it in one evening. I enjoyed the story of Grace and watching her journey of self-discovery. I can’t imagine that someone could be so shy that they could reach the age of 37 and have never been on a single date! I feel for anyone that may actually be in a situation like this. 

4/5 Stars

I received a free copy during a sale on Amazon. All reviews 100% reflect my honest opinion.

 Arielle Joy

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Sheryl Sandberg – Lean In

 

Today I’m going to share a book review for one of the most enlightening books I’ve read in quite some time, Lean In written by Sheryl Sandberg. For a novel with over 92 thousand 4 and 5 star ratings on Goodreads, you could say this book has been well-read and well-received.

sheryl-sandberg-lean-in

 

Lean in by Sheryl Sandberg

lean-inPublished: March 2013

Book Blurb: Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In is a massive cultural phenomenon and its title has become an instant catchphrase for empowering women. The book soared to the top of bestseller lists internationally, igniting global conversations about women and ambition. Sandberg packed theatres, dominated opinion pages, appeared on every major television show and on the cover of Time magazine, and sparked ferocious debate about women and leadership.

Ask most women whether they have the right to equality at work and the answer will be a resounding yes, but ask the same women whether they’d feel confident asking for a raise, a promotion, or equal pay, and some reticence creeps in.

The statistics, although an improvement on previous decades, are certainly not in women’s favour – of 197 heads of state, only twenty-two are women. Women hold just 20 percent of seats in parliaments globally, and in the world of big business, a meagre eighteen of the Fortune 500 CEOs are women.

In Lean In, Sheryl Sandberg – Facebook COO and one of Fortune magazine’s Most Powerful Women in Business – draws on her own experience of working in some of the world’s most successful businesses and looks at what women can do to help themselves, and make the small changes in their life that can effect change on a more universal scale.

Book Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Goodreads

My Review

One of my favorite reading genres for entertainment is romantic comedies, yet every so often I venture out to read something more educational and enlightening. This month I picked up Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg and I have to tell you how incredibly happy I did! I don’t often read educational business and leadership related books, but I have to say, if the others out there are anything like Sheryl’s novel, I will be making it more of a habit than an occasional whim.

Lean In is a poignant novel written in an easy-to read, relevant way. One does not need to be a business expert or CEO of a company to understand, appreciate and take-away from Sheryl’s writing. It only took me a few days to read, but throughout my reading I found myself having multiple conversations with my boyfriend about how much I was enjoying the book. It sparked intellectual conversations and truly made me take a deeper look inside myself. It has inspired me to Lean In and I hope that it will inspire you too.

5/5 Stars

Arielle Joy

 

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