Book Review: Alex the Fey Series

Usually it’s hard for me to pick a book to review, because my tastes are so varied. I’ll read anything if it’s well-read. No genre is off-limits. I found Claudia Hall Christian’s series a long time ago, and I probably read the first book because it was free. I was so hooked I immediately bought the whole rest of the series. I’ve probably read it four times now. It’s a fast-paced read that always gives me strength. It’s a thriller, but the threads that tie all the characters and plotlines together are love, family, and true friendship. Every time I read it I feel a little stronger. And when I read it this last time I got a surprise – there were two more books in the series since I’d last read it! It was like Christmas morning! When my favorite authors release a new book I’m like a honey-badger. Nothing is coming between me and that book until it’s done! And the latest two are just as good as all her previous ones. This is the first one, the one to start with. It does help to read them in order, because there are a lot of characters and it’s easy to get them confused if you don’t know their backstory.

It’s still free! I happened to look at the date I first downloaded it when I went to Amazon to get the link. It was January 28, 2011. That was about a week after my HR director called my home number and didn’t get an answer, so she called my cell phone while I was in Kroger with my son to tell me if I didn’t show up for work at 4:30 a.m. the next day I would no longer have a job. I knew it was coming, I knew my FMLA was up, but my pain hadn’t improved at all with the two neurosurgeries I’d had within a month. But I’ll never forget how cheerful she sounded, as if she was truly enjoying ending my employment with a company I’d worked for the past twenty years; and that she couldn’t be compassionate enough to wait and try me at home again fifteen minutes later so I’d have some privacy. I’d gone out to get milk, and brought my son to lift it because I couldn’t. I couldn’t return to work because of pain. Where would I be, out for a run? So I’m glad I found the character Alex Hargreaves to remind me that things can always be worse, and that it’s important to know who your friends are and to keep them close.

Drop by Mama Kat’s Writers’ Workshop if you have time on Thanksgiving. You’ll always find great posts there!

Five Things I Know Nothing About

I laughed out loud when I saw this one on the list of prompts at Mama Kat’s Writers’ Workshop! Five? This could be a weekly post for a year or more! I may or may not have a MENSA-qualifying IQ and have graduated in the top 1% of my high school class, but there are so many things I know nothing about. Of course if you’d have asked me that at seventeen, I’d have thought I knew everything and could rule the world. I still want to rule the world, but I’d need more than a cabinet of advisors. I’d need a whole pantry!

I know nothing at all about geography. I can find Italy because I want to go there. Everything else is kind of iffy. Except, of course, anything along the Gulf of Mexico. The only white stuff I should see at my feet is sand.

I don’t know a useful second language. I took Latin and French, and my brain absorbed the Latin. Somewhat useful in the medical field, but not so much in everyday life.

I can’t navigate my way out of a paper bag. If Michael and I ever had a huge fight and I told him I was leaving all he’d have to do is take my Garmin out of the car.  I’d never get out of this zip code without getting lost.

Technology. Like my computer, my phone, my TV, and even my microwave.  People have commented on how tech-savvy I am (get up off the floor, Aaron, they have!) and I do know how to use social media. But I still need help figuring out which remote does what when I’m trying to watch a DVD or something I’ve DVRd. And the microwave has too many buttons. I just hit the “30 second” one over and over until it gets to where I want. It works for me.

How to put on makeup. Honestly, I think this is one of those opportunities that’s just passed me by. If I don’t know by now there’s no point in learning. With my tremor eyeliner would look like an EKG monitor strip, anyway.  I have about five tubes of lipstick or tinted chapstick scattered around in different purses, and they’re all nearly the same color. At the rate I use them I’ll need a new one when I’m about eighty.

Make me feel better! tell me what you know nothing about!

I Should Have Stayed in My Jammies All Week!


— 1 —

It’s not been quite the week I planned, or expected. What’s new, right? The high point of my week was wearing a pair of size Medium jammies. I should have just kept them on all week with the covers over my head.

— 2 —

I had a routine visit with my Internal Medicine doc this week. My appointment was at 3:30 and he ended up entering my exam room sometime after 5:30. I’d been glaring so hard at his “Best of Louisville” plaque, supposedly from patient recommendations, that it’s a wonder it wasn’t in flames. And I was in so much pain that any position he wanted me in for exam purposes he pretty much had to put me in.

— 3 —

My baby boy turned seventeen this week, and true to form both he and his brother wanted the same computer game for their birthdays, and it was released between the two. For the first time ever, Amazon screwed up and didn’t ship my eldest son’s game. And this was during my free trial of Amazon Prime, timed so that both boys would receive their games on release day. It’s minor, I know, but I don’t get to buy many gifts so I want the ones I do buy to be delivered promptly.

— 4 —

Speaking of gifts, it looks like my Christmas shopping budget will be zero this year. I’m going to search my Pinterest boards for inexpensive handmade gifts, but that will be it.

— 5 —

I’d hoped for better news from the company handling my disability appeal, but evidently the stage I am currently in, which takes 3-5 months, has a very low approval rate and it pretty much a “rubber stamp denial” stage. After that comes another hearing with a judge, but I have to wait through this one first. And last time my hearing stage wait was supposed to be eighteen months and turned out to be more like two years.

— 6 —

I went to my bariatric support group meeting this week, and the apathetic nutritionist was gone, so that was a plus. But a meeting I thought would focus on eating during the holidays actually focused more on stress during the holidays, family dysfunction, and financial stress. I left nearly in tears, because I just hadn’t been prepared to think about that stuff, let alone talk about it.

— 7 —

The release of information about Robin Williams’ diagnosis of Lewy Body Dementia has, in a way, been a positive force for me. Nerium doesn’t do any traditional advertising, so only people who have talked to someone about EHT or read tidbits about it on their Facebook feed know anything about it. And it’s life-changing. I’m in the process of contacting people individually for small-group sit-downs or three-way phone calls about it, but if I haven’t gotten to you yet and you or someone you love have or are at risk for any neurologic issue please contact me. For the price of a bottled soda a day a life can be changed. My goal is to introduce EHT to as many people as possible before Christmas. If just a few families can feel hope instead of stress this time of the year my effort has been worthwhile!

For more Quick Takes, visit This Ain’t The Lyceum!

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Anything worth doing can be done in jammies!