Suz's love for COWS + Allan's work with LASERS = one unique blog name! Welcome to our blog filled with race recaps, pictures of our labs, and everything else we share with blogland!

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Legend by Eric Blehm

Every so often there's a book I read that I think about for months and even years afterward. One of those is Fearless by Eric Blehm and now I can add Legend to that list. Before I began reading this book I knew I had a very limited knowledge of the Vietnam War so I was anxious to read this and learn more. What I took away from the story of Roy Benavidez and the events that transpired on May 2, 1968, are so much more than dates and facts but rather experiences and stories that truly made this man a legend. While the author does cover Roy's entire life the main part of the book surrounds one day's events and what he did to save the lives of those surrounded by the enemy in the jungles of Cambodia, a country where we supposedly did not have American troops. Roy's actions were nothing less than heroic and practically unbelievable considering the wounds he himself had sustained. Unfortunately it took years for him to be awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor which he undoubtedly deserved much sooner. What I love about Legend is that the author takes the time to make you feel like you know all the other people involved that day. This makes the book painful at times but it's a truly gifted writer that can evoke such emotions from the reader. I found myself nervous for the crews flying overhead trying to protect their men on the ground, heartbroken over those who didn't make it out that day, and guilt for how these men were treated when they arrived home. Once I finished the book I had tears streaming down my face and I couldn't help but cry again later as I recounted to my husband and then my mother why I loved this book so much.

There were several quotes from the book that I wanted to share but I'll only share a couple that I found particularly moving:

"The one good thing about this place, you sure learn not to take anything for granted. Not anything." -Larry McKibben

"Today I go to the airport and see strangers shaking the hands of men and women in uniform, and it makes me smile. I don't think those people necessarily believe in the politics of our current wars, they just know this young man or woman is serving his country. That was all we did in Vietnam. I'll say it again: I'm proud of my service."
-Pete Gailis

I can promise you that after reading this book you won't look at this period of our nation's history the same way and I'd be willing to bet it may alter your view of the struggles our Vietnam veterans still have today. Get your tissues out and prepare to be moved by the story of Roy Benavidez, a true American legend.

If you'd like to read more about the book you can do so here and if you want to learn more about Eric Blehm you can do that here. After reading Fearless and Legend I can't wait to get my hands on his other books!

I received this book free of charge from Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest review.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Books 'n' Bloggers Swap Reveal

Thank you to the lovely ladies at Chaotic Goddess Swaps for organizing this! Just to recap: you send 3 books and receive 3 books. They should be:

  • a book off their wishlist
  • a book you've read and loved
  • a book you haven't read but think they will enjoy
I was paired with  Ashli at Faithfully Moonstruck. Since everything arrived via Amazon I wasn't sure which tag went with which book but here's what I received:
  • The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
  • All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
  • All But My Life by Gerda Weissmann Klein
  • cute magnetic bookmarks!

I love that all the books are centered around WWII because I enjoy historical fiction from that time period! I have learned that I need to do a better job of updating my wishlist (I snagged All the Light We Cannot See at the thrift store for $1 last week!) and I probably need to make a shelf of books I own since I do already have The Book Thief. However, I haven't read any of these three so I am excited to take a month and focus on WWII historical fiction. I have so many great books set during this time that I've been wanting to read for ages.

Thank you again to Chaotic Goddess Swaps and Ashli at Faithfully Moonstruck! This was a lot of fun!

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Whenever You Come Around by Robin Lee Hatcher

It's been years since Charity and Buck have seen each other but with her parents out of the country and her own home being repaired she's forced to go back to Kings Meadow to her parent's home if she wants to make her book deadline. Wouldn't you know that her parent's next door neighbor happens to be Buck?! After an accident with her dog renders Buck nearly helpless Charity feels obligated to help where she can and before long she finds herself enjoying Buck's company more than she thought possible.

Whenever You Come Around was an enjoyable story filled with mostly likable characters (and one who you can't help but loathe) whose past and present intertwine. Charity has been carrying a secret for years and the time has come where that secret can no longer stay hidden. She's spent so much time envisioning what would happen when the people closest to her find out the truth and as I've found to be the case with these things; the outcome we imagine is usually far from reality. I felt as though the story was missing something but I can't quite put my finger on it. I did feel that the ending of the story arrived a bit quickly and could have been fleshed out a bit more. Other than that though it was well-written and a quick read!

Book Description

Just when Charity's wild imagination failed her, a flesh-and-blood hero walked into her life.
Best-selling author Charity Anderson returns to her hometown of Kings Meadow to defeat a bad case of writer's block. She imagines she'll spend a lonely summer writing and then return to her home in Boise. She soon finds herself caring for Buck Malone, a wilderness guide-and the object of her unrequited teenage crush. But what else can she do? Her dog Cocoa caused the accident that left Buck with a broken ankle and wrist, taking him off the trail for weeks of prime tourist-season work.
Buck and Charity have gone different ways since high school, and at first it seems they have little in common. Buck loves the simple, low-key life he's made for himself in the mountains of Idaho, and she's a woman accustomed to the faster, bustling pace of the city. But spending so much time together has Buck hoping to change her mind about staying in the small town she thought she'd left behind for good.
It's a summer for discovering that young love is a spark not soon extinguished.

About the Author
Robin Lee Hatcher is the bestselling author of 70 books. Her numerous awards include the Christy Award for Excellence in Christian Fiction, the RITA Award for Best Inspirational Romance, and the RWA Lifetime Achievement Award. Robin and her husband currently reside in Idaho. For more information, visit

I received this book free of charge from BookLook Bloggers in exchange for my honest review.