Living Well Spending Less Book Review

Synopsis:Living Well Spending Less by Ruth Soukup

Title – Living Well Spending Less: 12 secrets to the good life  (Website, Goodreads, Amazon, BarnsAndNoble)

Author – Ruth Soukup (Website, Goodreads)

Published – December 30th 2014

Classification – Fiction

Summary – Ruth Soukup, a popular blogger of, published Living Well Spending Less to give her followers even more to be excited about! As Ruth puts it: “Through a combination of personal stories and practical action plans, this book will empower, enable, and inspire you to make real and lasting changes to your personal goals, finances, and homes in order to create the life you’ve always wanted—the Good Life”.


Thoughts: I was super stoked to FINALLY have this book in my hands after weeks of being on hold at the library. Ruth Soukup is one of my favorite bloggers and I’ve been following her for a while now. She has inspired so many people already and is helping others live the life they want – whether it is to get out of debt, cut down on grocery costs, keeping the house decluttered, or creating a successful blog. I follow her on a few social channels, as well as subscribe to her email where I first heard of her book.

She runs sales and promotions on her products, but I was happy to see that my local library carried the book so I could get my hands on it right away, rather than waiting until I decided it was okay to spend money on a book. I was only a few chapters in and I already knew that this book needed to be on my bookshelf permanently.

“The Good Life to me is this: a life rich in faith, family, friends, and creativity…It may not be always easy or comfortable. But it is always full in abundance and completely secure in Christ.”

I LOVE this!

The pictures below are just a few of the pages that I wanted to highlight:

As you can see, she covers topics such as goal setting, prioritizing your life, decluttering your possessions, how to find coupons, etc.

She writes in a conversational tone and shares her story of how she got where she is now and why she does what she does.Living Well Spending Less instagram post

While reading the other reviews on Goodreads, I think it is important to note that she does include bible verses and her faith within the book. Many people were turned off by this fact, but I thought it enhanced her writing. It is a big part of who she is and why she does what she does…so why should she omit it?

Have you read any of Ruth Soukup’s books? What are some things you pulled from your reading?

Conclusion: Highly recommend!



The Slight Edge Book Review

Synopsis:The Slight Edge

Title -The Slight Edge  (Website, Goodreads, Amazon, BarnsAndNoble)

Author – Jeff Olson (Website, Goodreads)

Published – September 15th 2014 (the 8th anniversary edition)

Classification – Non-fiction, Self-help

Summary – The Slight Edge is a self-help book about doing little daily activities to reach your goal. This 8th anniversary edition of The Slight Edge includes mini testimonies about the slight edge in use.



The Slight Edge is another staple book for your personal development library. Personally, I think this book is very similar to Darren Hardy’s The Compound Effect.  I feel The Slight Edge contents and themes builds upon the foundation from The Compound Effect. If you’re looking for an easier read or a “simpler” book, I’d recommend The Compound Effect…then grab this book.


“People also searched for” section in Google listings

Two big things I pulled out of this book are:

  • NEVER QUIT DREAMING. THE REASON THINGS MAY BE UNCOMFORTABLE IS BECAUSE I HAVE A GOAL – There is a “wanting” gap between “where I am” and “where I could be.” The gap and difference between these two places makes people uncomfortable. Most people see this difference as negative problem and want it to go away, rather than take steps towards the latter. To get rid of this tension, most just quit dreaming. (ch. 10, pg 165-166)
  • YOU CANNOT DO ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING WHEN REACHING A GOAL – “Remember, there aren’t many millionaires who bowl over 100. Why not? Because they left the bowling league behind to build their fortunes. ‘Is that too large of a price to pay?’ is a question only you can answer. Remember this: whatever price you pay, there’s a bigger price to pay for not doing it than the price for it….It may take five years and 10,000 hours to put your success on track, but it takes a lifetime to fail.”(ch. 15, pg 228)

I think it is important to note that these are some things I pulled out of the book during my first read-through. I will pull out different things next time I open the book because I will have personally grown since. Most likely, I will pull this book off my shelf next year to brush up my slight edge.

What are some things you taken away from reading this book? If you haven’t read it yet, will you?

Conclusion: As mentioned, The Slight Edge is another staple book for your personal development library.

The Bookseller Book Review

Synopsis:The Bookseller by Cynthia Swanson

Title – The Bookseller  (Website, Goodreads, Amazon, BarnsAndNoble)

Author – Cynthia Swanson (Website, Goodreads)

Published – March 3rd 2015

Classification – Fiction

Summary – Kitty Miller enjoys her life as a single lady who owns a bookstore with her best friend Frieda. However, as her dreams of her alternative life become more and more real, Kitty wonders if she is really as satisfied as she thought she was.


Thoughts: The Bookseller was one book I took on a weekend Upper Michigan trip to visit family. I’m not sure if this was a good idea or not…because this meant I was reading about a person waking up in a different room than one she fell asleep in. And here I am..waking up in a room that is not my bedroom.

But maybe this added to my liking of the story!

The Bookseller by Cynthia Swanson book reviewI thoroughly enjoyed The Bookseller. The author has the writing talent to sway the reader as the story goes on. When reading the chapter set during her single life, I was swayed into thinking that life is the right one for Kitty. Then I read the next chapter set during her married family life and I was almost convinced that life is the correct one.

In some further digging after I finish, I found some wonderful book discussion questions (link here). I would have LOVED to participate in a group discussion about The Bookseller. It is such a wonderful story with so much depth.

Want to discuss The Bookseller with me? Comment below! I’d love to hear other people’s thoughts – there is so much to talk about!

Conclusion: The Bookseller is going on my recommended book list for everybody!

2016 Summer Reading List


2016 Summer REading List


June is here and the weather is warming up. I just spent Memorial Weekend at the family trottage (cottage/ is a thing), which is prime for making a dent in my reading list.

Plus, I am all done with classes and you know what that means…

I am finished worrying about assignments and I can resume worrying about getting the next book done!

Just kidding. Reading is not stressful.

Anyway, I wanted to share my 2016 Summer Reading List (in no particular order). Here it is:



Confess by Colleen Hoover

Confess: A Novel by Colleen Hoover

As a follow up to reading Colleen Hoover’s Maybe Someday, which I loved (review to come), I decided to stick her newest book on my list.

Goodread’s description: Auburn Reed has her entire life mapped out. Her goals are in sight and there’s no room for mistakes. But when she walks into a Dallas art studio in search of a job, she doesn’t expect to find a deep attraction to the enigmatic artist who works there, Owen Gentry.

For once, Auburn takes a risk and puts her heart in control, only to discover Owen is keeping major secrets from coming out. The magnitude of his past threatens to destroy everything important to Auburn, and the only way to get her life back on track is to cut Owen out of it.

The last thing Owen wants is to lose Auburn, but he can’t seem to convince her that truth is sometimes as subjective as art. All he would have to do to save their relationship is confess. But in this case, the confession could be much more destructive than the actual sin…”



Strong Looks Better Naked Khloe Kardashian Strong Looks Better Naked by Khloe Kardashian

Because of my curiosity in books written by celebrities, of course this book is on my list.

Goodreads’ description: Khloé Kardashian shares her secrets for finding strength of body, heart, mind, and soul with inspirational, revealing stories of her own struggles with weight, relationships, and her self-image.

In a culture that worships skinny, Khloé Kardashian writes with passion about the power of strength: a strong body becomes a strong mind, which builds to strength of heart, character, and ultimately strength of spirit. This is an inspiring book about how to create strength and true beauty in every area of your life, inside and out. The book features inspired personal stories from Khloé and practical how-to advice about building a strong body, mind, heart, and soul in your own life.”



The Program by Suzanne YoungThe Program by Suzanne Young

This book has been on my “need-to-read” list for a while. I’ve heard nothing but good things.

Goodreads’ description: In Sloane’s world, true feelings are forbidden, teen suicide is an epidemic, and the only solution is The Program.

Sloane knows better than to cry in front of anyone. With suicide now an international epidemic, one outburst could land her in The Program, the only proven course of treatment. Sloane’s parents have already lost one child; Sloane knows they’ll do anything to keep her alive. She also knows that everyone who’s been through The Program returns as a blank slate. Because their depression is gone—but so are their memories.

Under constant surveillance at home and at school, Sloane puts on a brave face and keeps her feelings buried as deep as she can. The only person Sloane can be herself with is James. He’s promised to keep them both safe and out of treatment, and Sloane knows their love is strong enough to withstand anything. But despite the promises they made to each other, it’s getting harder to hide the truth. They are both growing weaker. Depression is setting in. And The Program is coming for them.”



Thrill Me by Susan Mallery Thrill Me by Susan Mallery

I haven’t totaled up all of the books in Susan Mallery’s Fools Gold series, but I know it is a lot. In following my review of Kiss Me and Chasing Perfect, (click the links for my review) I decided to try another one of her books. This time, I picked Thrill Me which came out August of 2015.

Goodreads’ description: Meet the Mitchell brothers of Fool’s Gold, California—five gorgeous men who’ve left a trail of broken hearts in their wake…

Maya Farlow learned the hard way to depend only on herself, so when she fell too deeply for the bad-boy charms of Del Mitchell, she did the only thing she could—she ran. Stunned, Del left Fool’s Gold to make his name and fortune in extreme sports.

Now ten years later, Maya’s been hired to promote her hometown’s new slogan, The Destination for Romance. The celebrity spokesman is none other than Del, the man she dumped but never forgot. Awkward!

Although Del’s not the type to hold a grudge, he’s determined to avoid falling a second time for the woman who broke his heart. He’s a daredevil, not an idiot. Trouble is, in all his adventures, he never found a rush as exhilarating as Maya’s kiss. Maybe risking his heart will prove to be the biggest thrill of all…  ”



A Want so Wicked by Suanne Young A Want So Wicked by Suzanne Young

Another Suzanne Young book on my list! A Want So Wicked by Collen Hoover is the second book in A Need So Beautiful series (review to come soon), so pick up the first one if you haven’t yet. Although I wasn’t a huge fan of the writing and I wasn’t sure I was going to read the second one, the last chapter had me hooked. Yup, it was definitely going on my list.

Goodreads’ description: (link here due to the fact that it might be a spoiler if you haven’t read the first book)



Play It As It Lays by Joan Didion Play it As it Lays by Joan Didion

This book has been checked out of the library once before and returned before finishing the first chapter. Here’s to giving it another try. What is it about again?

Goodreads’ description: “A ruthless dissection of American life in the late 1960s, Play It as It Lays captures the mood of an entire generation, the ennui of contemporary society reflected in spare prose that blisters and haunts the reader. Set in a place beyond good and evil – literally in Hollywood, Las Vegas, and the barren wastes of the Mojave Desert, but figuratively in the landscape of an arid soul – it remains more than three decades after its original publication a profoundly disturbing novel, riveting in its exploration of a woman and a society in crisis and stunning in the still-startling intensity of its prose.” 



The Crown by Kiera Cass The Crown by Kiera Cass

I rave about Kiera Cass in my book review of The Heir. This past May was the release of the next book in the Selection series. Of course this one is going on my list!

Goodreads’ description: When Eadlyn became the first princess of Illéa to hold her own Selection, she didn’t think she would fall in love with any of her thirty-five suitors. She spent the first few weeks of the competition counting down the days until she could send them all home. But as events at the palace force Eadlyn even further into the spotlight, she realizes that she might not be content remaining alone.

Eadlyn still isn’t sure she’ll find the fairytale ending her parents did twenty years ago. But sometimes the heart has a way of surprising you…and soon Eadlyn must make a choice that feels more impossible—and more important—than she ever imagined.”



Young and Beardless by John Luke RobertsonYoung and Beardless by John Luke Robertson

I just adore the Robertson family and want to read all their books. Just published May 17th, Young and Beardless is one I haven’t had a chance to get my hands on yet. (Speaking of book lists: I cannot find a complete list of the Robertson family’s books. How do I know I read them all? Bonus points to whoever is able to link me to a complete list!)

Goodreads’ description: John Luke Robertson may be young and beardless, but he has a lot to say about growing up and discovering your purpose.

John Luke Robertson, the oldest son of Willie and Korie Robertson and brother of Dancing with the Stars sensation Sadie Robertson, shares his story of what it’s like to grow up as a Robertson and all the fun and craziness that entails, as well as what he has learned as he has stepped out into his own unique experiences. He also shares what it’s like to navigate the walk from boyhood to becoming a man. Topics in this book include friendship, kindness, dreaming big, embracing your God-given uniqueness, taking chances, and choosing mentors.

John Luke speaks frequently on dreams (how to build a dream for your life), schemes (how to plan for your dream to come true), and building teams (choosing the people around you who will become a team that helps make your dream come true through their support, honesty, and care). He will incorporate these important guidelines into the book, ultimately helping young people learn how to find and pursue a clear-cut purpose in their lives.”


Life Just Got Real by Sadie Robertson Life Just Got Real by Sadie Robertson

Another Robertson clan book! Sadie’s second book is set to release June 7th, 2016.

Goodreads’ description: “From Dancing with the Stars runner-up and Duck Dynasty star Sadie Robertson comes a fun novel about two teenage girls from different backgrounds and opposite lifestyles who discover there is more to friendship than what meets the eye.

Sixteen-year-old A.J. Stewart, born and raised in backwoods Tennessee, loves nothing more than repairing broken cars with her father and hanging out with her brothers and their friends. Not far away in the busy city of Nashville, Kate Kelly is always dressed in the latest fashion, wearing clothes from her mother’s boutique and jetting around the world with her father.

When A.J. starts going to the school Kate attends, they instantly dislike each other. But as the year progresses, Kate’s brother Val is drawn to A.J., and when prom comes around, he asks her to be his date—much to his sister’s displeasure.

The following summer at camp, the two girls continue their dislike of each other, until a surprising moment of openness when A.J. shares her faith with Kate. As their bond grows, they discover that they share an inner resolve to live life as God intended, and to live it in their own individual and original ways.

In Life Just Got Real Sadie Robertson inspires teens to find the value God has placed inside us all and to live with confidence and purpose in a very complicated world.  “



The Rose and The Dagger by Renee Ahdieh The Rose and the Dagger by Renee Ahdieh

The Rose and the Dagger is the second book in The Wrath and The Dawn Series (review to come soon!) Just released in 2015, I am so so so excited to continue this story!

Goodreads’ description: The darker the sky, the brighter the stars.

In a land on the brink of war, Shahrzad is forced from the arms of her beloved husband, the Caliph of Khorasan. She once thought Khalid a monster—a merciless killer of wives, responsible for immeasurable heartache and pain—but as she unraveled his secrets, she found instead an extraordinary man and a love she could not deny. Still, a curse threatens to keep Shazi and Khalid apart forever.

Now she’s reunited with her family, who have found refuge in the desert, where a deadly force is gathering against Khalid—a force set on destroying his empire and commanded by Shazi’s spurned childhood sweetheart. Trapped between loyalties to those she loves, the only thing Shazi can do is act. Using the burgeoning magic within her as a guide, she strikes out on her own to end both this terrible curse and the brewing war once and for all. But to do it, she must evade enemies of her own to stay alive.

The saga that began with The Wrath and the Dawn takes its final turn as Shahrzad risks everything to find her way back to her one true love again.”



And there you have it! My 2016 Summer Reading List! This is not an all-encompassing list of course since a bunch of books sneak their way into my pile practically everyday! But at the end of summer, these will be read and reviewed.


Any books I should add to my list? This list just reflects my reading personality at this time. Suggestions welcome!