Posted in Christian Fiction, Sip n' Read

Riverbend Gap by Denise Hunter -A Review

Just a rant: I love a good romance and so I naturally get all mushy when I encounter a romance story because who doesn’t

Genre: Christian Contemporary Romance

Publishing Date: 19 October 2021

Themes: Family /Grief/ Addiction/ Adoption

Romance Genre: Love Triangle

Anci’s book summary: A huge thanks to Thomas Nelson for my e-ARC in exchange for an honest review. I firmly believe that I am Denise Hunter’s biggest fan from Zimbabwe because this book had me feeling all kinds of mushy. This is the first book in a series set in the small town of Riverbend.

The book follows the sweet but strong, funny, and witty Katelyn Loveland affectionally known as Katie and Cooper the one sibling that can never hold down a relationship (but can he). Katie and Cooper in the most terrifying meet cute when her car veers off the road and ends on hanging on the cliffside. Luckily he happens to be enjoying the sunset drive when he stumbles on her and ends up rescuing her. While waiting for help to arrive they end up bonding but it’s not happy ever after because he then discover’s that she’s actually his brother’s new girlfriend, they try to be friends but no one can deny the chemistry between them. Oh mayn, this was such a gooooood book

Cover rating: 4/5

Would you read more books by the author? Yes

Character/s that I liked: Katie and Avery

The character that made me cringe: The guy that was running opposite Cooper for sheriff because he was cunning, devious, and hurtful; a reminder of what human beings can do

Do you recommend this book? Yes

Would I Enjoy this book as Christian looking for a clean read ? Yes you will!

RATINGS (RATING OUT OF 5)

Overall rating:

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

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Posted in african fiction, Sip n' Read

Intelligence Isn’t Enough: A Black Professional’s Guide to Thriving in the Workplace by Carice Anderson- A Review

Just a rant:I didn’t know who Carice Anderson was till this book and now I want to send her a friend request.

Genre: African Non -Fiction

Anci’s summary: A huge thanks to Jonathan Ball Publisher and NetGalley for my e-ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Firstly Carice is witty and intelligent and I wish I had read this book at University. This book should be required reading. The book is divided into 6 chapters which means you can finish in no time *fingers crossed*. In the first chapter, she tackles a whole new world which is the corporate world. She then goes into tackling how to get your mind right, why people matter, cultural intelligence, building your personal brand, the importance of communication, and how you can be of impact.

The book was packing valuable lessons that I kept on highlighting. Just a few takeaways from the book :

  • It doesn’t hurt to work with others! We all need help
  • Learn how to communicate and how to communicate well
  • Intelligence isn’t enough
  • Mistakes happen because we are human

We all need to read this book! I highly recommend it

Cover rating: 4/5

Favorite Chapter/s :

To be honest, all of them because every chapter was good

Would you recommend this book? Yes, go read it!

Would you read more books by the author? Yes

Ratings

Emotional-o-meter:
🥺🥺🥺/🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺

Overall Rating:

Rating: 5 out of 5.
Posted in african fiction

The Men I’ve hated by Tinatswe Mhaka- A Review

Just a rant: I don’t really read a lot of memoirs so this book was my first memoir of 2021 by a Zimbabwean woman. I call it a memoir because it’s the author’s story in her own words #HerStory

Genre: African Contemporary

Publisher : Carnelian Heart Publishing

Anci’s book summary: A huge thanks to Samantha Vazhure from Carnelian Heart Publishing for providing this book in exchange for an honest review. The Men I’ve Hated is as scandalously and seductively good as the title. My advice is to go into this book blind because then you won’t know what hit you. In the book the reader is transported to the genesis of this author’s journey and her relations with men. We watch her as she find herself, her role in society and what makes her a full fledged woman

Cover rating: 4/5

Would you read more books by the author? Yes

Do you recommend this book? Yes

Would I Enjoy this book as Christian looking for a clean read ? Please do note that this book is brutally honest and it also tackles sexuality

RATINGS (RATING OUT OF 5)

Overall rating:

⭐⭐⭐⭐

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Posted in Sip n' Read

A Zimbabwean Is In The Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls: 100 Real-Life Tales of Black Girl Magic

Just a rant: I absolutely love stories about black girls that are doing extraordinary things because #BlackGirlMagic

Genre: Children’s Non Fiction

Publishing Date: 28 September 2021

Anci’s book summary: A huge thanks to Rebel Girls for my e-ARC in exchange for an honest review. I firmly believe that every black girl needs to read this book. This is my favorite book so far! get ready to be inspired by women such as the wonderful Toni Morisson, Octavia E. Butler, Kamala Harris, and Issa Rae. What made me so happy was seeing Chido Govera a mushroom farmer from Zimbabwe. I especially loved that the book included a lot of black women from around the world including African women. This book is a must-read for all girls anywhere and the perfect bedtime companion

Cover rating: 4/5

Would you read more books by the author? Yes

Do you recommend this book? Yes

Would I Enjoy this book as Christian looking for a clean read ? Yes you will!

RATINGS (RATING OUT OF 5)

Overall rating:

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

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Follow me on Twitt/IG @heyanci

Posted in african fiction, Sip n' Read

No Longer At Ease – A Review

Just a rant :I absolutely love Chinua Achebe and I wish I had met the man because Things Fall Apart was one of my favorite books . So I went into this book with great anticipation because it’s Chinua

Genre : African Fiction

Themes: Corruption/Morals/ Ancestry

Anci’s summary : No Longer At Ease is book 2 of a trilogy with the first book being Things Fall Apart. In No Longer At Ease we follow Obi Okonkwo the grandson of Okonkwo who we met in Things Fall Apart. Obi has just returned from studying abroad (the UK ) after having gotten a prestigious scholarship from his village. As part of his scholarship he returns to Nigeria to work as a civil servant to repay his part of his scholarship. We follow him as he grapples with his new position as a civil servant while navigating family dynamics.

Cover rating : 4/5

Favorite Quote :

“A person who has not secured a place on the floor should not begin to look for a mat.”
― Chinua Achebe, No Longer at Ease

Would you recommend this book? Yes go read it!

Would you read more books by the author? Yes


Ratings

Emotional-o-meter:
🥺🥺🥺/🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺

Pace-o-meter

🔥🔥🔥/🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥

Overall Rating:

Rating: 4 out of 5.
Posted in Sip n' Read

Why Books Written By Black Authors Matter To Me

The first friend I ever made was a blue-eyed girl with straight hair and six dogs.

Yep, my first friend was a white girl. Elizabeth Fredison was the first person I ever saw who kissed dogs on the lips, got so pink faster that I could scream morning, and was the first person I buddy read with. It was inevitable that we would be friends because our parents were. For 9 years, we carpooled together, shared pudding, and exchanged books. We both loved Enid Blyton and the wind in the willows ( who didn’t?)

We were good friends that never saw black or white but just like-minded girls with a love of all things literary. The problem started when I started wanting straight hair. Bless my mother for being the definition of cool and not scolding but letting a whimsical naive black girl get some Dark & Lovely in her hair. You see, cinderella had straight hair and she probably didn’t curse when an afro comb made its way through her hair. That was a mistake! We have jokingly said my hair fell off because my ancestors were angry at me for hating my hair.

None of my favourite books was filled with heroes or heroines that looked like me and the tv shows were not helping. I didn’t know what I consumed shaped me till a dear friend exclaimed ‘ I was a coconut” and this was after she talked me into going home with her. Mind you, I was carpooling and my poor parents and the Fredison looked for me only for me to be taken home on a bicycle *laugh out loud* . You should have seen the grin on my face *I was ecstatic * but a turning point was on the horizon.

The colour purple turned up and changed my view of the world and it was Their eyes were watching god that came and sealed my love for romances. I wasn’t done because I now firmly believed that black people go through a lot and black people could fall in love. I was hungry for more but I wanted stories by my people (cue the Patrick Chakaipa’s). And then I met the fourth man I would fall in love with -Chinua Achebe. I have come a long way and don’t get me wrong I do not regret reading any book but I have changed the way I consume books.

I have been privilidged to have the honor of impacting our suprise gift that is my little sister. Because I buy her books I have made sure that her books have girls like her. It’s important that she reads books by women that look like her for her to believe that black girls run empires, black girls fall in love and there is no shame in melanin. As I write this she is reading A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier by Ishmael Beah. African and Black authored books matter to me because our stories are meant to be read and shared. It’s important that we realize that black girls eat shrimp, go on vacations, have great jobs, and fall in love

featured image:pexels.com/robertokaka

Posted in Christian Fiction, Sip n' Read

Lost and Found Faith – Blog + Review Tour

Lost and Found Faith JustRead Blog + Review Tour

Welcome to the Blog + Review Tour for Lost and Found Faith by Laurel Blount, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK

Title: Lost and Found Faith

Author: Laurel Blount

Publisher: Love Inspired

Release Date: August 24, 2021

Genre: Christian, Contemporary Romance

A terrible tragedy nearly broke him. Can love put him back together again?

Widowed history teacher Neil Hamilton has lost his way—at work, with people, and even with his faith. But Neil’s shut-down existence is disrupted when a small toddler and his would-be foster mother, vibrantly pretty Maggie Byrne, come crashing into Neil’s yard and his life. Can this absentminded teacher find himself again…and take a chance on love, too?

From Love Inspired: Uplifting stories of faith, forgiveness, and hope.

PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | IndieBound | Christianbook | BookBub

ALSO AVAILABLE


Anci’s Book Review

Themes : Family/ Adoption /Faith

Anci’s Verdict: This book was just amazing! If you have ever lost your faith and felt like you are not lovable then this book will make you cry for a bit. I loved how the author was able to incorporate the challenges of adoption and how grief impacts the one left behind

The book follows Neil Hamilton a broken man who is still reeling from the car accident that broke his heart so he is a little bitter and angry at God. What makes it sad is that he is an award-winning history teacher who has lost himself and his teaching spark. His life gets a huge shake when Maggie Bryne the most bubbly and awesome’s baker foster son Oliver foster son stumbles down the trail from home into Neil’s yard. He immediately bonds with Neil and clings to him for comfort. Maggie comes pounding at Neil’s door in search of Oliver. Neil thinks she’s not a responsible parent (because we tend to judge first and listen later) but as they spend time together sparks fly.

Character/s that I loved: Ruby (this woman’s faith was just on point)

The character most like me: Maggie

Book Excerpt :

But we don’t always get what we deserve, do we?” Maggie was watching him closely now, and
she seemed to be choosing her words carefully. “Life’s not like that. God’s plan can be pretty
mysterious. Sometimes bad things happen to us that we don’t deserve. Sometimes that flips
around, and we get a blessing we haven’t earned. Like tonight.” She smiled. “I know I was kind
of chilly with you when we left the school. I sure didn’t deserve for you to be such a good sport
when I banged on your door at two in the morning, carrying a screaming toddler—who’s
drooling all over your shirt, by the way. You’re actually a pretty great guy, Neil Hamilton.”
I used to be. He wanted to tell her that. He hadn’t cared much what anybody thought of him in
years, but for some reason, he wanted this woman to know that once upon a time he had been a
different kind of guy. The sort of guy she would have liked.
Instead, he said, “That probably just proves you don’t know me any better than Oliver does
.”

Cover rating: 4/5

Would you read more books by the author? Yes

Do you recommend this book? Yes

Would I enjoy this book as a Christian looking for a clean read? Yes, you will!

RATINGS (RATING OUT OF 5)

Emotional-o-meter:

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.


Cheesy-o-meter:

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.


Hunger-o-meter:

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Overall rating:

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Laurel Blount

Award-winning author Laurel Blount writes inspirational romances full of grit and grace—with characters who’ll walk right off the page and into your heart! She lives on a farm in Georgia with her husband, their four fabulous kids, and an assortment of ridiculously spoiled animals.

An enthusiastic multi-tasker, Laurel writes for both Berkley/Penguin Random House and Love Inspired/Harlequin. She’s the recipient of ACFW’s Carol Award, The New England Reader’s Choice Award, and GRW’s Maggie Award. She’s represented by Jessica Alvarez of Bookends Literary Agency.

Lost and Found Faith is Laurel’s sixth book—and five more stories are in the works! Stay tuned!

CONNECT WITH LAUREL: Website | Facebook | Instagram


TOUR GIVEAWAY

(1) winner will receive an embroidered dishtowel with Maggie’s favorite saying “The kitchen is the heart of the home” and a $25 Amazon gift card!

Lost and Found Faith JustRead Giveaway

Be sure to check out each stop on the tour for more chances to win. Full tour schedule linked below. The giveaway beins at midnight August 23, 2021, and lasts through 11:59 PM EST on August 30, 2021. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only (sorry guys). Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

ENTER GIVEAWAY HERE


Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

JustRead Publicity Tours

*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.

Posted in Sip n' Read

Help, I Read A Mills and Boon

It’s almost comical how ‘Christians’ have this self-righteousness going on because we all have stumbled and fallen short of the glory of God. Nobody is perfect and that’s okay because we are loved by a good father. However, as a Christian, I have had conversations with my fellow peers who have been a little harsh and critical of my love of romance books. Before we go deep into my post let me confess (please don’t judge me)

My first romance novel was a Mills and Boon that I borrowed from my mom without her knowledge. I was so curious why she always had tons of them in her handbag and the first thought was why were the covers filled with people and my books had animals. I was 14 years old and ready to read ‘ romance’, she eventually caught me though and that lead to an uncomfortable conversation( you know birds and bees hey)

That’s all folks! That’s my confession and now we all can agree that we have read a Mills and Boon. Whether you love medical, modern, or inspired you have read a Mills and Boon and like any romance reader you are amazing. Now here are the 3 rules you need to remember when reading a Mills and Boon:

  1. Read what you like ! You don’t owe anyone an explanation on why you are reading that particular book
  2. Be open to reading new authors
  3. Enjoy the experience ! Be mindful of your mood

With that said, what’s your favourite Mills and Boon ?

Posted in Koffeepionated

Signs They Are Into You According To Romance Novels

This blog post was meant to be the lessons on love Romance books taught me but when I sat down to write my mind went blank. It was the greatest blackout of 2021 in my head because in my mind it was going to be “easy-peasy” but apparently not. When I started scribbling my mind drifted to an unwatched episode of Survivor. Now before I screw myself over, we need to talk about the guy/girl who may or may not be into you. Ever wondered how you can tell someone is into you? Worry not! So I and my romance books are here to save your beard game and your hairlines. So here are the signs that they are into you according to romance books:

  1. From the very first time you met you have been at each other’s throat. Now I don’t mean WWE style but rather you just can’t stop rubbing on each other the wrong but right in love way.
  2. They constantly trying to be ‘helpful’. Uhm need a screwdriver, they are the handyman. Need someone to look at your laptop, they suddenly have an IT Degree from MIT.
  3. They suddenly start talking about how different you look and did they just suddenly notice that half hidden tattoo after 7 years uhmmm
  4. They start popping in a lot because uhmm they can’t get enough of you
  5. They want to watch whatever you want and did they just remember that you like Sour Cream all of a sudden after having bought the wrong flavour several times.
  6. They laugh at all your stupid jokes

Now for the life of me, I need to excuse myself as I am having burger thoughts but if they tick 4 of these they may be into you

Posted in She Kodes

The Untold Story Of How I May Have Passed My Python Exam

I am a terrible exam taker ! Before an exam my heart rate is that of an Olympic 100m runner and this is at just standing at the exam door thinking of how it feels like to fail and also my sweat glands just suddenly erupt (trust me when I say they have never showed up after an hours workout ). Also I suddenly get the nudge to pee (even after showing up to the exam room with an empty bladder). I am sure you now know I am an anxious exam taker so when I had to take my Python Certification Exam everything that could go wrong in my perfect world did.

For starters my computer took a break from studying and I had to pull out old Atticus from storage who processes everything at the speed of a snail because he doesn’t bother rushing for anything. I got so swamped with work that my study tutor couldn’t catch me if he could and 48 hours before my exam 😱I had an electric fault .At this point you are probably palpitating and feeling sorry for me (thank you for that).

Before I tell you what happened this is what I did to pass my Python Exam :

  1. I got help! My good old friend Dante came through to help me grasp Python easily even though I had moments I felt extremely dumb because I study better in color
  2. Constant practice.
  3. Listen to my body! Rest is key

So back to the story ,it was 8 hours before the exam and I had no electricity ,my phone battery was on 30% and I didn’t feel studied up. I went to bed at 6pm praying that electricity would come back but alas at 1 am I had to wake up and pray Tecno’s batteries lasted enough for an hour’s exam.

Didn’t I just start praying that my brain’s storage was enough to get me at least 70%😂so with a candle nearby I signed in to write my final exam . As soon as I hit submit my phone switched off leaving me with racing thoughts of did I pass or did I fail.

Electricity decided to show up in the morning because she is a drama queen . I could barely wait to see my fate after all I had paid for this with my hard earned cash long sighhhh.

Long story short I passed whoop. But I realized that I passed because of constant practice , getting someone to study with and being kind to myself.