All posts by Jen

First Comes Love then Comes Malaria by Eve Brown-Waite

In this laugh-out-loud funny memoir, a pampered city girl falls head over little black heels in love with a Peace Corps poster boy and follows him —literally–to the ends of the earth.
Eve Brown always thought she would join the Peace Corps someday, although she secretly worried about life without sushi, frothy coffee drinks and air conditioning.  But with college diploma in hand, it was time to put up or shut up. So with some ambivalence she arrives at the Peace Corps office–sporting her best safari chic attire –to casually look into the steps one might take if one were to become a global humanitarian, a la Angelina Jolie.  But when Eve meets John, her dashing young Peace Corps recruiter, all her ambivalence flies out the window. She absolutely must join the Peace Corps – and win John’s heart in the process. Off to Ecuador she goes and – after a year in the jungle – back to the States she runs, vowing to stay within easy reach of a decaf cappuccino for the rest of her days.

But life had other plans.  Just as she’s getting reacquainted with the joys of toilet paper, John gets a job with CARE and Eve must decide if she’s up for life in another third world outpost. Before you can say, “pass the malaria prophylaxis,” the couple heads off to Uganda, and the fun really begins–if one can call having rats in your toilet fun. Fortunately, in Eve’s case one certainly can, because to her, every experience is an adventure to be embraced and these pages come alive with all of the alternatively poignant and uproarious details.
With wit and candor, First Comes Love, then Comes Malaria chronicles Eve’s misadventures as an aspiring do-gooder. From intestinal parasites to getting caught in a civil war, culture clashes to unexpected friendships, here is an honest and laugh-out-loud funny look at the search for love and purpose—from a woman who finds both in the last place she expected.

My Review: I love travel memoirs, I really liked this one.  This one was unique because she joined the peace corp and gave a very real story.   Most of us hear about the great accomplishments of the peace corp, but what if something goes wrong?

I loved this story because it was also a love story and the distance (literally) someone is willing to go for those they love.

The story of Uganda was amazing, Uganda is a country I really hope to visit someday.  The Pearl of Africa.   While Uganda isn’t always shiny it was nice to hear the good and the bad, because I do think a lot of times people who write travel memoirs they want to paint the most positive light to the point it doesn’t always feel real.

This book is perfect for ANYONE who wants to visit Ecuador or Uganda.  It is also perfect if you are contemplating the peace corp.

This is a refreshing take on living abroad and I think it is a great read for the casual reader or the world traveler.

The Romeo Catchers (The Casquette Girls #2)

 

Tormented by the fate she condemned her mother to, and by the lies she’s forced to tell to cover it up, Adele scours Storm-ravaged New Orleans for the truth about her family’s magical past. But every turn leads her back to the one person she’s determined to forget: Niccolò Medici. Not even the multitude of enchanted locks on the attic door trapping Nicco within can break their connection.

Sensing Nicco calling to Adele, Isaac tries relentlessly to keep her from exploring paths too dark that would endanger them all. But a new threat is rising: the Medici’s presence has attracted something else to New Orleans…an older enemy, one that will bring Isaac’s haunted past to life, test the witches’ friendships, and jeopardize Adele and Isaac’s blossoming relationship.

In this spellbinding continuation of The Casquette Girls saga, Adele must draw on the past—from seventeenth-century Florence, a time bubbling with alchemy and fraternal betrayal—and sort history from fantasy if she is to have any chance of saving her mother, her coven, and her magic.

 

My Review:  This was an absolutely amazing follow up to the first book.   I could not and did not want to put this book down.

Adele is a fantastic heroine that I found incredibly believable in her actions.  She did not seem fake or phony but how I would expect a 16 year old girl to react in dire situations.  She wants to be a kid, but she is torn between love, family and he powers.

The new characters were also fun, I found them perfectly bad and a great edition to this story.

Isaac had real struggles too, and again I felt he was believable in his actions.   I felt he was true to his age and his duty.

This book is overall a nonstop page turner that will make you want to walk around New Orleans and take in everything.  The city has a supernatural feel and I think this book would add to that.

Fantastic 5 star read.

My Drug Store Beauty run

I got a great compliment yesterday, that my eye makeup looked fantastic.   I found this compliment pretty amusing because I bought a bunch of cheap drug store make up the night before… and that is what I had on.

I love when I find cheap make up basics and the result in compliments.   I will admit it, I am pretty vain.

I am not a make up expert at all, in fact up until my recent job I NEVER wore make up,  but now in an effort to look professional well I wear it.

Anyway, if you are looking for cheap basics I recommend these.  I am still trying to decide if the mascara makes my lashes look 80% longer but I do like how it stays put and it doesn’t clump.

I have always bought Wet & Wild eye liner so I just grabbed my two normal colors, black and golden-brown (eye liner was the reason I was at the store in the first place) as I was walking out I came across the Elf matte lipstick.  I bought in in neutral because I have found that light neutral colors tend to work with my very pale skin.

Overall, these are great affordable drug store finds that you should add to your make up bag.   As always they are cruelty free and some are vegan.  #winning

Do you use these products?  What amazing drug store brands have you found recently?

Disclaimer: This post features affiliate links.

The Funeral Flower by Michelle Jester

The Funeral Flower
by Michelle Jester
Genre: NA Contemporary Fiction
Release Date: June 20th 2017

Summary from Goodreads:

Devastated by the death of her grandfather, six-year-old Kelly Rodgers barely manages to cope with the profound loss. Already facing issues at school, she finds herself spiraling deeper into despair, when a fateful interaction through the fence in her backyard gives her hope. In the years following, Kelly realizes that life’s tragedies can be dealt with through acceptance; until another series of agonizing events leaves her heart in pieces.

Finding herself thrown into new surroundings, Kelly embraces her life and resolves to never fall in love. That decision is easy to keep until her junior year when she is drawn by an unavoidable attraction to the new guy, tormented James Delaney. The moment he looks up at her and smiles, her body betrays her. And he notices. She is determined to avoid him, but soon Kelly is forced to face the inevitable truth: She doesn’t want to avoid James… and he won’t let her.

Even though tragedy always follows love.


Due to critical subject matter recommended for Ages 17+


Buy Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes | Kobo  


 

About the Author
I am a hopeless romantic (I think this is the most important thing to know about me). In addition, I live in Greenwell Springs, Louisiana with my husband and high school sweetheart. Together we have a son and daughter. Throughout my life writing and photography have been my main creative outlets. 
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