Review: When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi

41diKbNSQSL._SX336_BO1,204,203,200_Synopsis: 

At the age of thirty-six, on the verge of completing a decade’s worth of training as a neurosurgeon, Paul Kalanithi was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer. One day he was a doctor treating the dying, and the next he was a patient struggling to live. And just like that, the future he and his wife had imagined evaporated. When Breath Becomes Air chronicles Kalanithi’s transformation from a naïve medical student “possessed,” as he wrote, “by the question of what, given that all organisms die, makes a virtuous and meaningful life” into a neurosurgeon at Stanford working in the brain, the most critical place for human identity, and finally into a patient and new father confronting his own mortality.

What makes life worth living in the face of death? What do you do when the future, no longer a ladder toward your goals in life, flattens out into a perpetual present? What does it mean to have a child, to nurture a new life as another fades away? These are some of the questions Kalanithi wrestles with in this profoundly moving, exquisitely observed memoir.

Paul Kalanithi died in March 2015, while working on this book, yet his words live on as a guide and a gift to us all. “I began to realize that coming face to face with my own mortality, in a sense, had changed nothing and everything,” he wrote. “Seven words from Samuel Beckett began to repeat in my head: ‘I can’t go on. I’ll go on.’” When Breath Becomes Air is an unforgettable, life-affirming reflection on the challenge of facing death and on the relationship between doctor and patient, from a brilliant writer who became both.

My Review: 

THIS BOOK! OH MAN, this book has SERIOUSLY done me in! THIS IS AN ABSOLUTE MUST READ! I REPEAT, “THIS IS AN ABSOLUTE MUST READ!” Every person in the world should read this book! It really makes you think about life and death. The words in this book are so moving, honest, and full of compassion. I’m in such awe and have a ton of respect for Dr. Kalanithi for his courage to write this book after being diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer.

“Be ready. Be seated. See what courage sounds like. See how brave it is to reveal yourself in this way. But above all, see what it is to still live, to profoundly influence the lives of others after you are gone, by your words.”

It’s been a week since I finished this book and I’m still thinking about it. This book is so beautifully written you are immediately hooked beyond prevail. At the same time the story is devastatingly sad because you ultimately know where it’s heading. I felt that it was only fitting to honor Dr. Kalanithi by posting this review on the 1 year anniversary of his death since I finished reading his book so close to that date.

The synopsis of this book covers the premise of this book so I’m not going to repeat it. I’m going to tell you what I love about this book.

Lines from the book I loved:

1. “I began to realize that coming in such close contact with my own mortality had changed both nothing and everything. Before my cancer was diagnosed, I knew that someday I would die, but I didn’t know when. After the diagnosis, I knew that someday I would die, but I didn’t know when. But now I knew it acutely. The problem wasn’t really a scientific one. The fact of death is unsettling. Yet there is no other way to live.”

2. “Grand illnesses are supposed to be life-clarifying. Instead, I knew I was going to die—but I’d known that before. My state of knowledge was the same, but my ability to make lunch plans had been shot to hell. The way forward would seem obvious, if only I knew how many months or years I had left. Tell me three months, I’d spend time with family. Tell me one year, I’d write a book. Give me ten years, I’d get back to treating diseases. The truth that you live one day at a time didn’t help: What was I supposed to do with that day?”

3. “The tricky part of illness is that, as you go through it, your values are constantly changing. You try to figure out what matters to you, and then you keep figuring it out. It felt like someone had taken away my credit card and I was having to learn how to budget. You may decide you want to spend your time working as a neurosurgeon, but two months later, you may feel differently. Two months after that, you may want to learn to play the saxophone or devote yourself to the church. Death may be a one-time event, but living with terminal illness is a process.”

4. “Diseases are molecules misbehaving; the basic requirement of life is metabolism, and death its cessation.”

5. “The most obvious might be an impulse to frantic activity: to “live life to its fullest,” to travel, to dine, to achieve a host of neglected ambitions. Part of the cruelty of cancer, though, is not only that it limits your time; it also limits your energy, vastly reducing the amount you can squeeze into a day. It is a tired hare who now races. And even if I had the energy, I prefer a more tortoiselike approach. I plod, I ponder. Some days, I simply persist.”

6. “Human knowledge is never contained in one person. It grows from the relationships we create between each other and the world, and still it is never complete.”

7. “It’s easier when the patient is ninety-four, in the last stages of dementia, with a severe brain bleed. But for someone like me—a thirty-six-year-old given a diagnosis of terminal cancer—there aren’t really words.”

8. “Doctor’s need hope, too.” This choked me up a bit. I’ve never thought about how doctors themselves feel when they’re diagnosed with an illness. Prior to reading this book, I think, I must have thought that doctors were immortal or something. This definitely puts things into perspective.

Other things that made me fall in love with this book:

– I really liked that Dr. Kalanithi talked about his relationship with his wife before his diagnosis and also after.

– The Epilogue which was written by his wife Lucy Kalanithi. (So Beautiful and that’s when my tears began!)

– The  Cover.  I like the other cover with him in the scrubs as well, but I absolutely love the above cover. The feather symbolizes many different things. Just to name a few: purity, truth, calm, peaceful, and loving. I think all of these are fitting for this book. This cover to me is pure and breathtaking, just like this book!

Thank you, Dr. Kalanithi for having the strength and courage to write this book.  Your words will definitely live on!

~May your soul forever, Rest In Peace.

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6-star

New Release: Rich Bitch: A Simple 12-Step Plan for Getting Your Financial Life Together…Finally by Nicole Lapin

51biPLfYXSL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_Synopsis: 

In Rich Bitch, money expert and financial journalist Nicole Lapin lays out a 12-Step Plan in which she shares her experiences—mistakes and all—of getting her own finances in order. She talks to you not like a lecturer but as your friend. And even though money is typically an “off-limits” conversation, nothing is off-limits here.

Lapin rethinks every piece of financial “wisdom” you’ve ever heard and puts her own fresh, modern, sassy spin on it. Sure, there are some hard-and-fast rules about finance, but when it comes to your money, the only person who can tell you how to spend it is you. Should you invest in a 401(k)? Maybe not. Should you splurge on that morning latte? Likely yes. Instead of focusing on nickel-and-diming yourself, Nicole’s advice focuses on investing in yourself so you don’t have to stress over the little things.

Rich Bitch rehabs whatever bad money habits you might have and provides a plan you can not only sustain, but also thrive on. You won’t feel deprived but rather inspired to go after the rich life you deserve, and confident enough to call yourself a rich bitch.

(Click Book Cover for Amazon Purchase Link.)

~Happy Reading!

New Release: The Crooked Heart of Mercy: A Novel by Billie Livingston

5164RDrOCRL._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_Synopsis:

Ben wakes up in a hospital with a hole in his head he can’t explain. What he can remember he’d rather forget. Like how he’d spend nights as a limo driver for the wealthy and debauched….how he and his wife, Maggie, drifted apart in the wake of an unspeakable tragedy…how his little brother, Cola, got in over his head with loan sharks circling.

Maggie is alone. Again. With bills to pay and Ben in a psych ward, she must return to work. But who would hire her in the state she’s in? And just as Maggie turns to her brother, Francis, the Internet explodes with video of his latest escapade. The headline? Drunk Priest Propositions Cops.

Francis is an unlikely priest with a drinking problem and little interest in celibacy. A third DUI, a looming court date.…When Maggie takes him in, he knows he may be down to his last chance. And his best shot at healing might lie in helping Maggie and Ben reconnect—against all odds.

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~Happy Reading!

 

New Release: LIGHTNING by Sandi Lynn

51RGFQ3htvL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_Synopsis: 

“He shoots and he scores! Lightning Logan strikes again.”

That was me, Lightning Logan Jackson, because I was as fast as lightning on the ice. Playing for the NHL had been my dream since I was six years old when my dad took me to my first hockey game. Hockey was my life. It consumed me. It was the one thing in life that I could commit to. Relationships were a no. Sex with beautiful women and no strings attached was a yes. I was a bachelor—happy and living the dream. Then the accident happened and the doctors told me I’d never play hockey again. My life went to shit in the blink of an eye. All hope and the will to live was gone: until Brooke Alexander walked into my life.

I was hired to help Logan Jackson get back on the ice. I had rules. Rules he needed to follow if he was going to play hockey again. He was stubborn, defiant, and nothing I couldn’t handle. Rehabilitation was going to be difficult and pure hell. I had to break him in order to help him. I knew what it was like to have your dreams taken away from you and I was determined to give him his dream back, even if it meant losing him.

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~Happy Reading!

New Release: Jackson’s Trust: A Fourth Down Novel by Violet Duke

51lYwEHEVcL._SX327_BO1,204,203,200_Synopsis: 

It’s no secret that sports analyst Jackson Gray doesn’t do relationships. What is a secret, however, is the reason why. Jackson’s life is . . . complicated. And it doesn’t help that his current hands-off “friendship” is with the cute-as-hell new sideline reporter he’s assigned to train. Turns out, not only is the woman damn sweet, she also knows as much about football as he does. Like it or not though, Jackson has to remind himself that sex is the only thing he has to offer . . . until now.

Leila Hart’s fast-growing friendship with Jackson is something she’d never risk, no matter how unbelievably seductive the reward. Becoming an NFL sportscaster has always been the goal, and thanks to Jackson’s fierce support and mentoring, it all finally seems within reach. Problem is, a girl can only take so much of that sexy-as-sin voice whispering dirty, filthy football stats in her ear before she loses all self-control. A workplace romance with Jackson is a disaster waiting to happen, especially for someone with big dreams . . . and secrets of her own.

(Click Book Cover for Amazon Purchase Link.)

~Happy Reading!

New Release: Anti-Romance by Cassia Leo

61ObUEBO5kL._SX333_BO1,204,203,200_Synopsis: 

Laney Hill is screwed. On the bed. On the treadmill. On the hood of a BMW. And on her boss’s desk. Then she’s screwed again when she steps into the free clinic and finds out she has gonorrhea. That dirty prick gave her gonorrhea! She’s totally going to break up with him…until he breaks up with her…because he’s married!
A spur of the moment date with her hot musician neighbor, Kade Masters, goes from smoking hot to red-hot disaster in two seconds flat. Then, a night out drinking with friends leads to a fateful–yet awkwardly-sloppy–kiss between her and her best friend George Bratton.
Laney is ready to go into hibernation-mode, when George receives an invitation to his ex-girlfriend’s destination wedding in London. Self-destructive George and gonorrhea survivor Laney make a deal to go as each other’s dates. It will make great material for Laney’s “Anti-Romance” blog and maybe it will help George finally get over his ex.
Pushing aside thoughts of Kade, and his “big engine that could”, Laney jumps at the chance to escape to the magical land of the royal family. But her magical vacation soon turns into a royal, steaming pile of lies.

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~Happy Reading!

New Release: Risking It All: A Naked Men Novel by

51dTHL8A5iL._SX327_BO1,204,203,200_Synopsis: 

Griffin Montgomery helps people. As a teenager, he kept his best friends alive after their soccer team’s bus crashed in the Alps. Now, as a Coast Guard search and rescue pilot, he saves lives with reckless abandon—until he goes too far and earns a lengthy suspension. Working on the Naked Men projects keeps his mind busy, but Griff’s itching to get back in the action. That’s when he finds his latest rescue mission: a pretty wallflower who’s stuck in her comfort zone.

Chloe Widmore doesn’t take risks. As a professional letter writer, she gets enough excitement out of expressing other people’s emotions. So when the hottest man she’s ever seen invades her coffee shop, Chloe surprises herself with how much she wants to be with him. Routines make her feel safe. Griff makes her deliciously unsafe, in so many ways. But falling for him is one risk she might just have to take . . . whether she’s ready or not.

(Click Book Cover for Amazon Purchase Link.)

~Happy Reading!

New Release: P*rn Star by Laurelin Paige & Sierra Simone

51llpssNVWL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_Synopsis:

You know me.

Come on, you know you do.

Maybe you pretend you don’t. Maybe you clear your browser history religiously. Maybe you pretend to be aghast whenever someone even mentions the word porn in your presence.

But the truth is that you do know me.

Everybody knows Logan O’Toole, world famous porn star.

Except then Devi Dare pops into my world, and pretty soon I’m doing things that aren’t like me–like texting her with flirty banter and creating an entire web porn series just so I can get to star in her bed. Again. And again.

With Devi, my entire universe shifts, and the more time I spend with her, the more I realize that Logan O’Toole isn’t the guy I thought he was.

So maybe I’m not the guy you thought I was either.

 

(Click Book Cover for Amazon Purchase Link.)

~Happy Reading!

New Release: LAST HEARTBREAK by H.M Ward & Melanie Bussière

514vt6Aa-oL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_Synopsis: 

When a hot guy with blazing blue eyes and a sexy smirk saves my ass and covers up my sins, I know I’m screwed. He’s poor, and is probably morally deprived like every other ass I’ve attracted recently.

I admit it. I’m a moron magnet. If the guy’s a dick, then he sweeps me off my feet and promptly stabs me in the back. Billionaires are all the same. I’ve fallen for loser after loser, which earned me the classy reputation of being easy. I’m easy on the eyes, easy to bed.

But no one knows the truth, no one knows the events that forced me into the ledge of that elite NYC hotel–no one except that strapped, hot waiter.

Now I have to figure out if he’s an ally or an enemy. I need a friend, a real one, and not some jerk who’s after my money or my name. But If I make the wrong choice, it’ll destroy me.

The ledge high above the city was only the beginning. No one can help me now. I’m on my own.

(Click Book Cover for Amazon Purchase Link.)

~Happy Reading!

New Release: Slave to the Rhythm (The Rhythm Series, Book #1) by Jane Harvey-Berrick

41Do1xk1UnL._SX335_BO1,204,203,200_Synopsis:

DANCE. Guns.
MUSIC. Bullets.
RHYTHM. Pain.

Music in my head, dance in my body, the rhythm of my heart.

How far can you fall in just one month? How quickly can the human spirit be broken? Where does evil hide in plain sight?

Ash wants to dance. Needs it. To leave behind a life of expectation and duty, to set his soul free.
But life is never that simple. Every step is a journey on a new road.

For every action, there is a reaction.

Every choice has a consequence.

And when you meet the wrong person, all bets are off.

Laney tolerates her limitations, pushing quietly at boundaries. But when Ash crashes into her world through rage and violence, it sets off a chain reaction that neither of them expected.

(Click Book Cover for Amazon Purchase Link.)

~Happy Reading!