The Good Kings by Kara Cooney

"Non Fiction" words carved into wood
Book Genre "Learning" with "Learn" spelled in blocks

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This has been a period in history that has always interested me, so I was really excited to get my hands on this book! Author Kara Cooney takes a look at five Pharaohs in this book and how their power and rule has impacted our modern day politics. The Pharaohs focused on throughout this book are Khufu, Senwosret III, Akenhaten, Ramses II, and Taharqa.

I found the lives, successes, and reign of these Pharaohs to be really interesting! Khufu was one that I was especially interested in because I find the Pyramids fascinating! It was interesting to learn about how the building was constructed and how Khufu dictated over his people to keep his secrets even in death.

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Culture Ignited: 5 Disciplines for Adaptive Leadership by Jason Richmond

Welcome to the blog tour for Culture Ignited hosted by Iread Book Tours!
"Non Fiction" words carved into wood
"Non Fiction" words carved into wood

The 5 Disciplines for Adaptive Leadership Every Executive Must Know

Corporate leaders need to be prepared for any crisis and have a plan in place to act quickly, decisively, and empathetically. In Culture Ignited: 5 Disciplines for Adaptive Leadership, culture change strategist Jason Richmond and coauthors Jeanne Kerr and Malcolm J. Nicholl reveal how companies whose leaders ignite their culture are able to weather any storm and get ahead of the competition.

Based on hands-on experience helping senior corporate executives navigate the turbulence of the 2020-2021 pandemic, the authors distill their findings into five key disciplines.

They share how to:

  • Inspire and communicate a shared purpose
  • Build trust and authenticity
  • Hone your performance management skills
  • Develop your talent
  • Create belonging through diversity and inclusion.

The authors also explore how a crisis can be turned into opportunity and how to lead an organization in overcoming challenges never taught in business school.

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Rebel Correspondent by Steve Procko

"Non Fiction" words carved into wood
Rebel Correspondent book cover with soldier

Rebel Correspondent is the true story of a young man who joined the Confederate Army days after his eighteenth birthday and served bravely until the war ended. Wounded twice, he emerged a changed person. But he wasn’t just a returning veteran; he was also a writer.

At the beginning of the twentieth century, Arba F. Shaw was a fifty-seven-year-old farmer. On a chilly December day in 1901, he put pen to paper to write his memories of being a Rebel Private in the 4th Georgia Cavalry (Avery), C.S.A. He completed writing his account in February 1902. His local newspaper, the Walker County Messenger, in Lafayette, Georgia, published his account in more than fifty articles from 1901 to 1903. Then it was all but forgotten. Until Now. Rebel Correspondent presents Arba F. Shaw’s account word-for-word, as first published in the Walker County Messenger almost 120 years ago. Procko annotates Shaw’s account with in-depth research, verifying it and uncovering the back story of his life and the lives of his Rebel comrades. Procko’s research offers a historical perspective on the many places and events Shaw so richly described.

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Swagger: Unleash Everything You Are and Become Everything You Want by Leslie Ehm

"Non Fiction" words carved into wood
Book Cover "Swagger" with crown drawn over "A" in Swagger
Book Genre Block "Inspiring" with letter tiles spelling "Do Not Give Up"

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Self-Help is a genre that continues to interest me. Swagger is focused on helping you to become your true, authentic self. As you go through the book, there are activities and ways to help you create goals.

I thought this was a really great book to help you become who YOU truly are. This is not about faking or pretending until you become what you think you are, it is about bringing out what is already inside you. The stories that are shared within this book are truly inspirational, and I found myself nodding over and over as I read them.

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Cerebral Palsy: A Story by Ilana Estelle

"Non Fiction" words carved into wood
Book Cover "Cerebral Palsy: A Story" with birds flying over a stormy water
Book Genre "Memoir" with person writing with pen

Born the second of premature twins, Ilana knew she was different from a young age, but for all the wrong reasons. Part memoir, part motivational guide, this is Ilana’s open and honest journey, from an angry confused child, knowing something was wrong, but not knowing what, to the ‘real’ her – a courageous woman using her experiences and lessons to create inspiring messages about mental and physical health, positivity, resilience and change.

Just the Facts:

Cerebral Palsy: A Story by Ilana Estelle
Genre: Memoir
Page Count: 288 pages
Publisher: RedDoor Press
Pub Date: Feb 1, 2020

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Pennies from Heaven by Koedi Nealy

"Childrens" Genre Block - 4 kids laying on stomachs looking at book
Pennies from Heaven book cover with illustrated girl under rainbow with flowers and dog
"Non Fiction" words carved into wood

Based on the true-life events that led Koedi Nealy to start changing lives one penny at a time at the age of seven, “Pennies from Heaven” teaches children that they are never too young to do great things for God. Koedi’s journey culminated in forming a non-profit that currently serves the homeless population in Houston, Texas, helping the most overlooked and undervalued people in the community.

Just the Facts:

Pennies from Heaven by Koedi Nealy
Genre:  Children’s Non-Fiction
Page Count: 27 pages
Publisher: Halo Publishing International
Pub Date: Nov 29, 2020

Where to Find This Book:

Amazon

Banner with book pages
I had the chance to interview Koedi Nealy! Check out our conversation!

If you could go back in time, where would you go?

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Strong Like Water by Laila Tarraf

"Non Fiction" words carved into wood
Book cover "Strong Like Water" with cover image of water rippling
Book Genre "Memoir" with person writing with pen

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This book is all memoir, self-help, and inspiration. I loved that while it discusses ways to be stronger in a business setting, this story really prepares you to be successful in life.

Tarraf takes the reader on her emotional journey of heartbreak and growth. I was saddened reading about Laila’s childhood where her parents’ fighting turned physical, creating a poor home environment for her. After she started her own family, she endured a devastating loss of her husband as well as both of her parents. Her story talks about her therapy and finding a way through her grief. The things that she learns, she speaks to us about applying in our daily lives, both personally and professionally.

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I’m So Glad You’re Here by Pamela Gay

Rating: 3 out of 5.

My Synopsis:

I’m So Glad You’re Here is a memoir written by Pamela Gay. She shares her very traumatic early life experiences and how those shaped her life. Pamela witnessed her father’s forced removal from their family home at a young age. He was restrained and wheeled out right in front of her, leaving a terrible mental imprint on her. Pamela’s family later moved to Florida leaving her behind, which further impacts her mental health.

Pamela shares with the reader that she was later diagnosed with Post-traumatic Stress Disorder. She tries a multitude of methods to help her, but finally finds eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) as a therapy method and finds that it helps her. This leads her to the beginning of her healing process.

How I Felt:

Pamela Gay’s story was written with such an honest, emotional voice. I thought that she was very open about her experiences and her recovery process, and I appreciated that. She talks a lot about her family’s dynamic, how they interacted with one another, and also about their mental health history. I like how this information helped to shape her story, and I found it very interesting.

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Hollywood Park by Mikel Jollett

Rating: 4 out of 5.

What I Loved:

Mikel Jollett wrote this memoir in a way that made me see how he felt going through these experiences. His narrative changes as he ages, so I really got a sense of the issues that he dealt with during each age range of his life. As a child, his story is written with a child’s narrative, and it was my favorite part. I loved how he chose to spell or write words, making me understand what this word meant or how it sounded to him as a child.

How I Felt:

I listened to the audio version of this book, so my review will discuss both the book itself, and the narration of the book.

Mikel Jollett spent the early years of his life in a cult called Synanon in California. Synanon started as a drug rehabilitation group, drawing Mikel’s parents to the cult, as his father was an addict. Synanon leaders soon forgot their original purpose, transforming into the cult Mikel grew up in. All children were separated from parents and raised in an orphanage-type environment within the Synanon encampment. Many children did not understand who their parents were, and some families rarely saw each other. Mikel writes about his brother in a description of the treatment of the children and it broke my heart.

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Bury Him by Doug Chamberlain

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Bury Him is one of the most heartbreaking memoirs I have read recently. I was so invested in Doug Chamberlain’s story and I felt every single emotion that he described throughout his story. It’s a war story that shows the lifelong impact of war time events on soldiers.

Doug Chamberlain did an excellent job of writing his story. I felt the entire book was well-written and I appreciated his honest, open expression of his feelings and the events he had to endure. I liked that this story offered a view of this war from a soldier’s eye. This war was before my time, so it is one I only have books like this to learn from.

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Four Faces of Femininity: Heroic Women Throughout History by Barbara McNally

Rating: 5 out of 5.

What I Loved:

Can I just talk for a minute about how beautiful this book is?!?!?! Just from the cover, you get a sense of how amazing the artwork is on the inside. It is a feast for the eyes! I loved taking in each lovely page in Four Faces of Femininity.

What I Felt:

Feminism is a weird thing to me. I grew up in a family-owned hardware store, so I learned how to unload a truck, stock shelves, mix paint, and help any plumber or electrician that walked through the door. On the other hand, I learned nothing about being in a kitchen. I have, on multiple occasions, baked a frozen pizza with the cardboard still underneath it. I am also the sole-worker in our household, with my husband being a stay-at-home dad. So, I’ve never really felt stuck in a gender role.

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Notes to My Son by Eric Lynn

Rating: 4 out of 5.

What I Loved:

I loved the concept and execution of Notes to My Son. Written in the form of 25 letters to his son, Eric Lynn shares advice on life, being a dad, and so much more. I loved the way he put his feelings down as a tribute to his son.

How I Felt:

The letters, or notes, that Lynn has compiled for his son are broken up into 25 unique pieces. I have found that these really stayed with me after I finished. There is a lot of wonderful advice for people of all ages in this book.

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