Whiskey in a Teacup

Author: Reese Witherspoon
Publisher: Touchstone
Genre: Non-Fiction Memoir
Source:  Received at Book Event

Goodreads:  Academy award–winning actress, producer, and entrepreneur Reese Witherspoon invites you into her world, where she infuses the southern style, parties, and traditions she loves with contemporary flair and charm.

Reese Witherspoon’s grandmother Dorothea always said that a combination of beauty and strength made southern women “whiskey in a teacup.” We may be delicate and ornamental on the outside, she said, but inside we’re strong and fiery.

Reese’s southern heritage informs her whole life, and she loves sharing the joys of southern living with practically everyone she meets. She takes the South wherever she goes with bluegrass, big holiday parties, and plenty of Dorothea’s fried chicken. It’s reflected in how she entertains, decorates her home, and makes holidays special for her kids—not to mention how she talks, dances, and does her hair (in these pages, you will learn Reese’s fail-proof, only slightly insane hot-roller technique). Reese loves sharing Dorothea’s most delicious recipes as well as her favorite southern traditions, from midnight barn parties to backyard bridal showers, magical Christmas mornings to rollicking honky-tonks.

It’s easy to bring a little bit of Reese’s world into your home, no matter where you live. After all, there’s a southern side to every place in the world, right?

Ope’s Opinion: I rarely read non-fiction, but this one caught my eye.  Reese Witherspoon is such a leader in promoting women, she has a book club and I think she is a great role model for young women. 

I enjoyed the tidbits her mother and grandmother gave to her.  Her book club picks are interesting.  The recipes were fun to read about, but not ones I think I would use on a regular basis.



Dancing Through Life

Author: Candace Cameron Bure           dancing
Publisher: B&H Books
Genre: Memoir
Source:  BEA


Goodreads: Candace Cameron Bure has grown up before our eyes and we’ve watched as she’s balanced life in Hollywood with her faith for many years. But that all reached new heights when she was given the opportunity to join the cast of Dancing With the Stars. Being on the show was one of her dreams come true; and with that dream came the opportunity to display her Christian faith in front of millions of people, through an intense season of stretching beyond her limits, and to run the race God gave her with joy and perseverance.

Join Candace as she reflects on the self-discovery that came through leaping out of her comfort zone. Go behind the scenes and experience the highs and lows, the roadblocks, and the personal victories. Hear straight from her heart on tough lessons learned about grace, rejection, perfectionism, disappointment, accountability, dealing with criticism, and more. Through God’s strength, and with the help of endless support from her family and friends, see how Candace stayed true to herself and publicly lived out her faith in Christ all the way to the finale.

How do you stand with conviction in your world? Where does your courage come from when faced with challenges? How do you live out your faith on a daily basis despite opposition? Your stage probably isn’t in Hollywood and the challenges you are facing may not be on live television, but they are no less real. Come along with Candace as she shares how she found the courage to stand with conviction on one of the largest platforms of her life.

Ope’s Opinion:  If you are a Dancing with the Stars fan you definitely will enjoy reading this book.  Candace shared her view of before, during and after her time on Dancing with the Stars.  

If you enjoyed watching Candace grow up on TV you will enjoy this book.

My only disappointment was that I wanted more of her family and private life.  That was not the focus of this book.  The focus was her time on DWTS and keeping her focus on her faith while dancing.

Rating: 3 – I like this book enough to suggest it to a friend or two.


Author: Piage Rawl, Ali Benjamin            positive
Publisher:  HarperCollins
Genre:  Memoir
Source:  BEA


Publication Date: August 26, 2014


Goodreads:  An astonishing memoir for the untold number of children whose lives have been touched by bullying. Positive is a must-read for teens, their parents, educators, and administrators—a brave, visceral work that will save lives and resonate deeply.

Paige Rawl has been HIV positive since birth, but growing up, she never felt like her illness defined her. On an unremarkable day in middle school, she disclosed to a friend her HIV-positive status—and within hours the bullying began. From that moment forward, every day was like walking through a minefield. Paige was never sure when or from where the next text, taunt, or hateful message would come. Then one night, desperate for escape, fifteen-year-old Paige found herself in her bathroom staring at a bottle of sleeping pills.

That could have been the end of her story. Instead, it was only the beginning. Paige’s memoir calls for readers to choose action over complacency, compassion over cruelty—and above all, to be Positive.

Includes twenty-five photos from Paige’s personal collection throughout.

Ope’s Opinion:  Before I start this review, you should know I am not a big reader of memoirs.  I have read several books about HIV and teens – I did not realize the bullying and isolation were still happening today.  I would have thought by now with all the information that is out there, people would not be so misinformed.

Paige’s voice in this book was clear and informative.  She was not whiney even though she was dealing with a lot of difficult situations.  I actually thought she was very mature for her age.  It was great to see Paige use her illness and hard lessons for good.

Being positive is a theme in this book. Even though Paige is HIV positive, she tried to have a  positive attitude. Paige wants us to look at life from a positive perspective.   I think she also wants others to treat everyone in a positive manner.


Rating:  Four Chairs – I like this book so much I know several friends to share it with.