Tag Archives: short stories

Book Review: “Hot Chocolate for the Mystical Soul”

This week’s reading selection kept to our “Month of Holiday” theme for the month of December, but approached it in a pretty different way. The book for this week was a collection of stories addressing a more mystical side of life (and Hot Chocolate is totally appropriate for this month’s theme), and is entitled Hot Chocolate for the Mystical Soul by Arielle Ford.

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Okay – I’m not one for being inspired by the “inspiring” stories of others. I read ONE Chicken Soup for the Soul book, and it was not really my cup of tea. I have a hard time finding any kind of inspiration from other people’s experiences, and it leaves me rather empty. I’d rather spend my time reading some great historical fiction. This book, however, piqued my interest.

Hot Chocolate for the Mystical Soul includes 101 stories from people of different backgrounds, religions, races, countries, and upbringings, who have all had experiences with the otherworldly. This book included some pretty amazing stories – some unbelievable, some really heartwarming, and still some rather touching! My favorite story was one of a man who had a 4 year old girl who was interested in Egypt. He received an invitation to do a guest speech in Egypt, and was told to bring his family. He was given a business sponsor who also had a young daughter (5). When the two girls saw each other, they ran into each others’ arms, hugged, and both said, “I’m so happy to see you again.” These young girls had never met.

This story inspired some really poignant feelings in my heart and soul, because I believe in soul mates, and I don’t think they are necessarily romantic soul mates, simply people who have been in your past life, and who are now present in this life. This book was full of these kids of amazing experiences, which kept me reading into the late hours of the night.

My favorite aspect of this book was that you could never really get bored – each story was only a page long (maybe 5 tops), and every one was different! It was wonderful to hear from people from different countries who all had different belief systems, and yet they all had these otherworldly experience. For me, this shows how we are all cosmically connected, regardless of our backgrounds, distances, or beliefs!

I would recommend this book for anyone with an open mind. I will probably be passing this one on to my mom, who I know will appreciate it. It’s good for some light reading, and interesting even if you only have a few minutes at a time to read (because you can fit in one or two stories at a time). I probably won’t be picking up many more “inspiring” books, but I’m glad I read this one. That was the point of this book challenge – to expand my reading horizons!

Are you a fan of these kinds of “personal inspiring stories” books? Do you believe in otherworldly experiences? Have you ever had an otherworldly experience?

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Book Review: “Holidays on Ice”

Somehow I managed to get through my three major essays due this week! It was a rough one, but as always, I looked to a book to help motivate me! This week’s reading was perfectly up to that task! Our 14th book of the challenge, this week I picked up Holidays on Ice by David Sedaris.

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This book contains a collection of short stories – some truthful, some fictional – from Sedaris about the holidays. The first story, “Santaland,” is uproariously hilarious. I could hardly breathe for laughing so hard, and had a hard time reading out loud to my husband, who got quite the kick out of Sedaris’s story about working as an elf in SantaLand in Macy’s. Sedaris’s honest observations about the obsession with Christmas shows (in a very funny way) how silly we can all be at the “Most Wonderful Time of the Year.”

Listen – this book is a winner! It’s intensely funny! Sedaris has a way of writing from the heart (and the funny bone). His writing style is easy to read, and his observations are astute. I had so much fun reading this book, and could not put it down.

This book would make a great holiday related read for anyone on your list this year – it’s a little bit naughty, and a little bit nice. I dare you to try to read this one out loud without laughing hysterically! I would recommend this book to anyone (over the age of 18) who needs a smile this holiday season, and desperately needs to escape the sugary coating we give to live this time of year!

Did anyone else read Holiday’s on Ice this week (or ever before)? Have you ever read anything by Sedaris before?

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