Saturday, March 20, 2021

Cheat Sheets for Life by Ayesha Ratnayake

Cheat Sheets for Life: Over 750 hacks for health, happiness and success by Ayesha Ratnayake

Publication date: February 1st, 2021

My rating: 4 out of 5 stars

The link above is an affiliate link. If you make a purchase through it, I will receive a small amount of the sale, at no cost to you. It helps me make a little money to support my book reviewing hobby. Thank you! 

Publisher's description:
Learn life-changing insights from hundreds of bestsellers – by reading just one book.

As a busy CEO, Ayesha hated her lengthy commutes – until she turned them into her own mobile library. Soon, she was completing over 70 audiobooks each year on happiness, health, productivity, and success – while stuck in traffic. She began capturing and categorizing the most valuable research from her readings for rapid reference. In doing so, she realized that it was possible to derive a handbook for life, based on the expertise of hundreds of researchers. So, she set about doing just that.

The output is Cheat Sheets for Life – a concise handbook of science-backed advice on 17 dimensions of life, from health to money to leadership to relationships.

In Cheat Sheets for Life, you’ll learn:

— How playing the classic game “Tetris” can protect your mood

— The superfood that is “the most important dietary predictor of lifespan”

— Why you don’t need to have 8 glasses of water a day – and what to do instead

— The simple technique you can use to double your weight loss

— How to increase your chances of finding a partner by 25-46%

— The one factor that can predict your relationship satisfaction 10 years from now

— Why using all your vacation days boosts your chance of getting a raise

— Why you should keep a cute baby’s photo in your wallet

— How to decide whether to quit your job

— And 740+ more valuable insights!

Cheat Sheets for Life aims to be the last book you’ll ever need to pick up to improve your life. Using time-tested research, it strives to give even the busiest individual a foolproof guide to leading an optimized life.

My review:

I received this ebook from the author in exchange for a review. All opinions shared are 100% my own.

Okay… if you love lists and love learning new things, you will LOVE this book. It’s like an entire book of those super clickable Pinterest pins with 10 Ways to Be Better at this or 32 Ways to Be Better at that. It’s like the author has read and indexed ALL of those into bite-size lists of awesome. And the best part? She links to all the articles she got her information from in the back of the book. So, you can read a list of things to help you improve an area of your life and stop there. Or, if something really interests you, can you dive into the article behind the bullet point and learn more. One minor frustration is that the resource pages aren’t linked to the individual lists in the Kindle book. It would have been really helpful to use the Kindle feature of hyperlinking locations within a book to make popping back and forth from the list in the main text to the resource pages in the appendix.

The book is available as a paperback, which would be easier to read if you were just interested in flipping to a particular section and reading and referencing there. If you want to be able to easily access the bibliography for deep diving, the Kindle version read in your Cloud Reader is really nice since you can easily open the links. Why not buy both? Both are good.

It’s not a book to read cover to cover, but it is full of a wealth of information all at your fingertips or mouse click. I personally love lists and a good X Tips Pinterest pin so I enjoyed this book and appreciated the effort the author has put in to create it.  

Fun stuff:

Website for the book with additional resources like a free habit planner: 

About the author:

A Sri Lankan born in Fiji, Ayesha S. Ratnayake (MBA, Chartered Marketer) has 10+ years of experience in marketing and management. She has served as CEO, Director, and Shareholder of a technology firm where she led the development of an enterprise software product. She has also served as Co-founder and Director of a marketing communications agency. Ayesha is a startup mentor and a mental health advocate.

Thursday, March 18, 2021

Foster Cats... just because

I don't have a review this week (yet - the week isn't over though) but it has been a while since I shared pet photos!  So enjoy some foster kitten cuteness!  These two, Adrienne & Marinette, will be available for adoption soon from CritterhouseKC.  

Friday, March 12, 2021

Falling into Magic (Destiny Falls Mystery & Magic #1) by Elizabeth Pantley


Falling into Magic (Destiny Falls Mystery & Magic #1) by Elizabeth Pantley 

Publisher: Kindle Direct Publishing

Publication date: November 15th, 2020

My rating: 4 out of 5 stars

The link above is an affiliate link. If you make a purchase through it, I will receive a small amount of the sale, at no cost to you. It helps me make a little money to support my book reviewing hobby. Thank you! 

Publisher's description: 

When Hayden was a child, she lost her cat. Adults told her the cat ran away, but she knew the truth. The mirror had taken her. She knew because the mirror had given her a glimpse of an alternate world and had nearly pulled her in, so she was certain the cat had suffered that fate.

Twenty years later Hayden discovers the secret of the mirror when she is thrust into it. She learns of a world she never knew existed, and a family she never knew she had. But danger brought her here, and it followed her. Now, Hayden is on a mission to remove the threat, so that she can begin her magical, meaningful new life in this enchanted world.

About the author:

Elizabeth Pantley is the internationally bestselling author of The No-Cry Sleep Solution and twelve other books for parents, published in over twenty languages.

She simultaneously writes the well-loved Destiny Falls Mystery & Magic book series.

Elizabeth lives in the Pacific Northwest and is the mother of four and Nana to one. Visit her at

My review:

I received a copy of this ebook from the author in exchange for my review. All opinions shared are 100% my own.

Magic and talking cats. Um… yes?! Do you even know me? The book also has an overall “long-lost princess” vibe to it. I love a good fairytale and, on that front, this book definitely delivers. The story is told primarily from Hayden’s perspective, though the reader is occasionally taken to the cave of a witch where we hear the voice of the unknown bad guy of this fairytale. Overall, the story follows along pretty classic lines, but it has enough fun quirky extras (like aforementioned talking cats) to leave a lot of fun paths forward after this solid world-building first effort. There are a LOT of interesting plot threads still waiting to be pulled. The first book did lean more heavily on world-building instead of the mystery aspect of the plot.

A couple of things I didn’t love: I am not a fan of love-triangles and there’s some strong foreshadowing to the presence of one in future books of the series. And the very occasional breaking of the fourth wall is jarring. Either do it or don't do it. The smattering here and there of the reader "you" was irksome and broke my reading flow.

Overall, I would recommend the book to anyone who loves a cozy mystery with talking animals and magical elements. The magic isn’t explored as much in this installment of the new series, but the potential is there for it… and, you know, talking cats who help save the day! 

Fun stuff:

Book two of the series, The Disappearance of Emily, releases on March 15, 2021.