My Favorite Books

The Walking Drum
Ender's Game
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
The Curse of Chalion
The Name of the Wind
Chronicles of the Black Company
The Faded Sun Trilogy
The Tar-Aiym Krang

Sunday, August 21, 2022

Review: Speaking with Spirit: 52 Prayers to Guide, Inspire, and Uplift You

Speaking with Spirit: 52 Prayers to Guide, Inspire, and Uplift You Speaking with Spirit: 52 Prayers to Guide, Inspire, and Uplift You by Agapi Stassinopoulos
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

You get 52 reflections (2-3 pages each) on various aspects of Life, that if you actually have any experience with might help; however, I found it difficult to relate to most of them.  Each reflection opens with a personal anecdote and a little self analysis that I felt would apply more specifically to the author than to me.  Increasing the disconnect is the actual form of the Prayer.  If your spirituality is more independent of the established religions and you are comfortable with more generic language, the Prayers probably are not that bad … but I just could not get past the opening of Dear Beloved and ending with So Be It for all of them.  The language is generic enough to potentially fit within any tradition … or no tradition; but that actually makes it difficult to connect to somebody with a solid connection to a particular tradition … which is the primary issue that I had with this (for me, there just was no spark and spirituality is all about the spark).  While I [think] I understand what the author was going for, it was enough beyond my comfort zone to impede any spiritual benefit I might have found if the topic were more relevant to me.


1: My Birthday Wish: May My Life Be an Offering
2: How to Dial the Spirit for Directions
3: It’s Not a Trade; It’s an Offering
4: The Sweetness of Doing Nothing
5: The Gifts That Lie in the In-Between Times
6: God, Help Me Laugh Again!
7: Finding the Extraordinary in the Ordinary
8: The Courage to Give All Parts of Yourself a Voice
9: Putting the Day to Rest

10: Reviving Your Enthusiasm for Each New Day
11: Hearing the Whisper of Your Creativity
12: Asking God to Come with Me to My Job Interview
13: You Hold the Keys to Your Purpose

14: Becoming You: The Greatest Accomplishment 
15: The God Diet
16: The Hidden Gifts of Being Alone
17: Replace Your Addiction with God
18: The Imprisonment of Perfectionism
19: The Importance of Feeling Unimportant
20: Our Divine Right to Heal
21: To Thine Own Self Be True
22: You Are Never Really Abandoned
23: Stand in Your Mighty Self and Banish Self-Doubt

24: How to Get Out of a Toxic Environment 
25: You’re Bigger Than Your Fear
26: The Discouragement Trap
27: The the Wisdom in Your Disappointment
28: Reframing Failure to Your Advantage
29: In the Eye of the Hurricane: Finding Calm in Crisis
30: Having the Freedom to Choose How You React
31: Resetting Your Balance
32: Yes, You Can Kick the Worry Habit
33: When You Shut Others Out, You Shut Yourself Down

34: The Gift of Praying for Others
35: Finding Your People
36: To Compare Is to Despair
37: Free Yourself from Being Caught in the Middle
38: How to Lose an Argument and Still Be Okay
39: Breaking the Pattern of Unhealthy Attachments
40: Breaking Up: A Divine Opportunity to Upgrade Yourself
41: Yes, You Can Be Happy After Divorce
42: Parenting Through the Ups and Downs of the Teenage Years
43 Partnering with Spirit to Care for Aging Parents
44: Finding Comfort and Grace in the Loss of a Loved One
45: Being at Home Wherever You Are
46: Love Yourself the Way You Want to Be Loved
47: You Are the One You’re Looking For

48: Embracing All Aspects of the Feminine in You 
49: How to Navigate Being an Empath
50: Living with a Sense of Timelessness
51: Forgiveness: The Greatest Gift of All
52: Gratitude: The Key to Happiness and Fulfillment

Ending Questions

I was given this free advance reader copy (ARC) ebook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

#SpeakingwithSpirit #NetGalley.

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My Ratings Explained ...

  • [ ***** ] Amazing Read - Perfect story, exciting, engrossing, well developed complex characters, solid plot with few to no holes, descriptive environments and place settings, great mystery elements, realistic dialogue, believable reactions and behaviors; a favorite that I can re-read many times.
  • [ **** ] Great Read - Highly entertaining and enjoyable, exciting storyline, well developed characters and settings, a few discrepancies but nothing that can’t be overlooked. Some aspect of the story was new/refreshing to me and/or intriguing. Recommended for everyone.
  • [ *** ] Good Read - Solid story with a 'good' ending, or has some other redeeming feature. Limited character development and/or over reliance on tropes. Noticeable discrepancies in world building and/or dialog/behavior that were distracting. I connected enough with the characters/world to read the entire series. Most of the books I read for fun are here. Recommended for fans of the genre.
  • [ ** ] Okay Read - Suitable for a brief, afternoon escape … flat or shallow characters with little to no development. Over the top character dialog and/or behavior. Poor world building with significant issues and/or mistakes indicating poor research. Excessive use of trivial detail, info dumps and/or pontification. Any issues with the story/characters are offset by some other aspect that I enjoyed. Not very memorable. May only appeal to a niche group of readers. Recommended for some (YMMV).
  • [ * ] Bad Read - Awkward and/or confusing writing style. Poor world building and/or unbelievable (or unlikeable) characters. Victimization, gaslighting, blatant abuse, unnecessary violence, child endangerment, or any other highly objectionable behaviors by Main characters. I didn't connect with the story at all; significant aspects of this story irritated me enough that I struggled to finished it. Series was abandoned. Not recommended.