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Welcome! The ultimate luxury for me is curling up with a good book and a warm blanket. The next best thing is reviewing books and sharing them with others.

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25 10, 2016

Blog Tour: The Opposite of Everyone by Joshilyn Jackson

By | October 25th, 2016|Categories: Family Life, Genre Fiction, Literary, Literature & Fiction, Women's Fiction|Tags: , , |7 Comments

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opposite of everyone book coverPlease join Joshilyn Jackson, author of The Opposite of Everyone, as she tours the blogosphere with TLC Book Tours!

Reviewed by Bethany Kelly

Paula Vauss, a cutthroat divorce attorney, wasn’t always this way: skeptical and emotionless, pushing people away when they got too close. No, she used to be a free-spirited young girl on the road with her even more free-spirited mom, who told beautiful and entrancing tales born from Hindu mythology and southern oral tradition. She used to be the girl with a new past and present every time her mom decided it was time to leave the town they were in.

3 10, 2016

Review: Commonwealth by Ann Patchett

By | October 3rd, 2016|Categories: Coming of Age, Family Life, Genre Fiction, Literary, Literature & Fiction|Tags: , , |2 Comments

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commonwealth book coverReviewed by Meredith Kelly

“All life is linked together in such a way that no part of the chain is unimportant. Frequently, upon the actions of some of these minute beings depends the material success or failure of a great Commonwealth”.

So begins the story of two families, The Keatings’ and The Cousins’ who inadvertently come together because of a stolen kiss. The combined family has six children–two girls by the mother, and two girls and two boys by the father, all within a relatively narrow age range.

Commonwealth is a saga which spans over fifty years of the trials and tribulations of this blended family. I particularly like books in this format which tell the story from beginning to end.

29 09, 2016

Review: The Girl Who Could Read Hearts by Sherry Maysonave

By | September 29th, 2016|Categories: Contemporary, Family Life, Genre Fiction, Literature & Fiction|Tags: , , |0 Comments

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the girl who could read hearts book coverReviewed by Lauren Cannavino

Six-year-old Kate Kindrick is not like most little girls. Born with the magical ability to read people’s hearts, Kate is tiny, but mighty in her awareness and blessed with many gifts. When Kate was born, her dear grandmother, Grammy Mer, gave her a beautiful angel doll named Etta Ebella, that only rarely leaves Kate’s sight, but the doll has magical qualities and at times is very much alive. Etta Ebella becomes a silent staple in the story as much of what transpires in Kate’s life and her families is closely connected to the angel. Author Sherry Maysonave builds a strong main character in a child, one that remains poised and strong, while still remaining a little girl, filled with trust, wonderment and belief.

27 09, 2016

Review: The Summer That Melted Everything by Tiffany McDaniel

By | September 27th, 2016|Categories: Coming of Age, Family Life, Genre Fiction, Literary, Literature & Fiction|Tags: , , , |6 Comments

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the summer that melted everything book coverReviewed by Alisha Churbe

Fielding Bliss is our narrator, he’s an old man when he spins us the tale of The Summer That Melted Everything. The story waffles from current day, his reflection back to his childhood and any other memory or event he deems relevant between those two moments of time. The summer he reflects back to is 1984 when he was 13 years old. The year his father, Autopsy Bliss,
invited the devil to Breathed, Ohio. The devil arrives along with heatwave like the town has never seen (both environmental and metaphorical). This heat proceeds to melt everything.

McDaniel is clever and cunning with her word choices throughout. If you are someone who loves words and twisted meanings and innuendos, the book is a puzzle of double-meaning and McDaniel is a mistress of metaphor. In some books, authors try to show their creativity by using odd character names or descriptions and it distracts from the story. McDaniel uses it to feed her story and it works.

12 09, 2016

Review: The Green Road by Anne Enright

By | September 12th, 2016|Categories: Family Life, Genre Fiction, Literary, Literature & Fiction|Tags: , |2 Comments

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green road book coverReviewed by Alisha Churbe

Another gem from Anne Enright. If you haven’t read her previous stuff, I highly recommend her novels.

The Green Road is the story of the Madigan family and it spans practically 30 years. It steps in to show stories of the mother, Rosaleen and her four children, Dan, Constance, Emmet, and Hanna. It follows them across continents and decades. We watch the Madigan family grow up, grow apart and we see how they are when they come back together. Though they were raised together and share like experiences, the siblings have taken their own paths and become very separate and unique.

30 08, 2016

Review: Root, Petal, Thorn by Ella Joy Olsen

By | August 30th, 2016|Categories: Family Life, Genre Fiction, Historical, Literature & Fiction, Women's Fiction|Tags: , , , |3 Comments

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root petal thorn book coverReviewed by Alisha Churbe

Olsen’s debut novel, Root, Petal, Thorn is journey through one women’s grief and her quest to understand the women who have occupied her historical home in an old neighborhood in Salt Lake City, Utah. Olsen does a nice job of setting the story in Utah with only touching on the Mormon religion, rather than focusing the entire novel on it. Her descriptions of the town, characters and house transport you to the town and into the lives of the inhabitants.

The novel is about Ivy Baygren, a mother of two who loses her husband unexpectedly and needs to figure out how to handle her own grief while also managing her household and children.

24 08, 2016

Review: The Beekeeper’s Daughter by Santa Montefiore

By | August 24th, 2016|Categories: Family Life, Genre Fiction, Literature & Fiction, Romance, Women's Fiction|Tags: , , |3 Comments

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beekeeper's daughter book coverReviewed by Colleen Turner

I’ve read a few of Santa Montefiore’s novels and have always find them enjoyable. She has a wonderful way of transporting the reader to beautiful locations with a florid and alluring writing style that gets me every time. The stories are lighter reading with just enough drama and romance to keep the reader satisfied without pushing too far over into melodrama. In other words: perfect beach reading. After reading the synopsis of The Beekeeper’s Daughter I was excited to see how she tackled this story with the style I’ve come to enjoy. Did I find it a success? Well, yes and no.

The first two-thirds or so of the story goes back and forth between England in the 1930’s and 40’s and an island off the coast of Massachusetts in 1973. The earlier timeline deals with Grace Hamblin and her unquenchable love for the heir of her village’s local gentry.

3 08, 2016

Giveaway: Harmony by Carolyn Parkhurst

By | August 3rd, 2016|Categories: Family Life, Genre Fiction, Giveaways, Literary, Literature & Fiction, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense|Tags: , , , , |18 Comments

harmony book coverI have 2 copies of Harmony by Carolyn Parkhurst to give away! Open to U.S. residents only

About the book 

For the Hammonds of Washington, D.C., each day feels like a disaster waiting to happen. Older daughter Tilly is on the autism spectrum and for her parents Josh and Alexandra, life is about therapy options and finding a school that can deal with both her above-average intelligence and her sometimes explosive outbursts. Caught in between is younger daughter Iris—a shrewd observer and counterweight to Tilly.

2 08, 2016

Review: We Are All Made of Stars by Rowan Coleman

By | August 2nd, 2016|Categories: Family Life, Genre Fiction, Literary, Literature & Fiction, Romance, Women's Fiction|Tags: , , , |2 Comments

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we are all made of stars book coverReviewed by Jennifer Jensen

During my late teens and early twenties, I documented my college experience via an online journal. I also started a collection of letters for various people whom I had a connection with, always with the intention of turning over those letters to them once a specific anniversary was reached. I’ve always felt that I am my most honest through the written format, which is why Rowan Coleman’s We Are All Made of Stars appealed so much to me.

It sat unread on my iPad for a number of weeks, because I had to mentally prepare myself for a heavy read. After just having gotten through an emotionally draining book, I needed to give myself some time before beginning yet another one.

27 07, 2016

Review: Lawyer for the Cat for by Lee Robinson

By | July 27th, 2016|Categories: Family Life, Genre Fiction, Literature & Fiction, Women's Fiction|Tags: , |2 Comments

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lawyer for the cat book coverReviewed by Kelly Ferjutz

My first thought was that Lawyer for the Cat was an entirely charming book, but it really isn’t only just sweet. There’s a bit of sour in there too, which pretty much makes it a sweet and sour, charming book. The author’s writing style is terrific–she draws you into the story, and holds you there, regardless of what other plans you might have had in mind for that same space of time. Forget it. The Lawyer for the Cat wins her case, hands/paws down.

There have been several really big ‘news’ stories over the years about a wealthy person leaving his/her entire fortune to the care and comfort of a beloved pet. And why not? Pets are generally much more worthy than most people. When they love, they love unconditionally, and frequently suffer from bereavement as much if not more than humans do.