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It is book day!!! Linking up with Steph and Jana. This is the first time in a very long time that I didn’t have this post going the whole month. I am doing it from memory on the fly, scary I know!!! There are only four this month, I had a few that I started for about five minutes and decided I wasn’t in the mood. It was a weird reading month for me. I looked on Goodreads the other day. I set 52 books as my goal for the year and I read 71!! The year isn’t over yet!

I might not have my life together enough to write a regular post, but I am not going to miss a book one! I actually started writing a post yesterday, but I had issues loading my pictures. It was a picture heavy post so I said screw it and bailed. I hope to take some time to go back in and finish that post too!

Hotshot Doc by RS Grey

Hotshot Doc

R.S Grey has become my one of my favorite authors. She is the best at romantic comedy, and Hotshot Doc is exactly what I wanted it to be! This one gives you all the feels and has a nice slow burn with a love to hate/co-worker romance taking place in a hospital, all rolled in to one! I LOL’d more than once, and had a smile on my face pretty much the whole book. There isn’t much else for me to say for this one other than GO GET IT!

Bottom Line: Read it!!! Such a cute romantic comedy!

Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis

Girl, Wash Your Face: Stop Believing the Lies about Who You Are So You Can Become Who You Were Meant to Be

I feel like there are  a million reviews on this book out there. I am going to keep mine short and simple. Did it change my life? No. But, it did have some great takeaways and I really appreciated and I think if you enjoy this type of book…then it is worth the read. I didn’t love the section on body image, and she sort of talks about how fabulous she is a lot. I will say, there is one quote that really stuck out to me. “Someone else’s opinion of you is none of your business.” I wish I would have heard that a long time ago!

Bottom Line: This book wasn’t life changing, but there might be talking points that will stick with you.

You are a Badass by Jen Sincero

You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life

I was on the wait list for Girl, Wash Your Face and this one forever. Oddly enough, they came in at the same time. And they both came in right around when I was finally getting job offers. I really could have used both of them a few weeks sooner! But anyways, while I don’t think this book is life changing, I did take away quite a few things to think about. I don’t really have one specific, huge life dream…so some things don’t really apply to me.

Bottom Line: There really were several points that stuck with me, and if you are even the slightest bit interested in books from this genre, I would give it a read.

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

When Dimple Met Rishi

This was such a cute cute cute YA book!!! It was a little predictable, but I absolutely loved it! Dimple and Rishi were both such great characters, and I really appreciated how strong they were in their thoughts and beliefs. They are quirky and funny and I found myself flying right through this one to see how it ends.

Bottom Line: One of the better YA books I have read. Read it!

Currently Reading

Summerland by Elin Hilderbrand




book review, books


Guess who’s back, back again. Shady’s back, tell a friend.

What better way than to come back than on book day with Steph and Jana!!!! I have had this book post going for two months, so there is a lot of material here. I read lots of good books!!! I thought about splitting this into two posts, but I think you can handle it. As always, the blurb about the book is in bold and my thoughts below. I will be back tomorrow to talk about where I have been the last several weeks.

Daisy Jones and The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Daisy Jones and The Six

In 1979, Daisy Jones and The Six split up. Together, they had redefined the 70’s music scene, creating an iconic sound that rocked the world. Apart, they baffled a world that had hung on their every verse.This book is an attempt to piece together a clear portrait of the band’s rise to fame and their abrupt and infamous split.

I have so many feelings about this book! I devoured this book, as I do with all TJR books. She can do no wrong, really. This book was so different, in that it read like a VH1 Behind the Music special. It read like an interview between the different band members, and I just loved that! It is a question-less interview, which makes it much easier to read.  You get a few surprises in the end that you don’t really see coming. TJR wrote this so well, that you feel like you grew up with this band and know all the members and their songs. I cant even say anymore about it, I just want you to read it!!!

Bottom Line: Read it!!!!!

**I received a copy of Daisy Jones and The Six from Netgalley in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are of my own.**

Winter Storms (Winter #3)by Elin Hilderbrand

Winter Storms (Winter, #3)

This is the third book in the series, so I dont want to share any of the blurb about it…it will spoil some things if you haven’t read the first two.  While I love Elin Hilderbrand and this series, I felt like this book was a little rushed. Things came together pretty quickly and problems were easily solved. Even so, I just love these characters and this book made me smile.

Winter Solstice (Winter #4) by Erin Hilderbrand

Winter Solstice (Winter #4)

This is the last book in the series. I absolutely loved how some of the characters from The Rumor made their way into this story. You don’t have to read The Rumor to enjoy this book though. I do feel like it would help you know these characters better, as this takes place after the events in The Rumor. And if you planned to read that book, definitely read it first as there are spoilers to what happened in this one.

Bottom Line: I just loved this series, perfect Christmas reading!

Truly Madly Yours by Rachel Gibson

Truly Madly Yours (Truly, Idaho, #1)

When Delaney Shaw returned home to Truly, Idaho, for the reading of her stepfather’s will, she planned on paying her respects and getting out of town. But it seems the will has some unexpected stipulations-like the one that says if Delaney wants her inheritance she needs to stay put and have nothing to do with sexy Nick Allegrezza. . .for an entire year!

This was written in the 90’s, and I appreciated that. It was a quick and fun read. There were a few LOL moments and I love the tension and the love/hate going on between DeLaney and Nick. It is hot hot hot. If you enjoy this genre, you would probably like this book.

Bottom Line: This was a fun little read if you like the romance genre.

The Opposite of Everyone by Joshilyn Jackson

The Opposite of Everyone

Born in Alabama, Paula Vauss spent the first decade of her life on the road with her free-spirited young mother, Kai, an itinerant storyteller who blended Hindu mythology with Southern Oral Tradition to re-invent their history as they roved. Kai ended up in prison, and Paula has reincarnated herself as a tough-as-nails divorce attorney with a successful practice in Atlanta. While she hasn’t seen Kai in fifteen years, she’s still making payments on that Karmic debt – until the day her last check is returned in the mail, along with a cryptic letter. “I am going on a journey, Kali. I am going back to my beginning; death is not the end. You will be the end. We will meet again, and there will be new stories. You know how Karma works.” 

If you want messed up southern families, Joshilyn Jackson is your girl!!! I wasn’t sure how I felt about the book when I first got in to it, but about 10 to 15% in, and I was hooked. By the end of the book, I loved all the characters and their flaws. I loved the Hindu stories that were placed throughout the book. If you pay attention to them, they totally make sense by the end. The book alternates between past and present, as we learn more about Paula’s time in a group home. Not only do you have the flawed relationship between Kai and Paula, but then we meet Birdwine. The detective with a drinking problem and sorted past with Paula. This book was just so interesting and different. I wasn’t sure what to expect going in, but I really loved this book by the end!

Bottom Line: If you are a fan of Joshilyn Jackson or complicated families and relationships…this is the read for you!

Friction by Sandra Brown


A Texas Ranger, relegated to deskwork due to past recklessness, petitions to regain custody of his five-year-old daughter, and his case is assigned to a family court judge who is as attractive as she is ambitious. When a masked gunman barges in during the custody hearing with his sights on the judge, the Ranger reacts instinctively and goes after him. But authorities apprehend the wrong man, and the real gunman remains unknown, at large, and a threat.

This book has everything you expect from Sandra Brown. I don’t want to say too much about it to give anything away. I loved the “friction” between Holly and Crawford. I loved Crawford’s soft spot for his daughter, Georgia. And the whole story was quite interesting. I figured out a lot of what happened, but not everything.

Bottom Line: Read it. You will definitely enjoy it if you are a fan of Sandra Brown.

Evidence of the Affair by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Evidence of the Affair

A desperate young woman in Southern California sits down to write a letter to a man she’s never met—a choice that will forever change both their lives.

This was a free ebook I snagged with my Amazon Prime membership, after seeing TJR post about it on Instagram. I was so excited! This book was written in letter format and I read it in one sitting. It is a short story, and while I wished it were longer because I love TJR, it wasn’t rushed and I absolutely loved the little surprise at the ending. I highly recommend this for a short read!

Bottom Line: Read it!

Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan

Crazy Rich Asians (Crazy Rich Asians, #1)

Three super-rich, pedigreed Chinese families and the gossip, backbiting, and scheming that occurs when the heir to one of the most massive fortunes in Asia brings home his ABC (American-born Chinese) girlfriend to the wedding of the season.

I didn’t really know what to expect with this book, but I just loved it! It isn’t anything amazing, but just a good, enjoyable read to break up the heavier stuff. Obviously, I can not relate to any of the characters, as I am not a crazy rich Asian. But I loved reading about the culture and what is the norm for that life style. It sort of reminded me a tad bit of The Royal We, in that there is an underdog love story among the elite and people trying to tear it apart. I did this on audio book, and really loved the narrator.

Bottom Line: Read it! I immediately got on the long long wait list for the next one.

Our House by Louise Candlish

Our House

When Fiona Lawson comes home to find strangers moving into her house, she’s sure there’s been a mistake. She and her estranged husband, Bram, have a modern co-parenting arrangement: bird’s nest custody, where each parent spends a few nights a week with their two sons at the prized family home to maintain stability for their children. But the system built to protect their family ends up putting them in terrible jeopardy. In a domino effect of crimes and misdemeanors, the nest comes tumbling down.

The premise to this book was super interesting, but I felt like it just dragged on and on. I was all over it at first, and couldn’t wait to find out what happens….but all the middle parts just weren’t that enjoyable. Even with fraud, the Bird Nest approach to their relationship and a good old who done it, I was totally bored with this book quick. It was told mostly in the form of a podcast from Fi and a suicide word document from Bram. With some current day and past memory sprinkled in.  Neither character was likable, and eventually I just quit caring about all of it.

Bottom Line: Meh. Interesting idea, but the book really dragged. I would skip.

**I received a copy of Our House from Netgalley in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are of my own.**

Hardcore Twenty-Four by Janet Evanovich

Hardcore Twenty-Four (Stephanie Plum, #24)

This is the 24th book in the Stephanie Plum series. I love this cozy mystery series. You have a quirky cast of characters, ridiculous crimes and a love triangle between Stephanie, Joe Morelli and Ranger. And we can forget Grandma Mazur and her shenanigans. I will say, I think I am ready for this series to wrap up. The love triangle has been dragged out long enough, I just want her to pick Morelli already! The zombie thing in this one was a little much. But I sure did LOL a lot throughout and flew through the book in just a few sittings.

Bottom Line: Fun cozy mystery series.

Halloween at the Graff by Sinclair Jayne

Halloween at the Graff (Holiday at the Graff, #1)

Starting over at thirty-two is never fun, especially in a town the size of a postage stamp. Chasing that with having to beg for a job she’s wildly over-qualified for and Walker Wilder’s pride is really burned. But now that she’s the new events director for the historic Montana Graff Hotel, she’s tasked with creating buzz and traditions to fill rooms during the off-season. Halloween may not scream touristy, but hiring a spirit-hunting TV crew will definitely grab some headlines… But when the sexy spirit hunter shows up, he haunts more than her dreams. 

Bottom Line: Meh. I picked this one up right before Halloween because I thought it would be fun. There were cute elements to the book, but honestly, the author kept repeating the inner dialog between the two main characters and certain facts over and over that I lost interest pretty quickly.

Dangerous Refuge by Elizabeth Lowell

Dangerous Refuge

Shaye has little in common with Tanner. He’s a suspicious big city cop come home to the historic Davis family ranch to settle his uncle’s estate. She’s working for an environmental conservancy that acquires and protects old ranches-and she wants to preserve the Davis homestead. When the suspicious death of Tanner’s uncle at his ranch throws the two opposites together, tempers flare and sparks fly. While they have trouble seeing eye to eye, Shaye and Tanner agree on one thing: they need to uncover the truth.

This is a murder mystery with some romance thrown in. The whole premise was interesting, and it was a well written story. I got a little tired of all the references of the attraction between Tanner and Shaye throughout the book. We get it, they like each other. Let’s move on! Still, the actual story kept me interested the whole time. I really liked the way the book ended. Sometimes, the action and ending happen to quickly and feels rushed. I didn’t feel that way at all with this book.

Bottom Line: A good who done it if you are ok with some romance too.

The Sweet Dreams Bake Shop  and Murder So Sweet by J.A. Whiting

The Sweet Dreams Bake Shop (Sweet Cove Mystery, #1)Murder So Sweet (Sweet Cove Mystery, #2)












These books are really quick, just a few hours each. This is a super cute cozy mystery series that takes place in a little town called Sweet Cover, just outside of Boston. The Roseland sisters are all really sweet, and seem to get caught up in solving murders around town. There are two cats and some supernatural elements to the books, so many sure you are ok with that. These books aren’t very deep, they tend to follow a formula of there being a crime, the sisters getting involved and speculating what happened and investing deeper. There is a story line behind the crime of the book though, and I find that enjoyable to follow along through these.

Bottom Line: Super cute cozy mystery series, if you are ok with a little supernatural twist and aren’t looking for anything deep.

Did Not Finish

Foul Play by Janet Evanovich

Image result for foul play janet evanovich

You guys know my love for Janet Evanovich is deep and I put up with some quirky things without batting an eye, but this book was terrible!!!! I think I made it about 20% in? Honestly, it was about 19% too long. This is an old book written in the 90’s and the main female characters is so ditzy and ridiculous, I just couldn’t with her. And I didn’t like the male lead either. Just go ahead and pass this one.

Currently Reading

Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis

Girl, Wash Your Face: Stop Believing the Lies about Who You Are So You Can Become Who You Were Meant to Be

book review, books


Linking up with Steph and Jana to share all the books!

Everything I Never Told You by Celeste NG

Everything I Never Told You

So begins this exquisite novel about a Chinese American family living in 1970s small-town Ohio. Lydia is the favorite child of Marilyn and James Lee, and her parents are determined that she will fulfill the dreams they were unable to pursue. But when Lydia’s body is found in the local lake, the delicate balancing act that has been keeping the Lee family together is destroyed, tumbling them into chaos. 

I am not sure what I want to say about this book. It was so well written, and kept my attention the entire time. But, I thought it was going to be more of a mystery about what happened to Lydia. Instead it is more about the truth about her family. As a parent, it was heartbreaking and difficult to watch the parents pushing their kids to be what they wanted them to be. It was a great reminder that we can’t live vicariously through our children’s lives. They need to be their own people. Let them come up with their own ideas of what they want, and don’t put the guilt on them if it isn’t what you want. I appreciated that the side story of Marilyn’s disappearance and how it kept coming back around in the book. Another great reminder that our actions can have consequences and impact the rest of our lives. The characters can be very unlikable at times, but then you also feel sorry for them.

Bottom Line: Read it. While it can be difficult at times, the book is wonderfully written and tells a great, albeit, tragic story.

Scotland or Bust by Kira Archer

Scotland or Bust

I absolutely LOVED 69 Million Reasons, the first book in this series. The second wasn’t quite as good but still enjoyable. I feel the same about this one. There were a lot of references to Outlander in this book. I don’t know what that is or anything about it, so I didn’t care for the “show not to be named” references all throughout the book. That being said, I loved Harrison’s quirky family and thought it was a fun and cute read. What I didn’t get was why they kept holding out on themselves over getting together. There wasn’t a strong enough reason in my mind.

Bottom Line: Fun, quick read.

**I received a copy of Scotland or Bust from Netgalley in Exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.**

Strange Brew by Kathy Trocheck AKA Mary Kay Andrews

Strange Brew (Callahan Garrity Mystery, #6)

When the body of a murdered microbrewer is discovered in the aftermath of a furious Halloween gale, suspicion falls on the aging “flower child” shopkeeper whom the victim put out of business. Callahan isn’t as quick to condemn a colorful local character as some law officers still on the force. But her investigative zeal is stirring up secrets that are forcing her to reassess old friendships and a one-time love—and is brewing up more lethal trouble than Callahan and her “mice” can safely swallow. 

I have come to love Callahan Garrity and her House Mouse cleaning girls. I only have two more books in the series, and I am going to be so sad when I am done. I think I will be slowing my roll on these so I can come back to an old friend if I get in a rut any time soon. This one was fun, as it involved a brewery and some other places in the Little Five Points area that I remember and still exist today. I started to guess some of the mystery, but was still surprised at the very end. Just the way I like it.

Bottom Line: Such a fun cozy mystery series!!! Read it if that is your thing.

Atrophy by Edith Wharton

Image result for atrophy edith wharton

An unhappily married matron named Nora Fenway hears that her one-time clandestine lover, Christopher, is severely ill; she risks her reputation by going to visit him, but is turned away by his sanctimonious sister.

This was a quick, heartbreaking read about  social duty and etiquette. Nora wants to see her lover one last time, and you can practically feel her desperation.

Bottom Line: This was a quick read, around 30 minutes. I wouldn’t go out of my way to track it down…but if you happen to come across it in the library, would be worth it.

They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera

They Both Die at the End

On September 5, a little after midnight, Death-Cast calls Mateo Torrez and Rufus Emeterio to give them some bad news: They’re going to die today. Mateo and Rufus are total strangers, but, for different reasons, they’re both looking to make a new friend on their End Day. The good news: There’s an app for that. It’s called the Last Friend, and through it, Rufus and Mateo are about to meet up for one last great adventure—to live a lifetime in a single day. 

The premise of this book was so interesting. I am not sure if I am for or against Death-Cast to be honest? Can you imagine getting a call at 1:30am that you are going to die within 24 hours? How would you live your last day??? It really made me think a lot throughout the book. And the forging relationship between Rufus and Mateo, two different kids becoming friends over their one common thread – dying that day.

Bottom Line: Read it! This book was tragic and inspirng all at once.

All The Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

All the Bright Places

When Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school, it’s unclear who saves whom. And when they pair up on a project to discover the “natural wonders” of their state, both Finch and Violet make more important discoveries: It’s only with Violet that Finch can be himself—a weird, funny, live-out-loud guy who’s not such a freak after all. And it’s only with Finch that Violet can forget to count away the days and start living them. But as Violet’s world grows, Finch’s begins to shrink.

This has been on my TBR forever. While the book is about high school students,  it touches on the deep subject of death, suicide, depression and mental illness. It shows how powerful true friendship can be. It was beautiful, tragic, heart-wrenching, and even whimsical at times. I really liked the idea of completing a school project to see the wonders of their state. I actually want to create my own list of places to locally wonder. This book, it really hits all the feels.

Bottom Line: This was such a beautiful, tragic book. Definitely has some triggers though, as it deals with mental illness and suicide. I highly recommend it.

Current Reading:

I squealed when I saw that Netgalley approved me for the newest TJR!!! I really wanted to have it finished before this link up, but that didn’t happen. I am about half way through and can tell you I am loving it! Reminds me of watching a VH1 behind the music episode.

Daisy Jones and The Six

book review, books


Linking up with Steph and Jana to share some more books this month! I feel like I have read a lot more books this month than I realized. I had some really good reads, and a few that were just okay. One I could have done without. Let’s jump in!

Not So Nice Guy by RS Grey

Not So Nice Guy

“We’re extremely close, stuck so deep inside a Jim-and-Pam-style friendzone everyone at works assumes we’re a couple – that is until one day, word spreads through the teacher’s lounge that he’s single. Fair game. Suddenly, it’s open season on Ian. He should be reveling in all the newfound attention, but to our mutual surprise, the only attention he seems to want is mine.”

RS Grey is my favorite romantic comedy author! Dare I say the queen of RomCom?!  This is a cute and quirky friends to lovers rom-com that had me laughing from the very first page! I really loved the chemistry and banter between Sam and Ian. I devoured this book in 24 hours, which is huge for me. I love that the book switched POV between Sam and Ian, so you get to know both better. This is the perfect type of book to break up some more serious ones…or to take with you on that last trip to the beach this summer!

Bottom Line: Read it!

Surprise Me by Sophie Kinsella

Surprise Me

A trip to the doctor projects that Sylvie and Dan will live another 68 years together and panic sets in. They never expected “until death do us part” to mean seven decades. In the name of marriage survival, they quickly concoct a plan to keep their relationship fresh and exciting: they will create little surprises for each other so that their (extended) years together will never become boring. But in their pursuit to execute Project Surprise Me, mishaps arise and secrets are uncovered that start to threaten the very foundation of their unshakable bond. When a scandal from the past is revealed that question some important untold truths, they begin to wonder if they ever really knew each other after all. 

I am not sure that anything from Kinsella will top My Not So Perfect Life for me. I didn’t love this  book. I mean, the whole premise is that the characters find out they are going to get 68 more years together, that is awesome news! When you get married, don’t you go into it expecting to spend the rest of your lives growing old together??? That is sort of the point. So I just don’t get the whole freak out over living another 68 years together. I got really bored reading this book, and it took me a month to finish. I am going to be completely honest…I skipped over about 30% of the book and didn’t even miss anything.

Bottom Line: There really isn’t anything special about this book. I didn’t mind the ending, and can appreciate that the characters grew and changed…but I was bored most of this book and couldn’t wait to just be done with it. So I can’t really recommend it.

**I received a copy of Surprise me from Netgalley in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are of my own.””

All the Summer Girls by Meg Donohue

All the Summer Girls

Kate is dumped by her fiance the day she learns she is pregnant with his child. Vanessa is obsessively searching the Internet for news of an old flame. Dani, the aspiring writer who can’t seem to put down a book–or a cocktail–long enough to open her laptop, has just been fired… again. In an effort to regroup, Kate, Vanessa, and Dani retreat to the New Jersey beach town where they once spent their summers. Emboldened by the seductive cadences of the shore, the women begin to realize how much their lives, and friendships, have been shaped by the choices they made one fateful night on the beach eight years earlier–and the secrets that only now threaten to surface.

I am not sure how I feel about this book after finishing it. Most of the book you don’t know the full story of the secret each of the girls is keeping, so I stayed interested the whole time wanting to know what happened. I just feel like the characters weren’t really any that I cared about. Throughout the book, each of them is so focused on the drama in their own lives, the lies that they have kept to themselves and what happened in their pasts. None of them are all that likable and there wasn’t a whole lot going on in the book until the secrets are spilled towards the end.

Bottom Line: This is a decent beach read, if you are just looking for something to pass the time. It will probably be one that I forget about very soon, knowing that I read it but not remembering what all happened.

An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

An American Marriage

Newlyweds Celestial and Roy are the embodiment of both the American Dream and the New South. He is a young executive, and she is an artist on the brink of an exciting career. But as they settle into the routine of their life together, they are ripped apart by circumstances neither could have imagined. Roy is arrested and sentenced to twelve years for a crime Celestial knows he didn’t commit. Though fiercely independent, Celestial finds herself bereft and unmoored, taking comfort in Andre, her childhood friend, and best man at their wedding. As Roy’s time in prison passes, she is unable to hold on to the love that has been her center. After five years, Roy’s conviction is suddenly overturned, and he returns to Atlanta ready to resume their life together.

This book!!! It is SO good you guys!!! I laughed, I cried, I got angry, I smiled. This is one of those books that makes you wonder how you would handle the situation if it were to happen to you. It is tragic and raw. You really get to know the characters, as the novel switches between them. And there are several letters between Roy and Celestial while he is in prison. I went back and forth on what I wanted to happen for each of them. I really liked the ending. It was well written, and not rushed. I have so many more things I could say about this book, but go read it first and then let’s talk!

Bottom Line: Definitely read it! It deserves the hype.

Things I’m Seeing Without You by Peter Bognanni

Things I'm Seeing Without You

Seventeen-year-old Tess Fowler has just dropped out of high school. She can barely function after learning of Jonah’s death. Jonah, the boy she’d traded banter with over texts and heartfelt e-mails. Jonah, the first boy she’d told she loved and the first boy to say it back. Jonah, the boy whose suicide she never saw coming. Tess continues to write to Jonah, as a way of processing her grief and confusion. But for now she finds solace in perhaps the unlikeliest of ways: by helping her father with his new alternative funeral business, where his biggest client is . . . a prized racehorse? As Tess’s involvement in her father’s business grows, both find comfort in the clients they serve and in each other. But love, loss, and life are so much more complicated than Tess ever thought. Especially after she receives a message that turns her life upside down.

I was drawn to the book from the cover. I wont lie. I wasn’t a huge fan of the fact that it was a YA, but the premise sounded interesting so I figured…why not? I am so glad I did! I really enjoyed this book. The lead female character is sort of quirky and awkward. She has a no bullshit attitude that I can really appreciate for her age, she is quite snarky. This book deals with suicide, so it is a heavier issue than your typical YA read. I felt like the emotions in the book were raw and real. Tess can seem a little harsh, but it is just the way she deals with grief. The book really makes you think about life and relationships. Do we really know our friends and people in our lives? Depression is so complex, and I like that this book sheds some light on that.

Bottom Line: This is definitely a Y.A. If you like to read those from time to time, check this one out. I appreciated the strong lead female character and it deals with a heavier issue.

If I Run by Terri Blackstock

If I Run (If I Run, #1)

Casey Cox’s DNA is all over the crime scene. There’s no use talking to police; they have failed her abysmally before. She has to flee before she’s arrested . . . or worse. The truth doesn’t matter anymore. But what is the truth? That’s the question haunting Dylan Roberts, the war-weary veteran hired to find Casey. PTSD has marked him damaged goods, but bringing Casey back can redeem him. Though the crime scene seems to tell the whole story, details of the murder aren’t adding up. Casey Cox doesn’t fit the profile of a killer. But are Dylan’s skewed perceptions keeping him from being objective? If she isn’t guilty, why did she run?

I started this book not knowing there would be more to follow. I am a little irritated that it ends on a cliff hanger and I am torn if I want to pursue more. I probably will, because I have to know what happens!  The writing of the book is a little childish. I guess that is the best way I can describe it? And I didn’t realize this was a Christian book. I am not against reading Christian books, its just that they can come off preachy and this one will randomly go on a tangent about a bible story or Casey will say something like, “I wish I believed in prayer.” or “I wish I knew there was an afterlife.” Like it would change the situation she is currently in. Also, there was this judgy little banter between Casey and another girl about tattoos and it really rubbed me wrong. The premise of the book though is what got me and kept me interested. If you can get past the judgy parts of the book, it is actually a pretty decent story.

Bottom Line: Overall, the premise is interesting, but I only suggest getting in to this series if you are ok with Christian books and God talk. And can handle some judgy comments.

If I’m Found by Terri Blackstock

If I'm Found (If I Run #2)

So I had to know what happens, and the wait list wasn’t too long for the second book. I have been enjoying the overall story, but I am going to say that I find it a little unbelievable that Casey keeps meeting people that she can help save. How does she keep getting herself in those situations?? That part is far fetched. But again, I am enjoying following along and want to know how it is all going to play out.

Bottom Line: Again, if you don’t mind some judgy comments and God talk…the premise of this book is good and interesting enough to keep me around.

The Identicals by Elin Hilderbrand

The Identicals

Nantucket is only two and a half hours away from Martha’s Vineyard by ferry. But the two islands might as well be worlds apart for a set of identical twin sisters who have been at odds for years. When a family crisis forces them to band together — or at least appear to — the twins slowly come to realize that the special bond that they share is more important than the sibling rivalry that’s driven them apart for the better part of their lives. 

I just love diving in to a Hilderbrand book. I always know I am going to get a solid beach read. I loved the drama between the two sisters, the issues with their parents, and the side drama of Tabatha’s daughter Ainsley. The book was a little slow at times, but there was just enough excitement mixed in to keep you from putting it down. There was a good bit of juicy scandal thrown in for good measure. I really liked the epilogue at the end. I wont say more so it will be a fun little surprise for you too!

Bottom Line: Perfect beach read to end the summer!

Mr Miracle by Debbie Macomber

Mr. Miracle (Angelic Intervention, #10)

Harry Mills is a guardian angel on a mission: help twenty-four-year-old Addie Folsom get her life back on track—and, if the right moment strikes, help her find love. Addie has returned home to Tacoma for the holidays, but this time she plans to stay for good, enrolling in the local community college to earn her degree. What she doesn’t plan to do is run into Erich Simmons.

I didn’t realize this was #10 in a series until I went to mark it as currently reading on Goodreads. It doesn’t matter though, it is a stand alone book. This isn’t my favorite from Macomber. The romance feel really flat for me. It was a super quick read, so I hung with it. It passed the time by just fine, but I am sure I will forget about it soon enough. One thing I appreciated in the book is the idea that guardian angels can be in animal form too. I like to think that way when I look back on my time with Gracie.

Bottom Line: Quick, Christmas read that passed the time but isn’t very memorable.

Winter Stroll by Elin Hilderbrand

Winter Stroll (Winter #2)

The Quinns are looking forward to celebrating Genevieve’s baptism, welcoming Isabelle to the family, and enjoying the cheer of Nantucket’s traditional Christmas Stroll. But just when a peaceful family gathering seems within reach, Kelley’s estranged second wife, Mitzi, shows up on the island after souring on her relationship with the inn’s former Santa Claus. Soon Kelley isn’t the only Quinn entertaining a surprise guest from Christmases past as lovers old and new gather beneath the mistletoe. With jealousy, passion, and eggnog consumption at an all-time high, it’s going to take a whole lot more than a Christmas miracle to get the Quinns–and the inn–through the holidays intact. 

I loved picking up the following Christmas in this second book of the Winter series. I gained a new perspective on Mitzi, which I always appreciate when an author can change my mind about someone. This has that Christmas cheer, and some good old Quinn family drama. I felt like the ending was sort of abrupt though, and leaves off on a total cliffhanger!!! I was just reading along and all of a sudden I was like wait, where is the rest?

Bottom Line: Cute, cozy Christmas read with family drama. Just be prepared to need the next one immediately, as there is a cliffhanger!

Heart Trouble by Kathy Hogan Trocheck AKA Mary Kay Andrews

Heart Trouble (Callahan Garrity, #5)

I love Callahan Garrity! I have really enjoyed this series. I think there are eight books total, so I have three more to dive in to!  I love how they are written in the 90s around Atlanta. The set of main characters we have all come to know and love comes back in each book, as we are introduced to another new case. I like that in this book, the client that Callahan takes on isn’t 100% likable…but that you still want justice for her.

Bottom Line: This is a super fun cozy mystery series if you like that sort of thing.

book review, books


Linking up with Jana and Steph for another month of  books! I had a month of enjoyable reads, so let’s just jump right in!

The Rumor by Elin Hilderbrand

The Rumor

Madeline King and Grace Pancik are best friends and the envy of Nantucket for their perfect marriages, their beautiful kids, their Sunday night double dates with their devoted husbands. But this summer, something’s changed, and if there’s anything Nantucket likes better than cocktails on the beach at sunset, it’s a good rumor.

So this is my third Hilderbrand book, and I have to say that I liked Here’s to Us and Winter Street better. But that is not to say that this is a bad book. I enjoyed it, I just felt like the characters weren’t as likable. What I love about Hilderbrand is that she must have a map/family tree of fictional characters for Nantucket, because “Fast Eddie” was mentioned in Winter Street, and here he is one of the main male characters in this book. There was another character mentioned in another book, as well as a few of the places around town. So you really feel like you are part of that world while reading. I do love a good story about town drama, but since this book is called “The Rumor” you get an extra amount of gossip. I felt like most of the characters in this book are not all that identifiable. However, I still enjoyed it and finished it in less than a week. So that says something!

Bottom Line: This would make a great beach read.

The Wife Between Us by Greer Hendricks

The Wife Between Us

A novel of suspense that explores the complexities of marriage and the dangerous truths we ignore in the name of love.

Man, this book!!! It was a really slow build up, but I never saw the twists coming! They were so clever! The tag line says that you will make assumptions about the book and to assume nothing…and it sure delivers! I didn’t super love all of the characters, but that didn’t take away from the book at all. I don’t always love a book with a unreliable narrator, but it works well in this one.

Bottom Line: If you like suspense type books, read it!

Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds

Long Way Down

Will’s brother Shawn was just murdered. Will is on an elevator with a gun in his waistband, revenge on his mind. As the elevator stops on each floor, someone connected to his brother gets on to give Will a piece to a bigger story than the one he thinks he knows. A story that might never know an END…if WILL gets off that elevator.

This is such a powerful read. It took less than two hours to get through, so I highly suggest reading it! I listened to it on audiobook because the author reads it himself and it was written in verse. I love knowing that it was delivered exactly as intended. The ending is really left up for interpretation though. I listened to it about four or five times trying to decide how I thought he meant it to go. If you have read it, I would love to know how you took it.

Bottom Line: Just read it!

The Almost Sisters by Joshilyn Jackson

The Almost Sisters

 One tequila-soaked night at a comics convention, the usually level-headed graphic novelist is swept off her barstool by a handsome and anonymous Batman. It turns out the caped crusader has left her with more than just a nice, fuzzy memory. She’s having a baby boy. But before Leia can break the news of her impending single-motherhood (including the fact that her baby is biracial) to her conventional, Southern family, her step-sister Rachel’s marriage implodes. Worse, she learns her beloved ninety-year-old grandmother, Birchie, is losing her mind, and she’s been hiding her dementia with the help of Wattie, her best friend since girlhood. Leia returns to Alabama to put her grandmother’s affairs in order, clean out the big Victorian that has been in the Birch family for generations, and tell her family that she’s pregnant. Yet just when Leia thinks she’s got it all under control, she learns that illness is not the only thing Birchie’s been hiding.  

I feel like I waited forever for this book at the library. I have really come to love Joshilyn Jackson. She is such an engaging writer and I feel like her books are deeper than just a beach read. She knows how to develop a character. Small town Alabama can feel like you walked right in to the 80’s, and that is how Jackson writes about Birchville in this book. I loved all the drama that was written in to the Birch family history. So many secrets. I also like that there is a story within a story with the graphic novel series that Leia wrote.

Bottom Line: This is a very enjoyable read! You get the good, bad and ugly of the deep south, some family drama, secrets, a super hero and a woman who just wants to solve all the problems and doing the best that she can. Read it!

All We Ever Wanted by Emily Giffin

All We Ever Wanted

Nina Browning is living the good life after marrying into Nashville’s elite. Tom Volpe is a single dad working multiple jobs while struggling to raise his headstrong daughter, Lyla. Amid so much wealth and privilege, Lyla doesn’t always fit in—and her overprotective father doesn’t help—but in most ways, she’s a typical teenage girl, happy and thriving. One photograph, snapped in a drunken moment at a party, changes everything. As the image spreads like wildfire, the Windsor community is instantly polarized, buzzing with controversy and assigning blame. At the heart of the lies and scandal, Tom, Nina, and Lyla are forced together—all questioning their closest relationships, asking themselves who they really are, and searching for the courage to live a life of true meaning.

I finished this book in just a couple of sittings at the beach. It was actually a heavier topic than most of Giffin’s books. I felt like it was very realistic and now in terms of the issue and what happened. I do feel though that Giffin just touched the surface, and it could have gone a little deeper. I liked the way the book switched between Nina, Tom and Lyla. You got to see the story from each of their points of views and know what they were feeling. I didn’t really get attached to any of the characters the way I like to, but they were likeable enough. The ending sort of wrapped up a little too quickly for me, leaving me wanting something more from the book.

Bottom Line: I think Giffin fans will appreciate this book for its heavier subject matter. This was a quick and enjoyable read.

**I received a copy of All We Ever Wanted from Netgalley in exchange for me honest review. All opinions are of my own.**

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