Friday, December 19, 2014

Join The First Book Of The Year Fun

Join Sheila from Book Journey at the link in the last line of this post, and add your name and photo to the list.

This is a lot of fun.

As you can see from last year's post, Sheila creates a collage of all readers reading their first book of the year.

Don't miss out on the fun.

Head to Sheila's Blog Post to add your name and photo to the collage.



Thursday, December 18, 2014

Quotation of the Day

A perfect quote for book lovers and especially book bloggers.













The man who does not read has no advantage over the man who cannot read. Mark Twain (1835-1910) Discuss

*Taken from http://www.thefreedictionary.com/ - December 18, 2014

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

The Long Way Home by Louise Penny

Peter Morrow hadn't returned after the year he and Clara had agreed upon for his return so the search for Peter began. Of course, Armand Gamache was asked to be involved even though he had retired from the police force.

THE LONG WAY HOME has the well-known, well-loved residents of Three Pines we all are familiar with and the residents that make Louise Penny's books ones I enjoy reading.

THE LONG WAY HOME was a bit different from her other books.  Instead of solving a murder, the Three Pines residents were working together to find Peter.


This book was different because of the way the investigation took place.  Gamache actually was not in charge; Clara was.  It discussed muses and different art terms.  It was more about artists than the solving of a regular murder mystery, but the characters as always worked beautifully together.

​I can't say I didn't like THE LONG WAY HOME, but it is quite different from her other books and took a bit of getting used to.  Regardless of the style and plot, though, THE LONG WAY HOME still had the pull all of her books have on you. ​

​Ms. Penny's books usually involve emotions. THE LONG WAY HOME was specifically about happiness, sadness, and finding oneself.​  4/5


This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the publisher in return for an honest review.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

After The War Is Over by Jennifer Robson


Charlotte graduated from an elite college, became a governess,​ worked as a nurse during the war, ​worked in an office with a female boss who was a suffragist, and then​ became a journalist.

​Charlotte's job as a governess turned out to be quite unpleasant, but she did meet a man she could never forget​
but wasn’t able to marry him because of her class.

​AFTER THE WAR IS OVER goes back and forth between Charlotte's younger years as a governess and then her present-day situation.  I do enjoy books that move into the past and then come to the present, but the book dragged.

The cover pulled me in, but the book's content was not that enjoyable for me.​

There was too much about ​social status and not enough of a plot even though the book was mainly about Charlotte's life​.  The writing style was good, but the lack of an interesting plot had me plodding through to see what happened.​  3/5

This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the publisher in return for an honest review.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

The Silent Sister by Diane Chamberlain


Three children...and ​then there were two.  All was hush, hush about how that happened, and Riley didn't find out why until after both her parents had passed away.

As Riley was cleaning out her parents' home, talking to different neighbors, and talking to folks her father had left things to in his will, she had her share of surprises and shocking revelations.

THE SILENT SISTER has twists that keep you turning the pages as you learn of  secrets that had been kept for years and secrets that only a few folks knew about. How could anyone keep a secret like that?  How could anyone live his/her entire life worrying that the secret might accidentally be revealed?

The characters were well developed, but a lot of them were unlikeable.  Riley was a likeable character because she had to deal with everything, and she was  the character that had to deal with these​ secrets alone.  Danny, her brother, was not likeable at all.  He was too unpredictable.  Riley's parents were not active characters and to me not likeable​, but they, especially her father, carried the storyline and its suspense. 

I always enjoy Ms. Chamberlain's books, and this was no exception.  THE SILENT SISTER is an intriguing read with a ​perfec​t ​​title and a storyline filled with riveting ​incidents that were divulged. 

The secrets, the betrayal, and the ending are superb.  Don't miss reading THE SILENT SISTER.  5/5

This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the publisher in return for an honest review.​



Friday, November 21, 2014

The Bracelet by Dorothy Love

Diamond. Emerald. Amethyst. Diamond
                      = D. E. A. D.

A bracelet that mysteriously appeared on Celia Browning's nightstand was a bracelet she thought was from her fiancee, but once she saw what the individual jewels spelled out, she knew it wasn't good.

​Celia Browning was the daughter of a wealthy merchant and a descendant of a family member who died in their home about 20 years ago.  The death was​ said to be a suicide, but others believed it was a murder. Now just when she was finally going to be wed to her childhood sweetheart, nosy newspaper men began to question what happened and began causing trouble by printing articles in the paper, having people follow and frighten Celia, and leaving mysterious notes and gifts in the  house.

Celia couldn't tell her father about any of these odd situations because he wasn't well.  Her cousin, Ivy, was the only one who knew about the mysterious note but not the bracelet.  Who should Celia tell, and when should Celia tell someone?

Could her uncle really have murdered his wife?  What was this incident that happened so many years ago, and why does someone want to dredge it up again?​


THE BRACELET gives the reader a glimpse into wealthy households​ ​and appears to be about the Browning family and how they fit into society, but underneath all of that, ​it is a murder mystery that Celia needs to solve for her own peace of mind. 

Are there family secrets and perhaps a murderer hidden within all that southern hospitality and charm? Does a red diary with clues truly exist and have the answers to the 20-year-old mystery?

​THE BRACELET was an enjoyable, clever read with just enough suspense to keep ​you guessing about who the culprit is that was sending gifts and leaving notes and who it is that wanted to ruin the Browning family but why now?

I enjoyed THE BRACELET because of the setting and the time period.  Ms. Love definitely gave a perfect portrayal of wealthy, Southern life in the 1800's along with the added bonus of intrigue about the murder.  The ending is definitely a surprise and quite a good one.  


Don't miss reading THE BRACELET. 4/5

This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the author and pubslisher in return for an honest review.


Sunday, November 16, 2014

A Woman's Choice by Annie Thomas

From Gloucestershire, England, to New York City.

Making her way with her mother, Jenny, to a new life in America after her father died, Clara realized she was able to take care of her mother and still make choices. The boat ride across the Atlantic wasn't pleasant, but Clara And her mother met folks to share the worries and hopefully folks that they would see again some day.

Clara also found out that New Yorkers were not a pleasant lot. The early days of their arrival were spent in adapting to living in the small apartment with Jenny's sister and her family and her mother working way under the wages she deserved.

You will love Clara and feel sorry for her because of what she had to endure in her living conditions and in the work she found in New York.  Clara was very unhappy and tired of having to work so hard. Clara's mother was a bit difficult to like because of her dependence on Clara and her acting like the child instead of the parent.

A WOMAN'S CHOICE is historical fiction set in the early 1900's and during the time New York was growing.  We get to see what it was like to live and work in New York and see the hardships and poverty that the residents endured to make their way in America.
  

 
Clara grew along with New York and used her talent to make her own choices. 
Clara's determination was incredible, and her success was the result of her determination.

​A WOMAN'S CHOICE flowed nicely, gave the reader a history of New York, and was a lovely read. 


I enjoyed A WOMAN'S CHOICE and would recommend this book to historical fiction fans and folks who enjoy women's fiction.  4/5

This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the author in return for an honest review.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Guess The Desk

This is a photo of the desk a female author uses to write her bestselling novels.
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This mystery author is the author of the New York Times and internationally bestselling novel The Time In Between, which was translated into twenty-five languages and inspired a successful television series under the same title, as well as the highly acclaimed The Heart Has Its Reasons

She holds a PhD in English philology and is currently a professor at the University of Murcia.  The mystery author has also taught at American universities, authored several academic articles, and has participated in various educational, cultural, and editorial projects. She lives in Murcia, Spain.
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EASY, EASY, EASY....

Whose desk is this?  

The winner is:

Janie - #6  

CONGRATS

Complete this form to win a copy of her book, THE HEART HAS ITS REASONS.

CONTEST OPEN TO USA ENTRIES ONLY and will run from November 13 to November 20.

Good Luck!!


Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Marshall Field & Company - What The Lady Wants


Don't miss reading WHAT THE LADY WANTS by Renee Rosen.

  
                                

*YouTube video courtesy of Shelf Awareness, November 12, 2014

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

What The Lady Wants by Renee Rosen

​Glamor, glitter, love, shopping, and ​famous names thrown around...what fun it was reading WHAT THE LADY WANTS.

WHAT THE LADY WANTS is set in Chicago during the 1800's when retail stores and innovations were beginning to surface. Famous industrialists such as Pullman, McCormick, Potter, Swift, Field, and Armour filled the pages.  Hearing these names brought out the historical fiction aficionado in me.

Along with the business side of Chicago​,​ WHAT THE LADY WANTS tells​ the story of the personal life of Delia Spencer, Arthur Caton, and Marshall Field revealing ​Delia and Marshall​'s ongoing, infamous ​love ​affair.  You will want to look up th​eir ​names to find ​more ​information on them and on Marshall Field & Company.

Both Delia and Marshall were captivating characters, and Ms. Rosen perfectly portrayed their life and the lifestyles of the wealthy ​during that time.

​A little bit of romance along with the history of Chicago makes WHAT THE LADY WANTS an intriguing, alluring ​read.

​You will also find out where the book's title came from.  ENJOY!!​  5/5

This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the publisher in return for an honest review.​

Monday, November 10, 2014

Citizens Creek by Lalita Tademy


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From Lalita Tademy, the New York Times bestselling author of Red River and Oprah’s book club pick Cane River comes this fall’s historical fiction must-read, CITIZENS CREEK.

On sale now, CITIZENS CREEK is the evocative story of a once-enslaved black man who buys his freedom after serving as a translator during the American Indian Wars and the Indian Removal westward, and his granddaughter Rose, who sustains his legacy of courage.

Cow Tom, born into slavery in Alabama in 1810 and sold to a Creek Indian chief before his tenth birthday, possessed an extraordinary gift: the ability to master languages. What would become of him and his family in the aftermath of the Civil War?

Once you’ve read CITIZENS CREEK and checked out the reading group guide, Atria Books knows you’re going to want to discuss this fascinating book with a friend – or maybe even with the author.

Join Lalita and the Southern Independent Bookseller Alliance (SIBA) for a Facebook Q&A book club chat on November 20th at 8 pm EST on the Reader Meets Writer Facebook page – you can RSVP here.

CitizensCreek_Facebook Q&A

CITZENS CREEK is a November Indie Next Pick, the SIBA One Book, One South inaugural selection, and an Okra pick.

Praise for CITIZENS CREEK

 “Each of the novel’s characters speaking in a compelling voice…completely engrossing.” –Starred Booklist

“Tademy’s work sheds light on a complex and undertold chapter of American history.” –Library Journal

“Citizens Creek is an absorbing and unforgettable trip through a past that remains unexplored.” –Essence Magazine

” I was completely captured by this family’s adventures, misfortunes, and triumphs.” – Dolen Perkins-Valdez, author of Wench

“ This is a powerful and moving novel about a little known chapter in our past and about one family’s legacy of courage. I’ll remember it for a long time.” – Ann Packer, author of The Dive From Clausen’s Pier.

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About the Author: Lalita Tademy is the author of Cane River, a New York Times bestselling novel and the 2001 Oprah Book Club Summer Selection, and its critically acclaimed sequel Red River. She lives in Northern California.

Lalita Tademy


Wednesday, November 5, 2014

The Wolf In Winter by John Connolly



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If you already know John Connolly from his #1 internationally bestselling Charlie Parker thrillers, then there’s a good chance that you’ve already read John’s latest, The Wolf In Winter, and had the distinct pleasure of meeting the people of Prosperous, Maine.

And we probably don’t need to tell you that they’re no pleasure at all. They thrive while others suffer. They shun outsiders and guard their own. And, at the heart of Prosperous lie the ruins of an ancient church, transported from England stone by stone.

The people of Prosperous are as vivid as they are menacing. So, just how did John come up with the characters?

_________________________________

JOHN CONNOLLY

John Connolly is the author of The Wrath of Angels, The Burning Soul, The Book of Lost Things, and Bad Men, among many others. He is a regular contributor to The Irish Times and lives in Dublin, Ireland.

For more information, see his website at JohnConnollyBooks.com, or follow him on Twitter @JConnollyBooks.

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The Wolf In Winter by John Connolly is on sale now

Win A Visit from Ryan Winfield


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Only nine days left for a chance to win a visit from Ryan Winfield!

Enter the Ryan Winfield Book Club sweepstakes today!

Ways To Enter:

1) Take a picture of you and your book club with Jane’s Melody and tag it with #JanesMelody on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook.com/RyanWinfield (Ryan Winfield’s Facebook page).

2) Or to enter without purchase, fill out the form on RyanWinfieldBookClub.com 

Grand Prize (1):

Ryan Winfield will attend your next book club where he will treat everyone to a private dinner at their favorite restaurant, provide gift bags containing signed copies of both Jane’s Melody and Jane’s Harmony, and offer a lively book discussion.

Second Prize (1):

Signed copies of both Jane’s Melody and Jane’s Harmony for the entire book club and a Skype visit from the author for their next meeting.

Third Prize (1):

Signed copies of both books for the entire book club.

Consolation Prize:

Every book club that enters will receive bookmarks, as a thank you from the author.

The first in a series, Jane’s Melody is a sexy, touching love story about a woman in her 40’s who falls for a younger man, and the romantic journey they take together after the years she spent struggling alone.

Learn more about Ryan Winfield as he answers reader questions at RyanWinfieldBookClub.com.

__________________________

RYAN WINFIELD

Ryan Winfield is the New York Times bestselling author of Jane’s Melody, South of Bixby Bridge, and The Park Service trilogy. He lives in Seattle. To connect with Ryan, visit him at Facebook.com/RyanWinfield.

Winfield
JanesMelody
Jane’s Melody by Ryan Winfield is on sale now

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

GONE WITH THE WIND SWEEPSTAKES



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To celebrate the publication of Ruth’s Journey, Atria Books has partnered with BookPage to offer fans a chance to win a collection of Ruth’s Journey treasures!

One Grand Prize Winner will receive a Gone with the Wind 75th Anniversary Ultimate Collector’s edition on blu-ray and digital HD with ultraviolet, a signed first edition copy of Ruth’s Journey, and a Ruth’s Journey audiobook.

Five Runners-Up will receive first edition copies of Ruth’s Journey.

USA ONLY

To enter, visit Bookpage.com/Contests


Friday, October 31, 2014

What Color Are YOU?


Go to the site below, and choose your favorite color.

 http://www.personalityquiz.net/colortests/colors.htm

I am green, and I think it describes me perfectly.

Put your color in the comment section please, and let us know if you think it truly describes you.

*Rainbow Image courtesy of:

 www.webweaver.nu

The Paris Winter by Imogen Robertson


Who wouldn't want to spend the winter in Paris?  Maud was in Paris starving and freezing as an art student when Tanya, a wealthy woman, befriended her and helped ​Maud ​obtain a position ​in a home to take care of a young lady.

​Maud found out the accommodations brought about more than a warm place to stay and good meals.  Sylvie, the young lady she was taking care of, smoked opium and stole things​, her "brother" wasn't very honest, and nothing was what it seemed. What else was going to happen, and what did she get herself into?

What was supposed to be a life-changing winter turned out to be a winter of lies, ​danger​, deceit, and murder​. 

The beginning of THE PARIS WINTER was a bit slow, but as the tale unraveled, there was nothing slow​, ​​nothing short of deviousness, and nothing ​short of
intrigue​.  Don't give up too soon.

You will feel sorry for Maud, you will love Tanya and Yvette - they are actually comical and so loyal to Maude, you will hate Sylvie and her "brother," and you will question all that goes on with them and question their motives.

I thoroughly enjoyed THE PARIS WINTER because of the well-developed, unlikeable, devious, corrupt characters and the unpredictable, twisted plot with a marvelous, thrilling ending.   This thrilling ending was set during the Paris flood of 1910 and was a perfect connection to Maud's intentions.

Don't miss reading THE PARIS WINTER.  You will be pulled in just like the flood waters of Paris pulled in its citizens.  THE PARIS WINTER is an alluring, captivating historical read. 4/5

This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the publisher in return for an honest review.

Halloween Edition of The Book Blogger Hop - 10/31 - 11/6


Question of the Week:

You can go trick or treating with any fictional character (book or film). Who would you go with?

My Answer:

I would go trick or treating with Freya from Posie Graeme Evans' book, The Island House, or any character in Lucinda Riley's books.

We wouldn't scare too many people, but we definitely would have lovely conversations.

I loved the setting of The Island House, and I love any book written by Lucinda Riley.

Whew...I am glad this is the last of the Halloween questions, Billy.  It was a rough month of questions.   :)

Who would you choose to go with?