Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Mad Honey by Jodi Picoult and Jennifer Finney Boylan

Olivia left her abusive marriage before her husband could harm her son, Asher.

It has been twelve years since the divorce, but Olivia is still haunted by Braden.

She also worries if Asher will have the abusive tendencies of his father and even more when he is accused of the murder of his girlfriend, Lily.

We meet these characters as we are treated to beekeeping terms and procedures and as we learn of Olivia's past with her husband, the relationship between Olivia and her son, Asher and Lily’s relationship, and Lily's past.

We also follow Asher in jail, the murder investigation, how everyone is coping, and wonder if he really did kill her or was setup.

The tension is very real as Asher’s attorney puts together a defense.  You will be nervous along with the characters and react with them when the verdict is announced.

MAD HONEY is an excellent read by Jodi Picoult and co-author, Jennifer Finney Boylan.

It addresses domestic abuse, secrets we keep, relationships, life choices, and why people do what they do.

If you are a fan, do not miss this marvelous book.

It is outstanding for the research done about bees - actually fascinating about the bees, the descriptions of everything going on, and for making you feel every emotion the characters are feeling. 5/5

This book was given to me by the publisher in print and via NetGalley for an honest review.

Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Hester by Laurie Lico Albanese

Isobel lives in Scotland - a descendant of her namesake living in 1662 and who was labeled a witch.

Isobel sees colors which is called synesthesia, and her mother tells her she must see everything in black and white or they will label her a witch like her grandmother.

Isobel is an excellent seamstress and stitches beautiful scenes on clothing.  She marries an apothecary, but he gets into trouble, and they sail to America.

She arrives in Salem determined to use her skill to become independent because her husband took a job on the very boat they came over on.  She will live alone in a remote cottage.

While her husband is away, she meets none other than Nathaniel Hawthorn. Yes. The author of THE SCARLET  LETTER. 

Since her marriage is not filled with love, when she sees Nathaniel she gets an instant feeling that they will become friends.

Do they become friends or lovers? 

She is married, and he is not.

Will one of the hidden A’s she sews into her clothing be something she will have to prominently display?

HESTER is a beautifully written book focusing on women’s strengths and a take on The Scarlet Letter.

Seamstresses, fans of The Scarlet Letter, historical fiction fans, and fans of this time period will enjoy this book despite some of the odd chapters about witches.  4/5

This book was given to me by the publisher via NetGalley for an honest review.

Monday, October 3, 2022

Spotlight of One Woman's War by Christine Wells


Wells is known for historical novels featuring strong, fascinating women. 
The WWII history in this one is perfect for Kate Quinn readers, while the Ian Fleming background will appeal to James Bond fans.
October 4, 2022


“Forget James Bond. Say hello to the real-life Miss Moneypenny, whose life was as replete with spycraft, adventure and daring as any true hero’s. Through Christine Wells’ skillful storytelling, Paddy Bennett, aka Miss Moneypenny, doesn’t just shine—she dazzles like the star she was. Just like you’ll be cheering for the heroine of One Woman’s War, you’ll be cheering Christine Wells for writing this brilliant book.” —Natasha Lester, New York Times bestselling author of The Riviera House

“A pulse-pounding thrill ride of a read, One Woman’s War pulls back the curtain on one of the most covert operations of World War II, while also immersing readers in the fascinating foundations of 007-lore. Powerful reading you won’t want to put down!” —Stephanie Marie Thornton, USA Today bestselling author of A Most Clever Girl

“A thrilling spy novel with a splash of glamour and plenty of intrigue, Christine Wells has penned an exciting WWII adventure of the real-life Miss Moneypenny and 007 that will keep you turning the pages until you reach the end. I highly recommend this exciting and daring book!” —Eliza Knight, USA Today bestselling author of The Mayfair Bookshop

“Christine Wells has crafted a spy novel worthy of Bond himself, bringing the unbelievable true story of Operation Mincemeat to life through the eyes of two unforgettable, real-life female operatives. A must-read!” —Bryn Turnbull, bestselling author of The Last Grand Duchess

“With a dazzling cast from history, and a wild gamble of a mission, One Woman’s War is a testament to the brilliance and daring of women and men in WWII. In true Fleming/Bond form, Wells has crafted a glamorous, engaging novel full of intrigue, but one that also humanizes and brings to life many complicated people and terrifying situations. Mix a martini and settle in.” —Erika Robuck, bestselling author of Sisters of Night and Fog

One Woman’s War takes the reader on a breathtaking voyage to the glamour and edge-of-the-seat danger of London in the Blitz, as two very different women risk everything in a daring ruse that out-Bonds Bond. Christine Wells’ latest is such a great wartime thriller that Ian Fleming himself would be envious!” —Anna Campbell, bestselling author of the A Scandal in Mayfair series 


From the author of Sisters of the Resistance comes the story of WWII British Naval Intelligence officer Victoire Bennett, the real-life inspiration for the James Bond character Miss Moneypenny, whose international covert operation is put in jeopardy when a volatile socialite and Austrian double agent threatens to expose the mission to German High Command.



Christine Wells writes historical fiction featuring strong, fascinating women. 

From early childhood, she drank in her father’s tales about the real kings and queens behind popular nursery rhymes and she has been a keen student of history ever since. 

She began her first novel while working as a corporate lawyer, and has gone on to write about periods ranging from Georgian England to post World War II France. 

Christine is passionate about helping other writers learn the craft and business of writing fiction and enjoys mentoring and teaching workshops whenever her schedule permits. 

She loves dogs, running, the beach and fossicking for antiques and lives with her family in Brisbane, Australia. 

For more information, visit



It's Monday!! What Are YOU Reading? - 10/3/2022

I hope you had a great reading week.
This is a weekly meme hosted by Kathryn at BOOK DATE!

Post the books completed, the books you are currently reading, and the books you hope to finish at some point.
Books Completed:
CRAZY TO LEAVE YOU by Marilyn Simon Rothstein - review will be on October 28.
A fun, light read.
THE ITALIAN DAUGHTER by Soraya Lane - review will be on October 17.
A lovely, lovely read...don't miss it.
THE LINDBERGH NANNY by Mariah Fredericks - review will be on November 15.
Very well done.
THE WIDOW by Kaira Rouda - review will be on December 2.
Not a favorite.

DEAD AND GONDOLA by Ann Claire - review will be on November 3.
THE PRISONER by B. A. Paris - review will be on November 2.
THE FORGOTTEN BOOKSHOP IN PARIS by Daisy Wood - review will be on October 27.
 THE CRADLES OF THE REICH by Jennifer Coburn - review will be on October 11.
MAD HONEY by Jodi Picoult and Jennifer Finney Boylan - review will be on October 5.
Loved the information on bees.
HESTER by Laurie Lico Albanese - review will be on October 4.
A sweet, funny read that will have you laughing but also in tears at times.  A nice light read.
MR. PERFECT ON PAPER  ON PAPER  by Jean Meltzer - review is in the book's title. 
THE FORGOTTEN GIRL by Daco Auffenorde - review is in the book's title.
An interesting story line that will keep you turning the pages.
THE MATCHMAKER'S GIFT by Lynda Cohen Loigman - review is in the book's title.
Gorgeous Cover!! 

LOVED, LOVED, LOVED this book!!  Sweet characters and a sweet story line.

Book Currently Reading:
THE LAST PARTY by Clare Mackintosh - review will be on November 10.
Books Up Next:

THE PERSONAL ASSISTANT by Kimberly Belle - review will be on November 29.
THE SECRET OF MATTERDALE HALL by Marianne Ratcliffe - review will be on December 1. 
THE DRESSMAKERS OF PROSPECTD HEIGHTS - review will be on December 6.
THE OPPORTUNIST by Elyse Friedman - review will be on December 7.
THE WIDOWMAKER by Hannah Morrissey - review will be on December 8.
A MOTHER WOULD KNOW by Amber Garza - review will be on December 13.
THE SECRET SOCIETY OF SALZBURG by Renee Ryan - review will be on December 27.
ONE LAST SECRET by Adele Parks - review will be on December 28.
THE VILLA by Rachel Hawkins - review will be on January 3, 2023.
ALL THE DANGEROUS THINGS by Stacy Willingham - review will be on January 10, 2023.
THE NIGHT TRAVELERS by Armando Lucas Correa - review will be on January 11, 2023.
REEF ROAD by Deborah Goodrich - review will be on January 12, 2023.
JUST THE NICEST COUPLE by Mary Kubica - review will be January 13, 2023.
KILLER STORY by Matt Witten - review will be January 17, 2023.
THE WRITING RETREAT by Julia Bartz - review will be on February 21, 2023.
WHAT HAVE WE DONE by Alex Finlay - review will be on March 7.
HANG THE MOON BY JEANNETTE WALLS - review will be on March 28, 2023.
THE SOULMATE by Sally Hepworth - review will be on April 4, 2023.
WHERE COYOTES HOWL by Sandra Dallas - review will be on April 18, 2023.

THE COLLECTEDF REGRETS O CLOVER by Mikki Brammer - review will be on May 9, 2023.