Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday: The Big Rewind by Libby Cudmore

 "Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that you are eagerly anticipating.

Today, I am waiting on:  
The Big Rewind by Libby Cudmore!

From Goodreads:
Raymond Chandler meets Nick Hornby in this clever noir romp through hipster Brooklyn as a mysterious mix tape puts a young amateur sleuth on the hunt for a killer—and for the truths hidden within her own heart.

Jett Bennett moved to New York to become a music journalist. What she found was a temp gig as a proofreader, but at least she’s fitting in with the artists and musicians in the tragically hip Brooklyn neighborhood she calls home.

But when Jett opens up her mail and finds a mix tape meant for her neighbor, KitKat, a local queen bee renowned for her “enhanced” baked goods and retro videogame collection, everything changes. Jett drops off the cassette and discovers that it’s game over for KitKat: someone bashed her head in with a rolling pin… and left her pot brownies burning in the oven.

KitKat’s boyfriend, Bronco, is M.I.A. Her sister is so desperate that she asks Jett to snoop around. Then there’s that mix tape. Jett didn’t know KitKat well, but she knows music. And a tape full of love songs from someone other than Bronco screams motive—sending Jett and her best friend, Sid, on an epic quest to find KitKat’s killer through record stores, strip joints, vegan bakeries, and basement nightclubs—a journey that resonates with Jett, and her past, in unexpected ways.
I love love love mix tapes and love books with music!  This one sounds really good!  The Big Rewind is scheduled for release on February 2, 2016, and you can pre-order here!!

What books are you waiting on this Wednesday??

TEASER TUESDAY + GIVEAWAY: The Paper Swan by Leylah Attar

Monday, July 27, 2015

Top Ten Characters Who Are Fellow Book Nerds

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the fab ladies at The Broke and the Bookish!

1.  Of course I picked Senna from Mud Vein first, everyone's favorite author!

2.  Kat from the Lux series is awesome because she's a book blogger!

3.  Cath from Fangirl is a fan fiction extraordinaire!

4.  One of my favorite parts of Steering the Stars was Hannah's journey to become a writer.

5.  No one is a bigger book nerd than Dora, who literally shuts out the entire world to go on multiple day-long book benders, barely pausing to do anything but read.

6.  Not only do Matt and Hannah meet as writing partners in Night Owl but it is Matt's words that eventually inspire all aspects of their relationship including Hannah becoming an editor.

7.  How could I not include the original literary couple: Georgina (book lover, book store manager and devourer of Seth's words) and Seth (the writer)?

8.  I must admit that Eliza's job is the coolest: a rock 'n roll journalist -- who wouldn't want to spend their days interviewing rock stars and attending free concerts where you always end up back stage? 

9.  The members of the Rabbit Back Literature Society are the ultimate book nerds: the best writers in Finland who will stop at nothing to be the absolute best.

10.  Last but certainly not least, Jo March from Little Women:  a woman writing when that was the last thing encouraged of or expected of her!

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Review: The Night Ferry by Michael Robotham

Blurb from Goodreads:
A gripping tale of betrayal, murder, and redemption.

Detective Alisha Barba hadn't heard from her long lost friend Cate in years, but when she receives a frantic letter pleading for help, she knows she must see her. “They want to take my baby. You have to stop them,” Cate whispers to Alisha when they finally meet. Then, only hours later, Cate and her husband are fatally run down by a car. 

At the crime scene, Alisha discovers the first in a series of complex and mysterious deceptions that will send her on a perilous search for the truth, from the dangerous streets of London's East End to the decadent glow of Amsterdam's red-light district.  
My Review:
The Night Ferry was a fine mystery/crime thriller although the mystery was solved long before the book ended leaving the last 20% or so of the book as a bit boring.  I liked the MC, Alisha Barba, but the she was definitely a bit self-righteous and so confused at times.  I couldn't help but think that she was made to seem to indecisive and weak because it was a male author writing a female MC but it is possible that I am projecting.  I did love the settings of London and Amsterdam in this book, having been to both several times, and the actual crime solving was very good.

I would recommend this to anyone that likes thriller mysteries along the lines of James Patterson or Jonathan Kellerman.  This book was unique in that it was a female MC written by a male author but I'm not sure the voice of the MC was executed perfectly.  The Night Ferry was just released on e-book in the US last week, and you can purchase HERE!  
When the day comes that I am asked to recalibrate the calendar, I am going to lop a week off January and February and add them to October, which deserves to be forty days long, maybe more.
I love this time of year.  The tourists have long gone and the kids are back at school.  The TV schedules aren't full of reruns and I can sleep under a duvet again.  Mostly I love the sparkle in the air, without the pollen from the plane trees so that I can open my lungs and run freely. 

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday: F*** Love by Tarryn Fisher

 "Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that you are eagerly anticipating.

Today, I am waiting on:  
F*** Love by Tarryn Fisher!

The side of me that writes books like, Love Me With Lies, is making a brief comeback. And I'm very excited about this book. I like to do the hard things. But I need a brain break. And maybe coating my mind in love will keep me from becoming Margo. For now. Because F*** Love is still about love. And I can't stop thinking about the story when I'm away from it.

You guys already know that I am a MAJOR Tarryn Fisher fangirl, like MAJOR, MAJOR!   And when I heard that she's not only writing a second book this year, but that it's a love story? I could not be happier!  **ck Love is scheduled to be released this fall and I. CANNOT. WAIT. !!!!!!!!!!!

What books are you waiting on this Wednesday??

TEASER TUESDAY + GIVEAWAY: The Paper Swan by Leylah Attar

Monday, July 20, 2015

Review: The Coincidence of Coconut Cake by Amy E. Reichert

Blurb from Goodreads:
YOU'VE GOT MAIL meets HOW TO EAT A CUPCAKE in this delightful novel about a talented chef and the food critic who brings down her restaurant—whose chance meeting turns into a delectable romance of mistaken identities.

In downtown Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Lou works tirelessly to build her beloved yet struggling French restaurant, Luella’s, into a success. She cheerfully balances her demanding business and even more demanding fiancé…until the morning she discovers him in the buff—with an intern.

Witty yet gruff British transplant Al is keeping himself employed and entertained by writing scathing reviews of local restaurants in the Milwaukee newspaper under a pseudonym. When an anonymous tip sends him to Luella’s, little does he know he’s arrived on the worst day of the chef’s life. The review practically writes itself: underdone fish, scorched sauce, distracted service—he unleashes his worst.

The day that Al’s mean-spirited review of Luella’s runs, the two cross paths in a pub: Lou drowning her sorrows, and Al celebrating his latest publication. As they chat, Al playfully challenges Lou to show him the best of Milwaukee and she’s game—but only if they never discuss work, which Al readily agrees to. As they explore the city’s local delicacies and their mutual attraction, Lou’s restaurant faces closure, while Al’s column gains popularity. It’s only a matter of time before the two fall in love…but when the truth comes out, can Lou overlook the past to chase her future?

Set in the lovely, quirky heart of Wisconsin, THE COINCIDENCE OF COCONUT CAKE is a charming love story of misunderstandings, mistaken identity, and the power of food to bring two people together.

My Review:
I think I love books set in a kitchen -- there is something so fascinating to me about the stress, pace and reward of working in that type of environment.  And I know I definitely love coconut cake: WARNING: do not read this book hungry!  But I didn't love this book with all of my heart.  Don't get me wrong: this is a good book, and a very quick read, but something about it left me desiring more.  I liked Lou but sometimes she was hard to like -- she was a bit too oblivious to the truths around her to be completely believable.  The other portions of this book that detracted from my whole hearted love were the constant depressing plot points that sometimes seemed a bit unnecessary -- without giving anything away, everything that could go wrong, goes wrong and then, of course, Lou's love interest doesn't tell her something major, thereby breaking everyone's heart when they all find out the truth.  I'm a bit tired of this cliche -- when was the last time you read a romance where this didn't happen?  That being said, however, there were many charming part of this story and I loved the kitchen/food scenes!  It's also a total love letter to Milwaukee so, if you're from there, you will probably love this book!

I would recommend this to fans of The Chocolate Thief by Laura Florand or any book by Sarah Jio -- something about the tone and voice of this book reminded me of both.  And, if you're looking for other books set in a kitchen and/or with a female chef -- The Blue Bistro  by Elin Hilderbrand and Lizzy & Jane by Katherine Reay are also great!  The Coincidence of Coconut Cake comes out tomorrow, July 21, 2015, and you can purchase HERE!
Thunder rumbled and a cool breeze rushed through the open back door of the restaurant.  A waterfall fell over the entrance, the gutters above long defunct.  Other than the rain and thunder, only the whir of Harley's mixer and the snick of knives on cutting boards disturbed the peaceful morning.  While Lou loved the raucous music, loud voices and chaotic movement of a dinner rush, the calm prep work soothed her soul and gave her time to think.  Some people did downward dog, some burned incense in front of a Buddha statue, some prayed the rosary; Lou chopped vegetables into tiny squares, filleted fish, and reduced veal stock.  her meditation smelled better, and even if she didn't find a solution, at least she got to eat.
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