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Showing posts from April, 2016

Review: Lake of Dreams by Linda Howard

Lake of Dreams by Linda Howard

Blurb from Goodreads:
Dreams and reality collide—with potentially deadly consequences—in this stunning novella from New York Times bestselling author Linda Howard, available for the first time as a standalone ebook at an unbeatable price!

House painter Thea Marlow hasn’t been sleeping very well. Her nights are plagued by dreams, the setting by the water and the mysterious man who appears in them always the same. But the outcome of the dream changes nightly: sometimes the man loves her...and sometimes he kills her. Desperate for some much needed relaxation, Thea travels to her family’s remote country lake house. Imagine her surprise when a knock at the door reveals the man from her dreams...who happens to have just rented the house next door.

So will he love her—or will he kill her? My Review:
This book was originally released as part of an anthology and, accordingly, it's very short; I would categorize this as a novella. You already know by now that I abso…

Conversations With Myself (& Hopefully You): How Do You Define a HEA?

This discussion is partially inspired by Shannon's recent discussion regarding the "Pickiness of Endings" (a must read).  I was thinking about Shannon's discussion and I feel the same -- endings, especially series endings, disappoint me so often.  And then I thought about the fact that some of my very favorite books don't have a "happy" ending.  Sometimes this works because it feels more authentic for the story, for the characters and particularly, as Shannon pointed out, in a dystopian.  This led me to think about what a "happy" ending even means and so today I ask:
How do you define a HEA?
I often think of endings in simplest of Shakespeare's terms -- if it ends with a wedding, it's a comedy; if it ends with a funeral, it's a tragedy.  But maybe that is too simple. As you know, I hate spoilers and so I am going to try to talk about endings without referencing any particular books.  As I intimated above, some of my favorite books do…

Waiting on Wednesday: The Darkest Secret by Alex Marwood

"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 Darkest Secret by Alex Marwood



From Goodreads: From Edgar Award winner Alex Marwood comes another gripping psychological thriller. When a child goes missing at an opulent house party, it makes international news. But what really happened to Coco Jackson?

Real estate mogul Sean Jackson is throwing himself a splashy fiftieth birthday party, but trouble starts almost immediately: His ex-wife has sent his teenage daughters to the party without telling him; his current wife has fired the nanny; and he’s finding it difficult to sneak away to his mistress. Then something truly terrible happens: one of his three-year-old twins goes missing. No trace of her is ever found. The attendees of the party, nicknamed the Jackson Associates by the press, become infamous overnight.

Twelve years later, Sean is dead. The Jackson Asso…

Review: The Wedding Pact (The O'Malleys #2) by Katee Robert

The Wedding Pact (The O'Malleys #2) by Katee Robert

Blurb from Goodreads:
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Katee Robert continues her smoking-hot series about the O'Malleys—wealthy, powerful, and full of scandalous family secrets. 

Carrigan O'Malley has always known her arranged marriage would be more about power and prestige than passion. But after one taste of the hard-bodied, whiskey-voiced James Halloran, she's ruined for anyone else. Too bad James and his family are enemy number 1. 

Hallorans vs. O'Malleys—that's how it's always been. James should be thinking more about how to expand his family's empire instead of how silky Carrigan's skin is against his and how he can next get her into his bed. Those are dangerous thoughts. But not nearly as dangerous as he'll be if he can't get what he wants: Carrigan by his side for the rest of their lives. My Review:
I liked this one.  I think my first GR status update was that I was not ex…

Monday Musts: Dear Mr. Knightley, Prince & Bookish Links

Monday Musts is a weekly event, started and hosted by Jessica @ Lovin' Los Libros, which asks you to highlight your must read, must listen and must see!

MUST READ!
Dear Mr. Knightley by Katherine Reay



From Goodreads: Dear Mr. Knightley is a contemporary epistolary novel with a delightful dash of Jane Austen.

Samantha Moore survived years of darkness in the foster care system by hiding behind her favorite characters in literature, even adopting their very words. Her fictional friends give her an identity, albeit a borrowed one. But most importantly, they protect her from revealing her true self and encountering more pain.

After college, Samantha receives an extraordinary opportunity. The anonymous “Mr. Knightley” offers her a full scholarship to earn her graduate degree at the prestigious Medill School of Journalism. The sole condition is that Sam write to Mr. Knightley regularly to keep him apprised of her progress.

As Sam’s true identity begins to reveal itself through her letters, her …

Review: 33 1/3 New Kids on the Block's Hangin' Tough by Rebecca Wallwork

33 1/3 New Kids on the Block's Hangin' Tough by Rebecca Wallwork

Blurb from Goodreads:
Hangin' Tough, the second album by the New Kids on the Block, has sold more than seventeen million copies worldwide since it was released in 1988. But the album and the band have also been dismissed, derided and deemed uncool by the music establishment.

Almost thirty years later, the New Kids still perform the songs from Hangin' Tough.Hundreds of thousands of grown women still flock to their concerts to hear-and go bat-shit crazy for-the songs they first heard when they were teenagers. Is this mere nostalgia or can the science of music help explain the enduring success of Hangin' Tough? What is it about this album that made it so special? Is the music any good or are there other factors at play too?

Journalist and New Kids fan Rebecca Wallwork sets out to analyze the quality of Hangin' Tough with the help of music cognition experts, critics, producers and music industry pros. Thi…

Review: The Girl Who Stayed by Tanya Anne Crosby

The Girl Who Stayed by Tanya Anne Crosby

Blurb from Goodreads:
Zoe Rutherford wasn't sure what she was expecting when she returned to Sullivan's Island. The house on Sullivan's hadn't represented home to her in decades. It was the place where she endured her father's cruelty. It was the place where her mother closed herself off from the world. It was the place where her sister disappeared. But now that her parents are gone, Zoe needs to return to the house, to close it down and prepare it for sale. She intends to get this done as quickly as possible and get on with her life, even though that life seems clouded by her past, both distant and recent. But what she discovers when she gets there is far beyond her imagining and will change her in profound ways.  My Review:
First, I have to tell you that I hate this title -- I truly feel like it has "girl" in the title as a marketing ploy, to link it to those famed other current novels with unreliable female narrator…

Review: My Mrs. Brown by William Norwich

My Mrs. Brown by William Norwich

Blurb from Goodreads:
Sometimes a dress isn’t just a dress.

Emilia Brown is a woman of a certain age. She has spent a frugal, useful, and wholly restrained life in Ashville, a small town in Rhode Island. Overlooked especially by the industries of fashion and media, Mrs. Brown is one of today’s silent generations of women whose quiet no-frills existences would make them seem invisible. She is a genteel woman who has known her share of personal sorrows and quietly carried on, who makes a modest living cleaning and running errands at the local beauty parlor, who delights in evening chats with her much younger neighbor, twenty-three-year-old Alice Danvers.

When the grand dame of Ashville passes away, Mrs. Brown is called upon to inventory her estate and comes across a dress that changes everything. This isn’t a Cinderella confection; it’s a simple yet exquisitely tailored Oscar de la Renta sheath and jacket—a suit that Mrs. Brown realizes, with startling clari…

Waiting on Wednesday: Siracusa by Delia Ephron

"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:  
Siracusa by Delia Ephron



From Goodreads: An electrifying novel about marriage and deceit from bestselling author Delia Ephron that follows two couples on vacation in Siracusa, a town on the coast of Sicily, where the secrets they have hidden from each other are exposed and relationships are unraveled. 

New Yorkers Michael, a famous writer, and Lizzie, a journalist, travel to Italy with their friends from Maine—Finn, his wife Taylor, and their daughter Snow. “From the beginning,” says Taylor, “it was a conspiracy for Lizzie and Finn to be together.” Told Rashomon-style in alternating points of view, the characters expose and stumble upon lies and infidelities past and present.  Snow, ten years old and precociously drawn into a far more adult drama, becomes the catalyst for catastrophe as the novel explores collusion …

Review: Eligible: A Modern Retelling of Pride and Prejudice by Curtis Sittenfeld

Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld

Blurb from Goodreads:
This version of the Bennet family—and Mr. Darcy—is one that you have and haven’t met before: Liz is a magazine writer in her late thirties who, like her yoga instructor older sister, Jane, lives in New York City. When their father has a health scare, they return to their childhood home in Cincinnati to help—and discover that the sprawling Tudor they grew up in is crumbling and the family is in disarray.

Youngest sisters Kitty and Lydia are too busy with their CrossFit workouts and Paleo diets to get jobs. Mary, the middle sister, is earning her third online master’s degree and barely leaves her room, except for those mysterious Tuesday-night outings she won’t discuss. And Mrs. Bennet has one thing on her mind: how to marry off her daughters, especially as Jane’s fortieth birthday fast approaches.

Enter Chip Bingley, a handsome new-in-town doctor who recently appeared on the juggernaut reality TV dating show Eligible. At a Fourth of July …

Monday Musts: The Diamond Age, NKOTB & Favorite Bookish Links of the Week

Monday Musts is a weekly event, started and hosted by Jessica @ Lovin' Los Libros, which asks you to highlight your must read, must listen and must see!

MUST READ!
The Diamond Age: or, A Young Lady's Illustrated Primer by Neal Stephenson



From Goodreads: The Diamond Age: Or, A Young Lady's Illustrated Primer is a postcyberpunk novel by Neal Stephenson. It is to some extent a science fiction coming-of-age story, focused on a young girl named Nell, and set in a future world in which nanotechnology affects all aspects of life. The novel deals with themes of education, social class, ethnicity, and the nature of artificial intelligence. I haven't read a lot of sci-fi but I cannot recommend this book enough -- amazing world building and completely captivating, especially about reading in the future!

MUST LISTEN!

New Kids on the Block - Tonight
So I read 33 1/3's book re: Hangin' Tough last week (my review will be out soon!) and, consequently, I had to go and listen to all of …