Monday, September 9, 2019

Review: All the Flowers in Paris

All the Flowers in Paris
42859805By Sarah Jio
Published Augsut 13,c2019 
Ballentine Books

Note: I received this book from the publisher via NetGalley to facilitate my review. I received no other compensation, and all opinions are my own.

From Goodreads:

Two women are connected across time by the city of Paris, a mysterious journal, and shocking secrets, sweeping from World War II to the present--for readers of Sarah's Key.

When Caroline wakes up in a Paris hospital with no memory of her past, she's confused to learn that she's lived a sad, reclusive life for years in a sprawling apartment on the Seine. Slowly regaining vague memories of a man and young child, she vows to piece her life back together--though she can't help but feel she may be in danger. A budding friendship with the chef of a charming nearby restaurant takes her mind off of her foggy past, as does a startling mystery from decades prior...

In Nazi-occupied Paris, young widow Celine lives a quiet life with her father, the local florist, and her daughter, Cosi. When a ruthless German officer discovers the family's Jewish ancestry, he blackmails Celine, forcing her to become his mistress in exchange for the others' safety. The trio plans an escape, but their mission goes horribly awry and Celine's beloved father and daughter are sent away to a cruel fate. Initially distraught, Celine fears the worst. Yet she soon discovers that Cosi has snuck away and followed her into captivity. More motivated than ever, Celine must now fight to hide and protect the person she loves most.
n
Parallel timelines intersect when Caroline discovers Celine's diary tucked away in a closet, and it is revealed that the walls of her apartment harbor dark secrets. With the help of a local student from the Sorbonne, she realizes that she may have more in common with Celine than she could ever imagine.



What a beautiful book! I'll admit it took me a bit to get really invested and hooked into this book. I've been a fan of Jio's books for a long time and know the traditional format of her books--two time frames and two story lines that weave together--but this one did not suck me in from the beginning. I almost DNF'd around 30%. However, I'm so glad I kept reading--the more I read, the more attached to the characters I became.  It was heartbreaking at times  but such a beautiful story. I read the last half of the book in one afternoon and loved how the stories came together. 

If you love Paris and WW2 historical fiction, this book is a must read. Jio's description of the streets and neighborhoods of Paris made me feel like I was there. I wanted to eat at the Bistor Jeanty and buy flowers from Papa's flower shop. I loved the French language used in the book. Though it had its share of sad moments, there were happy moments and heartwarming lessons. I definitely recommend reading this book, especially if you're a Sarah Jio fan!

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Tell Me Something Tuesday: Fall Picks



TMSToption2Blue 
Tell Me Something Tuesday is hosted by Rainy Day Ramblings and discusses a wide range of topics from books to blogging.

This Week's Question: What are your picks for Fall 2019?

These are all books I'm excited about for Fall! Some are authors I've read before and love (Cathy Lamb and Elin Hilderbrand) and the rest are all new to me authors!


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What books are you excited to read this Fall? Happy Reading!

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Review: Mrs. Everything

Mrs. Everything
42589678. sy475 By Jennifer Weiner
480 pages
Published June 11,2019 by Atria Books
Source: Library

From Goodreads:

From Jennifer Weiner, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Who Do You Love and In Her Shoes, comes a smart, thoughtful, and timely exploration of two sisters’ lives from the 1950s to the present as they struggle to find their places—and be true to themselves—in a rapidly evolving world. Mrs. Everything is an ambitious, richly textured journey through history—and herstory—as these two sisters navigate a changing America over the course of their lives.


 
 I've been a big fan of Jennifer Weiner for a long time, and this is without a doubt her best work.  I  loved everything about the book--both sister (Jo and Bethie), the format of the book (alternating perspectives between the sisters) and  the timeline of the book.  I liked that everything was in chronological order--a lot of books these days seem to be jumping around. This one started in 1950 when the girls were young, and continued all the way through to the present day.

This book perfectly captured what it means to be a woman growing up in the 1960's and 1970's--the challenges, struggles, and realities. So many issues were covered in this book. Jo and Bethie's lives were so relatable to me even though I grew up a few decades later. The book highlighted that though some things have changed, women still have many of the same struggles today.  This book was so timely and relevant. It was completely worth the 500 page investment. I got so attached to Jo and Bethie, and related to both of them in different ways.

This is one of my favorites of 2019! If you only read one book by Jennifer Weiner--read this one!

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

WWW Wednesday: August 28

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The Three W's are:

What did you just finish reading?
What are you currently reading?
What do you think you'll read next?
Recently Finished
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 I absolutely LOVED Mrs. Everything--I believe it is Jennifer Weiner's best book! Absolute must read. Review on the blog tomorrow! Unfortunately, I didn't connect with The Winemaker's Wife. I expected to love it. It was just meh for me. I usually love Harmel's books though, so it won't stop me from reading future books by her.
Currently Reading
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As expected, I'm loving the latest Kristan Higgins! I wanted to get to it sooner, but library books and NetGalley books were calling me. Speaking of NetGalley, just started the latest Sarah Jio as well. It's a good reading week!
 
Up Next

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This one just came in for me at the library, I am picking it up today!

What are you reading this week?
 

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I've Read but Want to Own

 

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl

This Week's Topic:

Books I’ve Read That I’d Like In My Personal Library (perhaps you checked it out, borrowed it from a friend, received it for review, etc. and want to own it yourself.

This is a great topic! I borrow a lot of books from the library!!  Frequently, I'll wish I had bought a copy myself, but now that I've read it...do I really need a copy? The struggle is real! Here's my list (all library reads):

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Monday, August 19, 2019

Review: Things You Save in a Fire

Things You Save in a Fire
41150382By Katherine Center
320 pages
Published August 13, 2019 by St. Martin's Press

Note: I received this book from the publisher via NetGalley to facilitate my review. I received no other compensation, and all opinions are my own.

From Goodreads:

Cassie Hanwell was born for emergencies. As one of the only female firefighters in her Texas firehouse, she's seen her fair share of them, and she's excellent at dealing with other people's tragedies. But when her estranged and ailing mother asks her to uproot her life and move to Boston, it's an emergency of a kind Cassie never anticipated.

The tough, old-school Boston firehouse is as different from Cassie's old job as it could possibly be. Hazing, a lack of funding, and poor facilities mean that the firemen aren't exactly thrilled to have a "lady" on the crew, even one as competent and smart as Cassie. Except for the handsome rookie, who doesn't seem to mind having Cassie around. But she can't think about that. Because she doesn't fall in love. And because of the advice her old captain gave her: don't date firefighters. Cassie can feel her resolve slipping...but will she jeopardize her place in a career where she's worked so hard to be taken seriously?


I really enjoyed Katherine Center's 2018 release, How to Walk Away, so I was super excited to read Things You Save in a Fire! While How to Walk Away was a four tar read for me, Things You Save in a Fire was a five star but really can I give it ALL THE STARS read for me!! There are so many aspects of this book that I loved. Strong, badass female lead? Check.  A story about family? Check. Hot firefighters? Check. Romance? Check.  There wasn't anything I didn't absolutely love about this book. It was an emotional yet entertaining and funny read.

The author clearly did her research (read the author's note) and it was so interesting learning about the world of firefighters.  It gave me a whole new level of appreciation for them and a gave a really good look at what daily life is like for them.  As I said before, I absolutely loved Cassie.  She was such an interesting character you couldn't help but love and root for throughout the book--being a woman in a man's world is never easy.

I read the last third of the book in one sitting because I COULD NOT put it down!! This book gave me all the feels and is absolutely one of my top favorites of 2019. I can't recommend this book enough!

Happy Reading!







Friday, August 16, 2019

Bout of Books 26: Goals, TBR, Results

 Bout of Books

Bout of Books 26 starts Monday! It's my favorite readathon because it gives me the opportunity to connect with other readers and bloggers, as well as an extra excuse to devote more time to reading :) As in the past few Bout of Books rounds, I'm not stressing out about pages read. My goals this time are the exact same as the last few Bout of Books!  Want more details about Bout of Books? Check out my sign up post.


Goals

1. Spend time reading. Duh. I will be tracking TIME reading, not pages. Pages are hard to compare--a YA book vs. a women's fiction book vs. a graphic novel. I don't care how many pages, or compare this readathon's page total to another, I just want to spend time reading because I love reading! My goal is to spend more time reading than usual but not stress out about it. I have enough in my life to stress over and reading is supposed to be FUN! My goal is to finish TWO books during the week, but if not, no stress.


2. Connect with other readers and bloggers via Twitter, Instagram, etc. Bout of Books is such a great way to connect with others! Please tweet or DM me on instagram to connect! Also, the Bout of Books team named me a Bout of Books Expert, which basically means I've participated in A LOT of these great readathons! Feel free to ask questions if this is your first time!


 

The Books

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Bout of Books Results:
 
Finished Mrs. Everything 
 
50% through The Winemaker's Wife
  

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

TLC Book Tours: State of Lies

42772107. sy475 About State of Lies

Paperback: 368 Pages
Publisher: Thomas Nelson (August 13, 2019)
The secrets of those closest to us can be the most dangerous of all.
Months after her husband, Sean, is killed by a hit-and-run driver, physicist Georgie Brennan discovers he lied to her about where he had been going that day. A cryptic notebook, a missing computer, and strange noises under her house soon have her questioning everything she thought she knew.
With her job hanging by a thread, her son struggling to cope with his father’s death, and her four-star general father up for confirmation as the next Secretary of Defense, Georgie quickly finds herself tangled in a political intrigue that has no clear agenda and dozens of likely villains. Only one thing is clear: someone wants her dead too.
The more she digs for the truth, the fewer people she can trust.
Not her friends.
Not her parents.
Maybe not even herself.

Purchase Links

Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble | Thomas Nelson

 

This book grabbed me from the very beginning! The chapters were short, so it was easy to get sucked in and read "just" one more chapter! This was an exciting, suspenseful read that kept me guessing throughout the book. I loved the political psychological thriller aspect as well, and loved the main character, Georgie. She was a fantastic strong  female lead character!

 This is the first book I've read by Siri Mitchell and I loved her writing style! The pace of the book was perfect. Though I didn't realize this when starting the book, fans of this author and publisher may be expecting a faith based read. While faith is not the focus of the book, fans of that genre should still love this book! 

About Siri Mitchell

Siri Mitchell author photo
Siri Mitchell is the author of 14 novels. She has also written 2 novels under the pseudonym of Iris Anthony. She graduated from the University of Washington with a business degree and has worked in various levels of government. As a military spouse, she lived all over the world, including Paris and Tokyo. Siri is a big fan of the semi-colon but thinks the Oxford comma is irritatingly redundant.

Connect with Siri

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram


 

Follow the tour!

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

WWW Wednesday: August 7

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The Three W's are:

What did you just finish reading?
What are you currently reading?
What do you think you'll read next?
Recently Finished
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I really enjoyed Surfside Sisters! I really related to Keely. It's a perfect summer/beach read!  Ask Again, Yes was good but didn't wow me like I expected it to.


Currently Reading

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Enjoying both of these ARC's so far! My review of State of Lies will be on the blog next Wednesday with TLC Book Tours.
Up Next  

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Excited to read both of these! I'll see which one I'm up for after my current reads.
What are you reading this week? Happy Reading!

Monday, August 5, 2019

Bout of Books 26 Sign Up!


Bout of Books 26 is just around the corner!! The readathon starts August 19! Bout of Books is my favorite reading event!  I've connected with so many other awesome bloggers and readers through this event in the past and I'm excited to do it again! New to Bout of Books? Here's all the info:

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly Rubidoux Apple. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, August 19th and runs through Sunday, August 25th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, Twitter chats, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 26 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team

The best part about this readathon? It's no pressure and FUN!!I I used to stress out about pages read and whatnot and a few readathons back, I stopped caring about stats and just focused on the fun! I usually finish 1-2 books and have a great time! You don't have to have a blog to sign up--you can connect with this r eadathon on pretty much any social media platform. I post mostly on Instagram and Twitter during the readaton.  Here is where you can sign up! I'll be posting my TBR for the readathon as it gets closer. Hope you join in the fun with me!