Monday, August 31, 2015

Review: Rome in Love

23014729Title: Rome in Love
Author: Anita Hughes
320 pages, published August 4, 2015
Genre: Contemporary Romance

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

From Goodreads:

When Amelia Tate is cast to play the Audrey Hepburn role in a remake of Roman Holiday, she feels as if all her dreams have come true. She has a handsome boyfriend, is portraying her idol in a major motion picture, and gets to live in beautiful Rome for the next two months.

Once there, she befriends a young woman named Sophie with whom she begins to explore the city. Together, they discover all the amazing riches that Rome has to offer. But when Amelia’s boyfriend breaks up with her over her acting career, her perfect world begins to crumble.

While moping in her hotel suite, Amelia discovers a stack of letters written by Audrey Hepburn that start to put her own life into perspective. Then, she meets Philip, a handsome journalist who is under the impression that she is a hotel maid, and it appears as if things are finally looking up. The problem is she can never find the right time to tell Philip her true identity. Not to mention that Philip has a few secrets of his own. Can Amelia finally have both the career and love that she’s always wanted, or will she be forced to choose again?

My Review:

This book had elements of so many things I love--Italy, Audrey Hepburn, romance--so I was excited to read this book. However, I didn't end up loving it as much as I'd hoped. Let me begin with what I did enjoy about the book--the setting. The author did a great job of describing Rome and making me feel like I was really  there, and making me REALLY want to be there!  I could almost taste the yummy pasta and cappuccinos.  I did enjoy Amelia as a character as well, I was definitely rooting for her success throughout the book.

What I didn't like was that I felt the story was a bit too over the top. It certainly had potential, but some of it was a bit too much for me. Normally this doesn't bother me in books but for this one it just didn't work.  I liked that the author was trying to create parallels in Amelia's story and Audrey Hepburn's life in the letters Amelia finds, and literally a retelling of Roman Holiday itself, was too over the top for me.

Rome in Love is  definitely a charming book that I feel many readers will love, but it just wasn't my cup of tea!

Overall rating for "Rome in Love": 3 stars

Happy Reading!

Friday, August 28, 2015

RABT Blitz: To Be Honest

Young Adult Contemporary Romance
Date Published: July 21, 2015

 photo add-to-goodreads-button_zpsc7b3c634.png

T.C. Booth’s latest novel, To Be Honest, is a heart-warming young adult contemporary romance that focuses on cyberbullying, diversity and the struggles of living with a handicap, from the point of view of a teenage girl.

The book features Starla Emerson, a girl whose self-esteem vanished almost overnight when a freak accident left her with a deformed hand. When her family moves and she can no longer rely on her best friend and boyfriend for moral support, she finds herself all alone one hundred and twenty miles away home.

Starla tries not to stand out at her new school, but when a stranger posts pictures of her on the internet, this puts her in the spotlight against her wishes. And when the cyberbullying threatens to destroy her relationship, things take a turn for the worse.

To Be Honest has received glowing reviews on Amazon.


 I left one shelf bare for my memory boxes. I stacked the shoe-sized cardboard boxes so their labels showed. Freshman Year, Sophomore Year, Junior Year. The first two boxes were filled with memories that I collected to keep safe. My Junior Year box felt empty. I removed its lid and took out the orchard ticket stub, the pictures of the guys wrestling in the dark, and a dried purple rose. Jared handed me the rose at school the morning of Sweetest Day. I could only guess what might fill my box the rest of the year. Will I even make any new friends? How would people react when they saw my hand? They’d probably think I’m the creepy new girl and be grossed out by my claw. I took a deep breath and put the box back.
A piece of paper stuck out from between the pages of one of my books. I tugged it free and unfolded it. It was a note Jared wrote to me about two months after we started going out.

Please don’t be mad at me for the whole TBH thing. I just didn’t know what to say to Jan. I shouldn’t have said anything. I like you a lot! You are my girl. I don’t want anyone else.
Love, Jared

A sigh escaped me. I never got the whole TBH—to be honest—thing. You opened yourself up for drama if you posted a picture with the letters TBH online. A girl named Jan did that and Jared took the bait. He had to honestly say something about her, so he commented under the picture that she was cute. My phone blew up with text messages telling me about it. I cried and sent Jared a text telling him I wanted to break up. I felt so stupid. The entire student body of Cedar High knew Jared told another girl she was cute. He slipped me the note during Algebra class the next day. I forgave him.

About the Author

TC Booth was born and raised in a small town in Northeast Ohio where she currently teaches. She lives with her husband and four children ranging in ages from 13-23. Her pets include one dog named Sammy, and two cats- Sheldon and Sasha.

TC Booth views books as the best form of entertainment and her escape for life’s stresses. She prefers reading a book over watching a movie, and writing over almost any other way to spend her time.

When not attending her children’s sporting events and running them around, you’ll see her writing on her laptop, iPad, and even jotting ideas down on her phone apps.

Contact Links


Purchase Links

Thursday, August 27, 2015

TLC Book Tour: Broken Homes and Gardens

Title: Broken Homes and Gardens
23585086Author: Rebecca Kelley
280 pages, published April 2015
Genre: Fiction, Romance
Purchase on Amazon

Note: I received this book from TLC Book Tours to facilitate my review. I received no other compensation, and all opinions are my own.


A girl, a guy, a broken-down house. Not exactly on-again, off-again, Malcolm and Joanna are in-again, out-again: in love, out of each other’s arms, in an awkward co-living arrangement, out of the country. Their unconventional relationship is the only way, Joanna says, to protect herself from the specter of commitment, which inevitably leads to heartbreak. "When Harry Met Sally" for the Millennial generation, set in the damp and drizzly neighborhoods of Portland, Oregon, Broken Homes and Gardens is an ode to friendship, lust, and the unrelenting pull of love.

My Review:

I love reading books by authors of from my home state!  The book was fun to read since the majority of it was set in Portland, OR. It was clear the author new the city well, which strengthened the book. I thought the book was very well written, as I enjoyed her writing style.

My main issue with the book was that I felt like screaming at the characters for the majority of the book! Though the synopsis warned me about the on again, off again nature of Joanna and Malcolm's relationship, I still wanted to grab Joanna by the shoulders and shake some sense into her! Though it allowed the story to keep moving, it almost made me so frustrated with the characters I didn't care about what happened to them.

Despite my frustration with the character and plot,  this book really was well written and fast moving. I look forward to more novels from this Oregon author!

Overall rating: 3.5 stars

About Rebecca Kelley:

Rebecca Headshot(1)
Rebecca Kelley grew up in Carson City, Nevada, wandered for a few years, and eventually landed in Portland, where she teaches writing at Oregon College of Art and Craft. She is the co-author of 
The Eco-nomical Baby GuideBroken Homes & Gardens is her first novel.

Author's Website


See information about the rest of the tour here.

Happy Reading!

Monday, August 24, 2015

Bout of Books 14: Wrap Up

Bout of Books

Bout of Books 14 has come to a close! It was a fantastic readathon, and I had a lot of fun reading and connecting with other readers and bloggers! I participated in the chat on Saturday morning and had a great time. My dog had to have a tooth pulled on Wednesday, so I stayed home with him while he recovered on Thursday and Friday and got a TON of reading time and got to snuggle with my pup. It was a great couple of days!

I met all of my goals--I read a lot, finished not one but FOUR books, participated in twitter chats and daily challenges, and had fun! Here are the final stats:

Total pages this week: 1102

 Books completed this week: 4! Rome in Love, Broken Homes and Gardens, Quiet and Only Yours

Not a bad Bout of Books!! Looking forward to Bout of Books 15, which is scheduled for January 4-10th.
Happy Reading, and Happy Bout of Books!

Review: Eight Hundred Grapes

Title: Eight Hundred Grapes
Author: Laura Dave
23492613260 pages, published June 2015
Genre: Women's Fiction
Source: Library

From Goodreads:

Growing up on her family’s Sonoma vineyard, Georgia Ford learned some important secrets. The secret number of grapes it takes to make a bottle of wine: eight hundred. The secret ingredient in her mother’s lasagna: chocolate. The secret behind ending a fight: hold hands.

But just a week before her wedding, thirty-year-old Georgia discovers her beloved fiancé has been keeping a secret so explosive, it will change their lives forever.

Georgia does what she’s always done: she returns to the family vineyard, expecting the comfort of her long-married parents, and her brothers, and everything familiar. But it turns out her fiancé is not the only one who’s been keeping secrets…

My Review:

 "You have to grow, mold, squish about eight hundred grapes to get just one bottle of wine. If that isn't an argument to finish the bottle, I don't know what is."

I LOVED this book. Love, Love, LOVED this book. I alternately couldn't wait to finish it to find out what happened, and never wanted it to end because it was so amazing. I loved everything about it--the setting in Sonoma County, the characters, the family dynamic, everything about wine, and of course, Georgia's journey. 

What I love about reading books in general is that books allow you to learn about things and places you otherwise wouldn't be able to. That is what I loved about this book--I learned so much about the winemaking process! I've visited many wineries (the area where I live is  the Willamette Valley in Oregon) but I still learned a lot about the process in this book.

I loved the themes of this book--the theme of synchronization, keeping families together, and fate. It's the perfect summer read, and one of my favorites of 2015. The author's writing style was fantastic--it flowed effortlessly and I couldn't bear to put it down!

Now...who's up for some wine?

Overall rating for "Eight Hundred Grapes": 5 stars

Happy Reading!

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Bout of Books 14: Goals, TBR, and Progress!

Bout of Books

Last week I signed up for Bout of Books 14 (read my sign up post here)!  I'm so excited that it starts on Monday. Since I didn't post goals or a TBR list or anything on my sign up post, I'm posting them today! Here they are!


1. Read as much as possible (but not stress out about it). Read on lunch break, evenings, etc. On the weekend my husband has a guys weekend scheduled, so that will give me a great opportunity for reading time!

2.Participate in Twitter Chats/challenges/other events to connect with other bloggers/readers

3. Finish at least one book

4. As in the last Bout of Books...I'm not caring about a page goal....all I care about is to HAVE FUN!

TBR List
Here's what I'll be reading next week!

Almost halfway through this...want to finish it!

Starting this this weekend...will be reading next week if I don't finish it! Thanks NetGalley!

Reviewing this on for TLC Book Tours August 27. Excited to read this, as the author is from my home state of Oregon!

Daily Progress

Monday 8/17:

Reading time today: A lot! I read 210 pages!

Books read from today: Rome in Love

Number of books completed so far: 1 (Rome in Love)
Tuesday 8/18:

Reading time today: Not as much as Monday. Read 65 pages total

Books read from today: Broken Homes and Gardens
 and a little bit of Quiet

Number of books completed today: 0

Number of books completed so far: 1 (Rome in Love)
Wednesday 8/19:

Reading time today: Not much :( Only 30 pages

Total pages this week: 305

Books read from today: Broken Homes and Gardens

Number of books completed so far: 1 (Rome in Love)

Thursday 8/20:

Reading time today: a lot!! 168

Total pages this week: 473

Books read from today: Broken Homes and Gardens

Number of books completed today: Broken Homes and Gardens

Books completed so far: 2! Rome in Love and Broken Homes and Gardens

Friday 8/21:

Reading time today: 132 pages!

Total pages this week: 605

Books read from today: Quiet

Number of books completed so far: 2 Rome in Love and Broken Homes and Gardens

Saturday 8/22:

Reading time today: A lot! Wildfires in the area have made my part of Oregon super smoky, so I was inside reading most of the day.  Read 250 pages! 

Total pages this week: 855

Books read from today:  Quiet and Only Yours

Number of books completed today: Quiet 

Books completed so far: 3! Rome in Love, Broken Homes and Gardens, and Quiet
Sunday 8/23:

Reading time today: 247 pages

Books read from today: Only Yours, and Rainy Day Sisters

Number of books completed so far: 4 4! Rome in Love, Broken Homes and Gardens, Quiet and Only Yours
Grand Total:

Pages Read 1102

Books Completed: 4 (see above)

Thursday, August 20, 2015

#boutofbooks Daily Challenge: #4SeasonsBookCovers

Bout of Books

Today's daily challenge is hosted by KimberlyFayeReads and is called 4 seasons book covers! The challenge is to find book covers that reflect every season! Here's my list:




TLC Exceprt Tour: Starlight on Willow Lake

Starlight on Willow LakeTitle: Starlight on Willow Lake
Author: Susan Wiggs
384 pages, publishing date August 25, 2015
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Purchase on Amazon
From Goodreads:
When caregiver Faith McCallum arrives at the enchanted, lakeside estate of Avalon's renowned Bellamy family, she's intent on rebuilding her shattered life and giving her two daughters a chance at a better future. But she faces a formidable challenge in the form of her stubborn and difficult new employer, Alice Bellamy. While Faith proves a worthy match for her sharp-tongued client, she often finds herself at a loss for words in the presence of Mason Bellamy—Alice's charismatic son, who clearly longs to escape the family mansion and return to his fast-paced, exciting life in Manhattan…and his beautiful, jet-setting fiancée.

The last place Mason wants to be is a remote town in the Catskills, far from his life in the city, and Faith McCallum is supposed to be the key to his escape. Hiring the gentle-hearted yet strong-willed caregiver as a live-in nurse gives his mother companionship and Mason the freedom to return to his no-attachments routine. For Faith, it means stability for her daughters and a much-needed new home. When Faith makes a chilling discovery about Alice's accident, Mason is forced to reconsider his desire to keep everyone, including his mother, at a distance. Now he finds himself wondering if the supercharged life he's created for himself is what he truly wants…and whether exploring his past might lead to a new life—and lasting love—on the tranquil shores of Willow Lake.


Faith kept her crumpled-up jacket pressed against the spurting artery. She glanced across the ditch at the van, parked half on and half off the road. “Hurry, Cara,” she said through gritted teeth. Hurry. Faith didn’t know how much longer she could last like this.

“How you doing, honey?” she called to Ruby. She couldn’t see the little girl, but had ordered her to stay in the van, several yards away. There was so much blood. Oceans of it. Not to mention an apparent impalement in the lower thigh. Even Faith, with her medical training, was freaking out.

“I’m scared, Mom. What if nobody comes?”

“Cara went to get help,” Faith said, injecting into her voice a confidence she didn’t actually feel.

“She’s a fast runner, right?”

“A really fast runner. Remember her winning time at that track meet last fall?”

“Yep. She set a school record in the four hundred.”

Ruby would know. Despite her complaints, she idolized her sister. Faith wished Cara could have driven for help, but Cara couldn’t drive. The van had a stick shift and was a clunker even for an experienced driver.

The mobile phone—the only one they had—didn’t work. The battery was dead or they had run out of minutes on their pay-as-you-go plan; it was always something with that piece of garbage. Fortunately, the Bellamy place, where they’d been headed for Faith’s job interview, was just around a bend in the road.

Only moments ago, they’d been full of hope, spying the house in the distance. There was a long, winding private road leading to a stone-and-timber mansion, which crowned a green knoll overlooking the lake. By cutting across a broad, empty meadow from the road, Cara had probably managed to get there in a matter of minutes.

Now Faith wondered if such a fancy-looking place was surrounded by security fencing or protected by slavering guard dogs. Cara was resourceful, though. And, unlike her sister, fearless. It would take more than a slavering guard dog to intimidate Cara.

The wadded-up jacket Faith was holding on the wound had nearly soaked through. Damn. “Ruby, honey, I need a favor. Can you find a towel or something in the van? Something I can use as a really big bandage.”

“I don’t see anything, Mom.”

“Keep looking.”

“I’m scared.”

“Look anyway.” Faith gritted her teeth. How had she ended up in a mess like this? She had used her own jacket to staunch the blood. So much for her best outfit for the job interview. But oh, well.

An involuntary spasm caused the victim’s back to arch and contort.

“Easy,” Faith said to the stranger, even though he appeared to be unconscious. “You don’t want to move. Trust me, you don’t.” She eyed the piece of metal in his thigh with concern. If it cut the femoral artery, he could die in minutes.

The victim was lucky she’d come across him, probably seconds after the crash. The lakeshore road was deserted, and his motorcycle had ended up deep in a ditch. If she and the girls hadn’t happened by, he would have bled out by now.

It had been Cara, jiggling her leg and watching out the window, who had spotted a flurry of dust and exhaust in the ditch. Her yell—Mom, pull over, I mean it, Mom, pull over right now—had been delivered with an urgent imperative Faith hadn’t questioned. She and Cara had their differences, but the girl wasn’t one to cry wolf.

Ruby appeared at the edge of the ditch. “I brought you my bathrobe.” A gasp escaped her. “Mommy—”

“It looks like a mess, but we need to help this man,” Faith said. She could see Ruby starting to sway. “Don’t pass out on me, kiddo. I can only handle one crisis at a time. Just toss me the robe and go back to the van and wait for me, okay?”

Ruby didn’t hesitate. She threw the wadded-up robe to Faith and rushed to the van. Faith pressed the freshly laundered fabric on top of the soaked jacket. The hot, coppery scent of his blood filled her senses.

Where the hell were the EMTs?

As crucial moments ticked by, Faith did her best to assess the injuries of the unknown victim. She’d checked his airway immediately—all clear, though he was unconscious, and then wrapped her jacket around the big bleed from the arm—the bright rose-red of arterial blood, pulsing out in spurts. In addition to the metal protruding from his thigh, he almost certainly had a compound fracture of the lower leg. A bloody bone, like a branch of stained and broken driftwood, was poking through the torn denim of his jeans.

There were probably other issues, as well, but she couldn’t let up on the bleeding in order to examine him in detail. She yearned to stabilize the piece of metal, but that was too risky. He was male, in his forties or fifties, perhaps, judging by the face framed by the now-battered helmet. He seemed to be about six feet tall, two hundred pounds. It was probably best he was unconscious because that fracture was one of the most painful looking things she’d ever seen.

Her mind, trained by instinct, flashed again to Ruby, who had obediently returned to the van. What time was it? When your kid was diabetic, you always needed to know what time it was. When did she last eat? When did she have her insulin? Were her levels okay?

“Ruby, I want you to speak up if your alarm even thinks of going off.”

“I will,” said the little girl.

The blood-smeared face of Faith’s discount-store watch showed nine-twenty. It was past time for the job interview.

Ah, well, the position had sounded too good to be true, anyway. The invitation that had popped up in her inbox late last night had been an interview with a Mrs. Alice Bellamy, who lived in a fully staffed estate on the western shore of Willow Lake. Finding a client who could accommodate Faith and her two girls was a longshot, but Faith had run out of options.

After what seemed like an eternity, she heard the crunch of tires on gravel. No sirens, but at this point she would take whatever help she could get.

She glanced up and saw a shiny dark blue car that was eerily silent in its approach. One of those new electric things that made no noise. The door opened and a guy in a crisply pressed three-piece suit with a white shirt and tie jumped out and rushed toward her.

“Do you have a phone?” Faith yelled. “Call 911.”

“Already done,” he said. “They’re on the way.”

She could tell the moment he spotted the victim, because his gasp was audible. He looked a bit like Ruby had, regarding the sea of blood.

“Hey, get a grip,” she said. As she spoke, the victim made an involuntary spasm. She really needed to check his pulse. “I could use some help here.”

“Okay. What do you need me to do?” She could feel his gaze moving over the blood that covered her.

“He’s bleeding from the brachial artery. That’s why there’s so much blood. We have to keep applying pressure. This robe I used is soaked through already,” she said.

Susan-Wiggs“Then should I… Okay.” She could see his shadow on the road as he removed his jacket and bent down beside her. “Now what?”

“I need you to keep compression right here.” She could barely see her own hands.

“I’m ready,” he said.
About the Susan Wiggs:
Susan Wiggs is the author of many beloved bestsellers, including the popular Lakeshore Chronicles series. She has won many awards for her work, including a RITA® Award from the Romance Writers of America.


Tuesday, August 18, 2015

#boutofbooks Daily Challenge: Scavenger Hunt

Bout of Books

Today's Daily Challenge for Bout of Books is a Scavenger Hunt hosted by The Book Monsters! Here are my answers to the scavenger hunt!

1. A Book that begins with “B”  (for Bout of Books!)

2. A book you’re planning to read/currently reading for Bout of Books

3. Blue Book(s)


4. Books from your favorite genre!



5. A book on your TBR shelf, or your full TBR shelves
Happy Reading, and thanks for hosting the challenge, Book Monsters!

Monday, August 17, 2015

Review: The Status of All Things

23492736Title: The Status of All Things
Authors: Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke
304 pages, published June 2015
Genre: Women's Fiction
Source: Library

From Goodreads:

Kate is a thirty-five-year-old woman who is obsessed with social media. So when her fiancé, Max, breaks things off at their rehearsal dinner—to be with Kate’s close friend and coworker, no less—she goes straight to Facebook to share it with the world. But something’s changed. Suddenly, Kate’s real life starts to mirror whatever she writes in her Facebook status. With all the power at her fingertips, and heartbroken and confused over why Max left her, Kate goes back in time to rewrite their history.

Kate's two best friends, Jules and Liam, are the only ones who know the truth. In order to convince them she’s really time traveled, Kate offers to use her Facebook status to help improve their lives. But her attempts to help them don’t go exactly as planned, and every effort to get Max back seems to only backfire, causing Kate to wonder if it’s really possible to change her fate.

In The Status of All Things, Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke combine the humor and heart of Sarah Pekkanen and Jennifer Weiner while exploring the pitfalls of posting your entire life on the Internet. They raise the questions: What if you could create your picture-perfect life? Would you be happy? Would you still be you? For anyone who’s ever attempted—or failed—to be their perfect self online, this is a story of wisdom and wit that will leave you with new appreciation for the true status of your life.

My Review:

Wow! What a great book! I was drawn to the book by it's gorgeous cover, and once I read the synopsis I knew I had to read it! The book was so culturally relevant to today's society of constantly updating our social media accounts, and constantly worried about how others view us via those social media accounts. How many times have we all wondered "What if I could go back in time? Would I change things? Did I miss something?" Katie is given exactly that chance.  I loved her journey, and I loved the themes of this book--something we can all learn from and relate to. Things happen for a reason, things aren't always what they seem on the outside (or online), etc.

The writing style was fantastic. It flowed well and the book was hard to put down. I was originally concerned when I saw it was written by two authors--would their writing styles blend? Would it be obvious it was written by two people? I'm happy to say it was written beautifully and I had no reason at all to be concerned.  The writing was outstanding. I look forward to more from these authors!

I definitely recommend this book! Quirky, fun, real, relatable--a great page turner!

Overall rating for "The Status of All Things": 5 Stars

Happy Reading!

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

TLC Book Tour: Thrill Me

Title: Thrill Me
Author: Susan Mallery
24338319368 pages, published July 28, 2015
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Purchase on Amazon

Note: I received this book from TLC Book Tours to facilitate my review. I received no other compensation, and all opinions are my own.

From Goodreads:

Meet the Mitchell brothers of Fool's Gold, California—five gorgeous men who've left a trail of broken hearts in their wake…

Maya Farlow learned the hard way to depend only on herself, so when she fell too deeply for the bad-boy charms of Del Mitchell, she did the only thing she could—she ran. Stunned, Del left Fool's Gold to make his name and fortune in extreme sports.

Now ten years later, Maya's been hired to promote her hometown's new slogan, The Destination for Romance. The celebrity spokesman is none other than Del, the man she dumped but never forgot. Awkward!

Although Del's not the type to hold a grudge, he's determined to avoid falling a second time for the woman who broke his heart. He's a daredevil, not an idiot. Trouble is, in all his adventures, he never found a rush as exhilarating as Maya's kiss. Maybe risking his heart will prove to be the biggest thrill of all…

My Review:

Surprisingly, this was my first read in the Fool's Gold series! It definitely won't be my last. I really enjoyed this book! I loved the characters--Maya and Del were both so likeable.  Although it's pretty clear where the plot was heading, I couldn't stop reading it to find out how it happened! I loved the chemistry between Maya and Del.

I look forward to reading other books in the Fool's Gold series to learn more about some of the other characters--I love it when authors set a whole series in the same place and have the characters cross paths. I also loved that this book still made complete sense even though I haven't read the 17 previous Fool's Gold books. A winner all the way around from Susan Mallery!

About Susan Mallery: York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery has won the hearts of millions of readers around the world with books described as “immensely entertaining, intensely emotional” (RT Book Reviews), “hilarious” (Fort Worth Star-Telegram), and “heartwarming” (Publishers Weekly). One major retailer recently described her as “the queen of romantic fiction.” While she deeply appreciates the accolades of critics and booksellers, Mallery is even more honored by the enthusiasm of her readers and the word-of-mouth that catapults her toward the top of the bestsellers lists time and again.

Mallery lives in not-so-sunny Seattle with her husband and a toy poodle who makes her laugh every day and who’s not even a little bit impressed by her growing fame.
Visit her website

Thank you to TLC Book Tours! See the full tour list here.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Top Ten Authors I've Read The Most Books From

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and The Bookish. This week's topic is Top Ten Authors I've Read the Most Books From.  Here they are, in no particular order (I've also included my favorite book from the author, for entertainment value):

1. Colleen Hoover (8 books, Favorite Book: Slammed)

2.  Nora Roberts (12 books, Favorite Book: The Bridal Quartet series)

3. Emily Giffin (7 books, Favorite Book: Something Borrowed)

4. Jill Shalvis (7 books, Favorite Book: Second Chance Summer)

5. J.K. Rowling (7 books, Favorite Book: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire)

6. Elin Hilderbrand (7 books, Favorite Book: The Blue Bistro)

7. Lauren Weisberger (5 books, Favorite Book: The Devil Wears Prada)

8. Jane Green (5 books, Favorite Book: The Other Woman)

And now for some YA series....

9.  Melissa Lowell (25+ books...loved the Silver Blades series when I was younger! I took figure skating lessons for quite a few years and loved these books!)

10. Ann M. Martin (too many to count!! Loved The Babysitters Club series!!)

Who are some of the authors you've read a lot of books from? I love recommendations!

Happy Reading!

Monday, August 10, 2015

Review: The Sweetness of Forgetting

12986965Title: The Sweetness of Forgetting
Author: Kristin Harmel
368 pages, published August 2012
Genre: Women's Fiction
Source: Library

From Goodreads:

A baker in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, must travel to Paris to uncover a family secret for her dying grandmother's and what she learns may change everything. The Sweetness of Forgetting is the book that made Kristin Harmel an international bestseller.

At thirty-six, Hope McKenna-Smith is no stranger to bad news. She lost her mother to cancer, her husband left her for a twenty-two year old, and her bank account is nearly depleted. Her own dreams of becoming a lawyer long gone, she's running a failing family bakery on Cape Cod and raising a troubled preteen.

Now, Hope's beloved French-born grandmother Mamie, who wowed the Cape with her fabulous pastries for more than fifty years, is drifting away into a haze of Alzheimer's. But in a rare moment of clarity, Mamie realizes that unless she tells Hope about the past, the secrets she has held on to for so many years will soon be lost forever. Tantalizingly, she reveals mysterious snippets of a tragic history in Paris. And then, arming her with a scrawled list of names, she sends Hope to France to uncover a seventy-year-old mystery.

Hope's emotional journey takes her through the bakeries of Paris and three religious traditions, all guided by Mamie's fairy tales and the sweet tastes of home. As Hope pieces together her family's history, she finds horrific Holocaust stories mixed with powerful testimonies of her family's will to survive in a world gone mad. And to reunite two lovers torn apart by terror, all she'll need is a dash of courage, and the belief that God exists everywhere, even in cake...

My Review:

I first heard of this book on Brandie's blog (it's awesome, go check it out!) and immediately fell in love with the cover. I'll admit it, I'm a cover snob.  I absolutely adore pretty covers. I immediately researched the book and after reading the synopsis immediately requested it from the library. I'll admit the first part of the book was tough for me, as my father passed away from a form of Alzheimer's and parts of it hit a bit too close, but I loved the story and wanted to keep going. I am SO glad I did! I absolutely LOVED this book!

I loved the characters. I loved the Cape Cod and the Paris setting. I loved reading about the bakery. All the elements were things I absolutely love in a book! The story is absolutely beautiful. You're rooting for Rose and Jacob the whole book. The ending is beautiful and amazing and heartbreaking all at once.  You WILL cry. I do not recommend reading the ending to this one in public! I read the second half of the book on an airplane coming back from a business trip, sitting next to my boss, trying not to ugly cry at the beautiful ending.

If you love romance, historical fiction, novels about food, and beautiful stories about the power of love and family, don't hesitate to pick up this book. I highly recommend it!

The irony? Despite the gorgeous cover, I felt the cover art didn't really go with the story. Do I care? Not one bit!

Overall rating for "The Sweetness of Forgetting": 5 stars

Happy Reading!