Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Top Ten Books That Take Place in Another Country


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl.
This Week's Topic:

 Books That Take Place In Another Country










Monday, March 26, 2018

It's Monday, What Are You Reading?


This is a weekly meme hosted by Kathryn @ The Book Date.
Recently Finished:

Really enjoyed this one from fellow Oregonian Cathy Lamb! Full review on Goodreads here.

Currently Reading:
Thanks to the author for this ARC! Enjoying it so far! Release date is next Tuesday!
Up Next: 

Reviewing this one in April for TLC Book Tours!
 Always excited for a new MKA book! Bring on the summer beach reads!!!
What are you reading this week? Happy Reading! 

Friday, March 23, 2018

TLC Book Tours: Hot Mess

About Hot Mess
  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Graydon House (March 20, 2018)
Sweetbitter meets The Devil Wears Prada in this riveting and provocative novel set in the trendy Chicago restaurant scene.
Twenty-something Allie Simon never imagined she’d fall for a recovering drug addict—but that was before she met Benji Zane, Chicago’s hottest up-and-coming chef, who’s known as much for his hard partying ways as for his unparalleled culinary skills. Six months into their relationship, the food and chemistry are out of this world, but the reality of living with a cooking wunderkind hasn’t exactly been all hearts and flowers. Still, Allie’s convinced that her love is the key to fixing this talented man’s broken soul—so when Benji is offered his dream job as chef de cuisine for a new restaurant opening on Randolph Street, Chicago’s foodie hot spot, Allie agrees to invest her life savings in his future. But less than a month after she goes all in, Allie learns a heartbreaking lesson: addicts lie. Benji cracks under the pressure, relapses and disappears, bagging out not only on the restaurant, but on her, too. Left with nothing but a massive withdrawal slip and a restaurant that absolutely must open in a matter of weeks, Allie finds herself thrust into a world of luxury and greed, cutthroat business and sensory delight. Lost in the mess of it all, she can either crumble completely or fight like hell for the life she wants and the love she deserves.
With razor-sharp wit and searing insight, Emily Belden serves up a deliciously dishy look behind the kitchen doors of a hot foodie town.
“Belden has written a story that’s more complicated (and feminist) that I ever suspected. Without giving too much away, I will say that HOT MESS far exceeded my expectations.” -The Bookly Club
“Emily Belden serves the decadence and drama a la mode in Hot Mess. The full-bodied novel takes the resilient Allie Simon on a journey of sex, love, secrets, and the high-end culinary world. You’ll savor every word of this provocative story.” -Abby Stern, author of According to a Source
“[F]ull of fire and fury….Belden’s excellent tell-it-like-it-is read is perfect for foodies and entrepreneurs alike.” -Library Journal (starred review)

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I thoroughly enjoyed this book!! The comparison to The Devil Wears Prada was accurate--it did remind me a lot of that book but in a completely different setting--the restaurant world of Chicago. The book has that edgy, snarky, witty element that I loved in The Devil Wears Prada. I was hooked on this book from the very first page and couldn't stop reading!

I was so angry with Allie's character in the beginning. HOT MESS was literally the perfect title for this book and her life. I wanted to shake her and tell her how stupid she was being letting her drug addict boyfriend talk her into investing thousands of her own money into something that wasn't her original dream.  But she grew on me throughout the book and I liked how far she'd come by the end.  I also LOVED Angela's character and her positive  influence on Allie throughout the story--the best word I can use to describe her is badass!

I've never worked in a restaurant so the inside look at the restaurant industry was so interesting to me!  I love how books like this can both entertain you and teach you something at the same time. I definitely recommend this fun and entertaining read!
About Emily Belden

Emily Belden is an author for powerhouse publisher, Harlequin/HarperCollins. She is represented by famed literary agency, Browne & Miller, along with 44 Blue Productions in Burbank. The SoCal studio is adapting her memoir into a comedic series.

Connect with Emily

Website | Facebook  | Twitter 

To follow the rest of the tour, click here.

TLC Book Tours

Monday, March 19, 2018

Hello, Monday...3/19


Linking this post to Hello Monday by Heather from My Glittery Heart! Also linking up with It's Monday, What are You Reading? Hosted by The Book Date.

Weekend:  It was a busy but fun weekend! Saturday we did our usual coffee shop walk with the pups, then I ran a 5K (the Salem Paddy Pint) with some ladies from my gym, went to lunch, came home, cleaned my house and had some friends over for dinner and drinks that evening! By the end of the day I have 22,000+ steps so I was exhausted! I was super happy with my time and pace for the race!  Sunday ended up being a lazy day!

Reading:  I'm in between ARC deadlines so I decided to read a book I've had on my shelf for a few months (YAY #readmyowndamnbooks !) by one of my favorite authors, fellow Oregonian Cathy Lamb! This is her newest novel that came out last fall. I'm halfway through it and loving it so far. 


Workouts: Obviously I did the 5K this weekend, so that covers a lot of this part of the update...I definitely need some yoga this week.  Also hoping for some warmer temps this week (or at least, a break from the rain) so we can walk the pups after work.

Listening to: Lost in Paradise by the Common Kings.  Missing Hawaii and tropical warmth.  I have literally listened to this on repeat lately.

Looking forward to: THE FIRST DAY OF SPRING IS TOMORROW! So ready for some SUNSHINE. And warmth.

Thanks for reading and have a great week!

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Review: Husbands and Other Sharp Objects

Title: Husbands and Other Sharp Objects
34379136Author: Marilyn Simon Rothstein
Release Date: March 6, 2018
Lake Union Publishing

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

From Goodreads:

After a lifetime of marriage, Marcy Hammer is ready to get herself unhitched—just as everyone else in her life is looking for a commitment. Her new boyfriend, Jon, wants to get serious, and her soon-to-be ex-husband, Harvey, is desperate to get back together. When her headstrong daughter announces a secret engagement to Harvey’s attorney, Marcy finds herself planning her daughter’s wedding as she plans her own divorce.
Now with two huge events on the horizon, the indomitable Marcy soon realizes that there’s nothing like a wedding to bring out the worst in everybody. From petty skirmishes over an ever-growing guest list to awkward confrontations with her sticky-fingered new in-laws, pulling off the wedding is going to be a challenge; seeing her divorce through is going to be a trial. And trying to make everyone happy might prove to be impossible—because in the end, Marcy alone must make a choice between something old and something new.

I loved the author's debut novel, Lift and Separate, and was happy to love this book just as much! I was thrilled the book followed Marcy's adventures again and picked up where her first book left off. This book can be read on it's own but I think it will make more sense and be more enjoyable if you read Lift and Separate first.  

What I loved most about this book was the witty and fun writing style! Just as in her first book, the author makes an otherwise depressing or stressful situation for the character something to laugh through and find the positives. The "one liners" and  jokes the Marcy makes literally make you laugh out loud. Marcy even calls out the fact that joking is her defense mechanism when another character makes a joke in the middle of a serious conversation. The book drew me in from the first page and I couldn't stop reading because I just HAD to know how all the wedding drama worked out.

Once again, I'm impressed with the author's ability to blend serious, important issues concerning families and relationships with laugh out loud humor! You would think the humor would make light of or take away the seriousness of the situation, but it doesn't. It makes the story that much more real and easy to relate to. I definitely recommend this as your next weekend read!

Happy Reading!

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Release Blitz: French Vanilla & Felonies

Happy Release Day to Erin Huss! FRENCH VANILLA & FELONIES, book one in the Cambria Clyne Mystery series, is available now!

Promo Signup || Erin Huss – French Vanilla & Felonies (3/13)French Vanilla & Felonies by Erin Huss
Series: Cambria Clyne Mysteries #1
Published by Gemma Halliday Publishing on March 13, 2018
Genres: Cozy Mystery

From author Erin Huss comes an "uproariously funny" (InD'Tale Magazine) new mystery... 
When Cambria Clyne—klutzy, twenty-something single mom—takes the job of an apartment manager at an LA complex, she hopes her run of bad luck is finally coming to an end. She's got a nice home for her daughter, a steady source of income, and the cute maintenance guy is certainly a nice perk! But her luck takes a bad turn again when a dead body turns up, a crime spree takes over the community, and Cambria finds her complex squarely at the center of it all! 
With her dream job suddenly on the line, Cambria dons her detective hat to get to the truth—after all, she's watched enough crime shows on TV to know how to catch a perp! Or so she hopes as she wades through a streaker in apartment 40, an ex-con with a shady agenda, an overly frisky retired couple, and the suspiciously sneaky dealings of the dentist in apa​rtment 36. But will Cambria be able to catch a killer... or will she get caught up in his game and lose it all?

About Erin Huss

Erin Huss is a blogger and best selling author. She can change a diaper in fifteen seconds flat, is a master overanalyzer, has a gift for making any social situation awkward and yet, somehow, she still has friends. Erin shares hilarious property management horror stories at The Apartment Manager’s Blog and her own daily horror stories at erinhuss.com. She currently resides in Southern California with her husband and five children, where she complains daily about the cost of living but will never do anything about it.

Release Blitz Organized By:

Monday, March 12, 2018

Hello, Monday...3/12


Linking this post to Hello Monday by Heather from My Glittery Heart! Also linking up with It's Monday, What are You Reading? Hosted by The Book Date.

Weekend: It was in the 60's this weekend--sunny and wonderful weather!! It made Spring Forward Sunday a little less painful! Took the pups on some long walks this weekend, went to the driving range with the hubby,  worked out in the back yard a bit, had a BBQ and a fire pit night last night. I am SO READY for spring and summer!

Reading: I'm currently reading Hot Mess by Emily Belden for TLC Book Tours. My review will be posted Friday the 23rd of March. I 'm really enjoying it so far--witty, fun, entertaining, a bit of a Devil Wears Prada vibe. I'm excited to continue reading it this week!


Workouts: I had a great time at Yoga + Wine last Monday! Met up with a good friend from work, drank a glass of wine before class, and enjoyed a relaxing yoga class from Chantal Barton. My workweek ended up being super stressful so I was glad I got to start it with a fantastic yoga class!  Treadmill workout Tuesday, elliptical Wednesday, and yoga Thursday. It was a busy week!

Looking Forward to: Running my first 5K race of the year this Saturday with a great group of ladies from my gym! Hoping it doesn't downpour like my 5K last year on this same weekend. We'll still run it, of course but it would be more pleasant if it wasn't down pouring!

Have a great week!

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

WWW Wednesday March 7


Hosted by Taking On A World of Words. Since I just started my current read, instead of Reading Next I'm listing what I've recently added to my TBR.

Recently Finished 

Posted my review on this one yesterday! Liked it, excellent writing, but didn't love it. A little too full of drama for me.

Currently Reading
Loving this one so far! I'm literally laughing out loud reading it!
Recently Added to my TBR

This one is the March pick for the Reese Witherspoon book club! I wasn't familiar with it, anyone read it? What did you think?

Happy Reading!

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Book Review: The Family Next Door

34964898Title: The Family Next Door
Author: Sally Hepworth
352 pages, published March 6, 2018

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

he small suburb of Pleasant Court lives up to its name. It's the kind of place where everyone knows their neighbours, and children play in the street.
Isabelle Heatherington doesn't fit into this picture of family paradise. Husbandless and childless, she soon catches the attention of three Pleasant Court mothers.
But Ange, Fran and Essie have their own secrets to hide. Like the reason behind Ange's compulsion to control every aspect of her life. Or why Fran won't let her sweet, gentle husband near her new baby. Or why, three years ago, Essie took her daughter to the park - and returned home without her.
As their obsession with their new neighbour grows, the secrets of these three women begin to spread - and they'll soon find out that when you look at something too closely, you see things you never wanted to see.

 I loved The Things We Keep and was excited to read The Family Next Door. Though I didn't love this one as much, it was still a solid read from Sally Hepworth. The writing was excellent, the switching between character perspectives was clear and easy to understand right from the beginning, and the story flowed well. It was easy to keep turning the pages and a hard one to put down. As a result, I finished it in just a few days!

That being said, it was a bit too over dramatic/baby/housewife drama for my taste.  I liked how the author tied everything together and wrapped it up at the end but I was so annoyed with all the characters with being so petty and nosy throughout the book. That made it a little hard to connect to the characters for me. This may be less of an issues for other readers, but the storyline just wasn't for me. If the plot summary sounds like something you like to read, I definitely think you'll like this book, as it is well written and hard to put down!

Happy Reading!

Friday, March 2, 2018

High Five for Friday: March 2


Inspired by Brandie at Running on Words and Wine and Kim at Kimberlyfaye Reads,I've created my own Friday post!

1. New Books this Week

Despite the fact that I had such a strong negative reaction to Behind Closed Doors, I couldn't help but be interested in B.A. Paris's next read, Bring Me Back.  Her writing style is fantastic. I was also ecstatic this week to get an ARC of When Life Gives You Lululemons! The Devil Wears Prada is one of my favorites. I did not like Revenge Wears Prada but I'm hoping this one is better. I like that it's about Emily!

2. Books I've Been Loving this Week
 I finished The Woman in the Window this week--tore through it in just a few days because I could not put it down. Such a great read! I should've guessed the ending, but I didn't. I just started The Family Next Door on Wednesday...not loving it yet (SO MUCH DRAMA) but I'm not far enough yet to make a totally fair judgment. I'm going to keep reading!
3. When I Wasn't Reading 
I went to the gym a lot this week! Went for a run on Sunday, eliptical on Monday, PiYo Tuesday, and Turbo Kick Wednesday! Last night I decided to do some yoga at home. It was a busy week at work too so it felt good to work out all the stress. Glad to be back at it!
4. So Random

I registered for my first 5K of the year! It's on St. Patrick's Day and of course is named the Paddy Pint run! You get a shirt and a drink coupon for a pint after the race, so you can't beat that! A bunch of my gym friends are going to run the 5K too so it will be a fun time!
5. Weekend Plans  

No official plans yet...walking the pups, reading, relaxing. 

Thanks for reading! Happy Friday!