Discussion Posts

Cleaning Up My TBR: Down the TBR Hole #14

I joined Goodreads a few years ago, way before I started blogging, so my profile is kind of a mess.  I really want to clean it up so I can make better use of it.  I thought what a better way to do that than to join the Down the TBR Hole meme started by Lia @Lost In a Story! I am going to do it once a month instead of weekly, and hopefully make my Goodreads a pleasant place to be again.

Here is how it works:

  • Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopses of the books

Decide: keep it or should it go?


The Tiger’s Wife by Téa Obreht

11784464In a Balkan country mending from years of conflict, Natalia, a young doctor, arrives on a mission of mercy at an orphanage by the sea. By the time she and her lifelong friend Zóra begin to inoculate the children there, she feels age-old superstitions and secrets gathering everywhere around her. Secrets her outwardly cheerful hosts have chosen not to tell her. Secrets involving the strange family digging for something in the surrounding vineyards. Secrets hidden in the landscape itself.

But Natalia is also confronting a private, hurtful mystery of her own: the inexplicable circumstances surrounding her beloved grandfather’s recent death. After telling her grandmother that he was on his way to meet Natalia, he instead set off for a ramshackle settlement none of their family had ever heard of and died there alone. A famed physician, her grandfather must have known that he was too ill to travel. Why he left home becomes a riddle Natalia is compelled to unravel.

Grief struck and searching for clues to her grandfather’s final state of mind, she turns to the stories he told her when she was a child. On their weekly trips to the zoo he would read to her from a worn copy of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book, which he carried with him everywhere; later, he told her stories of his own encounters over many years with “the deathless man,” a vagabond who claimed to be immortal and appeared never to age. But the most extraordinary story of all is the one her grandfather never told her, the one Natalia must discover for herself. One winter during the Second World War, his childhood village was snowbound, cut off even from the encroaching German invaders but haunted by another, fierce presence: a tiger who comes ever closer under cover of darkness. “These stories,” Natalia comes to understand, “run like secret rivers through all the other stories” of her grandfather’s life. And it is ultimately within these rich, luminous narratives that she will find the answer she is looking for.

My Thoughts: This book has some major cred, but for some reason, the premise just doesn’t call to me.  VERDICT: TOSS


Loser/Queen by Jodi Lynn Anderson

Cammy Hall is what anyone would describe as a loser. She lives with her grandparents 7539827and has adopted their way of life right down to the comfortable shoes and early bedtime. And can she help it that she actually likes to knit?

At school, her skills with knitting needles and some yarn go completely unappreciated: people like Bekka Bell reign while Cammy and her best friend, the fearless Danish exchange student Gerdi, watch from the sidelines. Cammy’s used to being an outsider; after years of humiliating moments, her goal is simply to fly under the radar. Then she suddenly starts receiving mysterious text messages that lead her right to all the embarrassing secrets about the most popular kids in school. Cammy never expected to be able to climb up the high school food chain, and the agenda of the texter may be questionable but how can she possibly give up the chance to be Queen?

My Thoughts:  This book just seems kinda meh to me.  VERDICT: TOSS


666 Park Avenue by Gabriella Pierce

8479792._SY475_What if your mother-in-law turned out to be an evil, cold-blooded witch . . . literally?

Ever since fabulously wealthy Malcolm Doran walked into her life and swept her off her feet, fledgling architect Jane Boyle has been living a fairy tale. When he proposes with a stunning diamond to seal the deal, Jane can’t believe her incredible luck and decides to leave her Paris-based job to make a new start with Malcolm in New York.

But when Malcolm introduces Jane to the esteemed Doran clan, one of Manhattan’s most feared and revered families, Jane’s fairy tale takes a darker turn. Soon everything she thought she knew about the world—and herself—is upended. Now Jane must struggle with newfound magical abilities and the threat of those who will stop at nothing to get them.

My Thoughts: This one is tricky.  On the one hand, it sounds like it should be everything I could want in a novel, but on the other hand, it has a TON of mixed reviews- a lot of them skewing to the negative… It definitely won’t be high up on my list but maybe if I randomly come across it at the library…. VERDICT: KEEP (for now)


From High Heels to Handcuffs by Helen Goltz10463489

What makes a girl throw away a six-figure salary and a marketing career to enter thePolice Service? A) A mid-life crisis? B) Trying to escape a failing marriage? C) The search to reignite her passion for life? D) All of the above?For the author, it was ‘D’, all of the above. Nearing forty, childless, tired of her career and with the new-found discovery that her husband was cheating, the time had come to make some tough decisions. The author begins a journey to reignite her passion for life.From High Heels to Handcuffs is for anybody who has ever lost their footing in this world and wondered, ‘can I start again?’

My Thoughts: Honestly not quite sure how this made it onto my TBR in the first place…. VERDICT: TOSS


These Things Hidden by Heather Gudenkauf

9166559When teenager Allison Glenn is sent to prison for a heinous crime, she leaves behind her reputation as Linden Falls’ golden girl forever. Her parents deny the existence of their once-perfect child. Her former friends exult her downfall. Her sister, Brynn, faces whispered rumors every day in the hallways of their small Iowa high school. It’s Brynn–shy, quiet Brynn–who carries the burden of what really happened that night. All she wants is to forget Allison and the past that haunts her. But then Allison is released to a halfway house, and is more determined than ever to speak with her estranged sister. Now their legacy of secrets is focused on one little boy. And if the truth is revealed, the consequences will be unimaginable for the adoptive mother who loves him, the girl who tried to protect him and the two sisters who hold the key to all that is hidden.

My Thoughts: I’m not the biggest thriller fan in general, and this one has really mixed and polarizing reviews.  I think I have more important books to get to, and if I’m going to read a thriller I think there are better options. VERDICT: TOSS


Let me know what you think of my decisions in the comments! If you have read any of these, I’d love to hear your opinions on them! ❤ Happy reading friends!

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Discussion Posts

Cleaning Up My TBR: Down the TBR Hole #13

I joined Goodreads a few years ago, way before I started blogging, so my profile is kind of a mess.  I really want to clean it up so I can make better use of it.  I thought what a better way to do that than to join the Down the TBR Hole meme started by Lia @Lost In a Story! I am going to do it once a month instead of weekly, and hopefully make my Goodreads a pleasant place to be again.

Here is how it works:

  • Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopses of the books

Decide: keep it or should it go?


A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett

76817._SY475_Sara Crewe, an exceptionally intelligent and imaginative student at Miss Minchin’s Select Seminary for Young Ladies, is devastated when her adored, indulgent father dies. Now penniless and banished to a room in the attic, Sara is demeaned, abused, and forced to work as a servant. How this resourceful girl’s fortunes change again is at the center of A Little Princess, one of the best-loved stories in all of children’s literature.

My Thoughts: I LOVED this movie as a kid, and I actually watched it recently and sobbed like a little baby.  I feel like I would love the book as well and I consider it to be a classic so VERDICT: KEEP


The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux

First published in French as a serial in 1909, The Phantom of the Opera is a riveting 480204story that revolves around the young, Swedish Christine Daaé. Her father, a famous musician, dies, and she is raised in the Paris Opera House with his dying promise of a protective angel of music to guide her. After a time at the opera house, she begins hearing a voice, who eventually teaches her how to sing beautifully. All goes well until Christine’s childhood friend Raoul comes to visit his parents, who are patrons of the opera, and he sees Christine when she begins successfully singing on the stage. The voice, who is the deformed, murderous ‘ghost’ of the opera house named Erik, however, grows violent in his terrible jealousy, until Christine suddenly disappears. The phantom is in love, but it can only spell disaster.

My Thoughts: As a huge and long-time fan of the musical version, this story has always fascinated me.  However; seeing as I know the story so well from all of the adaptations, I don’t think I’ll need to read the book anytime soon.  Maybe someday, but for now… VERDICT: TOSS


The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis

11127Journeys to the end of the world, fantastic creatures, and epic battles between good and evil—what more could any reader ask for in one book? The book that has it all is The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, written in 1949 by Clive Staples Lewis. But Lewis did not stop there. Six more books followed, and together they became known as The Chronicles of Narnia.

For the past fifty years, The Chronicles of Narnia have transcended the fantasy genre to become part of the canon of classic literature. Each of the seven books is a masterpiece, drawing the reader into a land where magic meets reality, and the result is a fictional world whose scope has fascinated generations.

My Thoughts: Ok, so I read The Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe as a kid in school, but I never continued on in this iconic series and I’ve been meaning to get back to it forever. This one is obvious. VERDICT: KEEP


Breakfast at Tiffany’s by Truman Capote

It’s New York in the 1940s, where the martinis flow from cocktail hour till breakfast 9889at Tiffany’s. And nice girls don’t, except, of course, Holly Golightly. Pursued by Mafia gangsters and playboy millionaires, Holly is a fragile eyeful of tawny hair and turned-up nose, a heart-breaker, a perplexer, a traveller, a tease. She is irrepressibly ‘top banana in the shock department’, and one of the shining flowers of American fiction.

My Thoughts: I have not seen the movie of this novella, but I know it’s a classic that I must watch someday.  Seeing as the novella is pretty short, I would like to read it as well.  VERDICT: KEEP


The Peach Keeper by Sarah Addison Allen

8546358Walls of Water, North Carolina, where the secrets are thicker than the fog from the town’s famous waterfalls, and the stuff of superstition is just as real as you want it to be.

It’s the dubious distinction of thirty-year-old Willa Jackson to hail from a fine old Southern family of means that met with financial ruin generations ago. The Blue Ridge Madam—built by Willa’s great-great-grandfather during Walls of Water’s heyday, and once the town’s grandest home—has stood for years as a lonely monument to misfortune and scandal. And Willa herself has long strived to build a life beyond the brooding Jackson family shadow. No easy task in a town shaped by years of tradition and the well-marked boundaries of the haves and have-nots.

But Willa has lately learned that an old classmate—socialite do-gooder Paxton Osgood—of the very prominent Osgood family, has restored the Blue Ridge Madam to her former glory, with plans to open a top-flight inn. Maybe, at last, the troubled past can be laid to rest while something new and wonderful rises from its ashes. But what rises instead is a skeleton, found buried beneath the property’s lone peach tree, and certain to drag up dire consequences along with it.

For the bones—those of charismatic traveling salesman Tucker Devlin, who worked his dark charms on Walls of Water seventy-five years ago—are not all that lay hidden out of sight and mind. Long-kept secrets surrounding the troubling remains have also come to light, seemingly heralded by a spate of sudden strange occurrences throughout the town.

Now, thrust together in an unlikely friendship, united by a full-blooded mystery, Willa and Paxton must confront the dangerous passions and tragic betrayals that once bound their families—and uncover truths of the long-dead that have transcended time and defied the grave to touch the hearts and souls of the living.

My Thoughts: Ok, this sounds so good.  I love a good Southern family story and mix it with a little magical realism and you’ve got me hooked. It also has pretty good ratings on Goodreads. VERDICT: KEEP


Alright, 1 out of 4 tossed.  Not too shabby.  What do you think of my choices? Let me know in the comments.

Discussion Posts · Tags

Cleaning Up My TBR: Down the TBR Hole #12

I joined Goodreads a few years ago, way before I started blogging, so my profile is kind of a mess.  I really want to clean it up so I can make better use of it.  I thought what a better way to do that than to join the Down the TBR Hole meme started by Lia @Lost In a Story! I am going to do it once a month instead of weekly, and hopefully make my Goodreads a pleasant place to be again.

Here is how it works:

  • Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopses of the books

Decide: keep it or should it go?

This week we have a bunch of classics to go through.  Here we go!


The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

12296In Nathaniel Hawthorne’s dark novel, The Scarlet Letter, a single sinful act ruins the lives of three people. None more so than Hester Prynne, a young, beautiful, and dignified woman, who conceived a child out of wedlock and receives the public punishment of having to always wear a scarlet “A” on her clothing.

She refuses to reveal the father of her child, which could lighten her sentence. Her husband, the aptly-named Roger Chillingworth, who Hester thought had died in a shipwreck but was actually being held captive by Native Americans, arrives at the exact moment of her deepest public shaming and vows to get revenge. Her lover, Arthur Dimmesdale, remains safely unidentified, but is wracked with guilt.

Though originally published in 1850, the story is set in seventeenth-century Massachusetts among Hawthorne’s Puritan ancestors. In The Scarlet Letter, he created a story that highlighted both their weaknesses and their strengths. His knowledge of their beliefs and his admiration for their way of life was balanced by his concerns about their rigid and oppressive rules.

My Thoughts: This is one of those books that I just feel like I have to read.  I’m a little nervous because all of the things I have heard about it have been negative from friends who were forced to read it in school, but it must be a classic for a reason right? VERDICT: KEEP


Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

In what may be Dickens’s best novel, humble, 2619orphaned Pip is apprenticed to the dirty work of the forge but dares to dream of becoming a gentleman — and one day, under sudden and enigmatic circumstances, he finds himself in possession of “great expectations.” In this gripping tale of crime and guilt, revenge and reward, the compelling characters include Magwitch, the fearful and fearsome convict; Estella, whose beauty is excelled only by her haughtiness; and the embittered Miss Havisham, an eccentric jilted bride.

My Thoughts: I bought a copy of this book so long ago because Dickens is an author I know I want to read, and still haven’t.  VERDICT: KEEP


The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas

7190This swashbuckling epic of chivalry, honor, and derring-do, set in France during the 1620s, is richly populated with romantic heroes, unattainable heroines, kings, queens, cavaliers, and criminals in a whirl of adventure, espionage, conspiracy, murder, vengeance, love, scandal, and suspense. Dumas transforms minor historical figures into larger- than-life characters: the Comte d’Artagnan, an impetuous young man in pursuit of glory; the beguilingly evil seductress “Milady”; the powerful and devious Cardinal Richelieu; the weak King Louis XIII and his unhappy queen—and, of course, the three musketeers themselves, Athos, Porthos, and Aramis, whose motto “all for one, one for all” has come to epitomize devoted friendship. With a plot that delivers stolen diamonds, masked balls, purloined letters, and, of course, great bouts of swordplay, The Three Musketeers is eternally entertaining. 

My Thoughts: This is one of the most famous stories of all time, and I’d really like to see the source of it all.  It also sounds really entertaining.  VERDICT: KEEP


Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson

For sheer storytelling delight and pure adventure, Treasure297 Island has never been surpassed. From the moment young Jim Hawkins first encounters the sinister Blind Pew at the Admiral Benbow Inn until the climactic battle for treasure on a tropic isle, the novel creates scenes and characters that have firetd the imaginations of generations of readers. Written by a superb prose stylist, a master of both action and atmosphere, the story centers upon the conflict between good and evil – but in this case a particularly engaging form of evil. It is the villainy of that most ambiguous rogue Long John Silver that sets the tempo of this tale of treachery, greed, and daring. Designed to forever kindle a dream of high romance and distant horizons, Treasure Island is, in the words of G. K. Chesterton, ‘the realization of an ideal, that which is promised in its provocative and beckoning map; a vision not only of white skeletons but also green palm trees and sapphire seas.’ G. S. Fraser terms it ‘an utterly original book’ and goes on to write: ‘There will always be a place for stories like Treasure Island that can keep boys and old men happy.

My Thoughts: Another famous classic that I have always wanted to read.  I also have a thing for pirates so, I feel like this one will be fun. VERDICT: KEEP


The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

51496Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde is the original title of a novella written by the famous Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson that was first published in 1886. The work is commonly known today as The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, or simply Jekyll & Hyde. It is about a London lawyer named John Gabriel Utterson who investigates strange occurrences between his old friend, Dr Henry Jekyll, and the evil Edward Hyde.

My Thoughts: I have always been intrigued by this story, mostly because of the musical adaptation.  It’s probably fairly low on my classics list, but I do still want to read it. VERDICT: KEEP


This was a round of all keeps!  What do you think of my choices? Have you read any of these books?  What would you have done?  Let me know in the comments 🙂

Discussion Posts

Cleaning Up My TBR: Down the TBR Hole #11

I joined Goodreads a few years ago, way before I started blogging, so my profile is kind of a mess.  I really want to clean it up so I can make better use of it.  I thought what a better way to do that than to join the Down the TBR Hole meme started by Lia @Lost In a Story! I am going to do it once a month instead of weekly, and hopefully make my Goodreads a pleasant place to be again.

Here is how it works:

  • Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopses of the books

Decide: keep it or should it go?


A Walk to Remember by Nicholas Sparks

3473Every April, when the wind blows from the sea and mingles with the scent of lilacs, Landon Carter remembers his last year at Beaufort High. It was 1958, and Landon had already dated a girl or two. He even swore that he had once been in love. Certainly the last person in town he thought he’d fall for was Jamie Sullivan, the daughter of the town’s Baptist minister. 

A quiet girl who always carried a Bible with her schoolbooks, Jamie seemed content living in a world apart from the other teens. She took care of her widowed father, rescued hurt animals, and helped out at the local orphanage. No boy had ever asked her out. Landon would never have dreamed of it. 

Then a twist of fate made Jamie his partner for the homecoming dance, and Landon Carter’s life would never be the same. Being with Jamie would show him the depths of the human heart and lead him to a decision so stunning it would send him irrevocably on the road to manhood…

My Thoughts: It’s been a while since I’ve read a Nicholas Sparks book, and they usually leave me a little disappointed.  I hear this is one of the better ones, and I do love the movie… I just don’t know if it’s something I need to commit to reading… VERDICT: TOSS


Heart of the Matter by Emily Giffin

Tessa Russo is the mother of two young children and the wife of a renowned pediatric 7114761surgeon. Despite her own mother’s warnings, Tessa has recently given up her career to focus on her family and the pursuit of domestic happiness. From the outside, she seems destined to live a charmed life. 

Valerie Anderson is an attorney and single mother to six-year-old Charlie—a boy who has never known his father. After too many disappointments, she has given up on romance—and even to some degree, friendships—believing that it is always safer not to expect too much.

Although both women live in the same Boston suburb, the two have relatively little in common aside from a fierce love for their children.  But one night, a tragic accident causes their lives to converge in ways no one could have imagined.  

In alternating, pitch-perfect points of view, Emily Giffin creates a moving, luminous story of good people caught in untenable circumstances. Each being tested in ways they never thought possible. Each questioning everything they once believed. And each ultimately discovering what truly matters most.

My Thoughts: I like Emily Giffin’s stuff, but this one really doesn’t call to me with its plot.  VERDICT: TOSS


Sing Me to Sleep by Angela Morrison

6586512THE TRANSFORMATION 

Beth has always been “The Beast”,that’s what everyone at school calls her because of her awkward height, facial scars, and thick glasses. Beth’s only friend is geeky, golden-haired Scott. That is, until she’s selected to be her choir’s soprano soloist, and receives the makeover that will change her life forever.

THE LOVE AFFAIR

When Beth’s choir travels to Switzerland, she meets Derek: pale, brooding, totally dreamy. Derek’s untethered passion,for music, and for Beth, leaves her breathless. Because in Derek’s eyes? She’s not The Beast, she’s The Beauty.

THE IMPOSSIBLE CHOICE

When Beth comes home, Scott, her best friend in the world, makes a confession that leaves her completely torn. Should she stand by sweet, steady Scott or follow the dangerous, intense new feelings she has for Derek?

THE HEARTBREAK

The closer Beth gets to Derek, the further away he seems. Then Beth discovers that Derek’s been hiding a dark secret from her that could shatter everything.

My Thoughts: This just sounds overdramatic to me now and I’m not even sure why I added it in the first place… VERDICT: TOSS


Finny by Justin Kramon

Justin Kramon’s debut novel, Finny, is a sweeping, enchanting voyage, an insightful story 7557810about a young woman’s complicated path to adulthood.
 
We meet Finny Short as an observant, defiant fourteen-year-old who can’t make sense of her family’s unusual habits: Her mother offers guidance appropriate for a forty-year-old socialite; her father quotes Nietzsche over pancakes. Finny figures she’s stuck with this lonely lot until she meets Earl Henckel, a boy who comes from an even stranger place than she does. Unhappy with Finny’s budding romance with Earl, her parents ship her off to Thorndon boarding school. But mischief follows Finny as she befriends New York heiress Judith Turngate, a girl whose charm belies a disquieting reckless streak.

Finny’s relationships with Earl and Judith open her up to dizzying possibilities of love and loss and propel her into a remarkable adventure spanning twenty years and two continents. Justin Kramon has given us a wickedly funny odyssey with a moving and original love story at its core. Finny introduces us to an unforgettable heroine, a charmingly intricate world, and an uncommonly entertaining and gifted young novelist.

My Thoughts: This one intrigues me.  I really haven’t heard much about it at all and it doesn’t have that many ratings or reviews on Goodreads despite being published almost 10 years ago… I feel like there are other books that are more important for me to get through… VERDICT: TOSS


Animal Farm by George Orwell

7613George Orwell’s timeless and timely allegorical novel—a scathing satire on a downtrodden society’s blind march towards totalitarianism.

“All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”

A farm is taken over by its overworked, mistreated animals. With flaming idealism and stirring slogans, they set out to create a paradise of progress, justice, and equality. Thus the stage is set for one of the most telling satiric fables ever penned—a razor-edged fairy tale for grown-ups that records the evolution from revolution against tyranny to a totalitarianism just as terrible.

When Animal Farm was first published, Stalinist Russia was seen as its target. Today it is devastatingly clear that wherever and whenever freedom is attacked, under whatever banner, the cutting clarity and savage comedy of George Orwell’s masterpiece have a meaning and message still ferociously fresh.

My Thoughts: This one is on my Classics Club Challenge list, so I’m definitely going to read it.  It’s one of the books I feel like I need to read in my life.  VERDICT: KEEP


I think I’m getting better at this.  I’m finding it easier to let go of the books I added in 2011 to make room for all the new books that I actually want to read now.  What do you think of my choices? Did I let of your faves? Let me know in the comments! 🙂

Discussion Posts · Tags

Cleaning Up My TBR: Down the TBR Hole #10

I joined Goodreads a few years ago, way before I started blogging, so my profile is kind of a mess.  I really want to clean it up so I can make better use of it.  I thought what a better way to do that than to join the Down the TBR Hole meme started by Lia @Lost In a Story! I am going to do it once a month instead of weekly, and hopefully make my Goodreads a pleasant place to be again.

Here is how it works:

  • Go to your goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopses of the books

Decide: keep it or should it go?


Room by Emma Donoghue

9691607To five-year-old-Jack, Room is the world. . . . It’s where he was born, it’s where he and his Ma eat and sleep and play and learn. At night, his Ma shuts him safely in the wardrobe, where he is meant to be asleep when Old Nick visits. 

Room is home to Jack, but to Ma it’s the prison where she has been held for seven years. Through her fierce love for her son, she has created a life for him in this eleven-by-eleven-foot space. But with Jack’s curiosity building alongside her own desperation, she knows that Room cannot contain either much longer.

Room is a tale at once shocking, riveting, exhilarating–a story of unconquerable love in harrowing circumstances, and of the diamond-hard bond between a mother and her child.

My Thoughts: I broke down and saw the movie version of this book before I had the chance to read it, and I loved it.  However; now that I know the story and what happens, I’m not sure if I have to spend the time reading it. VERDICT: TOSS


Saving CeeCee Honeycutt by Beth Hoffman

Twelve-year-old CeeCee is in trouble. For years she’s been the caretaker of her psychotic 12408603mother, Camille— the crown-wearing, lipstick-smeared laughingstock of an entire town. Though it’s 1967 and they live in Ohio, Camille believes it’s 1951 and she’s just been crowned the Vidalia Onion Queen of Georgia.

The day CeeCee discovers Camille in the front yard wearing a tattered prom dress and tiara as she blows kisses to passing motorists, she knows her mother has completely flipped. When tragedy strikes, Tootie Caldwell, a previously unknown great-aunt comes to CeeCee’s rescue and whisks her away to Savannah. Within hours of her arrival, CeeCee is catapulted into a perfumed world of prosperity and Southern eccentricities—a world that appears to be run entirely by women.

While Tootie is busy saving Savannah’s endangered historic homes from the wrecking ball, CeeCee encounters a cast of unforgettable, eccentric characters. From the mysterious Thelma Rae Goodpepper, who bathes in an outdoor tub under the watchful eyes of a voyeuristic peacock, to Oletta Jones, the all-knowing household cook, to Violene Hobbs, the loud-mouthed widow who entertains a local police officer in her yellow see-through peignoir, the women of Gaston Street keep CeeCee entertained and enthralled for an entire summer.

But CeeCee’s view of the world is challenged in ways she could have never imagined: there are secrets to keep, injustices to face, and loyalties to uphold. Just as she begins to find her ballast and experiences a sense of belonging, her newfound joy collides with the long-held fear that her mother’s legacy has left her destined for destruction.

Laugh-out-loud funny, at times heartbreaking, and written in a pitch-perfect voice, Saving CeeCee Honeycutt is a spirited Southern tale that explores the intricate frailties and strengths of female relationships while illuminating the journey of a young girl who loses her mother but finds many others. 

My Thoughts: This book just doesn’t really appeal to me anymore.  VERDICT: TOSS


Still Missing by Chevy Stevens

7159515On the day she was abducted, Annie O’Sullivan, a 32-year-old realtor, had three goals—sell a house, forget about a recent argument with her mother, and be on time for dinner with her ever-patient boyfriend. The open house is slow, but when her last visitor pulls up in a van as she’s about to leave, Annie thinks it just might be her lucky day after all. 

Still Missing interweaves the year Annie spent as the captive of a psychopath in a remote mountain cabin, which unfold through sessions with her psychiatrist, with a second narrative following the events after her escape—her struggle to piece her shattered life back together and the ongoing police investigation into the identity of her captor.

My Thoughts: This is not the normal type of book that I read, but I have been watching a ton of criminal minds and now this sounds good to me. VERDICT: KEEP


Cum Laude by Cecily von Ziegesar

Dexter College is a small liberal arts college in the quiet town of Home, Maine. But it won’t 6022731stay quiet for long with this group of freshmen. There’s Shipley–blonde and beautiful, the object of envy and more than a little lust. Determined to assert herself and to shed her good-girl image, she buys cigarettes and condoms, because that’s what every self-respecting college girl does. Her edgy roommate, Eliza, came to Dexter to get noticed, and she has the attitude and the mouth to prove it. Then there’s Tom. Handsome, privileged, used to getting his own way, he’s a jock-turned-artist who thinks his paintings will change the world. Sensitive Nick, Tom’s wake-and-bake pot-smoking roommate, wants to follow in the footsteps of his boarding-school hero. And then there are brother and sister Adam and Tragedy Gatz. The freckle-faced farm boy lives at home with his parents and his little sister, who does all she can to stop him from being a wuss.

As Shipley, Eliza, Tom, Nick, and Adam find out, that first year of college is more than credits and cramming. Between the lust and the love, the secrecy and the scandal, they’ll all receive an unexpected education. It’s a time of shifting alliances, unrequited crushes, and coming of age. Find Yourself is Dexter’s motto. And they are determined to do just that.

My Thoughts: I love Cecily von Ziegesar and both her other series and while this synopsis sounds perfect for me, it only has 2.5 stars on Goodreads and I haven’t really heard much about it… If I stumbled across it at the library I might pick it up but I probably won’t seek it out… VERDICT: TOSS


Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll

24213After a tumble down the rabbit hole, Alice finds herself far away from home in the absurd world of Wonderland. As mind-bending as it is delightful, Lewis Carroll’s 1865 novel is pure magic for young and old alike.

My Thoughts: I feel like this is a must read, and it is on my Classics Club list.  VERDICT: KEEP

 

 


 

What do you think? Have you read any of these books? Let me know in the comments 🙂

Top Ten Tuesday

Top 10 Tuesday: My Spring TBR

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I love making TBR lists.  There is something so exciting about thinking of the books I’m going to read next.  Do I always stick to them? No, but they do give me a good sense of accomplishment and keep my blogging schedule on track.  This week’s theme from That Artsy Reader Girl is our Spring TBR, which for me is March-May, and I cannot wait to get through all of these beauties!

Children of Virtue and Vengeance by Tomi Adeyemi

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I Spy the Boy Next Door by Samantha Armstrong

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Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

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Enchantée by Gita Trelease

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Finale by Stephanie Garber

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Lovestruck by Kate Watson

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Tower of Dawn by Sarah J. Maas

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The Girl From the Savoy by Hazel Gaynor 

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Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi

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Collide by Nina Walker

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What books are on your TBRs?  Give me some more recommendations cuz my list is forever growing! 🙂
Discussion Posts

Cleaning Up My TBR: Down the TBR Hole #9

I joined Goodreads a few years ago, way before I started blogging, so my profile is kind of a mess.  I really want to clean it up so I can make better use of it.  I thought what a better way to do that than to join the Down the TBR Hole meme started by Lia @Lost In a Story! I am going to do it once a month instead of weekly, and hopefully make my Goodreads a pleasant place to be again.

Here is how it works:

  • Go to your goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopses of the books

Decide: keep it or should it go?


Girl’s Guide to Witchcraft by Mindy Klasky

248583Which is more unlikely? Meeting a single, straight, reasonably attractive, willing-to-commit man? Or discovering a secret cache of magic books?

For good girl Jane Madison, neither has a shot in hell of coming true—until the day she finds a hidden room….

Now she’s done a bit of experimenting and found a spell that makes her irresistible to men—even those who have previously ignored her. And another that turns a cat into her witch’s familiar (a snarky, critical, self-absorbed man—pretty much a typical male). Though her impulsive acts of magic have brought a warder (sexy, grouchy, elusive and determined to stop her from using magic) down on her, Jane’s not willing to let go of this fantastic new life.

Though she wonders about having things that aren’t “real,” she’s having too much fun to stop. After all, no one ever said being a witch was easy….

My Thoughts: I can’t get enough of witches, in all versions and forms, and this book sounds like such a fun and easy read for whenever I’m in the mood for some witchcraft.  VERDICT: KEEP


Once Upon Stilettos by Shanna Swendson

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“There’s no place like Bloomies!”

Katie Chandler’s life is pure magic–literally. As an executive assistant at Magic, Spells, and Illusions, Inc., she’s seen more than her share of fantastical occurrences. A mere Manhattan mortal, Katie is no wizard, but she’s a wiz at exposing “hokum” pocus, cloaked lies, and deceptive enchantments. And she’s fallen under the all-too-human spell of attraction to Owen, a hunky wizard and coworker. Owen, however, is preoccupied. Someone has broken into his office and disrupted top-secret files, and it reeks of an inside job. CEO Merlin (yes, the Merlin) taps Katie and her special ability to uncover the magical mole.

Keeping her feelings in check while sleuthing alongside Owen, Katie is shocked to discover that her immunity to magic is waning, putting her in grave danger. Soon she’s surrendering to the charms and enchantments of everyone and everything around her, including a killer pair of red stilettos. Katie must now conjure up her natural instincts to get to the bottom of the break-in, regain her power, and win the wizard of her dreams.

My Thoughts: This sounds like it could be cute.  It’s actually is the second in a series, which I didn’t realize when I added it.  It doesn’t really call to me though so for now… VERDICT: TOSS


A Hopeless Romantic by Harriet Evans

528560Laura Foster is a hopeless romantic. Her friends know it, her parents know it—even Laura acknowledges she lives either with her head in the clouds or buried in a romance novel. It’s proved harmless enough, even if it hasn’t delivered her a real-life dashing hero yet. But when her latest relationship ends in a disaster that costs her friendships, her job, and nearly her sanity, Laura swears off men and hopeless romantic fantasies for good.

With her life in tatters around her, Laura agrees to go on vacation with her parents. After a few days of visiting craft shops and touring the stately homes of England, Laura is ready to tear her hair out. And then, while visiting grand Chartley Hall, she crosses paths with Nick, the sexy, rugged estate manager. She finds she shares more than a sense of humor with him—in fact, she starts to think she could fall for him. But is Nick all he seems? Or has Laura got it wrong again? Will she open her heart only to have it broken again?

My Thoughts: This one is hard for me.  I’ve recently gotten back into contemporary romances, and I feel like I might like this one, but I have so many other things that call me more… VERDICT: TOSS


Angel Falls by Kristin Hannah

When Mikaela Campbell, beloved wife and mother, falls into a coma, it is up to her 276342husband, Liam, to hold the family together and care for their grieving, frightened children. Doctors tell him not to expect a recovery, but he believes that love can accomplish what medical science cannot. Daily he sits at her bedside, telling her stories of the precious life they have built together, hoping against hope that she will wake up. But then he discovers evidence of his wife’s secret past: a hidden first marriage to movie star Julian True.

Desperate to bring Mikaela back at any cost, Liam knows he must turn to Julian for help. But will that choice cost Liam his wife, his family, and everything he holds dear? One of Kristin Hannah’s most moving novels, Angel Falls is a poignant and unforgettable portrait of marriage and commitment, of an ordinary man who dares to risk everything in the name of love.

My Thoughts: This is a no brainer.  I love everything Kristin Hannah has ever written, and I’m honestly just surprised that I haven’t read this one yet… VERDICT: KEEP


Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver

6482837For popular high school senior Samantha Kingston, February 12—”Cupid Day”—should be one big party, a day of valentines and roses and the privileges that come with being at the top of the social pyramid. And it is…until she dies in a terrible accident that night.

However, she still wakes up the next morning. In fact, Sam lives the last day of her life seven times, until she realizes that by making even the slightest changes, she may hold more power than she ever imagined.

 

My Thoughts:  I’ve seen this one everywhere for so long, and I know I need to read it.  VERDICT: KEEP


What do you think? Have you read any of these books? Let me know in the comments 🙂

Monthly Wrap-Ups

February 2019 Wrap-Up

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Hello everyone! It’s already March and that is crazy!! My tour has been chugging along, and we’re finally in Los Angeles for the next month.  It has been harder to blog on tour than I had expected, and I ended up taking a bit of an unexpected hiatus and missed a few more posts than I would have liked.  However, I have still been reading a good amount and trying to keep up as much as possible.

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Books Read:

The Woman in the Lake by Nicola Cornick ★★★★

The Everlasting Rose by Dhonielle Clayton★★★

The Third Angel by Alice Hoffman★★★★

P.S. I Still Love you by Jenny Han★★★★★

Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han★★★★★

Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins★★★


Favorite Book of the Month:

I can’t decide which one of these books I liked better, but they’re both incredible.


Currently Reading:

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Challenge Updates:

Goodreads Challenge: 10 of 100

Classics Club Challenge: 4 of 50 (I suck… but I WILL read Wuthering Heights this month)


Broadway Book Chat: Keri Rene Fuller

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February Reviews:

• Furyborn by Claire LegrandARC-The Woman in the Lake by Nicola CornickARC-The Everlasting Rose by Dhonielle Clayton 


February Posts

Top 10 Tuesday: New Releases I’m On The Fence About • Cleaning Up My TBR- Down the TBR Hole #8 • Top 10 Tuesday: My Favorite Book Couples from 2018 • Top 10 Tuesday: Hidden Gems With Less Than 2,000 Goodreads Ratings •


Top Ten Tuesday

Top 10 Tuesday: 10 Most Recent Additions to My To-Read List

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My TBR, both physical and mental, is constantly growing.  I should be better about actually getting to the books that are high on my list, but sometimes I just find a random one in an independent bookstore and I can’t help myself.  This week’s theme from That Artsy Reader Girl is 10 Most Recent Additions to my TBR!

What books have you guys added to your lists? Please send me more recommendations because I am an addict and can’t get enough books 🙂
Top Ten Tuesday

Top 10 Tuesday: Books I Meant to Read in 2018

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Hello lovely bookworms! I have been in tech rehearsal for Cats this week, so my life has been absolutely crazy and filled with face paint, unitards, and sore muscles.  I have had very little time to read or blog, and missed two posts last week, but I am happy to get back to it with this week’s Top Ten Tuesday from That Artsy Reader GirlBooks I Meant to Read in 2018!

Did you get to all the books you meant to read last year? Which ones do I need to move up on my TBR? Let’s chat in the comments 🙂 Happy reading!