Showing posts from June, 2014

It's Monday, June 30th! What are you reading?

Welcome to another Monday...this is a weekly meme hosted by Book Journey.

Last week was a productive reading week! In a marathon reading night I finished All the Light We Cannot See (my review is here). I also finished not only Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, but the third book, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban as well!

Now I'm reading a book I received from NetGalley, called Aloha Also Means Goodbye.  In addition, I also plan on starting Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire this week. I'm making great progress on my summer reading project and loving the HP series so far!!

Recently Finished: Currently Reading: What are you reading this week? Happy Reading!

All the Light We Cannot See

Title: All the Light We Cannot See
Author: Anthony Doerr
544 pages, published May 2014
Genre: Historical Fiction
Source: Library

I've had my eye on this one since I first started reading the ARC reviews. Historical fiction, WW2, set in France...all elements that I would love in a book. After reading five star review after five star review, I was excited to read this book.

Marie Laure, blind since age six, lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History where he works as a master locksmith. To help Marie Laure, her father builds a model of their neighborhood so she can memorize it with her fingers and navigate her way. When the Germans occupy Paris, they must flee to Saint Malo, in northern France on the Brittany coast to live with Marie Laure's uncle. In Germany, an orphan boy named Werner and his sister Jutta become enchanted with a radio Werner finds. He becomes a master at building and fixing radios that earns him a place at an elite military academy. We…

Life of a Blogger: Favorite Sports Teams

Life of a Blogger is a weekly meme hosted by Jessi at Novel Heartbeat. It is a weekly feature with a different non book related topic each week so you can get to know me better! The topic changes weekly.

After seeing Brandie's  post and learning about this meme, I was super excited to write my post on this topic! I LOVE watching sports! My favorite is football, but  I'll watch pretty much any sport (with the exception of boxing/fighting). A great date night for my hubby and I is to to to Buffalo Wild Wings and watch whatever games are on. I grew up watching Indy Car racing with my Dad. Sunday mornings meant watching the race while eating pancakes!

I'm also a huge figure skating fan!! I took lessons for quite a few years when I was younger, and love watching it. My favorite skaters of all time are Tara Lipinski and Brian Boitano!

Since Oregon doesn't have an NFL team, my favorite NFL teams are the Broncos and the Seahawks!

I get to travel for work, and I got to travel…

Harry Potter Through The Eyes of a First Time Reader: Part 2

Less than a week after finishing Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, I finished the second book, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets! This is the second post in my "Harry Potter Through the Eyes of a First Time Reader" series! In each part of the series I will provide a review and commentary on each Harry Potter book. Don't worry--I know some of you haven't read it, so just like all my reviews, there will be no spoilers here!

Title: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Author: J.K. Rowling
342 pages, published June 1999
Genre: Young Adult
Source: Amazon Prime Kindle Borrowing Library

In this second installment of the series, Harry is anxious for summer with the Dursley's to end so he can get back to Hogwarts. Before he leaves, he gets a warning from a strange creature named Dobby, who says disaster will strike if Harry returns to Hogwarts. And strike it does--something, or someone is turning students into stone. Everyone at Hogwarts suspects Harry, a…

Waiting on Wednesday: All We Had

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine.  The event spotlights upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating.

This week, I am excited for the release of:

All We Had
by Annie Weatherwax
Release Date: August 5, 2014
 272 pages
Genre: Fiction

From GoodReads:
A poignant and fierce debut novel about the relationship between a teenage daughter and her struggling single mother—from a powerful new voice in fiction.

For Ruthie Carmichael and her mother Rita, life has never been stable. Jobs are hard to find, men come and go. But when a set of unexpected circumstances strands them in Fat River, a small rural town in upstate New York, life takes a turn. Fat River becomes the first place they call home. The modest economic security they gain gives them peace and space for friends. The people of Fat River—Hank and Dotty Hanson, the elderly owners of the local hardware store being driven out of business by the new Walmart; Mel, the flawed, but kindhearted owner of the…

Anna and the French Kiss

Title: Anna and the French Kiss
Author: Stephanie Perkins
372 pages, published December 2010
Genre: Young Adult
Source: Library

I've had my eye on this book for quite awhile. The cover drew me to the book initially--I love all things French! I also can't resist a great YA read. So when I read lots of great reviews of this one, I knew I had to read it!

Anna's parents decide to send her to boarding school in Paris for her senior year in high school. At first, Anna is disappointed to leave her friends and life behind in Atlanta. Then she meets Etienne St. Clair--a charming, smart, and gorgeous student with an English accent. Only downside: he has  girlfriend. As Anna adjusts to her new life in Paris, will romance blossom between her and St. Clair? Will she finally get that first "French Kiss"?

I absolutely adored this book. It made my heart happy.  I loved Anna's character. Young, na├»ve, innocent, and a typical over-analyzing teenager. Perkins wrote her charact…

It's Monday, June 23, What Are You Reading?

Welcome to another Monday...this is a weekly meme hosted by Book Journey.

Over the last week I did manage to get a lot of reading done! I finished Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (read my review here), and read a YA novel I'd been waiting for at the library, Anna and the French Kiss (review posted tomorrow!).

Currently, I am still working my way through All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr. I'm about 250 pages in now and I'll be honest, I'm dragging my way through it. The writing is beautiful, but I just haven't gotten sucked into the story. I also started Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets last week, and am SO close to finishing it!

What are you reading this week? Hope you have a great week of reading! Yay for Summer!
Recently Finished:

Currently Reading: Happy Reading!!

Christmas in July Book Swap!

I'm super excited to be participating in a book swap this summer! It's the Christmas in July Book Swap, and it's hosted by The Book Monsters.  Here's the info from the swap, from the host's sign up post:

Swap Details:
Send at least 1 book and something else fun for your partner that they would like.  The package mustinclude a book from their wishlist. If you want to send them a second, that is at your discretion.
Dates: Sign-Ups Start:  Monday, June 16th at 12AMSign-Ups End: Monday, June 30th at 12AMFirst Post MUST be Posted by: Tuesday, July 1st at 12AMPartners assigned: Wednesday, July 2nd
Packages Shipped: Friday, July 18th & Saturday July 19thShow-Off Linky Opens: Wednesday, July 23rd
Show-Off Linky Closes: Friday, August 1st Interested in signing up too? The sign up link is Here! Can't wait to send and receive some book mail :) Happy Reading!

Harry Potter Through The Eyes of A First Time Reader: Part 1

Even though I'm a voracious reader, I somehow made it to age 30 (almost 31) without reading Harry Potter.  I have received my fair share of "You HAVEN'T read Harry Potter??" comments,  along with strange looks of surprise. But it's true--I haven't read them. I don't really have a good reason as to why, other than they just never sparked my interest.  I remember hearing about when each book and movie came out, and watching the obsessive fans and wondering if it was really worth the hype.   I even watched movies 1 and 2, and felt them to be extremely overrated.  Now, I know to Never Judge a Book By Its Movie. After watching it, I knew the book would clearly be better, because books are ALWAYS better. But my disappointment in the movie just didn't motivate me enough to read it.

However, I have countless friends who are avid readers who love the series, including my close friend and "sister" in Seattle. For the last few years I always had planne…

Waiting on Wednesday: The Sleepwalker's Guide to Dancing

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine.  The event spotlights upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating.

This week, I am excited for the release of:

The Sleepwalker's Guide to Dancing
By Mira Jacob
Release Date: July 1, 2014
512 pages
Genre: Fiction, Historical Fiction

From GoodReads:

When brain surgeon Thomas Eapen decides to cut short a visit to his mother's home in India in 1979, he sets into motion a series of events that will forever haunt him and his wife, Kamala; their intellectually precocious son, Akhil; and their watchful daughter, Amina. Now, twenty years later, in the heat of a New Mexican summer, Thomas has begun having bizarre conversations with his dead relatives and it's up to Amina-a photographer in the midst of her own career crisis-to figure out what is really going on. But getting to the truth is far harder than it seems. From Thomas's unwillingness to talk, to Kamala's Born Again convictions, to run-ins …

Top Ten Tuesday: Books On My Summer TBR List

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week's theme is Top Ten Books On My Summer TBR List!

I have lots of great books I want to read this summer, so here they are in no particular order:

1. The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling: This is my summer project, and #18 on my Bookish Bucket List! I'm in the middle of the first one and enjoying it so far.

2. A Wedding in Provence by Ellen Sussman: a previous Waiting on Wednesday, I recently received this ARC from Netgalley!

3. Landline by Rainbow Rowell: Duh. If you've been reading my blog, you know my RR obsession :)

4. We Were Liars by E. Lockhart: Excited to read this one...still on the library hold list!

5. Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover: My friend Brandie and Brandie is a Book Junkie said in last week's Top Ten Tuesday that this was her favorite read so far in 2014. AND her list included not one but two Rainbow Rowell books. She also shares my RR obsession.  So if this one is ahead of RR …

The Glass Kitchen

Title: The Glass Kitchen
Author: Linda Francis Lee
384 pages, publishing date June 17, 2014
Genre: Women's Fiction
Source: NetGalley

Note: I received this ARC from NetGalley. This is my honest review.

From Good Reads:
Portia Cuthcart never intended to leave Texas. Her dream was to run the Glass Kitchen restaurant her grandmother built decades ago. But after a string of betrayals and the loss of her legacy, Portia is determined to start a new life with her sisters in Manhattan . . . and never cook again. But when she moves into a dilapidated brownstone on the Upper West Side, she meets twelve-year-old Ariel and her widowed father Gabriel, a man with his hands full trying to raise two daughters on his own. Soon, a promise made to her sisters forces Portia back into a world of magical food and swirling emotions, where she must confront everything she has been running from. What seems so simple on the surface is anything but when long-held secrets are revealed, rivalries exposed, …

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

This is a weekly meme hosted by Book Journey.

This weekend  I finished The Glass Kitchen, which I received an ARC of from NetGalley. I really enjoyed it, and will be posting my review soon! I also started All The Light We Cannot See this weekend, which has started out slow for me. I like it so far though! 

Also this weekend for a lighter read I FINALLY started #18 on my Bookish Bucket the Harry Potter books! That's right, I have yet to read them. I saw movies #1 and 2, wasn't impressed, and felt HP was overrated. I'm about a third of the way through Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone  and I will have to eat my words, my friends! This book is charming, witty, and an addicting read! I will be doing some sort of "Harry Potter through the eyes of a first time reader" blog series this summer for your entertainment!  I KNOW I have some book blogger friends out there that also haven't read HP...I'm not alone!

Have a good reading week, my friends…

The Blue Bistro

A couple weeks ago, I featured Elin Hilderbrand's new release The Matchmaker, as my Waiting on Wednesday. Just yesterday, this article Hilderbrand wrote was posted on the Huffingon Post's website. The Matchmaker features a character dealing with cancer.  Ironically and sadly, Hilderbrand was recently diagnosed with breast cancer, and is scheduled to have a double mastectomy today, just three days after her book release. My mother in law battled breast cancer so I know first hand how horrible this disease can be.

I have always loved Hilderbrand's books.  They're a perfect relaxing afternoon read, or summer beach read! I haven't been able to read The Matchmaker yet, but in support of Hilderbrand today, I am posting a short review of one of her other books I enjoyed--The Blue Bistro!

Title: The Blue Bistro
Author: Elin Hilderbrand
384 pages, published May 2006
Genre: Women's Fiction
Source: Bought for myself

Adrienne Dealy has spent her career working for hotels in…


Title: Attachments
Author: Rainbow Rowell
336 pages, published April 2011
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Source: Borrowed from Library

As most of you know, I'm a huge Rainbow Rowell fan. I've read  and reviewed Eleanor and Park, and Fangirl, and couldn't wait to read her 2011 novel, Attachments!

Beth Freemont and Jennifer Scribner-Snyder spend their downtime at work at the local newspaper emailing each other. They know their email is being monitored, but they still continue to send each other hilarious emails discussing every aspect of their lives. Lincoln O'Neill is the "internet security" officer whose job is to monitor (aka read) the emails. He comes across Beth and Jennifer's emails and is so intrigued he can't bring himself to turn them in. Soon enough, he realizes he's falling for Beth...and needs to figure out how to introduce himself in a way that doesn't make him appear like the creepy guy that reads her emails.

While Eleanor and Park a…

Waiting On Wednesday: Landline

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine.  The event spotlights upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating.

This week, I am excited for the release of:

by Rainbow Rowell
Release date: July 8, 2014
320 pages
Genre: Contemporary Adult Fiction

From Good Reads:

Georgie McCool knows her marriage is in trouble. That it’s been in trouble for a long time. She still loves her husband, Neal, and Neal still loves her, deeply — but that almost seems besides the point now.

Maybe that was always besides the point.

Two days before they’re supposed to visit Neal’s family in Omaha for Christmas, Georgie tells Neal that she can’t go. She’s a TV writer, and something’s come up on her show; she has to stay in Los Angeles. She knows that Neal will be upset with her — Neal is always a little upset with Georgie — but she doesn’t expect to him to pack up the kids and go home without her.  When her husband and the kids leave for the airport, Georgie wonders if she’s…

My Library Story

Today's topic for the Library Books Read-A-Thon is "My Library Story." Such a fun topic, as I have loved libraries all my life! This event is hosted by  Rachael @ Rachael Turns Pages.

My love affair with books began as soon as I was old enough to look through them, according to my mom. When I would get books as gifts for Christmas or my birthday or whatnot, my mom said I would immediately stop and page through the books once I opened them. I wouldn't care if there were more gifts to open--I was all about the books. Still am, really :)

I don't vividly remember getting my first library card, but I know I was young! I remember Mom taking me to the library quite frequently. Also my mom read to me every night--I specifically remember reading all the Little House on the Prairie books together. I also remember the library at my elementary school. Wednesdays were Library Day, and they were my favorite day of the week!

My favorite thing about my elementary school librar…

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I've Read So Far This Year

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week's theme is Top Ten Books I've Read So Far This Year!

I have a reading goal of 70 books for 2014...and have already made it through 39! Excited to have an even larger goal next year. Needless to say, I have some great books to pick from for this topic! Here we go:

1. Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell (my review): Definitely my favorite book read in 2014, and definitely my favorite YA read.

2. Moloka'i by Alan Brennert (my review): I finished this one January it barely snuck in for counting for this top ten! I think this is one of my most favorite historical fiction novels EVER, and tied with E & P for my favorite in 2014.

3. Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed (my review): I normally don't get into memoirs/autobiographies, but I LOVED this one!

4. Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn (my review): I've now read all of Flynn's novels, and loved this…

Library Books Read-a-thon: Goals

This week is the Library Books Read-A-Thon, hosted by Rachael @ Rachael Turns Pages! I'm excited to participate in another reading challenge, especially since the theme is to promote libraries!

Here are some of my goals for the week:

1. Finish Attachments by Rainbow Rowell
2. Start All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
3. Start the Harry Potter series
4. Go to the library and ask about their Adult Summer Reading Program

The good thing about reading the Harry Potter series now (after literally EVERYONE has already read it but me) is that the books are easily available at the library. In addition, I have Amazon Prime (I can read a large selection of books for free on my Kindle) and the HP series is included in this. So that's good!

Have you gotten any good books from the library lately? I encourage you to visit your local library this week and check out some books!

Happy Reading!

Musing Mondays

Musing Mondays is hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading. The goal is to "muse" on one of the following prompts:

*Describe one of your reading Habits
*Tell us what book(s) you recently bought for yourself or someone else and why you chose that/those book(s)
*What book are you currently desperate to get your hands on? Tell us about it!
*Tell us what you're reading right now--what you think of it so far; why you chose it; why you are (or aren't) enjoying it
*Do you have a bookish rant? Something about books or reading (or the industry) that gets your ire up? Share it with us!
*Instead of the above questions, maybe you just want tor ramble on about something else pertaining to books--let's hear it, then!

Currently I'm participating in two reading challenges--The Summer Library Challenge (June and July) and the Library Books Read-a-thon (this week). So that will keep me busy this week! I'm currently reading Attachments by Rainbow Rowell (which I picked up from my local…

The Thirteenth Tale

Title: The Thirteenth Tale
Author: Diane Setterfield
406 pages, published September 2006
Genre: Fiction, Gothic, Mystery, fantasy
Source: I purchased this book myself

I finished this book during the Bout of Books challenge!

Margaret Lea is a biographer who returns to her apartment above her father's bookshop one evening. On the stairs to her apartment, she finds a handwritten letter from one of Britain's most loved novelists, Vida Winter. Winter is seriously ill and wants to tell her life story before she dies--and wants Margaret to be the one to write it. Having never read Winter's novels, Margaret reads her father's copy of Winter's Thirteen Tales of Change and Desperation, only to discover it contains just twelve stories. Interested, Margaret agrees to meet with Vida, and learns her dark family secrets of her childhood.  Both Margaret and Vida are forced to confront their troubled past.

One of the main reasons I liked this book was because it was a book about books and…

The Opposite of Maybe

Title: The Opposite of Maybe
Author: Maddie Dawson
400 pages, published April 2014
Genre: Women's Fiction

Note: I received this book for free from the publisher’s Blogging for Books program in exchange for this review. All opinions are my own.

Rosie and Jonathan have been together for 15 years when Jonathan decides he wants them to move across the country together. Things suddenly fall apart and Rosie moves in with her elderly  grandmother, Soapie, who helped raise her since she was a little girl. She also shares the house with Soapie's caregiver, Tony. Then Rosie, who is 44, realizes she's pregnant. In addition to feeling completely unprepared (as children were never in her and Jonathan's plans) she feels she may be falling in love with Tony, who has his own set of life complications. Through her pregnancy and caring for her ailing grandmother, Rosie learns that perhaps life's twists and turns happen exactly the way they are meant to be.

It took me a few chapters …

Love Letters: A Rose Harbor Novel

Title: Love Letters
Author: Debbie Macomber
320 pages, release date August 12, 2014
Genre: Women's Fiction

Note: I won this Advanced Reader's Copy (ARC) in a GoodReads giveaway. This is my honest review.

Love Letters is the third book in the Rose Harbor series, and I loved it just as much as the first two (link to my review)! The book returns to Rose Harbor in at the peak of summer, a busy season for the Inn. Jo Marie Rose and handyman Mark Taylor have been spending a lot of time working on projects for the Inn, and Jo Marie considers him a close friend.  A new group of  guests visit the Inn for the weekend. The first is Ellie Reynolds, who is taking a leap of faith to meet someone named Tom, a man she's been corresponding with via phone and online for months but hasn't met in person yet.  Ellie's made the trip despite not having her mother's approval and is anxious to prove she's right about Tom.  Maggie and Roy Porter are visiting the Inn for their first …