Saturday, April 21, 2018

The Sunday Post/It's Monday! What Are You Reading?


Check out the The Caffeinated Book Review for the Sunday Post
It's Monday! What Are You Reading is hosted by Kathryn at Book Date

Hey all! Hope you are all doing well! It was a pretty good week around here - I had book club, and there was even an earthquake! Very rare for Michigan. We also had some nice weather and got to get outside for a bit. We wandered our downtown area last night - they had some food trucks out and about and Wyatt ate his way through a bag full of mini-doughnuts with great joy. Lol.

This week the boy and I have a field trip coming up, to a petting farm. It should be fun! Although when they brought animals to his school Wyatt was not too excited about getting near them. So we might not actually be doing any petting. I also have an eye appt, ew. Getting old stinks. I get horrible headaches when I read on my phone too much, so I try not to do it, but I wonder if it is the phone and its horrid light or if I am squinting, so, eye exam it is.

Read Last Week:

I am stuck on Jenny Colgan. I love her. Lol.


Little Beach Street Bakery - I loved it. I can't decide which I love more, this one or The Bookshop on the Corner! I think I need her particular brand of book right now -these quaint little worlds, creative and brave characters, lovely settings, and a bit of a love story too. It's just the mood I am in I guess!

Reading This Week:

Sorry guys - I'm going through a thing here.



Watching:

We devoured Lost in Space - it was so so good and I love Parker Posey
We are also watching Supernatural, iZombie, and Victoria, which is excellent!

How about you guys? What is the happening in your world?

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Book Review: The Family Gathering by Robyn Carr

Title: The Family Gathering
Author: Robyn Carr
Source: Little Bird Publicity

Goodreads Summary:

 Having left the military, Dakota Jones is at a crossroads in his life. With his elder brother and youngest sister happily settled in Sullivan’s Crossing, he shows up hoping to clear his head before moving on to his next adventure. But, like every visitor to the Crossing, he’s immediately drawn to the down-to-earth people and the seemingly simple way of life.

Dakota is unprepared for how quickly things get complicated. As a newcomer, he is on everyone’s radar—especially the single women in town. While he enjoys the attention at first, he’s really only attracted to the one woman who isn’t interested. And spending quality time with his siblings is eye-opening. As he gets to know them, he also gets to know himself and what he truly wants.

When all the Jones siblings gather for a family wedding, the four adults are drawn together for the first time in a way they never were as children. As they struggle to accept each other, warts and all, the true nature and strength of their bond is tested. But all of them come to realize that your family are the people who see you for who you really are and love you anyway. And for Dakota, that truth allows him to find the home and family he’s always wanted.  


My Thoughts:

I have been loving this series! I love these characters, the setting, their world. Their names, their backstory, their trials and triumphs. I find them to be very real, have real world problems and issues that are relatable  - and of course I enjoy the love stories as well, the "main attraction" if you will.

In this book we are introduced to Dakota Jones, a former soldier who is now looking for the next step in his life now that he has left the military. And like any returning soldier, he seeks out his family for a visit that turns into more than a visit. Dakota had not intended to stay, but after seeing the town, meeting its residents, one resident in particular, he finds that Sullivan's Crossing in Timberlake, Colorado has worked its magic on him and he begins to set down roots. He finds a job, a house, and begins to get to know his siblings, Cal and Sierra again, and to bond with their families. Strengthening these roots.

He catches the eye of a few of the women in town right away, but there is only one that interests him, and she is the one who is going to make him work for it. Sid(ney), another , transplant to Sullivan's Crossing, had no intention of getting into a relationship after the one she has just gotten out of. But that was before she met Dakota, who shakes up her plans. Sid is dealing with her own issues and past, and Dakota is respectful of that in his pursuit of her. I really liked how his character interacted with Sid, playful yet patient.

There are a few other storylines at play in this book, dealing with Sierra, and his other sister, Sedona who makes her appearance partway through the book. Both of their storylines deal with pretty big topics, which I thought Carr handled brilliantly and sensitively. A few scenes even made me a little teary for these women.

Overall, I really loved this book. It is the third in the series, and while you can read it without having read the previous two, I would still recommend reading the others first. These are good characters, a good town. You won't regret your reading foray into this small town in Colorado!

Sunday, April 15, 2018

The Sunday Post/It's Monday! What Are You reading?


Check out the The Caffeinated Book Review for the Sunday Post
It's Monday! What Are You Reading is hosted by Kathryn at Book Date

Ugh today is the nastiest weather - we woke up to freezing rain this morning, and while it has warmed up, it is still raining. At least it is no longer frozen! We had lakeshore flooding warnings overnight as well, due to the amount of precipitation that was falling. We are looking at more rain throughout the week as well, but water levels are receding back down. 

We also celebrated my niece's first birthday this weekend! And. we got a special announcement as well - not only is she turning one, but she is also going to be a big sister!  


Read Last Week:

My book club book finally came in, so I read that instead of my planned book!


The Hideaway - I really liked this book. I liked the characters, the setting, the story. It made me a little bit sad though - I teared up a few times! It was a perfect book for a rainy weekend. 

Reading This Week:

One of these (or maybe both!)

  

Watching:

iZombie, Supernatural, The Gifted, The Path (we finished it up, so good!), Lost in Space (loving it!!)

We also watched Jumanji (the new one) today since we were stuck inside. It was great for a much needed laugh, the perfect Sunday rainy afternoon movie. 

Posted:


on my other blog






How about you all? What's up in your world?




Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Book Review: The Sacrifice of Sunshine Girl

Title: The Sacrifice of Sunshine Girl
Author: Paige McKenzie 
Source: review copy from Little Bird Publicity in exchange for an honest review

Goodreads Summary:

Sunshine Griffith can communicate with ghosts. Even more amazing—to herself; her boyfriend, Nolan; and her adoptive mom, Kat—she’s recently learned she’s a luiseach, one of an ancient race of creatures who have lived among humans for centuries, protecting them from dark spirits and helping them move on to the afterlife.

Having survived an abyss full of demons, Sunshine Griffith must figure out who—or what—has been organizing the forces of darkness against her. Do they want to destroy her and the rest of the endangered luiseach? Do they want to take over the world? Nolan has figured out that Sunshine’s death would trigger a calamitous event, so not only does she have to stay alive for herself, but for the fate of civilization. It’s not just the demons who want Sunshine dead, though. Her biological mother, Helena, is back. And what is Helena’s history with the mysterious man in black?

Fortunately for Sunshine, she has a lot of people (and ghosts) to help her stop the darkness: Nolan, her father and mentor Aidan, her mom Kat, Victoria, Lucio, Anna, and Ashley—whose handsome new crush, Sebastian, seems hauntingly familiar. But time may be running out as an unexpected event unleashes a fierce war between the luiseach and the demon army. In the midst of the fiery battle, Sunshine will learn a shocking truth about herself and what sort of sacrifice is required to save the world.
 



My thoughts:

Reminiscent in style to Buffy the Vampire Slayer or the vampire books by Mary Janice Davidson, this YA book was a lot of fun. Based on the YouTube series The Haunting of Sunshine Girl, it is part of a trilogy of books. This is the third installment, and I actually read it without having read the previous books or having watched the series, although I do plan on both. 

Although I missed all the backstory and went straight for the ending, it was still a good read. It was not hard to figure out what was going on once I got into the book a little. It starts off in the middle of the action, right off the bat, and I was appropriately confused. But it soon all became clear. Sunshine is a high school girl who can see ghosts. She is a luiseach, whose job is to help ghosts move on from this plane, and also to protect humans from dark and evil creatures. By this book, Sunshine has fully come into her powers and there is a battle brewing. Sunshine is not alone in this war though - she has the support of her biological father Aidan, and biological mother, Helena, both powerful luiseachs. However, Helena did try to kill Sunshine, so who knows if she is really there to help, especially with her mysterious behavior and alliances, including to the lurking man in black. In addition to her bio parents, Sunshine has her whole group of friends and family to help her along the way - Nolan, Lucio, Anna, Ashley, Victoria, and her human mom Kat. And Sunshine not only has to figure out who is plotting against them and committing evil acts upon the citizens of her town, she also has to deal with her very real human social life, including boys. And boyfriends. And boys who are friends who might want to be boyfriends.

This is a fun book, enjoyable, fast paced, and I loved how it involved books and media - what a great way to get young people to read! Definitely a must read for those readers who like fantasy and supernatural tales. I know that I am going to seek out the first two books so that I can see what I missed!

Sunday, April 8, 2018

The Sunday Post/It's Monday! What Are You Reading?


Check out the The Caffeinated Book Review for the Sunday Post
It's Monday! What Are You Reading is hosted by Kathryn at Book Date

The sun is out and shining! It feels like it has been so long. I understand now why ancient cultures celebrated the return of the sun - all we have had lately, for months it seems, are gray, overcast days. So depressing. Today however, is beautiful. Yesterday was beautiful. Hallelujah!


We went out yesterday to Belle Isle and reveled in it at the conservatory - so it was a double happy spot. Not only did we get the sun, but it was so toasty warm in there. And green!! Pretty sure we all left smiling.

Read Last Week:

  

The Bookshop on the Corner by Jenny Colgan: I absolutely loved this book! I couldn't put it down, right from the very beginning. It was pretty perfect in my opinion. I'll be reading another Colgan book as soon as I can get my hands on one! 

Reading This Week:


The High Tide Club by Mary Kay Andrews: I am so excited to read this! A review book from St. Martin's Press. 

Watching:

We are still watching Riverdale - which might be getting better, although, Archie still. 
We also watched all of the episodes of Big Dreams Small Spaces on Netflix and are obsessed. We need more Monty Don! And, we are watching The Gifted (still unsure on this show) and The Path, which has gotten excellent!

How about you guys? 


Thursday, April 5, 2018

Book Review: Here We Lie by Paula Treick DeBoard

Title: Here We Lie by Paula Treick DeBoard
Source: Paula Treick DeBoard, in exchange for an honest review

Goodreads Summary:

Megan Mazeros and Lauren Mabrey are complete opposites on paper. Megan is a girl from a modest Midwest background, and Lauren is the daughter of a senator from an esteemed New England family. But in 1999, Megan and Lauren become college roommates and, as two young women struggling to find their place on campus, they forge a strong, albeit unlikely, friendship. The two quickly become inseparable, sharing clothes, advice and their most intimate secrets.

The summer before their senior year, Megan joins Lauren and her family on their private island off the coast of Maine. The weeks go by, filled with fun and relaxation, until late one night at the end of the vacation, something unspeakable happens, searing through the framework of the girls' friendship and tearing them apart. Many years later, in the midst of a political scandal, Megan finally comes forward about what happened that fateful night, revealing a horrible truth about Lauren's family and threatening to expose their long-buried secrets.

In this captivating and moving novel of domestic suspense, Paula Treick DeBoard explores the power of friendship and secrets and shows how betrayal can lead to disastrous, and deadly, consequences.



My Thoughts:

DeBoard is one of my favorites, and has been ever since I devoured her book The Mourning Hours in 2013. Ever since then, I excitedly wait for her next book - like all readers everywhere do, for those authors we particularly enjoy. I was so excited to receive this book, with a handwritten note from Paula Treick DeBoard, in the mail, and to dive right in. 

Here We Lie is the story of two unlikely friends - one from a regular old midwestern family, the other, a daughter of privilege and prestige, the daughter of a Senator, and an old family to boot. Like the Kennedys, but of course, not the Kennedys. Through a sad series of events, Megan is able to kick the dust off her proverbial boots and go to college, away from home, and from the memories that it holds, good and bad, and a terrible secret. It is here that she meets Lauren, who has caused her political family some headaches with her wild ways, just avoiding scandal by a razor's edge. She has to prove herself to her family, that she can be something, and do something. Be responsible and good.

These two on paper should not be friends - but inside, they are keeping a secret from others. In true DeBoard fashion, there is a darkness. In most books or movies or tv shows, where opposites attract (Betty and Veronica for instance), at the core is a friendship born out of a true blending and sharing of something good. In Here We Lie, however, we get a friendship that is built on the sharing of dark secrets. 

But the story doesn't end with this. Megan slides right into Lauren's family dynamic, Lauren's buddy.Yet something horrible happens on a trip to Lauren's family's private island over the fourth of July holiday the summer before their senior year, that destroys their friendship. And after fourteen years of silence, Megan is about to tell the truth. 

I really loved this book, the darkness, these characters, knowing that somewhere something was going to drop. The overall feel that despite seeming like a buddy book, this kind of really wasn't. DeBoard does a great job of putting all the pieces in this book together into a gripping, thought-provoking book. 





*I received this book in exchange for an honest review. It is woefully late - but the book is out there, waiting to be read, and I think you should do it!

Sunday, April 1, 2018

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?


Check out the The Caffeinated Book Review for the Sunday Post
It's Monday! What Are You Reading is hosted by Kathryn at Book Date

Happy Easter, to those who celebrate! 

We had a great day with family, welcoming springtime and renewal. We went out to my dad's and hung out with Wyatt's grands and aunts and uncle and cousins. It was relaxed and happy and full of chocolate.  

Read Last Week:

  

Last week, I read Meadowland, which I absolutely adore, and part of Watership Down. Meadowland references Watership Down, and also the book that helped inspire Richard Adams, The Secret Lies of Rabbits. The two were similar, talking about the English countryside and the flora and fauna. No wonder I love Meadowland so much!

Reading This Week:

I'm going to be finishing up Watership Down, then moving on to one of these! I am not sure which, but I am leaning toward The Bookshop on the Corner. 



Watching:

Superstore, Supernatural - all the supers, I guess. Supernatural's last episode was a cartoon mashup with Scooby Doo and it was awesome!!!!

We also stumbled onto a gardening show on Netflix, Big Dreams, Little Spaces and are strangely addicted to it. I think we are just craving an end to this cold weather, and are so ready to get outside, and see green, growing things. 

How about you? What's been going on in your world?