Sunday, August 31, 2014

In My Mailbox: Decatur Book Festival August 31, 2014

Good evening!  Well the festival is over!  I had a great time! I even got to meet Lauren Clark in person.  Had a great time seeing Mary Kay Andrews, Patti Callahan Henry, Zoe Fishman, Stephanie Evanovich, Karen Joy Fowler (extremely entertaining!),Wendy Wax, and Randy Susan Meyers.  


So without further ado here is the mailbox: 












The Jane Austen Book Club by Karen Joy Fowler













Accidents of Marriage by Randy Susan Meyer













Big Girl Panties by Stephanie Evanovich













Driving Lessons by Zoe Fishman













The Unexpected Waltz by Kim Wright

I hope you all enjoy the holiday and share what you are reading!

I am reading:


























Thursday, August 28, 2014

Welcome to a Wedding at the Beach!



Welcome to Nantucket where we get to meet the Carmichaels and the Grahams clans. They gather for the wedding of Jenna and Stuart.  Elin Hilderbrand welcomes us to the wedding of the season. 

Synopsis:

Jenna Carmichael is getting ready to marry the love of her life Stuart Graham.  The planning of the wedding centers around Jenna’s deceased mother Beth’s notebook.  This notebook is sacred to the planning and each and every detail has been gone over by a fine tooth comb.  Conflicts are created between Doug and his current wife Pauline will it be enough to destroy their marriage?  Margot the sister of the bride has to keep everything together with both plans and family members.  Is she up for the job?   Ann the mother of the bride has her own dilemma during the wedding seeing the woman who broke up her marriage.  Will Jenna and Stuart make it down the aisle?

My Thoughts: 

Another visit to Nantucket that comes with no disappointments!  I was very excited to have an opportunity to share this novel.  One aspect that makes Beautiful Day so special is that it is about a wedding.  I wondered what would be the distinguishing factor that makes a wedding at Nantucket special or different from the rest.  To me there are three factors that especially make this novel so special: Summer, Beach, and a wedding. 

The plot for this novel centered around the notebook.  What would the notebook say about the wedding plan?  How would it affect a second spouse or the groom’s mother?  One quality about the notebook that made it interesting is how the notebook is treated by the family members.  It takes on almost god like qualities because of the memories it evokes of the lost mother.

I very much enjoyed the novel.  I thought that plot was what made this novel so interesting.  I did find it slow in spots over all wanted to know would Jenna walk down the aisle? Come visit soon!

Rating: 

4.25/5

Please visit Elin on her Facebook page or twitter.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Where Would You Escape To?



Fly Away Home by Jennifer Weiner always be featured during Beach Reads at Writer’s Corner.  Her novel explores what happens when a Political wife learns about her husband’s affair and how it affects her daughters.

Synopsis:

Sylvie has always put her husband Richard first in their family, regardless of any circumstance.  Richard is a politician and a Senator for the state of New York.  One day She is driving home from an event when she gets a frantic phone call from her best friend.  Seal tells her that Richard has had an affair and it is all over the national news.  What is Sylvie to do with this news?  How will it impact their daughters?  Diana an emergency room doctor and mom to Mylo has her own struggles with her marriage.  Lizzy the younger daughter is coming back from rehab and trying to start her life over.  Will she be successful?  Will Diana be able to cope with her father and other problems?

My Thoughts:

Jennifer Weiner definitely has a winner with this one.  So many people slam chick lit because they don’t think that there are real issues and only fluff.  Fly Away Home does not have fluff at all. All the characters have to deal with the affair.  I loved how Sylvie chose to deal with the problem and what insights she discovered.  Diana is not a likable character.  She seems to have everything but it is not what it seems.  Lizzy is trying to put her life back together but doesn’t feel that it could ever be normal.  I sometimes felt these conflicts went too far for me.  I really appreciate the depth the writer took to convey these very real conflicts.

The setting for this story was interesting!  It took place three different states:  New York, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania.  I felt it was appropriate for the story that  Jennifer Weiner  crafted. 

Another entertaining read!  I also listened to this novel and Judith Light narrated and did an excellent job!

Rating:

4.5/5
Please visit Jennifer on Facebook, Twitter, and her Website.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

In My Mailbox August 24, 2014

Welcome to this week's In My Mailbox!  This week is more the last week of summer to me than the end of July.  I am looking forward to the holiday!  I will be spending next weekend at the Decatur Book Festival! 

Just to let you know there is a Kindle Fire HDX giveaway! 

So here is the mailbox for this week: 













June Bride by Mary Beth Whalen













Conversations with a Writing Coach by Susan May Warren













Stargazey Nights by Shelley Noble













Desperately Ever After by Laura Kenyon

I am currently reading: 

























We have also started reading for Pink: 



         


      







Friday, August 22, 2014

What Can Secrets From the Past Reveal?



Grown Up Kind of Pretty by Joshilyn Jackson is a great read!  I can’t wait to share my thoughts with you on this novel.  It is my first novel by this author and certainly won’t be my last!

Synopsis:

In Immita Mississippi a hidden dark secret is brought to light that changes the lives of three generations of women.  We are introduced to fifteen year old Mosey, her mother Liza and her Grandmother Big.  What do these women have in common?  One day a tree in their front yard comes down, and underneath it are bones that belong to another child.  Mosey becomes curious as she embarks on a journey to discover who her parents are.   How will the results impact Mosey’s life and others?

My Thoughts:

I loved this novel out of all of the books that I had read this year! The writing style is incredible; it’s like watching a movie. The tone of the novel is both happy and sad. The characters are well written and developed. You feel bad for Mosey due to the fact of her mother’s choice.  The perception by others is that she will do the same. It is interesting how people have expectations that are not based in reality.  Even at Calvary Baptist School, she doesn’t get a break.  Once the discovery is made, and makes headlines.  The school and everyone’s attitudes towards her changes.  Liza seems to be the person you either want to hate or feel sorry for, because of her choices.  Big seemed to come across as a hypocrite for the choices and the resulting actions. Roger was a great towards Mosey. I loved how he chose to help her out in this mystery. I love how the story is told by different character’s point of view.

 Ms. Jackson did a great job with this one!

By Josephine Mattia

Rating: 5/5

Please visit Joshilyn Jackson on her Facebook page, Twitter, and Her Website

Thursday, August 21, 2014

What Is Most Precious to You?



What is most precious to you?  This question is the one that Mary Alice Monroe answers through her novel Summer Girls.  She discusses  the traits of the bottle nose dolphin and how it affects both human and animal.

Synopsis:

This summer will be different!  The summer girls will be back this summer if Mamaw has her way.  Carson the middle daughter is the first one to return home and has no problem coming back out of work and looking for a fresh start.  The best part of going to her Mamaw is that Sea Breeze her residence is on the ocean.  She lives for the water and can’t wait each morning to hit the beach.  One morning while on surfing she meets a dolphin who protects her from a shark attack.  Little does she know how special this dolphin will become.  Mamaw also invites her two other half-sisters Dora and Harper.  There is one catch they must stay for the summer.  Will the sisters follow through?  What will happen to the dolphin?

My Thoughts:

Well this is the next novel you should read this summer!  Summer Girls tells mainly Carson’s story and gives you the back story on the rest of the family.  The pages were easy to turn.  I couldn’t wait to find out more! 

When I saw Mary Alice Monroe during her tour for this novel she discussed the relevant topics.  One of the topics is how the emotions of the dolphin caring for their young.  This is illustrated by mamaw’s ultimatum and advice throughout.  I was a little surprised that the dolphin itself was included in order to tell the story.   Many facts are listed in the back of the novel about how to support the care of dolphins.  She also described therapy with the dolphins and how it helped veterans and others. 

The setting at the beach is always a plus.  The conflict was a little predictable but still a great read! 

I can’t wait for the next novel and I don’t think you should either!

Rating:

5/5
Visit Mary Alice Monroe on her Facebook page, Twitter, and her Website.