Posted in Bookish Thursdays

BOOKISH THURSDAY #27: SERENDIPITOUS MOMENTS

bookish thursdays

Welcome to Thursday, a day that once seemed lost, with nothing exciting happening anywhere.  But then that changed, and today I am celebrating a couple of the bookish events around the blogosphere, like Lexxie’s Thirsty Thursday & Hungry Hearts; and Christine’s Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts.

 

 

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Today’s Thirsty Thursday and Hungry Hearts excerpt comes from The Book That Matters Most, by Ann Hood.

 

 

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When Ava’s husband Jim left her for another woman, she decides to try to restart her life, which includes joining a book group.  At the first meeting, Ava approaches the wine and cheese table.

 

The book group ladies were at that table, plastic glasses of wine in their hands, munching on Camembert and grapes.

Relax, Ava told herself.  She took a deep breath and went to join them.

As soon as Ava got a glass of wine, a slender, ancient blonde in a beige Chanel suit came up to her and said, “Are you the one taking Paula’s spot, (in the book club)  Cate’s friend?”

“I am,” Ava said.

“Glad to have you.  I’m Penny Frost, the grande dame here.  Which just means I’m older than everyone else.”

***

The Providence book group sounds good to me, as their plan for the year is for each member to pick the book that mattered most to them in their life.

The wine and cheese sound pretty good, too.

***

 

 

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My Bookish and Not So Bookish Thoughts this week:

 

  • The week has been one of great reading, with two books read and reviewed so far.  (Click titles for reviews).   The Excellent Lombards, by Jane Hamilton, was not my favorite from this author, but it was still a good read. Behind Closed Doors, by B. A. Paris was truly a riveting read.
  • Currently I’m reading The Book That Matters Most, by Ann Hood, excerpted above.
  • The rest of the week has been busy with errands, and I also took a little break for dinner earlier tonight, at the neighborhood Marie Callender’s.

 

 

shepherd's pie, salad, wine

 

  • My youngest son’s birthday was today.  However, we just texted, as we had our celebratory dinner earlier in the month.  He sent me some gorgeous photos of the beach where they kicked back to relax.  His wife is pictured below:

 

 

August 24 on the beach

 

  • A couple of nights ago, I rearranged the dolls in my bedroom, the ones on a couple of the shelves.  Just so the oscillating fan wouldn’t blow the hair of the hippie dolls…yes, silly, right?

 

 

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  • I am on the final season of Doc Martin, on Netflix, and I’m hoping to find another show to binge-watch when that one is done.
  • I also have some shows to watch on my DVR.  Has anyone been watching Guilt?  The Monday night episode had a startling end, and I suspect it will not resume until next summer.

 

***

That’s my week…what has yours been like so far?

***

Posted in WWW Wednesday

HUMP DAY READING: PAST, PRESENT, & FUTURE READING

b & n ON JULY 20-LOGO

Today I’m participating in Sam’s WWW Wednesdays Here’s how it works:

 

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next, and/or what are you eagerly awaiting?

***

Currently Reading:

I am loving the intense and twisted Behind Closed Doors, by B. A. Paris, the kind of book that is impossible to put down.  But I finally had to get some sleep last night.  I will be finished today, and I can’t wait to see how it all ends.

The perfect marriage? Or the perfect lie?

“A hair-raising debut, both unsettling and addictive…A chilling thriller that will keep you reading long into the night.” —Mary Kubica, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of The Good Girl

This is one readers won’t be able to put down.” —Booklist (starred review)

 

 

 

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Just Finished:

Yesterday, I finished The Excellent Lombards, by Jane Hamilton (click title for my review).

 

 

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A four-star read for me, it was not my favorite from this wonderful author, but I enjoyed it anyway.

 

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EAGERLY ANTICIPATING:

Fractured, by Catherine McKenzie, is a book I’m eager to get for my shelves.  I’ve been noticing it around lately, and its release date of October 4 is right around the corner.

I’ve read all of the author’s previous books, so I’m sure to enjoy this one, too.

 

 

 

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Synopsis:  Welcome, neighbor!

Julie Prentice and her family move across the country to the idyllic Mount Adams district of Cincinnati, hoping to evade the stalker who’s been terrorizing them ever since the publication of her bestselling novel, The Murder Game. Since Julie doesn’t know anyone in her new town, when she meets her neighbor John Dunbar, their instant connection brings measured hope for a new beginning. But she never imagines that a simple, benign conversation with him could set her life spinning so far off course.

We know where you live…

After a series of misunderstandings, Julie and her family become the target of increasingly unsettling harassment. Has Julie’s stalker found her, or are her neighbors out to get her, too? As tension in the neighborhood rises, new friends turn into enemies, and the results are deadly.

***

That’s my week so far.  What did yours look like?

***

Posted in Weekly Updates

WEEKLY UPDATES: CONNECTING….

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Good morning! Today’s post will link up to The Sunday Salon, The Sunday Post and Stacking the Shelves, for weekly updates.

**Mailbox Monday is hosted at the home site: Mailbox Monday.

And let’s join Kathryn, our leader in It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?, at Book Date.

 

The weather has been very hot, but what else is new?  I did curl up inside my air-conditioned space, reading and watching movies (saw The Boss, with Melissa McCarthy) and Netflix.  I’ve been watching Doc Martin again.  The folks in that little Cornish town are hilarious.  Finished THREE books this week, and they were all different from one another, while being completely engaging.  I love when that happens.

When I was up in Crescent City, I added Skype to my iPhone, since I didn’t have my laptop with me.  We had hoped to connect with my eldest son in Prague while I was there, so my youngest son could also chat.  But the timing was always off.

However, this week, my youngest son Skyped me on my iPhone…and it worked fine.  Just like the laptop version.  He is trying to set up a time to Skype with Eldest One.  We even turned on our pictures and it was fun to see them in their living room, with Auggie (the dog), too. 

In this photo from a while ago, Auggie’s the one on the right….LOL.

 

 

4-16 - In Crescent City - Augie & the Seal

 

So…that was my week, and a tidbit from last week….so let’s look at a little bit more…

 

LAST WEEK ON THE BLOGS:

Monday Potpourri:  Musings…

Tuesday Excerpts:  “Leave Me”

Hump Day Reading:  Current, Past, & Future Reading

Bookish Thursday #26:  Serendipitous Moments

Bookish Friday:  “The Things We Wish Were True”

A Journey South of the Border

Review:  The Truth-Teller’s Lie (e-book), by Sophie Hannah

Review:  Siracusa (e-book), by Delia Ephron

Review:  Mystic Summer (e-book), by Hannah McKinnon

 

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INCOMING BOOKS: (Titles Linked to Amazon)

 

 

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(Above):  These three books (purchased) came in my mailbox this week:

 

My Life, My Body, by Marge Piercy

Rosemary:  The Hidden Kennedy Daughter, by Kate Clifford Larson

American Heiress, by Jeffrey Toobin

 

Downloads:  Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

Results May Vary (e-book), by Bethany Chase

 

 

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If I Forget You (e-book), by Thomas Christopher Greene

 

 

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WHAT’S UP NEXT? (Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

Currently Reading:  The Excellent Lombards (e-book), by Jane Hamilton (Purchased in April – long overdue!)

 

 

 

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Even though I haven’t had this one very long…I really must read….

Behind Closed Doors (e-book), by B. A. Paris

 

 

 

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And there are many more on my lovely Pippa!

 

 

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***

 

There will be more iced tea today!

 

 

 

 

What did your week look like?  Come on and share, please!

***

Posted in BOOK REVIEW

REVIEW: SIRACUSA, BY DELIA EPHRON

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Two couples now living in Portland, Maine, plan a trip together, destination Siracusa, in Sicily, but the odd history between them all foreshadows catastrophe ahead.

Lizzie, a journalist who grew up in Berkeley, has chosen the destination in honor of her now deceased father. She has memories of stories he told about the charming town, which others see as decrepit and decomposing.

Her husband Michael, a Pulitzer prize-winner struggling with a novel, is hoping to find what he needs to finish the book. He has a larger-than-life personality, and basks in the glow of others as he tells his tales. He is a “serial fabricator.”

Taylor and her husband Finn seem completely unsuited for each other. Finn still lusts for Lizzie, with whom he once had an affair, and Taylor is wrapped up in a very strange symbiotic relationship with her ten-year-old daughter Snow, who accompanies them on the trip.

Snow…what a strange child, and somehow, she ends up as the centerpiece for the darkness ahead. Her mother believes she is just shy, but brilliant. Others see her as charming, but Lizzie intuits the darkness in her. What unfortunate events will have them pondering the hidden depths of this child? Why is she so drawn to Michael, and will the “crush” she has on him lead to tragedy?

Meanwhile, an interloper arrives in the form of Michael’s latest conquest. What will her presence add and subtract from the vacation?

Siracusa was a tale of unraveling relationships, darkness, and the lies we tell to keep others interested. I enjoyed the multiple narrators that fleshed out the characters and the story, although I rooted for none of them, except possibly Lizzie. Flawed and somewhat jaded, they remind me of people I’ve known, so I couldn’t stop reading this book which earned 5 stars.

Posted in Bookish Thursdays

BOOKISH THURSDAY #26: SERENDIPITOUS MOMENTS

bookish thursdays

Welcome to Thursday, a day that once seemed lost, with nothing exciting happening anywhere.  But then that changed, and today I am celebrating some of the bookish events around the blogosphere, like Lexxie’s Thirsty Thursday & Hungry Hearts; Kimberlyfaye’s TBR Thursday; and Christine’s Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts.

 

 

unConventionalBookViews_Meme-ThirstyThursdayHungryHearts-1-450x200

My foodie excerpt today comes from I Found You, by Lisa Jewell, the story of a single mum, Alice Lake, who finds a nameless man outside her house on the beach.

 

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In this excerpt, Alice’s friend Derry has come over for tea and a chat, with her son Danny.  They talk a little about the man Alice found, and then they prepare tea.

 

Derry and Danny stay for a couple of hours.  The little ones play in the living room while Derry and Alice sit in the kitchen and drink tea.  Jasmine returns at four o’clock, soaked to the skin with a wet rucksack full of GCSE coursework, no coat and no umbrella.  Kai comes back at four thirty with two friends from school.  Alice makes spaghetti for tea and Derry stops her opening a bottle of wine on account of her having to go home.  She and Danny leave at six o’clock.  It is still raining.

***

Spaghetti sounds good, but it would have been better with the wine…sigh.

***

 

 

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My TBR book today is Dream Lover, by Elizabeth Berg, a book I bought in April 2015.

 

 

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I don’t know why I haven’t read this one, because I love this author.  Perhaps it’s the historical element that has put me off.  Here’s the synopsis:

 

At the beginning of this powerful novel, we meet Aurore Dupin as she is leaving her estranged husband, a loveless marriage, and her family’s estate in the French countryside to start a new life in Paris. There, she gives herself a new name—George Sand—and pursues her dream of becoming a writer, embracing an unconventional and even scandalous lifestyle.

Paris in the nineteenth century comes vividly alive, illuminated by the story of the loves, passions, and fierce struggles of a woman who defied the confines of society. Sand’s many lovers and friends include Frédéric Chopin, Gustave Flaubert, Franz Liszt, Eugène Delacroix, Victor Hugo, Marie Dorval, and Alfred de Musset. As Sand welcomes fame and friendship, she fights to overcome heartbreak and prejudice, failure and loss. Though considered the most gifted genius of her time, she works to reconcile the pain of her childhood, of disturbing relationships with her mother and daughter, and of her intimacies with women and men. Will the life she longs for always be just out of reach—a dream?

***

It sounds good, doesn’t it?  I think it’s a buried treasure that I must bring out.  What do you think?

***

 

 

 

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  • My week has gone by fast, as usual, with triple digits again;
  • I had a dental appointment, and will have two more before the treatment is done.  I’m not a fan;
  • My daughter is on her cruise this week; she left last Thursday, so she may be home tomorrow.  Here’s a photo she sent from the ship.  It looks like they’re having fun;

 

Heather & friends - cruise

 

 

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  • Currently I’m reading Siracusa, an electrifying novel about marriage and deceit from bestselling author Delia Ephron that follows two couples on vacation in Siracusa, a town on the coast of Sicily, where the secrets they have hidden from one another are exposed and relationships are unraveled.

           Alternating narrators tell the tale, and we get to see the secrets and flaws of each character, and although I’m loving the story, I am not fond of any of the characters.  Especially the one child, Snow, who is spooky strange.

 

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  • Today I watched another episode of Vexed on Netflix, and I think I might just abandon it.  The two detectives are kooky and a little inept, which doesn’t work for me in the long haul;
  • I switched over to Parenthood.…and then decided to watch an Amazon Prime video, Shattered, with Gerard Butler and Maria Bello, two parents who are held at gunpoint by Pierce Brosnan, while a woman cohort has abducted their child;
  • Now I plan to watch American Gothic on TV, a show that I inadvertently got addicted to, while not planning to watch more than the first episode;

 

***

That’s it for this week….what has yours been like?  Lots of iced tea kept me hydrated on this hot day.

 

 

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Posted in WWW Wednesday

HUMP DAY READING: CURRENT, PAST, & FUTURE READING

b & n ON JULY 20-LOGO

Today I’m participating in Sam’s WWW Wednesdays Here’s how it works:

 

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next, and/or what are you eagerly awaiting?

***

Currently Reading:

 

Siracusa (e-book), by Delia Ephron, is an electrifying novel about marriage and deceit from bestselling author Delia Ephron that follows two couples on vacation in Siracusa, a town on the coast of Sicily, where the secrets they have hidden from one another are exposed and relationships are unraveled.

 

 

 

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I’ve barely started this book, as today was full of activities and appointments.  But so far, I’m enjoying the characters.

 

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JUST FINISHED:

 

Yesterday I finished reading and reviewing The Truth-Teller’s Lie, by Sophie Hannah (click title for my review).

 

 

 

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WHAT I AM ANTICIPATING:

 

I always love Lisa Gardner’s suspense, so I am eagerly waiting for Right Behind You, coming out on February 7, 2017.  Yes, it’s a while to wait, but you know how time flies.

 

 

 

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Is he a hero?
 
Eight years ago, Sharlah May Nash’s older brother beat their drunken father to death with a baseball bat in order to save both of their lives. Now thirteen years old, Sharlah has finally moved on. About to be adopted by retired FBI profiler Pierce Quincy and his partner, Rainie Conner, Sharlah loves one thing best about her new family: They are all experts on monsters.
 
Is he a killer?
 
Then the call comes in. A double murder at a local gas station, followed by reports of an armed suspect shooting his way through the wilds of Oregon. As Quincy and Rainie race to assist, they are forced to confront mounting evidence: The shooter may very well be Sharlah’s older brother, Telly Ray Nash, and it appears his killing spree has only just begun. 
 
All she knows for sure: He’s back.
 
As the clock winds down on a massive hunt for Telly, Quincy and Rainie must answer two critical questions: Why after eight years has this young man started killing again? And what does this mean for Sharlah? Once upon a time, Sharlah’s big brother saved her life. Now, she has two questions of her own: Is her brother a hero or a killer? And how much will it cost her new family before they learn the final, shattering truth? Because as Sharlah knows all too well, the biggest danger is the one standing right behind you.

***

What are you reading or anticipating?  Come on by and share….

***

Posted in Weekly Updates

WEEKLY UPDATES: FORTY YEARS AGO TODAY….

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Good morning! Today’s post will link up to The Sunday Salon, The Sunday Post and Stacking the Shelves, for weekly updates.

**Mailbox Monday is hosted at the home site: Mailbox Monday.

And let’s join Kathryn, our leader in It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?, at Book Date.

 

It was a good week, with some great reading.  Three books read and reviewed, and my total on Read the Books You Buy Challenge is 49 books!

After slightly cooler weather (90s) for a few days, it’s back to triple digits.  I was planning to see a movie today, but will wait until tomorrow.

Today is my daughter’s 40th birthday!  She is on a cruise right now, but earlier in the week, she and I had a celebratory lunch.  Yes, I was invited on the cruise, too, but I already had my mini-vacation from August 1-4…so I bowed out.

Today I wrote a post in honor of her birthday:  A Journey with Heather:  Happy Birthday!

 

 

Heather's birthday lunch - 2016

I also did some Netflix viewing this week, finishing up Season 4 of Wentworth.  Now for a long wait until Season 5.  Meanwhile, I found a new show:  Vexed.

 

LAST WEEK ON THE BLOGS:

Monday Sparks:  Musings…

Tuesday Potpourri:  “The Couple Next Door”

Curl up with My Newest Bookish Pick…

Hump Day Reading:  Current, Past, & Future Reading

Back to the Beginning:  A Journey

Bookish Thursday #25:  Serendipitous Moments

Bookish Friday:  “The Truth-Teller’s Lie”

Review:  Blood Defense (e-book), by Marcia Clark

Review:  Truly Madly Guilty (e-book), by Liane Moriarty

Review:  The Couple Next Door (e-book), by Shari Lapena (NetGalley – 8/23)

 

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INCOMING BOOKS: (Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

Received one book in the mailbox, and a review book from NetGalley.  Then I went a little crazy and purchased some downloads.

I Found You, by Lisa Jewell (Purchased Print Book)

 

 

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Faithful (e-book), by Alice Hoffman (NetGalley -11/1)

 

 

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Purchased Downloads:

Behind Closed Doors (e-book), by B. A. Paris

 

 

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The Book That Matters Most (e-book), by Ann Hood

 

 

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Family Tree (e-book), by Susan Wiggs

 

 

 

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Firefly Summer (e-book), by Nan Rossiter

 

 

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The American Girl (e-book), by Kate Horsley

 

 

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WHAT’S UP NEXT? (Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

My moods will dictate what I read next, but I’m thinking along the lines of summer reads…while it lasts.  Like these:

 

 

Mystic Summer (e-book), by Hannah McKinnon….and Forever Beach, by Shelley Noble

 

 

 

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What did your week look like?  Let’s chat….I think I’ll have another glass of iced tea….

 

 

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