My Favorite Reads of the Year

I read about 150 books this year, which is easy to do if you love reading and are disabled! What follows are a few of my favorite reads of the year, and are not necessarily published in 2017:

Susanna Owens tries to protect her three children from whom they really are, witches. They are related to Maria Owens of the 1600s who was accused of witchery for loving the wrong man. Set in the 60s, the children cannot hide their truths and prevent themselves from falling in love as much as anyone can. This book was beautifully written, magical and very emotional. It is a prequel to Hoffman’s “Practical Magic” which I read years ago but will have to read again.

My favorite non-fiction book of the year was Waking Up White. Debby Irving grew up in a WASP background where everyone else was the same. She never thought of herself as having a race. This book is about Debby realizing the fact of white privilege and takes us on her journey of reaching out to people of color and learning more about what these minorities go through. At the end of each chapter she gives you thought provoking questions to help you think critically of this problem here in America. She also tells you what can do to bridge the gap between all races so that we can all truly belong.

I found a new favorite cozy mystery series this year, “A Witch City Mystery”. If you don’t know, cozy mysteries are less violent than regular mysteries and usually have a great heroine and supporting cast. I picked up one in the series for Halloween and I was hooked. In this first book of the series, Widow Lee Barrett is back in her hometown of Salem, MA to live with her Aunt Ibby and interview for the reporter’s job on WICH-TV. But after the nighttime host of horror movies and psychic is found murdered, Lee is cast as the new host. Lee must also face facts that she is psychic herself! This is the first book in the “Witch City Mystery” cozy series and I absolutely love it. Lee and Aunt Ibby make a great team and the book had a fantastic ending.

And my favorite book I read this year is:

Single mother Rachel Jenner is walking in the woods with her eight year old son, Ben, when he asks if he can run ahead to the rope swing. When she gets there Ben is gone without a trace. It’s every mother’s nightmare, especially if you’re like me and have a son. This is the first book I’ve ever read that I truly felt like I was having a heart attack! I had to keep reminding myself that it was only a story but it is so well written. I can’t do it justice, just read it, read it, read it!

I hope you enjoyed my picks for the year and will pick up a couple for yourself. I’m looking forward to what I’ll discover in the new year!

Book Reviews!

Inspired by Mama Kat’s Writer’s Workshop.

Some clever thieves steal some priceless manuscripts from F. Scott Fitzgerald. The scripts are flipped over from many interested parties but there is reason to believe bookstore owner Bruce Cable of Camino Island, FL is currently in possession of them. Approached by an organization specializing in recovery is Mercer Mann, a young novelist who has just been let go of her teaching job. The company gives Mercer a generous offer and she agrees to go under cover to get close to Cable. I hadn’t read John Grisham in years, I got tired of the lawyer thing, but this was really different. A great beach read, taking place in a beach setting and a plot that kept me interested. Recommended!

Jessica Malloy’s absolute favorite star is Grace Kelly and because her father is her publicist, she gets to meet her at various times throughout their lives. This is historical fiction so it follows Grace’s rising star to her fall from, well, grace when she has a baby out of wedlock. It also delves into the McCarthy Era. I really enjoyed this book, it helps that I am a Gracy Kelly fan myself! It is a wonderful coming of age story where a young woman realizes that her idol is only a person.

These reviews are from my goodreads account. I’d love to see you follow me!

 

The Best Book I’ve Read This Year (So Far)

This post was inspired by Mama Kat’s Writer’s Workshop.

Prompt 3. October is National Book Month, tell us about the best book you’ve read so far this year.

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The best book I’ve read so far this year has got to be a book I recently read. Author Megan Miranda is a Young Adult writer and this is her first novel for adults.

Nicolette has the summer off from her job in Philadelphia to help her senile father sell his house in her small town in North Carolina. Going back home brings back memories of her friend Corinne going missing without a trace. Now, ten years later, another young woman has also gone missing and Nic has to find out if her family has anything to do with the disappearances.

The book is told backwards, from Day 15 to Day 1. It is confusing at first but then you realize how actually ingenious this story is and it makes you want to read the book all over again.

In my opinion, this book is better than Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train. I’m not sure why it hasn’t hit big yet but I think it is a real gem!

Right! Click! Paste!

This post is courtesy of Mama Kat’s Writer’s Workshop.

2. Open a blank blog post and “right click paste” in the body of the post…what was pasted? Explain it.

I am rereading a few of Sue Grafton’s alphabet mystery series, but most I have not read, and plan on going through them all. The woman who was found guilty in the death of her hotshot lawyer husband is out of prison and she wants P. I. Kinsey Millhone to find out who really did it. This is mystery writing at it’s finest. I can’t believe the first book was written all the way back in 1982!

What I last pasted was a Pinterest book review I have from one of my boards, “Books I am Reading/Have Read.” It comes from a longer review from Goodreads.

I’d love for you to follow me on Goodreads or Pinterest and meanwhile I will be working my way through Sue Grafton’s alphabet!

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Review and Contest For “Lost Edens”

(I read Lost Edens as a member of the From Left to Write book club.  I was given a free copy of this book.  The opinions, however, are my own.  If you would like to read the post that I was inspired to write after reading this book, you can go here.)

Lost Edens by Jamie Patterson is the true story of a woman in her mid-20s who decides to take her husband back after he admits to having an affair.  She does this without the support of any of her family or friends, there is not one person behind her, but Jamie is determined to make it work.

To tell you that the marriage does not work out is not spoiling it for you as it says right on the back cover, “(Jamie) lives in Minneapolis with her dog, Huey.”  But it is the middle of the book, the journey that Jamie takes from deciding to take her husband back to running like Hell that is the real story.

Lost Edens reads like a novel except for the very sad and terrifying fact that this book is not “based on a true story” but that it is a true story.  To watch Jamie go from determined young wife to how she leaves her husband is a study of a woman growing up and a study of a woman having to admit that she MUST leave.

For those who may be sensitive, there is abuse and mental illness in this book, and for those not recovered from their own personal experiences, this may not be the right book for you.

At 210 pages Lost Edens is the perfect memoir of a woman facing betrayal, innocence and finally, self-awareness.  It is the perfect book for curling up on a cold day and reading it in one sitting from cover to cover.

Would you like to win a gently used copy of Lost Edens?  

 Entering is easy and you have three chances to win:

1. Leave a comment below.

2. Tweet out the contest.

3. Post this contest on your Facebook wall.  

If you tweet and Facebook the contest, please let me know by leaving two more entries.  In other words, if you have commented, Tweeted and Facebooked, you will have THREE separate entries.  

The contest will end on Monday, November 14th at 11:59 p.m. EST.  A winner will be chosen at random. Good luck!

Congratulations to Deana, winner of Lost Edens.  Deana’s entry, #3 was chosen by random.org.  Thank you to all who entered and keep checking in because I hope to have some holiday contests coming up soon!