Top Ten Tuesday – My 10 Most Anticipated Releases for the Second Half of 2019


Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Top Ten Tuesday has been one of my favorite memes ever since I started blogging, so huge thanks to Jana for taking over the hosting duties!

This week’s TTT topic is actually Most Anticipated Releases for the Second Half of 2019.  I’m excited about so many books that are coming out in the second half of the year that it was nearly impossible to narrow it down to just ten.  I did it though and tried to pick some from each of my favorite genres.


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My 10 Most Anticipated Releases for the Second Half of 2019


1, TWICE IN A BLUE MOON by Christina Lauren

During a whirlwind two-week vacation abroad, Sam and Tate fell for each other in only the way that first loves do: sharing all of their hopes, dreams, and deepest secrets along the way. Sam was the first, and only, person that Tate—the long-lost daughter of one of the world’s biggest film stars—ever revealed her identity to. So when it became clear her trust was misplaced, her world shattered for good.

Fourteen years later, Tate, now an up-and-coming actress, only thinks about her first love every once in a blue moon. When she steps onto the set of her first big break, he’s the last person she expects to see. Yet here Sam is, the same charming, confident man she knew, but even more alluring than she remembered. Forced to confront the man who betrayed her, Tate must ask herself if it’s possible to do the wrong thing for the right reason… and whether “once in a lifetime” can come around twice.

With Christina Lauren’s signature “beautifully written and remarkably compelling” (Sarah J. Maas, New York Times bestselling author) prose and perfect for fans of Emily Giffin and Jennifer Weiner, Twice in a Blue Moon is an unforgettable and moving novel of young love and second chances.



The only child of a single mother, Nina has her life just as she wants it: a job in a bookstore, a kick-butt trivia team, a world-class planner and a cat named Phil. If she sometimes suspects there might be more to life than reading, she just shrugs and picks up a new book.

When the father Nina never knew existed suddenly dies, leaving behind innumerable sisters, brothers, nieces, and nephews, Nina is horrified. They all live close by! They’re all—or mostly all—excited to meet her! She’ll have to Speak. To. Strangers. It’s a disaster! And as if that wasn’t enough, Tom, her trivia nemesis, has turned out to be cute, funny, and deeply interested in getting to know her. Doesn’t he realize what a terrible idea that is?

Nina considers her options:  1. Completely change her name and appearance. (Too drastic, plus she likes her hair.); 2. Flee to a deserted island. (Hard pass, see: coffee); 3. Hide in a corner of her apartment and rock back and forth. (Already doing it.)

It’s time for Nina to come out of her comfortable shell, but she isn’t convinced real life could ever live up to fiction. It’s going to take a brand-new family, a persistent suitor, and the combined effects of ice cream and trivia to make her turn her own fresh page.


3, THE WORLD THAT WE KNEW by Alice Hoffman

In 1941, during humanity’s darkest hour, three unforgettable young women must act with courage and love to survive, from the New York Times bestselling author of The Dovekeepers and The Marriage of Opposites Alice Hoffman.

In Berlin, at the time when the world changed, Hanni Kohn knows she must send her twelve-year-old daughter away to save her from the Nazi regime. She finds her way to a renowned rabbi, but it’s his daughter, Ettie, who offers hope of salvation when she creates a mystical Jewish creature, a rare and unusual golem, who is sworn to protect Lea. Once Ava is brought to life, she and Lea and Ettie become eternally entwined, their paths fated to cross, their fortunes linked.

Lea and Ava travel from Paris, where Lea meets her soulmate, to a convent in western France known for its silver roses; from a school in a mountaintop village where three thousand Jews were saved. Meanwhile, Ettie is in hiding, waiting to become the fighter she’s destined to be.

What does it mean to lose your mother? How much can one person sacrifice for love? In a world where evil can be found at every turn, we meet remarkable characters that take us on a stunning journey of loss and resistance, the fantastical and the mortal, in a place where all roads lead past the Angel of Death and love is never ending.


4, WILDER GIRLS by Rory Power

It’s been eighteen months since the Raxter School for Girls was put under quarantine. Since the Tox hit and pulled Hetty’s life out from under her.

It started slow. First the teachers died one by one. Then it began to infect the students, turning their bodies strange and foreign. Now, cut off from the rest of the world and left to fend for themselves on their island home, the girls don’t dare wander outside the school’s fence, where the Tox has made the woods wild and dangerous. They wait for the cure they were promised as the Tox seeps into everything.

But when Byatt goes missing, Hetty will do anything to find her, even if it means breaking quarantine and braving the horrors that lie beyond the fence. And when she does, Hetty learns that there’s more to their story, to their life at Raxter, than she could have ever thought true.


5, LOCK EVERY DOOR by Riley Sager

No visitors. No nights spent away from the apartment. No disturbing the other residents, all of whom are rich or famous or both. These are the only rules for Jules Larsen’s new job as an apartment sitter at the Bartholomew, one of Manhattan’s most high-profile and mysterious buildings. Recently heartbroken and just plain broke, Jules is taken in by the splendor of her surroundings and accepts the terms, ready to leave her past life behind.

As she gets to know the residents and staff of the Bartholomew, Jules finds herself drawn to fellow apartment sitter Ingrid, who comfortingly, disturbingly reminds her of the sister she lost eight years ago. When Ingrid confides that the Bartholomew is not what it seems and the dark history hidden beneath its gleaming facade is starting to frighten her, Jules brushes it off as a harmless ghost story . . . until the next day, when Ingrid disappears.

Searching for the truth about Ingrid’s disappearance, Jules digs deeper into the Bartholomew’s dark past and into the secrets kept within its walls. Her discovery that Ingrid is not the first apartment sitter to go missing at the Bartholomew pits Jules against the clock as she races to unmask a killer, expose the building’s hidden past, and escape the Bartholomew before her temporary status becomes permanent.


6. THE BROMANCE BOOK CLUB by Lyssa Kay Adams

The first rule of book club:  You don’t talk about book club.

Nashville Legends second baseman Gavin Scott’s marriage is in major league trouble. He’s recently discovered a humiliating secret: his wife Thea has always faked the Big O. When he loses his cool at the revelation, it’s the final straw on their already strained relationship. Thea asks for a divorce, and Gavin realizes he’s let his pride and fear get the better of him.

Welcome to the Bromance Book Club.

Distraught and desperate, Gavin finds help from an unlikely source: a secret romance book club made up of Nashville’s top alpha men. With the help of their current read, a steamy Regency titled Courting the Countess, the guys coach Gavin on saving his marriage. But it’ll take a lot more than flowery words and grand gestures for this hapless Romeo to find his inner hero and win back the trust of his wife.


7. INTO THE CROOKED PLACE by Alexandra Christo

Into the Crooked Place begins a gritty two-book YA fantasy series from Alexandra Christo, the author of To Kill a Kingdom.

The streets of Creije are for the deadly and the dreamers, and four crooks in particular know just how much magic they need up their sleeve to survive.

Tavia, a busker ready to pack up her dark-magic wares and turn her back on Creije for good. She’ll do anything to put her crimes behind her.

Wesley, the closest thing Creije has to a gangster. After growing up on streets hungry enough to swallow the weak whole, he won’t stop until he has brought the entire realm to kneel before him.

Karam, a warrior who spends her days watching over the city’s worst criminals and her nights in the fighting rings, making a deadly name for herself.

And Saxony, a resistance fighter hiding from the very people who destroyed her family, and willing to do whatever it takes to get her revenge.

Everything in their lives is going to plan, until Tavia makes a crucial mistake: she delivers a vial of dark magic—a weapon she didn’t know she had—to someone she cares about, sparking the greatest conflict in decades. Now these four magical outsiders must come together to save their home and the world, before it’s too late. But with enemies at all sides, they can trust nobody. Least of all each other.



From the New York Times bestselling author of Good Luck with That comes a new novel about a blue-blood grandmother and her black-sheep granddaughter who discover they are truly two sides of the same coin.

Emma London never thought she had anything in common with her grandmother Genevieve London. The regal old woman came from wealthy and bluest-blood New England stock, but that didn’t protect her from life’s cruelest blows: the disappearance of Genevieve’s young son, followed by the premature death of her husband. But Genevieve rose from those ashes of grief and built a fashion empire that was respected the world over, even when it meant neglecting her other son.

When Emma’s own mother died, her father abandoned her on his mother’s doorstep. Genevieve took Emma in and reluctantly raised her–until Emma got pregnant her senior year of high school. Genevieve kicked her out with nothing but the clothes on her back…but Emma took with her the most important London possession: the strength not just to survive but to thrive. And indeed, Emma has built a wonderful life for herself and her teenage daughter, Riley.

So what is Emma to do when Genevieve does the one thing Emma never expected of her and, after not speaking to her for nearly two decades, calls and asks for help?



The Age of Darkness approaches.  Five lives stand in its way.  Who will stop it… or unleash it? 

For generations, the Seven Prophets guided humanity. Using their visions of the future, they ended wars and united nations―until the day, one hundred years ago, when the Prophets disappeared.

All they left behind was one final, secret prophecy, foretelling an Age of Darkness and the birth of a new Prophet who could be the world’s salvation . . . or the cause of its destruction. As chaos takes hold, five souls are set on a collision course:

A prince exiled from his kingdom. A ruthless killer known as the Pale Hand. A once-faithful leader torn between his duty and his heart.  A reckless gambler with the power to find anything or anyone. And a dying girl on the verge of giving up.

One of them―or all of them―could break the world. Will they be savior or destroyer? Perfect for fans of Throne of Glass, Children of Blood and Bone, and An Ember in the Ashes. 


10. NINTH HOUSE by Leigh Bardugo

The mesmerizing adult debut from #1 New York Timesbestselling author Leigh Bardugo

Galaxy “Alex” Stern is the most unlikely member of Yale’s freshman class. Raised in the Los Angeles hinterlands by a hippie mom, Alex dropped out of school early and into a world of shady drug dealer boyfriends, dead-end jobs, and much, much worse. By age twenty, in fact, she is the sole survivor of a horrific, unsolved multiple homicide. Some might say she’s thrown her life away. But at her hospital bed, Alex is offered a second chance: to attend one of the world’s most elite universities on a full ride. What’s the catch, and why her?

Still searching for answers to this herself, Alex arrives in New Haven tasked by her mysterious benefactors with monitoring the activities of Yale’s secret societies. These eight windowless “tombs” are well-known to be haunts of the future rich and powerful, from high-ranking politicos to Wall Street and Hollywood’s biggest players. But their occult activities are revealed to be more sinister and more extraordinary than any paranoid imagination might conceive.


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What are some of your most anticipated releases for the second half of 2019?  Do we share any?

Top Ten Tuesday: Unpopular Bookish Opinions


Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Top Ten Tuesday has been one of my favorite memes ever since I started blogging, so huge thanks to Jana for taking over the hosting duties!

This week’s TTT topic is Unpopular Bookish Opinions.  Honestly I don’t know how unpopular any of my opinions really are. I half expect when I post this that I’ll learn lots of people share my opinions.  If not…




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10 Unpopular Bookish Opinions



  • I can’t stand Neil Gaiman’s American Gods.  I love several of his other books, but I’ve tried to read American Gods twice now and have DNFed it both times.  I don’t get it since pretty much everyone else I know loves it, but it’s just not for me.


  • Every once in a while, the movie (or TV show) is better than the book.  I don’t say this often, but I do believe it in a few rare cases.  The 100 comes to mind. I love the TV series but couldn’t get through any of the books.


  • Bookshelves organized by color aren’t my thing.  Don’t get me wrong – I think they look absolutely beautiful, especially in Instagram photos, but honestly, if I were to organize my books that way, I’m pretty sure I’d never be able to locate a book on them again.  Plus, what if series books aren’t the same color? I need my series together on the shelf.  I need a more practical system, even if it’s not as asthetically pleasing.


  • Standalones > Series.  Even though I read a lot of series, I honestly still prefer standalones.  I prefer following characters from the beginning to the end of a single book and then being finished with them rather than left hanging waiting for the next installment.  I also like that the narrative tends to be tighter in a standalone, whereas sometimes I feel like some series book have a lot of fluff and filler in them.


  • The Red Queen series makes me want to scream.  Speaking of series, I know a lot of people love the Red Queen series, but I’m not one of them.  I made it through the first book and thought it was good enough to pick up Glass Sword, the second book in the series, even though Mare, the main character, and her love triangle, (square, rhombus, whatever it was?), annoyed the bejeezus out of me.  That second book, however, did me in and I DNF’ed it and quit the whole series.


  • I have very mixed feelings when it comes to John Green’s books. There were some, like The Fault in Our Stars, that I thought were incredible, but then there are others like Turtles All the Way Down and Paper Towns that I just feel meh about.


  • I love Dan Brown’s books.   I know a lot of people hate them and I’ve heard several say he’s a bad writer, but I completely disagree.  Maybe his books are not high brow literature and maybe they’re a bit formulaic, but they’re always very entertaining and I love reading them.


  • I don’t love Fiona Barton’s books.  I know she’s a super popular author right now, but I just continually struggle to get through her books.  I find the writing style somewhat dry and I always struggle to connect with Barton’s characters.


  • Maggie Stiefvater is also hit and miss for me.  Like with Barton, I know Stiefvater is super popular, but my experience reading her books has been very inconsistent.  All the Crooked Saints was mostly a miss for me and I just didn’t connect with the story at all.  In contrast, however, I thought The Raven Cycle was pretty amazing.


  • The Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children series was mostly a miss for me as well.  I made it through the first book okay but the next book bored me to the point where I quit the series.


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What are some of your unpopular bookish opinions?

Top Ten Tuesday – 10 Retellings I Absolutely Love


Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Top Ten Tuesday has been one of my favorite memes ever since I started blogging, so huge thanks to Jana for taking over the hosting duties!

This week’s TTT topic is actually Books From My Favorite Genre (You pick the genre, and give us your ten faves.).  I read so many genres that I just couldn’t pick a favorite one, so I decided to tweak the topic a bit and share some of my favorite retellings instead since I’m just a sucker for a good retelling.  I also love all kinds of retellings, whether they’re fairytale retellings, retellings of classic novels, villain origin stories, or even historical retellings.  I’m even taking part in a Retellings Reading Challenge this year because I want to read even more of them than I already do.


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10 Retellings I Absolutely Love


1, THE LUNAR CHRONICLES by Marissa Meyer

(a fairytale retelling that features Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Snow White, and Rapunzel)


2, HEARTLESS by Marissa Meyer

(An Alice in Wonderland retelling, specifically a villain origin story for the Queen of Hearts)


3, GEEKERELLA by Ashley Poston

(A super cute, modern Cinderella retelling that also celebrates fandoms)


4, SPEAK EASY, SPEAK LOVE by McKelle George

(A retelling of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing, set during the Prohibition Era)


5, TO KILL A KINGDOM by Alexandra Christo

(A Little Mermaid retelling)


6. SKY WITHOUT STARS by Jessica Brody and Joanne Rendell

(A sci-fi retelling of Les Miserables)



(A Beauty and the Beast fantasy retelling)


8. PRIDE by Ibi Zoboi

(A modern Pride and Prejudice retelling set in Brooklyn)


9. MY LADY JANE by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, & Jodi Meadows

(A surprisingly humorous retelling set in Tudor England and featuring Lady Jane Grey, King Edward VI, and Lord Guildford Dudley)



(A modern and gender-bent retelling of Pride and Prejudice, featuring an Indian American protagonist, and set in San Francisco)


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What are some of your favorite retellings?  Do we share any favorites?

Top Ten Tuesday – Top 10 Favorite Books Released in the Last 10 Years


Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Top Ten Tuesday has been one of my favorite memes ever since I started blogging, so huge thanks to Jana for taking over the hosting duties!

This week’s TTT topic is Favorite Books Released In the Last Ten Years (one book for each year).  I found this to be a pretty interesting stroll down memory lane just to see how my reading tastes have changed from year to year.


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Favorite Books Released in the Last Ten Years


1. Daisy Jones & the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid

(2019, my favorite so far)

Goodreads Synopsis:  Everyone knows Daisy Jones & The Six, but nobody knows the reason behind their split at the absolute height of their popularity . . . until now.

Daisy is a girl coming of age in L.A. in the late sixties, sneaking into clubs on the Sunset Strip, sleeping with rock stars, and dreaming of singing at the Whisky a Go Go. The sex and drugs are thrilling, but it’s the rock and roll she loves most. By the time she’s twenty, her voice is getting noticed, and she has the kind of heedless beauty that makes people do crazy things.

Also getting noticed is The Six, a band led by the brooding Billy Dunne. On the eve of their first tour, his girlfriend Camila finds out she’s pregnant, and with the pressure of impending fatherhood and fame, Billy goes a little wild on the road.

Daisy and Billy cross paths when a producer realizes that the key to supercharged success is to put the two together. What happens next will become the stuff of legend.

The making of that legend is chronicled in this riveting and unforgettable novel, written as an oral history of one of the biggest bands of the seventies. Taylor Jenkins Reid is a talented writer who takes her work to a new level with Daisy Jones & The Six, brilliantly capturing a place and time in an utterly distinctive voice.   (Read more…)


2. Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi



Goodreads Synopsis: They killed my mother.  They took our magic.  They tried to bury us.  Now we rise.

Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zélie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls.

But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.

Now Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.

Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leoponaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers and her growing feelings for an enemy.  (Read more…)


3. The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden


Goodreads Synopsis: At the edge of the Russian wilderness, winter lasts most of the year and the snowdrifts grow taller than houses. But Vasilisa doesn’t mind—she spends the winter nights huddled around the embers of a fire with her beloved siblings, listening to her nurse’s fairy tales. Above all, she loves the chilling story of Frost, the blue-eyed winter demon, who appears in the frigid night to claim unwary souls. Wise Russians fear him, her nurse says, and honor the spirits of house and yard and forest that protect their homes from evil.

After Vasilisa’s mother dies, her father goes to Moscow and brings home a new wife. Fiercely devout, city-bred, Vasilisa’s new stepmother forbids her family from honoring the household spirits. The family acquiesces, but Vasilisa is frightened, sensing that more hinges upon their rituals than anyone knows.

And indeed, crops begin to fail, evil creatures of the forest creep nearer, and misfortune stalks the village. All the while, Vasilisa’s stepmother grows ever harsher in her determination to groom her rebellious stepdaughter for either marriage or confinement in a convent.

As danger circles, Vasilisa must defy even the people she loves and call on dangerous gifts she has long concealed—this, in order to protect her family from a threat that seems to have stepped from her nurse’s most frightening tales. (Read more…)


4. Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly



Goodreads Synopsis:  Inspired by the life of a real World War II heroine, this debut novel reveals a story of love, redemption, and secrets that were hidden for decades.
New York socialite Caroline Ferriday has her hands full with her post at the French consulate and a new love on the horizon. But Caroline’s world is forever changed when Hitler’s army invades Poland in September 1939—and then sets its sights on France.

An ocean away from Caroline, Kasia Kuzmerick, a Polish teenager, senses her carefree youth disappearing as she is drawn deeper into her role as courier for the underground resistance movement. In a tense atmosphere of watchful eyes and suspecting neighbors, one false move can have dire consequences.

For the ambitious young German doctor, Herta Oberheuser, an ad for a government medical position seems her ticket out of a desolate life. Once hired, though, she finds herself trapped in a male-dominated realm of Nazi secrets and power.

The lives of these three women are set on a collision course when the unthinkable happens and Kasia is sent to Ravensbrück, the notorious Nazi concentration camp for women. Their stories cross continents—from New York to Paris, Germany, and Poland—as Caroline and Kasia strive to bring justice to those whom history has forgotten.  (Read more…)


5. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah



Goodreads Synopsis:   In love we find out who we want to be. In war we find out who we are.

France, 1939.  In the quiet village of Carriveau, Vianne Mauriac says goodbye to her husband, Antoine, as he heads for the Front. She doesn’t believe that the Nazis will invade France…but invade they do, in droves of marching soldiers, in caravans of trucks and tanks, in planes that fill the skies and drop bombs upon the innocent. When France is overrun, Vianne is forced to take an enemy into her house, and suddenly her every move is watched; her life and her child’s life is at constant risk. Without food or money or hope, as danger escalates around her, she must make one terrible choice after another.

Vianne’s sister, Isabelle, is a rebellious eighteen-year-old girl, searching for purpose with all the reckless passion of youth. While thousands of Parisians march into the unknown terrors of war, she meets the compelling and mysterious Gäetan, a partisan who believes the French can fight the Nazis from within France, and she falls in love as only the young can…completely. When he betrays her, Isabelle races headlong into danger and joins the Resistance, never looking back or giving a thought to the real–and deadly–consequences. (Read more…)


6. Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty



Goodreads Synopsis:  Big Little Lies follows three women, each at a crossroads:

Madeline is a force to be reckoned with. She’s funny and biting, passionate, she remembers everything and forgives no one. Her ex-husband and his yogi new wife have moved into her beloved beachside community, and their daughter is in the same kindergarten class as Madeline’s youngest (how is this possible?). And to top it all off, Madeline’s teenage daughter seems to be choosing Madeline’s ex-husband over her. (How. Is. This. Possible?).

Celeste is the kind of beautiful woman who makes the world stop and stare. While she may seem a bit flustered at times, who wouldn’t be, with those rambunctious twin boys? Now that the boys are starting school, Celeste and her husband look set to become the king and queen of the school parent body. But royalty often comes at a price, and Celeste is grappling with how much more she is willing to pay.

New to town, single mom Jane is so young that another mother mistakes her for the nanny. Jane is sad beyond her years and harbors secret doubts about her son. But why? While Madeline and Celeste soon take Jane under their wing, none of them realizes how the arrival of Jane and her inscrutable little boy will affect them all.

Big Little Lies is a brilliant take on ex-husbands and second wives, mothers and daughters, schoolyard scandal, and the dangerous little lies we tell ourselves just to survive. (Read more…)


7. Me Before You by Jojo Moyes



Goodreads Synopsis:  Discover the love story that captured over 20 million hearts in Me Before YouAfter You, and Still Me.

They had nothing in common until love gave them everything to lose . . .

Louisa Clark is an ordinary girl living an exceedingly ordinary life—steady boyfriend, close family—who has barely been farther afield than their tiny village. She takes a badly needed job working for ex–Master of the Universe Will Traynor, who is wheelchair bound after an accident. Will has always lived a huge life—big deals, extreme sports, worldwide travel—and now he’s pretty sure he cannot live the way he is.

Will is acerbic, moody, bossy—but Lou refuses to treat him with kid gloves, and soon his happiness means more to her than she expected. When she learns that Will has shocking plans of his own, she sets out to show him that life is still worth living.

A Love Story for this generation and perfect for fans of John Green’s The Fault in Our StarsMe Before You brings to life two people who couldn’t have less in common—a heartbreakingly romantic novel that asks, What do you do when making the person you love happy also means breaking your own heart?  (Read more…)


8. The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey


Goodreads Synopsis: Alaska, 1920: a brutal place to homestead, and especially tough for recent arrivals Jack and Mabel. Childless, they are drifting apart–he breaking under the weight of the work of the farm; she crumbling from loneliness and despair. In a moment of levity during the season’s first snowfall, they build a child out of snow. The next morning the snow child is gone–but they glimpse a young, blonde-haired girl running through the trees. This little girl, who calls herself Faina, seems to be a child of the woods. She hunts with a red fox at her side, skims lightly across the snow, and somehow survives alone in the Alaskan wilderness. As Jack and Mabel struggle to understand this child who could have stepped from the pages of a fairy tale, they come to love her as their own daughter. But in this beautiful, violent place things are rarely as they appear, and what they eventually learn about Faina will transform all of them.   (Read more…)


9. The Night Circus by Erin Morganstern



Goodreads Synopsis: The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.

But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands.

True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus performers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.

Written in rich, seductive prose, this spell-casting novel is a feast for the senses and the heart. (Read more…)


10. Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins



Goodreads Synopsis:  My name is Katniss Everdeen. Why am I not dead? I should be dead.

Katniss Everdeen, girl on fire, has survived, even though her home has been destroyed. Gale has escaped. Katniss’s family is safe. Peeta has been captured by the Capitol. District 13 really does exist. There are rebels. There are new leaders. A revolution is unfolding.

It is by design that Katniss was rescued from the arena in the cruel and haunting Quarter Quell, and it is by design that she has long been part of the revolution without knowing it. District 13 has come out of the shadows and is plotting to overthrow the Capitol. Everyone, it seems, has had a hand in the carefully laid plans–except Katniss.

The success of the rebellion hinges on Katniss’s willingness to be a pawn, to accept responsibility for countless lives, and to change the course of the future of Panem. To do this, she must put aside her feelings of anger and distrust. She must become the rebels’ Mockingjay–no matter what the personal cost. (Read more…)

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What have been some of your favorite reads over the past 10 year?  Do we share any favorites?

Top Ten Tuesday – 10 Books I’d Love to Share with Everyone


Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Top Ten Tuesday has been one of my favorite memes ever since I started blogging, so huge thanks to Jana for taking over the hosting duties!

This week’s TTT topic is actually Books That I Refuse to Let Anyone Touch but I just drew a blank on this one.  While I am picky about lending out books, I can’t really say that there are any that are completely off limits. So instead of doing the assigned topic, I decided to go a little off script and talk about books I wish I could share with everyone.  In my mind, I believe that everyone could be a reader if they just found the right book and/or genre to get them hooked.

So, what I have here is a selection of some of my favorite reads that I’d consider a “starter kit” of books to explore different genres.  I’ve got a mix of classics that didn’t make me cringe, thrillers that kept me on the edge of my seat, as well as fantasy and sci fi that transported me to other worlds, and contemporary novels that just left me with a smile on my face.


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Books I’d Love to Share with Everyone


Historical Fiction



THE NIGHTINGALE by Kristin Hannah

LILAC GIRLS by Martha Hall Kelly






JANE EYRE by Charlotte Bronte





THE NIGHT CIRCUS by Erin Morganstern




Science Fiction


THE MARTIAN by Andy Weir

THE ILLUMINAE FILES by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff


Contemporary Fiction










UNSUB by Meg Gardiner



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What are some books you’d love for everyone to read?

Top Ten Tuesday – Ten Page-to-Screen Adaptations I Want to Watch


Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Top Ten Tuesday has been one of my favorite memes ever since I started blogging, so huge thanks to Jana for taking over the hosting duties!

This week’s TTT topic is Page to Screen Freebie (Books that became movies/TV shows, movies that became books, great adaptations, bad ones, books you need to read before watching their movie/TV show, movies you loved based on books you hated or vice versa, books you want to read because you saw the movie or vice versa, etc.)

I decided to go with page to screen adaptations that I really want to see.  There are so many books that I love that have either been made into TV series or movies or are in the process of being made into them.  I’m sure there are plenty more out there that I want to see, but these 10 are at the top of my list at the moment.  Some I’ve been saying I want to watch for a while now and others are fairly new or are still in production.  I’ve shared trailers for any that I could find.


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10 Page-to-Screen Adaptations I Want to Watch



1. THE HATE U GIVE, a big-screen adaptation of Angie Thomas’ best selling novel of the same name.

This one has been out for a while and I just haven’t made the time to watch it yet even though I loved the book.



2. SHADOW and BONE, an eight-episode Netflix series based on Leigh Bardugo’s Shadow and Bone & Six of Crows fantasy novels.

I don’t think there’s a release date for this yet, but I can’t wait since it combines two of my favorite fantasy series.



3.  A DOG’S JOURNEY, a film adaptation of the popular series by W. Bruce Cameron.  This movie actually comes out this week and I’m really looking forward to seeing it. The books and the first film, A Dog’s Purpose, had me crying the ugly cry, so I’m sure this one will have me reaching for the tissues too.



4.  THE SUN IS ALSO A STAR, a film releasing this week that is based off of Nicola Yoon’s best selling novel of the same name.  I actually haven’t read this book yet, but the trailer just really appealed to me so now I want to watch the film and read the book.



5. ARTEMIS FOWL, a movie based on the beloved books by Eoin Colfer.

My son and I have been reading this series together and were excited to learn that Disney is making it into a film that will release later this year.



6.  THE ART OF RACING IN THE RAIN, a movie adaptation of the best selling book by Garth Stein.

I’m excited for this one because I loved the book of course, and because it has Milo Ventimiglia from This is Us and Gilmore Girls in it.  It releases this fall.



7.  ALL THE BRIGHT PLACES, an upcoming movie based on Jennifer Niven’s best selling novel of the same name.

I haven’t seen much information for this aside from that Elle Fanning will play Violet and Justice Smith will play Finch, but I can’t wait to see this film.  I’m sure it’s another that will have me reaching for the tissues.



8.  SHADOWHUNTERS, a TV series based on the popular Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare.

I’m late to the Shadowhunters game as I just started Clare’s book series late last year and the TV series is actually in its final season.  Regardless, I look forward to binging it once I finish the books.



9.  A DISCOVERY OF WITCHES, a TV series based on the popular book series by Deborah Harkness.

I’ve been meaning to start this one for a while now, but keep forgetting about it.



10.  HIS DARK MATERIALS is an upcoming TV series based on the popular series by Philip Pullman.

I enjoyed the book series, but I’m most excited for this because Lin-Manuel Miranda is in this, and I just love him. #theaternerdcrush

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Have your seen any of these?  Or do you plan to?  What are some of your favorite page-to-screen adaptations?

Top Ten Tuesday – Ten Characters That Remind Me of Myself


Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Top Ten Tuesday has been one of my favorite memes ever since I started blogging, so huge thanks to Jana for taking over the hosting duties!

This week’s TTT topic is Ten Characters That Remind Me of Myself.  At first I thought this topic was going to be easy, but then the more I thought about it, the harder it got.  Even with the ten characters I finally settled on, I couldn’t decide with most of them if they were really like me or if they are more who I hope I’m like or who I aspire to be like.  I clearly don’t know myself as well as I thought I did, haha.


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10 Characters That Remind Me of Myself



  • MOLLY WEASLEY (Harry Potter series).  I picked Mrs. Weasley because she is such a Mama Bear.  You mess with her kids and you will face her full wrath.  I know I feel the same way when someone messes with my child, so I’d like to think I’ve got some of that Weasley Mama Bear instinct in me.


  • HERMIONE GRANGER (also Harry Potter series).  In many ways, I’m not at all like Hermione because she’s a total badass and I’m the exact opposite. But where she does remind me of myself is with her love of learning and her love of reading and of course, the library.


  • CATH AVERY (Fangirl) I fell in love with Fangirl specifically because I saw myself in Cath so much.  That whole socially awkward, introverted writer-type is so me.


  • FITZWILLIAM DARCY (Pride and Prejudice).  I definitely see myself in Mr. Darcy.  I can be painfully shy around new people, which people tend to mistake for me being aloof and therefore unlikable.  Like Mr. Darcy though, once you get to know me, you’ll realize I’m not so awful after all (well, hopefully anyway, lol).


  • ELIZABETH BENNETT (also Pride and Prejudice).  Is it weird to see myself in both of the main characters from the same book?  I don’t know.  Regardless though, I also see myself in Elizabeth Bennett with that stubborn streak she exhibits when it comes to Mr. Darcy, whom she thinks is looking down on her and her family.  I can be stubborn as a mule as well.


  • SCOUT FINCH (To Kill a Mockingbird) Scout is probably one of those characters that I wish I was more like than I really am, but her sense of curiosity and her intense desire to make sense of the things she sees happening around her has always reminded me of myself.


  • FELICITY MONTAGUE (The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue) Like Hermione, Felicity is way more of a badass than I could ever hope to be, but her passion to pursue what matters to her at all costs and her belief that her gender should in no way hold her back, reminds me a bit of myself and my path to college and beyond.


  • JANE EYRE (from Jane Eyre) I selected Jane because she’s stubborn and independent, and because she was a teacher, all things that remind me of myself.


  • JO MARCH (Little Women).  I think Jo is another of those characters that I’m somewhat similar to but wish I was more like.  I selected Jo because she’s so devoted to her family and would do absolutely anything for them.  Plus, she’s a writer.


  • EEYORE (from Winnie the Pooh) Eeyore was always my childhood favorite and I’m sure it’s because he reminded me of myself.  I can definitely be gloomy and pessimistic at times.


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Who are some fictional characters that remind you of yourself?

Top Ten Tuesday – 10 Book Quotes That Resonate


Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Top Ten Tuesday has been one of my favorite memes ever since I started blogging, so huge thanks to Jana for taking over the hosting duties!

This week’s TTT topic is Inspirational/Thought-Provoking Book Quotes.  It was hard to pick just ten since so many quotes from books resonate with me, but I was eventually able to narrow down to a few from some of my favorite reads that I’ve found especially thought provoking over the years.

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10 Book Quotes That Resonate


1. “If you have two friends in your lifetime, you’re lucky. If you have one good friend, you’re more than lucky.”  This quote is one I remember reading when I was a kid but that I think resonates with me more now that I’m an adult.  I probably have fewer close friends than I did when I first read it, but I know I treasure the close friends I have now.




2. “Don’t ignore half of me so you can fit me into a box. Don’t do that.”  This quote stuck with me after reading The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo because I agreed with her so strongly about the importance of not trying to pigeon-hole people into some pre-conceived notion you have about them.




3. “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view … Until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it.”  This is another one I read as a child.  I loved both the imagery used in the quote and the message about trying to put yourself into another person’s shoes rather than passing judgment on them.




4.  “It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends.”  This is actually one of my favorite quotes from Harry Potter and it’s just so true.  The path of least resistance is to just go along with whatever your friends are doing, even if you know it’s wrong.  Standing up to them and risking losing their friendship is a hard and brave thing to do.




5.  “What’s the point of having a voice if you’re gonna be silent in those moments you shouldn’t be?”  This quote from The Hate U Give resonates with me on many different levels.  Most recently I’ve been thinking about it in terms of certain individuals in Congress who have a voice but choose to turn a blind eye even though doing so could ultimately harm our democracy.




6.  “Open your eyes and see what you can with them before they close forever.”  I love this quote and its message to live life to the fullest because you never know how long you have on this Earth.




7.  “But even if we don’t have the power to choose where we come from, we can still choose where we go from there.”  I’ve always loved the possibilities that this quote puts on the table.  Your past does not define you. No matter where you come from, you are in charge of where you ultimately go.




8. “Brave doesn’t mean you’re not scared. It means you go on even though you’re scared.”  This quote resonates with me and the message is something that I’m constantly trying to teach my son.  That it’s okay to be afraid. You just can’t let that fear hold you back.




9.  “People generally see what they look for, and hear what they listen for.”  This quote is another that has always stuck with me because it’s so true.  As I look at it right now, it also makes me think of politics and how each party only sees and hears what they want to hear, even if evidence to the contrary is staring them right in the face.  They hear what fits the narrative they’re trying to create and nothing anyone says can change their minds.




10.  “I had absolutely no interest in being somebody else’s muse. I am not a muse. I am the somebody. End of fucking story.”  I think this was the quote that made me fall in love with Daisy Jones.  I just loved that attitude and that passion about following her dream.  She didn’t want to inspire other people to write songs about her. She wanted to write her own damn songs and perform them.




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Do any of these book quotes resonate with you?

Top Ten Tuesday – First 10 Books I Ever Reviewed


Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Top Ten Tuesday has been one of my favorite memes ever since I started blogging, so huge thanks to Jana for taking over the hosting duties!

This week’s TTT topic is First 10 Books I Ever Reviewed.  Okay, I’m using the term “reviewed” very loosely here since these titles come from around the time I first joined Goodreads.  I joined back in 2008 and when I first started out, I rarely ever wrote more than a sentence about a book, if I even did that much.  I think I set up my account, “reviewed” a couple of current reads, and then got sucked down the rabbit hole of rating books I’d read in order to supposedly get better book recommendations generated by GR.  I also must have only been interested in putting ratings on books that I liked because as you can see, these first books reviewed are almost all 4 and 5 star reads.

My, how my review style and my taste in books has changed over the years…


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First 10 Books I Ever Reviewed




THE THIRTEENTH TALE by Diane Setterfield  (4 STARS)

THE KITE RUNNER by Khaled Hosseini  (5 STARS)

ANGELS & DEMONS by Dan Brown  (5 STARS)



BLEAK HOUSE by Charles Dickens  (5 STARS)

ONE FOR THE MONEY by Janet Evanovich  (4 STARS)

1ST TO DIE by James Patterson  (3 STARS)


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What are first books you remember reviewing?

Top Ten Tuesday – 10 Perfect Rainy Day Reads


Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Top Ten Tuesday has been one of my favorite memes ever since I started blogging, so huge thanks to Jana for taking over the hosting duties!

This week’s TTT topic is Rainy Day Reads.  This was a surprisingly hard topic for me, I guess mainly because as a book nerd, I think pretty much every book is great for a rainy day. So I got to thinking about it and decided to focus in on books I think would consume readers so thoroughly they would actually forget it was even raining outside.  For me, that list contains both some old favorites and some new ones that have sucked me in and kept me reading all day.  Both Kristin Hannah and Taylor Jenkins Reid feature prominently on my list as I’m currently addicted their their books.  Harry Potter of course made my list.  I picked one book for here but honestly any book would be perfect.


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10 Perfect Rainy Day Reads



THE NIGHTINGALE by Kristin Hannah

THE GREAT ALONE by Kristin Hannah

DAISY JONES & THE SIX by Taylor Jenkins Reid

THE BRIDE TEST by Helen Hoang



THE HUNGER GAMES by Suzanne Collins

ME BEFORE YOU by Jojo Moyes

THE NIGHT CIRCUS by Erin Morganstern


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What are some of your favorite rainy day reads?