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Week in Review

Good morning. As expected, I did not manage to write any blog posts last week. We spent the last four days in Myrtle Beach, SC, and it was a lot of fun. I did get some reading done. Now that the kids are older, I can actually sit on the beach and read, although I did spend a lot of time in the water too!

Reviews and Posts
I didn't write any reviews, but I did close out my Literary Blog Hop giveaway. Congratulations to Lindsey of Literary Lindsey, who won the two ARCs I was giving away!

Reading
With all my beach reading, I finished my second book for the Big Book Summer Challenge: Honolulu by Alan Brennert. It was a wonderful story of the life of a woman from Korea who goes to Hawai'i at a young age as a picture bride. I'll try to get the review up this week.

I also read The Curtain Call Caper: The Gabby St. Claire Diaries (Volume 1) by Christie Barritt, a fun middle grade mystery.

Now I'm reading One Plus One: A Novel, which I got from NetGalley last week.

What are you…

Week in Review

Good evening. I'm a bit late publishing my weekly recap this week. My dad was visiting for the past few days. He came down to see my daughter's dance recital on Saturday night. It's been a fun few days! We've gone panning for gems, spent time at the pool, and went to the art museum. It was a nice visit!

Reviews and Posts
The only thing I posted this past week was my Literary Blog Hop post. I'm giving away two ARCs and the giveaway ends tomorrow! So check it out and enter today!!

It will probably continue to be a quiet week here as we're heading to the beach later this week. So I won't have much time for blogging. I'll get back to my reviews next week if not before.

Reading
I'm still reading Honolulu by Alan Brennert, which has been on my shelf for a long time. It's taking me a while since I had company and didn't do much reading. Once I finish that, I plan to read The Curtain Call Caper by Christy Barritt finally! I've been saying I'…

Book Giveaway: The Literary Blog Hop

Today I'm joining with several other book blogs for The Literary Blog Hop hosted by Judith at Leeswammes' Blog. I'm giving away two literary fiction books, both of which are advance uncorrected proofs that I have read once through.


The Tulip Eaters by Antoinette van Heugten
The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce (note: this ARC has a plain red cover)

I will have one winner who will receive both books. If you would like to enter to win, please complete the Rafflecopter. a Rafflecopter giveaway
Linky List:
LeeswammesThe Misfortune of KnowingBibliosueToo FondUnder a Gray SkyRead Her Like an Open Book (US)My Devotional ThoughtsWildmooBooksGuiltless ReadingFourth Street ReviewNishita's Rants and RavesWord by WordWords And Peace (US)Ciska's Book ChestFalling LettersRoof Beam ReaderReaderbuzzThe Relentless Reader (US)Mom's Small Victories (US)Daily Mayo (US)The Emerald City Book Review (US)A Lovely Bookshelf on the WallLost Generation ReaderBooklover Book R…

Week in Review

Good morning. It's summer vacation here! Yay! Actually, that just means my kids are at camp this week while I work. But it's still nice to know there's no homework and the kids are having fun.

Reviews and Posts
Last week, I posted two reviews:
The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion
Insurgent by Veronica Roth

Reading
I read a great middle grade spy novel, Codename Zero by Chris Rylander. C read it as well and we both loved it. It's a great storyline but also very funny. We'll be working together on a review for this one.

After that, I started reading Honolulu by Alan Brennert, which has been on my shelf for a long time. I'm also going to take some time this week to read a couple children's books I have for review: The Curtain Call Caper by Christy Barritt and The Story of the Unlucky Teacher and Her Koalas by Nina Johnson.

C is now reading The Lemonade Crime by Jacqueline Davies and M is reading Junie B., First Grader Aloha-ha-ha! by Barbara Park.

What are you re…

Book Review: Insurgent by Veronica Roth

Insurgent by Veronica Roth is the second book in the Divergent series. I will start by saying that I enjoyed this book, but not as much as the first in the series. It was a nice continuation of the story, and I liked getting to know some of the characters more. But I found the focus of the story in Divergent much more interesting. And now, if you haven't read Divergent, you should stop reading my review!

Insurgent starts with Tris, Tobias and other characters on the train heading away from the conflict that took place in Divergent. The Dauntless are now split between loyal Dauntless and Traitors. War is brewing, and each faction, including Amity and Candor must choose sides. Even the factionless are involved.

Tris is dealing with more than war in this book, though. She is also dealing with her extreme regret over having to shoot Will. She can't even hold a gun now, which isn't a very good situation to be in during a war! Her relationship with Tobias hits some major snags to…

Book Review: The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

Don Tillman is a socially inept genetics professor who is on a quest to find a wife after one of his few friends suggests that he would make a wonderful husband. He creates a questionnaire with all of the most important questions he'd need to ask a potential wife, including whether she is generally on time, smokes, drinks, etc. But then he meets Rosie, who does not meet most of his requirements.

The Rosie Project: A Novel by Graeme Simsion is really the story of Don's transformation. Told in the first person from Don's point of view, the reader is drawn into his unique mind, the mind of a man with Asperger's ~ although he doesn't realize this. He does, however, know he is wired differently than others. He has a difficult time feeling emotions and being appropriate in social situations. But with the help of friends, and Rosie, he is working on that.

Don connects with Rosie through her desire to find her father. She doesn't have a good relationship with her stepf…

Week in Review

Good Monday morning! I'm actually writing this post early for once. I hope you've had a good week. I have a lot to share today because I actually did a lot of reading and writing last week. Finally! And I'm in a great mood because it's the last week of school, so there's no homework to deal with. Woohoo!

Reviews and Posts
Last week, I posted several blogs:
Big Book Summer Challenge kickoff post
Review of Pressed Pennies by Steven Manchester
Month in Review: May
Review of Eyes Closed Tight by Peter Leonard


Reading
I also spent a lot of time reading last week. I finished reading Insurgent by Veronica Roth. Then I read my next book club selection, The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion. We'll be discussing it next week.

Now I'm going to read a few of the children's books I have for review: The Curtain Call Caper by Christy Barritt, The Story of the Unlucky Teacher and Her Koalas by Nina Johnson, and Codename Zero by Chris Rylander.

What are you reading this week…

Book Review: Eyes Closed Tight by Peter Leonard

A former Detroit homicide detective, O'Clair left the force behind and moved to Florida. He bought a motel on the beach and is enjoying a quieter life. But when two different women end up dead on the beach in front of his motel, his old life pulls him back in. Soon he's wrapped up in the homicide investigation, digging into an old case that has too many similarities with this one.

Eyes Closed Tight by Peter Leonard is a fast-paced thriller that takes us along for the ride as O'Clair tries to put the pieces together before another woman is killed. This time, it's his own girlfriend who has been targeted. Told from multiple viewpoints, including that of the killer, the story is still suspenseful in that the killer's true identity isn't revealed until the end.

One of the best parts of this novel is the way the characters interact and speak to one another. The dialog is realistic and the relationships are as well. It has an easy going, fun tone throughout the story…

Month in Review: May

Here's a recap of my reading and reviewing for May. This is pretty simple, but I figure if I keep my monthly recaps simple, I'll actually publish them.

BOOKS READ IN MAY: 4
REVIEWS WRITTEN IN MAY: 3
The Metaxy Project by Layton Green - reviewedThe Orphans of Race Point: A Novel by Patry Francis - read and reviewedMinnie in Paris by Sheila Sweeny Higginson - read and reviewedThe Madonnas of Leningrad by Debra Dean - readPressed Pennies by Steven Manchester - readYEAR-TO-DATE TOTALS:

Total Books Read: 25
Total Reviews: 21


Historical Fiction: 3
Middle-Grade Fiction: 10
Picture Books: 2
Young Adult: 2
Contemporary Fiction: 3
Mystery/Thriller: 2
Nonfiction: 2
Memoir: 1

For review: 12
For book club: 3
For me: 10

Book Review: Pressed Pennies by Steven Manchester

Rick and Abby grew up together and started a relationship in their teens, but Rick and his family moved away and they lost touch. Through the years, each married and built their lives and families. But neither found happiness. Abby got divorced and moved with her daughter to a new home. Rick became disillusioned with his materialistic life and marriage, and decided to break away on his own. And then, a chance meeting brought them together again.

Pressed Pennies by Steven Manchester is a love story that isn't so simple. While Rick and Abby consider getting to know each other again, Abby's 10-year-old daughter Paige has other ideas. She's still trying to deal with her parents' divorce and is comforted by her mother's promise that it will be just the two of them. When Rick shows up, Paige wants nothing to do with him ~ and she wants her mom to herself.

Manchester delivers a beautifully written, emotionally full story of love and sacrifices. He digs into the decisions …

Big Book Summer Challenge

I've decided to join in the 2014 Big Book Summer Challenge hosted by Sue at Book By Book. Here are the details:
Anything over 400 pages qualifies as a big book.The challenge will run from Memorial Day weekend (May 24-26 this year) through Labor Day weekend (Labor Day is September 1 this year).
Choose one or two or however many big books you want as your goal.  Wait, did you get that?  You only need to read 1 book with over 400 pages this summer to participate! (though you are welcome to read more, if you want). Last night, I finished Insurgent by Veronica Roth, which qualifies as my first big book of the summer! Yay! I have a few others on my shelf that would qualify as well, so I need to choose which ones I'll read this summer. I haven't done that yet. I'll keep track of my progress here.

Big books completed during summer:

1. Insurgent by Veronica Roth
2. Honolulu by Alan Brennert
3. The Land of Stories: The Wishing Spell by Chris Colfer
4. The Beach House by Mary Al…

Week in Review

It's June! Oh, that means I should be writing my May wrap-up soon, even though I just posted my April wrap-up a few weeks ago! This year is flying by!! I hope you had a nice week. We had a busy week with school stuff and swimming and tennis and dance. It's a crazy time of the year. I'm looking forward to July, which should be a bit calmer.

Reviews and Posts
Last week, I finished The Orphans of Race Point by Patry Francis and put up my review. I also read and reviewed a beautiful picture book, Minnie in Paris by Sheila Sweeny Higginson.

Reading
Now I'm back to reading Insurgent by Veronica Roth, which I had started a while ago but put aside. Next up is my next book club selection, The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion.

I haven't written a kick-off post yet, but I've also decided to join the 2014 Big Book Summer Challenge hosted by Sue at Book By Book. Insurgent counts toward that one, since it's all about reading books that are over 400 pages. I have a few ot…