FINDING TREASURES…

It is time for another search of our TBR shelves/piles for those sadly neglected books from the past.  Carole’s Random Life in Books is hosting this event.

Today’s selection is a book I purchased in March 2020. Why? I enjoy the author, and I love the sound of it. I bought it in print format, which explains why it is still languishing. Print volumes seem to take longer to read!

Description: In Oak Knoll, a verdant, tight-knit North Carolina neighborhood, professor of forestry and ecology Valerie Alston-Holt is raising her bright and talented biracial son, Xavier, who’s headed to college in the fall. All is well until the Whitmans―a family with new money and a secretly troubled teenage daughter―raze the house and trees next door to build themselves a showplace.

With little in common except a property line, these two families quickly find themselves at odds: first, over an historic oak tree in Valerie’s yard, and soon after, the blossoming romance between their two teenagers.

A Good Neighborhood
asks big questions about life in America today―what does it mean to be a good neighbor? How do we live alongside each other when we don’t see eye to eye?―as it explores the effects of class, race, and heartrending love in a story that’s as provocative as it is powerful.

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What have you discovered on your shelves?

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TREASURE DISCOVERED…

It is time for another search of our TBR shelves/piles for those sadly neglected books from the past.  Carole’s Random Life in Books is hosting this event.

Nowadays, I am searching my 2020 purchases, which is progress, I guess.  Of course I have only actually read a handful of the “neglected books” I have discovered.  So far.  But discovery is the first step.

Today I am featuring one of my paperback books purchased in March 2020:  Life and Other Inconveniences, by Kristan Higgins.

 

LIFE AND OTHER INCONVENIENCES

I have enjoyed this author, which is why I bought this book.  And because I have been adding print volumes to my bookshelf, I have gone a little overboard with those purchases.

Description:  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?

What have you discovered today?

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PLAYING AROUND WITH LINKS…


Just a little playing around with links and images.  I don’t know if I will ever master the art of Block Editor images…but I will keep trying.

Meanwhile, I am reading a book that I think will be interesting:  A Million Reasons Why, by Jessica Strawser.

 

 

Jessica Strawser’s A Million Reasons Why is “a fascinating foray into the questions we are most afraid to ask” (Jodi Picoult, #1 New York Times bestselling author)–the story of two women who discover a bond between them that will change both their lives forever.

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What are you reading and/or obsessing about today?

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ANOTHER BACKLOG BOOK…

It is time for another search of our TBR shelves/piles for those sadly neglected books from the past.  Carole’s Random Life in Books is hosting this event.

Today’s neglected book was purchased in February 2020:  Blind Spot, by Sue Miller.

blind spot

Why did I buy this book? When I saw the author’s name, I thought it was from the Sue Miller who wrote several other books I had read. When I realized I was wrong, I thought I should try it anyway.

Who should we save? Our family? Our friends? 2045 and the world is in chaos. Climate change, shortages of food and falling fertility are turning nations and communities into fortresses. Hope Grigori and Jude Goodman are cousins. She wants to save their whole community, he’s prepared to choose the strongest and leave the rest behind. But how do you decide who’s going to live? And who has the right to say one individual matters more than another? What’s fair? Who’s in charge? Determined to find a way through the challenges Hope sets off on a quest to find fairness for the many, not just the few. A book for anyone who’s ever asked if their life was meant to turn out the way it has. Blind Spot is a prequel to 20/20 Vision: They didn’t see it coming.

So now I should actually find out more about this book and the author. What are you “neglecting” today?

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GOODBYE TO MARCH!

revised-desk-image

ANOTHER MONTH IS ENDING.  HERE ARE TWO FAVORITES…AND MY TITLES FOR THE MONTH.

The Good Sister, by Sally Hepworth

good sister

Finlay Donovan Is Killing It, by Elle Cosimano

finlaydonovan

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Genres:

     Mysteries/Thrillers – 6

     Memoirs – 2

     Contemporary Fiction – 3

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Here are my titles; click to see the reviews:

MARCH 2021:

1.Are We There Yet? (e-book), by Kathleen West – (348 pages) – (contemporary fiction) – 3/25/21

2.At the Edge of the Haight (e-book), by Katherine Seligman – (301 pages) – (contemporary fiction) – 3/8/21

3.Finlay Donovan Is Killing It (e-book), by Elle Cosimano – (355 pages) – (suspense thriller) – 3/12/21

4.Good Sister, The (e-book), by Sally Hepworth – (320 pages) – (contemporary fiction) – 3/19/21 – (NG-4/13/21)

5.Guilt by Association, by Marcia Clark – (352 pages) – (legal thriller) – 3/3/21

6.Her Dark Lies (e-book), by J. T. Ellison – (351 pages) – (mystery) – 3/30/21

7.Kamala’s Way, by Dan Morain – (225 pages) – (biography) – 3/15/21 – Nonfiction Reading Challelnge

8.This Is Big, by Marisa Meltzer – (286 pages) – (memoir) – 3/6/21 – Nonfiction Reading Challenge

9.Triple Chocolate Cheesecake Murder, by Joanne Fluke – (352 pages) – (cozy mystery) – 3/9/21

10.Unfaithful (e-book), by Natalie Barelli – (288 pages) – (psychological suspense) – 3/20/21

11.Upstairs House, The (e-book), by Julia Fine – (235 pages) – (psychological suspense) – 3/27/21

BOOKS READ IN MARCH 2021:  11

PAGES READ IN MARCH 2021: 3,413

BOOKS READ YTD:  31

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How did your month unfold?

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REVIEW: HER DARK LIES, BY J. T. ELLISON

 

Jutting from sparkling turquoise waters off the Italian coast, Isle Isola is an idyllic setting for a wedding. In the majestic cliff-top villa owned by the wealthy Compton family, up-and-coming artist Claire Hunter will marry handsome, charming Jack Compton, surrounded by close family, intimate friends…and a host of dark secrets.

From the moment Claire sets foot on the island, something seems amiss. Skeletal remains have just been found. There are other, newer disturbances, too. Menacing texts. A ruined wedding dress. And one troubling shadow hanging over Claire’s otherwise blissful relationship—the strange mystery surrounding Jack’s first wife.

Then a raging storm descends, the power goes out—and the real terror begins…

 

 

curl up and read thoughts

Claire Hunter is the first-person narrator of Her Dark Lies for most of the story. But an unknown alternate narrator keeps us on our toes as we try to figure out the secrets each of the characters is keeping.

First, we are not completely sure that Jack isn’t hiding important events, and even each of his family members are suspect.

Strange events keep unfolding in the week before the wedding, and suddenly people begin dying, one by one.

Twists and turns kept me turning the pages as I tried to decide who and what to believe. 4.5 stars.

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REDISCOVERING A TREASURE…

It is time for another search of our TBR shelves/piles for those sadly neglected books from the past.  Carole’s Random Life in Books is hosting this event.

Today I am scrolling through some more recent purchases:  In February 2020, I purchased Catch and Kill, by Ronan Farrow.

I bought it because I am intrigued by this young man and his work.  Plus, I love this topic that he has tackled.  I haven’t yet read it because it is going to be an ambitious read. (464 pages of hefty material).

Here is the synopsis:

In this instant New York Times bestselling account of violence and espionage, Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter Ronan Farrow exposes serial abusers and a cabal of powerful interests hell-bent on covering up the truth, at any cost.
 
In 2017, a routine network television investigation led Ronan Farrow to a story only whispered about: one of Hollywood’s most powerful producers was a predator, protected by fear, wealth, and a conspiracy of silence. As Farrow drew closer to the truth, shadowy operatives, from high-priced lawyers to elite war-hardened spies, mounted a secret campaign of intimidation, threatening his career, following his every move, and weaponizing an account of abuse in his own family.
 
All the while, Farrow and his producer faced a degree of resistance they could not explain — until now. And a trail of clues revealed corruption and cover-ups from Hollywood to Washington and beyond.

This is the untold story of the exotic tactics of surveillance and intimidation deployed by wealthy and connected men to threaten journalists, evade accountability, and silence victims of abuse. And it’s the story of the women who risked everything to expose the truth and spark a global movement.

Both a spy thriller and a meticulous work of investigative journalism, Catch and Kill breaks devastating new stories about the rampant abuse of power and sheds far-reaching light on investigations that shook our culture.
 
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What are you discovering tucked away in your shelves today?
 
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FROM THE BACKLOG…

It is time for another search of our TBR shelves/piles for those sadly neglected books from the past.  Carole’s Random Life in Books is hosting this event.

Today’s featured book from the backlog:  The Janes, by Louisa Luna.

Why did I buy this book? I had read the previous book in the series and enjoyed it.

 

Synopsis:  The page-turning follow-up to acclaimed thriller Two Girls Down features the tenacious PI Alice Vega and her electric partnership with Max Caplan, as they follow a shocking murder investigation to it’s even more shocking conclusion.

On the outskirts of San Diego, the bodies of two young women are discovered. They have no names, no IDs, but one of the Jane Does holds a note bearing the name, “Alice Vega.” The police and FBI reach out to Vega, a private investigator known for finding the missing. Fearing the possibility of a human trafficking ring, Vega enlists the help of her one-time partner, former cop Max “Cap” Caplan.

Despite a case with so few leads, Alice Vega is a powerful woman whose determination is matched only by her intellect, and, along with her partner Cap, she will stop at nothing to find the Janes’ killers before it is too late.

Louisa Luna is writing new classics of crime fiction, and her partnership of Vega and Cap is rightfully joining the pantheon of the most memorable thrillers.

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What book have you overlooked until today?

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REVIEW: KAMALA’S WAY, BY DAN MORAIN

 

A revelatory biography of the first Black woman to stand for Vice President, charting how the daughter of two immigrants in segregated California became one of this country’s most effective power players.

There’s very little that’s conventional about Kamala Harris, and yet her personal story also represents the best of America. She grew up the eldest daughter of a single mother, a no-nonsense cancer researcher who emigrated from India at the age of nineteen in search of a better education. She and her husband, an accomplished economist from Jamaica, split up when Kamala was only five.

The Kamala Harris the public knows today is tough, smart, quick-witted, and demanding. She’s a prosecutor—her one-liners are legendary—but she’s more reticent when it comes to sharing much about herself, even in her memoirs. Fortunately, former Los Angeles Times reporter Dan Morain has been there from the start.

In Kamala’s Way, he charts her career from its beginnings handling child molestation cases and homicides for the Alameda County District Attorney’s office and her relationship as a twenty-nine-year-old with the most powerful man in the state: married Assembly Speaker Willie Brown, a relationship that would prove life-changing. Morain takes readers through Harris’s years in the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office, explores her audacious embrace of the little-known Barack Obama, and shows the sharp elbows she deployed to make it to the US Senate. He analyzes her failure as a presidential candidate and the behind-the-scenes campaign she waged to land the Vice President spot. Along the way, he paints a vivid picture of her values and priorities, the kind of people she brings into her orbit, the sorts of problems she’s good at solving, and the missteps, risks, and bold moves she’s made on her way to the top.

 
 
 

In Kamala’s Way, we meet an unconventional, bright, and ambitious girl who grows into a young woman on the move. A woman with goals and an intensity about achieving them. She had no problem being mentored by powerful people, including an older man who opened some doors for her.

But she worked hard and had the ability to speak out against the wrongs she witnessed in her daily life. Moving from her role as a prosecutor to attorney general of California and finally to a senate seat in 2016, she was poised to become the change that she wanted to effect in the world and was ready to correct the ills she encountered.

Sometimes her “way” put her on a path of antagonizing some, while at other times, her truly compassionate side shone through. In the end, she stayed focused and finally found her true calling in the 2020 election as the Vice President in Joe Biden’s Presidency.

Sometimes the author skipped around a lot in the telling of this story, but he always caught me up in the end. 4.5 stars.#2021ReadNonFic

 
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A REDISCOVERED BOOK…

It is time for another search of our TBR shelves/piles for those sadly neglected books from the past.  Carole’s Random Life in Books is hosting this event.

Today I found another neglected book, one I purchased in hardcover in October 2019:  The Book of Gutsy Women, by Hillary Rodham Clinton and Chelsea Clinton.

I bought it, obviously, because I love this kind of topic, and I have been participating in Nonfiction Reading Challenges, in both 2020 and 2021.  I have a lovely stack of these print volumes…and my only excuse for not yet reading it is the clamoring call I get daily from my e-books…and other books!

Description:  Hillary Rodham Clinton and her daughter, Chelsea, share the stories of the gutsy women who have inspired them—women with the courage to stand up to the status quo, ask hard questions, and get the job done.

She couldn’t have been more than seven or eight years old. “Go ahead, ask your question,” her father urged, nudging her forward. She smiled shyly and said, “You’re my hero. Who’s yours?”

Many people—especially girls—have asked us that same question over the years. It’s one of our favorite topics.

HILLARY: Growing up, I knew hardly any women who worked outside the home. So I looked to my mother, my teachers, and the pages of Life magazine for inspiration. After learning that Amelia Earhart kept a scrapbook with newspaper articles about successful women in male-dominated jobs, I started a scrapbook of my own. Long after I stopped clipping articles, I continued to seek out stories of women who seemed to be redefining what was possible.

CHELSEA: This book is the continuation of a conversation the two of us have been having since I was little. For me, too, my mom was a hero; so were my grandmothers. My early teachers were also women. But I grew up in a world very different from theirs. My pediatrician was a woman, and so was the first mayor of Little Rock who I remember from my childhood. Most of my close friends’ moms worked outside the home as nurses, doctors, teachers, professors, and in business. And women were going into space and breaking records here on Earth.

Ensuring the rights and opportunities of women and girls remains a big piece of the unfinished business of the twenty-first century. While there’s a lot of work to do, we know that throughout history and around the globe women have overcome the toughest resistance imaginable to win victories that have made progress possible for all of us. That is the achievement of each of the women in this book.

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What book have you rediscovered today?

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