TOP TEN FAVORITES OF 2017….

On my Favorite Books of 2017 page, I had a total of 14 favorites throughout the year.  So weeding out four of them to create my Top Ten List was no easy task.

If you want to see them all, check out this page…

And, drum roll!  Here are the Top Ten: (Click titles for my reviews)….

1.Orphan’s Tale, The, by Pam Jenoff – 342 pages – (historical fiction) – 1/16/17 (Amazon Vine Review)

2.Never Let You Go (e-book), by Chevy Stevens – 384 pages – (suspense thriller) – 2/26/17 (NetGalley – 3/14/17)

3.Night the Lights Went Out, The (e-book), by Karen White – 406 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 5/13/17

4.Marriage Pact, The (e-book), by Michelle Richmond – 432 pages – (suspense) – 7/17/17 –(NetGalley – 7/25)

5.Good Daughter, The (e-book), by Karin Slaughter – 528 pages – (suspense thriller) – 8/28/17

6.  Sunday Morning Coming Down, by Nicci French – 406 pages – (suspense thriller) – 8/1/17

7.Stolen Marriage, The (e-book), by Diane Chamberlain – 384 pages – (historical fiction) – 9/28/17 – (NetGalley – 10/3)

8.Then She Was Gone, by Lisa Jewell – 424 pages – (mystery) – 10/25/17

9.Poison (e-book), by Galt Niederhoffer – 304 pages – (psychological thriller) – 11/15/17 – (NG – 11/21)

10. Wife Between Us, The (e-book), by Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekkanen -352 pages – (thriller) – 12/4/17 (NG – 1/9/18)

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What were your favorites?  Come on by and share…

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GOODBYE, DECEMBER…AND 2017!

Another great month has passed, and as always, I am grateful for the truly wonderful books I found on my shelves this month…and this year.

Visit The Book Date to add your link for your month in review.

Genres Read This Month:

     Mysteries/Thrillers – 6

    Contemporary Fiction – 3

    Literary Fiction – 3

    Historical Fiction – 1

 

FAVORITE BOOK OF DECEMBER 2017:

The Wife Between Us, by Greer Hendricks/Sarah Pekkanen

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NUMBER OF BOOKS READ IN DECEMBER 2017:        13

NUMBER OF PAGES READ IN DECEMBER 2017:      4.189

BOOKS READ YTD:                                                                          174

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Click my titles to read my reviews…

DECEMBER 2017:

1.A Bella Flora Christmas (e-book, Ten Beach Road Novella), by Wendy Wax – 87 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 12/3/17

2.A Hundred Small Lessons (e-book), by Ashley Hay – 290 pages – (literary fiction) – 12/15/17

3.A Season to Lie (e-book, Detective Gemma Monroe Novel), by Emily Littlejohn  -290 pages – (mystery) – 12/13/17

4.Cruelest Month, The (e-book, CI Gamache Mystery), by Louise Penny – 318 pages – (mystery) – 12/1/17

5.Dead of Winter (e-book, Lily Dale Mystery), by Wendy Corsi Staub – 288 pages – (mystery) – 12/24/17

6.Fragments of the Lost (e-book), by Megan Miranda – 370 pages – (psychological mystery/YA) – 12/7/17

7.Girls in the Picture, The (e-book), by Melanie Benjamin – 448 pages – (historical fiction) –(NG-1/16/18)

8.Little Broken Things (e-book), by Nicole Baart – 346 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 12/9/17

9.Lost & Found Sisters (e-book) , by Jill Shalvis – 400 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 12/29/17

10.Snap Judgment (e-book, Samantha Brinkman #3), by Marcia Clark – 448 pages – (mystery/thriller) – 12/19/17

11.These Violent Delights (e-book), by Victoria Namkung – 220 pages – (literary fiction) – 12/23/17

12.Wife Between Us, The (e-book), by Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekkanen -352 pages – (thriller) – 12/4/17 (NG – 1/9/18)

13.Wonder Valley (e-book), by Ivy Pochoda – 332 pages – (literary fiction) – 12/22/17

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HAPPY NEW YEAR!

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IT’S A WRAP! GOODBYE, NOVEMBER….

The month flew by.  Check out my reading, and head on over to The Book Date to see what others read.

November was a great reading month!  I read and reviewed FIFTEEN books.  My Favorite Fiction Book was Poison, by Galt Niederhoffer- (Click title/cover for review)

 

My Genres Included:

       Literary Fiction – 3

      Suspense/Mystery/Psychological Thriller – 6

      Contemporary/Historical Fiction –   6

 

Here are the books I read.  Click the titles for my reviews.

NOVEMBER 2017:

1.All the Best People (e-book), by Sonja Yoerg – 332 pages – (historical/contemporary fiction) – 11/13/17

2.Bonfire (e-book), by Krysten Ritter – 290 pages – (suspense thriller) – 11/23/17

3.Cold As Ice (e-book,Country Club Murders #6), by Julie Mulhern – 268 pages – (cozy mystery) – 11/8/17

4.Last Mrs. Parrish, The (e-book), by Liv Constantine – 400 pages – (psychological thriller) – 11/11/17

5.Merry & Bright (e-book), by Debbie Macomber – 272 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 11/22/17

6.Moral Defense (e-book, Book Two Samantha Brinkman), by Marcia Clark  – 406 pages – (mystery/legal thriller) – 11/28/17

7.One and Only, The, by Emily Giffin – 415 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 11/7/17

8.Play It as It Lays (e-book), by Joan Didion – 214 pages – (literary fiction) – 11/25/17

9.Poison (e-book), by Galt Niederhoffer – 304 pages – (psychological thriller) – 11/15/17 – (NG – 11/21)

10.Seven Days of Us (e-book), by Francesca Hornak – 355 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 11/5/17

11.Storied Life of A. J. Fikry, The (e-book), by Gabrielle Zevin – 258 pages – (literary fiction) – 11/17/17

12.Story of Arthur Truluv, The (e-book), by Elizabeth Berg – 240 pages – (literary fiction) – 11/16/17 – (NG – 11/21)

13.Unraveling Oliver (e-book), by Liz Nugent – 258 pages – (psychological thriller) – 11/3/17

14.Without Merit (e-book), by Colleen Hoover – 384 pages -(contemporary fiction/YA) – 11/29/17

15.Young Jane Young (e-book), by Gabrielle Zevin – 295 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 11/19/17

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NUMBER OF BOOKS READ IN NOVEMBER 2017:         15

NUMBER OF PAGES READ IN NOVEMBER 2017:      4,691

BOOKS READ YTD:                                                      161

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What did your month look like?  Come on by and share.

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WRAPPING UP AUGUST!

It’s time to look back at August!  I read more pages this month than the previous ones, but I read one less book than in July.  There were so many books to love…so it was hard to choose favorites. 

Check in at The Book Date, to see what others have read and enjoyed.

Here are my favorites, despite how difficult it was to choose:

Top Favorites:

 

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My Book Genres:

Literary Fiction:  2 books read

Contemporary Fiction:  2 books read

Historical/Contemporary Fiction:  2 books read

Mysteries/Thrillers:  8 books read!

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Click on my titles to see my reviews:

AUGUST 2017:

1.After She Fell (e-book), by Mary-Jane Riley – 323 pages – (psychological thriller) – 8/26/17

2.Before We Were Yours (e-book), by Lisa Wingate – 352 pages – (historical/contemporary fiction) – 8/12/17

3.Bookshop on the Corner, The (e-book), by Jenny Colgan – 331 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 8/3/17

4.Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands, by Chris Bohjalian – 266 pages – (literary fiction) – 8/7/17

5.Good Daughter, The (e-book), by Karin Slaughter – 528 pages – (suspense thriller) – 8/28/17

6.Here & Gone (e-book), by Haylen Beck – 288 pages – (suspense thriller) – 8/18/17

7.Home, by Harlan Coben – 385 pages – (mystery) – 8/30/17

8.Identicals, The (e-book), by Elin Hilderbrand – 418 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 8/17/17

9.Lying Game, The (e-book), by Ruth Ware – 384 pages – (mystery) – 8/24/17

10.Other Girl, The (e-book), by Erica Spindler – 256 pages – (mystery/thriller) – 8/4/17 – (NetGalley – 8/22/17)

11.Secrets She Keeps, The (e-book), by Michael Robotham – 367 pages – (mystery) – 8/15/17

12.Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, The (e-book), by Taylor Jenkins Reid – 400 pages – (historical/contemporary fiction) – 8/21/17

13.Sunday Morning Coming Down, by Nicci French – 406 pages – (suspense thriller) – 8/1/17

14.Swimming Lessons (e-book), by Claire Fuller – 356 pages – (literary fiction) – 8/8/17

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NUMBER OF BOOKS READ IN AUGUST 2017:         14

NUMBER OF PAGES READ IN AUGUST 2017:     5060

BOOKS READ YTD:                                                      117

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Enjoy September!

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REVIEW: TALKING AS FAST AS I CAN, BY LAUREN GRAHAM

In Talking as Fast as I Can, Lauren Graham hits pause for a moment and looks back on her life, sharing laugh-out-loud stories about growing up, starting out as an actress, and, years later, sitting in her trailer on the Parenthood set and asking herself, “Did you, um, make it?” She opens up about the challenges of being single in Hollywood (“Strangers were worried about me; that’s how long I was single!”), the time she was asked to audition her butt for a role, and her experience being a judge on Project Runway (“It’s like I had a fashion-induced blackout”).

In “What It Was Like, Part One,” Graham sits down for an epic Gilmore Girls marathon and reflects on being cast as the fast-talking Lorelai Gilmore. The essay “What It Was Like, Part Two” reveals how it felt to pick up the role again nine years later, and what doing so has meant to her.

Some more things you will learn about Lauren: She once tried to go vegan just to bond with Ellen DeGeneres, she’s aware that meeting guys at awards shows has its pitfalls (“If you’re meeting someone for the first time after three hours of hair, makeup, and styling, you’ve already set the bar too high”), and she’s a card-carrying REI shopper (“My bungee cords now earn points!”).

Including photos and excerpts from the diary Graham kept during the filming of the recent Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life, this book is like a cozy night in, catching up with your best friend, laughing and swapping stories, and—of course—talking as fast as you can.


My Thoughts: I was probably one of the last people to come to the Gilmore Girls party, but once I discovered the show on Netflix, I couldn’t stop watching. The term “binge watching” completely describes my experience.

Before I found myself a real fan of this show, I had already discovered Lauren Graham in movies and on Parenthood.

Now, in Talking as Fast as I Can, I liked discovering her personal take on her movies, TV shows, and relationships. Her self-deprecating voice kept me smiling, even as I felt like someone who was having a conversation with her.

I liked learning how she came to start writing, and enjoyed her descriptions of her writing process, which included tidbits from someone whose process became part of her writing style.

But my favorite moments were the peeks behind the scenes on the sets, especially the ones related to the Gilmore Girls reboot. Special moments involved the connections with the cast who felt like family, and the emotions they experienced as they wrapped up the show. As a reader, I felt like I was part of it all. 4.5 stars.

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OFF TO THE SHORE: THE BOOKS ARE COMING, TOO….

 

It is almost time for my trip to the beach!  You’d think I’m going for a week or more, the way I’m gathering things together, making lists, etc.

All week long, these pieces of half-packed luggage have been sitting by my bed.  Whenever I can tuck something away, which has to be an item I won’t be using again before I leave…in it goes.

At least I have refrained from bringing out my large luggage…my daughter has reminded me that other people will have luggage in the van.  LOL.

One thing I haven’t forgotten…books.  Maybe I won’t have much reading time, but you have to be prepared.  For late nights, when everyone else is out doing other things, I can curl up in my hotel room and read a little.  I’m thinking one of these, below.  I’m already reading The Cutaway, by Christina Kovac.

 

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I’ll be bringing Pippa, too, with many book choices, including One Perfect Lie, by Lisa Scottoline.

 

 

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I also have a short book on my Kindle, one I downloaded this week:  All Grown Up, by Jami Attenberg.

 

 

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So….I will party with the others until I can make my excuses and retreat to my room…for reading, TV, etc.  That’s how I enjoy myself, and since many people will be having a bonfire on the beach after the festivities, I will not be missed, I’m pretty sure.

Now you know my secret…I am basically a recluse who comes out to play for only a few hours into the night.  That’s how I do things nowadays.  I had my days of partying all night back in the day…now I prefer curling up to read.

What do you like to do when you are on “vacation”?

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CURL UP…AND LET’S TAKE A LOOK BACK…

Madeleine on June 15 - coffee

Looking back, checking to see what I was thinking and feeling during a particular time period, is one of my favorite blogging activities.  Today I looked back two years ago, to February 2015 and my review of The Girl on the Train.  Remember that one?

You will see, if you check it out, that I loved it.  And later, I loved the movie, which is now available on Amazon Prime Videos.  I will be watching it…again!

I saw it twice at the theater, once alone and another time with my granddaughter.  She and I often enjoy some of the same movies.  We’ve watched White Oleander and Erin Brockovich too many times to count.

 

white-oleander-movie

erin-brockovich-movie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I used to buy the DVDs of favorite movies, but now, with Amazon Prime, I can buy them on the site for less than the cost of the DVD.  So that’s what I do.  Sometimes they are free!

Speaking of Prime..and Netflix...and Hulu, I do enjoy visiting those sites, and haven’t been there in at least a week…but now that some of my favorite TV shows are back from hiatus, I tend to save those places for nights or weekends when nothing else is on.

Tonight it’s This Is Us, one of my favorites of the new season.  The actor, below, was a fan fave on The Young and the Restless…and those of us sad to see him go can now enjoy him on this show. (Hey, that sort of rhymed!  LOL).   Here is super-hot Justin Hartley…

 

 

JUSTIN HARTLEY

 

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What do you enjoy, in movies, TV, or even in books?  Do you find yourself gravitating to a certain kind of reading or viewing?

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A CHALLENGE: MAKING LISTS, COUNTING MY NUMBERS…

bloggiesta-bullet-journal

Making lists is an ongoing part of my blogging journey.  They begin with pages on this blog, from which I gather information I need for the weeks and months ahead.

Since I will be participating in a new Read the Books You Buy Challenge, starting on January 1, I thought it was imperative that I take a look at the target months and the numbers.

What are the target months?  July 1, 2016 through December 31, 2017.

Let’s take a peek:

July 2016:

10 Books Purchased, 1 Book TBR (Not bad!)

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August 2016:

19 Books Purchased, 4 TBR

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September 2016:

9 Books Purchased, 3 TBR

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October 2016:

13 Books Purchased, 5 TBR

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November 2016:

14 Books Purchased, 6 TBR

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December 2016:

9 Books Purchased, 8 TBR

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Total Purchased for July through December:  86

Total TBR for July through December:  32

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So…32 books to read from 2016.  Not bad.  But guess what the best part is?  2017 is a Clean Slate!  Thanks to last year’s challenge, I feel as if I am in a good place.

What are you planning for the New Year?  Will you be signing up for a challenge or two to whittle the unread books from your stacks?  Good luck, and have fun!

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MONTHLY WRAP-UP: HELLO, OCTOBER!

June 3 - rearranged spaces - 1

Wow!  The months are ticking by, and we just said goodbye to September.  My total books read dropped by one from last month’s, but everything I read engaged me.  It was hard to pick just one favorite.

What did your month look like?  Let’s link up to Kathryn’s Book Date so we can visit others.

Here are my books, with the titles linked to my reviews.

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SEPTEMBER 2016:

1.Cruel Beautiful World, by Caroline Leavitt – 352 pages – (Literary Fiction) – 9/28/16 (NetGalley – 10/4/16)

2.Girl on the Run, by Daryl Wood Gerber – 290 pages – (mystery/suspense) – 9/11/16 – (Author Review Request)

3. If I Forget You (e-book), by Thomas Christopher Greene – 255 pages – (literary fiction) – 9/22/16

4.It Ends with Us (e-book), by Colleen Hoover – 384 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 9/5/16

5.I’ve Got Sand in All the Wrong Places (e-book), by Lisa Scottoline, et. al. -304 pages – (memoir) – 9/3/16

6. My Life, My Body, by Marge Piercy – 128 pages – (nonfiction) – 9/30/16

7. Sister, The (e-book), by Louise Jensen – 330 pages – (psychological thriller) – 9/9/16

8. Sunshine Beach (e-book), by Wendy Wax – 414 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 9/25/16

9.  They May Not Mean To, But They Do (e-book), by Cathleen Schine – 306 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 9/14/16

10.This Must Be the Place (e-book), by Maggie O’Farrell – 400 pages – (contemporary/historical fiction) – 9/2/16

11. Untethered, by Julie Lawson Timmer – 332 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 9/19/16 (Amazon Vine)

12.Watching Edie (e-book), by Camilla Way – 291 pages – (psychological thriller) – 9/16/16

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NUMBER OF BOOKS READ IN SEPTEMBER 2016:         12

NUMBER OF PAGES READ IN SEPTEMBER 2016:    3,786

BOOKS READ YTD:                                                                     120

FAVORITE FICTION BOOK IN SEPTEMBER 2016:

It Ends with Us, by Colleen Hoover

 

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