A little over a week ago, I published a list of favorite books for the year…so far.

Now that December is ending, I am ready to proclaim my favorite December read, to add to my list of favorites this year.

There were several contenders, so it was a difficult pick.  In the end, I chose After Nightfall, by A.J. Banner:  my conclusions in my review settled it for me.  “Marissa’s first person narrative kept me following along with great intensity, anxious for answers, sorting through possible scenarios. Even when I thought I finally had them, I suspected that there might be more to the story. I was riveted to the pages, rubbing my eyes with fatigue when I couldn’t stop reading, and in the end, I still wanted more. 5 stars.”


This year was one with lots of wonderful books.  I can’t wait to see what 2019 brings!

Did you have a great reading year?  Have you settled on some favorites?




Another month has passed, and what a great journey!  Let’s check in at Book Date to see how everyone else fared.

Take a peek at my favorites…and click the titles of each book for my review.


JUNE 2017:

1.Any Day Now (e-book, Book Two), by Robyn Carr – 336 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 6/29/17

2.Beach House for Rent (e-book), by Mary Alice Monroe (416 pages) – 6/3/17 – (NetGalley – 6/20)

3.Beach Inn, The, by Joanne DeMaio – 294 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 6/17/17 – (Author Review Request)

4.Every Last Lie (e-book), by Mary Kubica – 336 pages – (thriller) – 6/11/17 – (NetGalley – 6/27)

5.Fairy Tale Interrupted, by RoseMarie Terenzio – 256 pages – (memoir) – 6/20/17

6.Good Me, Bad Me, by Ali Land – 338 pages – (psychological thriller) – 6/23/17

7.It’s Always the Husband (e-book), by Michele Campbell – 326 pages – (mystery) – 6/1/17

8.One Good Thing (e-book), by Wendy Wax – 349 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 6/9/17

9.Red Hunter, The (e-book), by Lisa Unger – 368 pages – (suspense thriller) – 6/15/17

10.Sunshine Sisters, The (e-book), by Jane Green – 371 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 6/25/17

11.Swallow’s Nest, The, by Emilie Ricards – 504 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 6/7/17 – (Author Review Request)

12.  Talking as Fast as I Can, by Lauren Graham – 205 pages – (memoir) – 6/27/17

13.Watching the Detectives (e-book, Book 5), by Julie Mulhern – 210 pages – (cozy mystery) – 6/26/17

14.What Remains, by Carole Radziwill – 264 pages – (memoir) – 6/30/17 – (A 2014 TBR book)

15.You’ll Never Know, Dear (e-book), by Hallie Ephron – 304 pages – (suspense thriller) – 6/19/17



NUMBER OF PAGES READ IN JUNE 2017:       4,877

BOOKS READ YTD:                                                                    88

FAVORITE FICTION:  Every Last Lie, by Mary Kubica





PicMonkey Collage


Good morning! Today’s post will link up to The Sunday Salon, The Sunday Post and Stacking the Shelves, for weekly updates.

**Mailbox Monday is hosted at the home site: Mailbox Monday.

And let’s join Kathryn, our leader in It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?, at Book Date.

Wow, what a slow reading week I had!  But I savored my ONE book read (and reviewed it), so I guess it’s all good. I was swept along by the beach scenes in the novel, and felt as though I were there with the characters.  I could almost smell the sweet salt air.

Hot days here were my coming-back-to-reality moments, and I stayed inside except for brief outings to the shops. 

Then came the fabulous e-mail with an Amazon credit, due to a settlement with Apple e-books.  Yay!  I’ll bet you can imagine my “click to buy” delight.

There was Netflix viewing, of course, and I finished Revenge, started Orange Is the New Black.-Season 4..and then stopped.  Taking a break, but I’ll get back to it soon.

But first, let’s savor each day, especially Coffee Mornings like this one, in my newly created dining space:






Finito! – Bloggiesta Has Ended

Tuesday Intros:  “Beach Blues”

Tuesday Potpourri:  Tidbits About Delightful Books

My Interior World:  Striving for Balance

Hump Day Reading:  What Does Yours Look Like?

Bookish Thursday #19:  Serendipitous Moments

Thursday Potpourri:  Tidbits & Unexpected New Books

My Interior World:  A Conundrum

Bookish Friday:  “Sweetbitter”

Review:  Beach Blues, by Joanne DeMaio (Publicist Review Request)



From Trish, at Between My Lines:  7 Things Nobody Tells You About Blogging.

INCOMING BOOKS:  (Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

Nothing came in my mailbox…BUT, I downloaded five delicious new books, thanks to the settlement.

Sunshine Beach (e-book), by Wendy Wax (I love this series, and I also want to continue with my beach staycation).





Mystic Summer (e-book), by Hannah McKinnon





Vinegar Girl (e-book), by Anne Tyler





Here’s To Us (e-book), by Elin HIlderbrand





Drinking Closer to Home (e-book), by Jessica Anya Blau





WHAT’S UP NEXT? (Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

Currently Reading:  The Perfect Neighbors (e-book), by Sarah Pekkanen (NetGalley – July 5)





I’ve been a mood reader lately…so I can visualize these books coming up next.  A review book, of course, and then…who knows?  But I like the “perfect” theme I’ve got going on…like last month’s “girls” theme:

The Perfect Girl, by Gilly MacMillan (Amazon Vine)




Flight Patterns (e-book), by Karen White



cover resized


That was my week…what did yours look like?  Are you feeling whimsical, organized, or are you following a theme?  Come on by and share, please!


Books & fairytales - may 16-blog button***




PicMonkey Collage-may 20 cu



morning in april


Good morning, and it’s still Coffee Time in my world, so I’m eager to talk about books and reading.  You might have also noticed my new look here (see new header at the top of my post).


I photographed a section of my bookish corner, the shelves built by my youngest son, and the loveseat…a thing from my past.  A place to curl up.



my bookish corner


The wicker loveseat has found many places to belong (for a while) in my home, from a spot by the windows to a place at the foot of my bed.

But I think this is my favorite niche for it.  It is where people sit down right after coming through the front door…and before they find the couches (loveseat and bigger couch), where they settle in for conversation, food, or reading.





Speaking of reading, I am pondering my books and trying to decide what’s up next.  Currently, I am still reading The Ramblers, an engaging book, but I’ve been distracted.  (Netflix, movies).

Breakdown is next on my list…and I love Alex Delaware.

But Friction has been on Pippa since March, so maybe it can be next?





And I’ve been looking at ROOM, too, since I saw the movie already.






So…I have a start for some engaging books….and now I just have to finish this week’s list first!  Or not.  Sometimes, I’m whimsical with my reading.

What about you?




Books & fairytales - may 16



reading in rstaurants

The scene above conjures up lovely moments in life…a cup of coffee or tea, a good book, and a pile of books waiting.  All while catching a glimpse of the outdoors.

I often love visiting restaurants to read and have food or drink…or both.  Usually I don’t have a window view, but sometimes I am fortunate enough to have all of these lovely elements.

Would today be a day to take myself over to such a place to read? 

I also have some coupons for Barnes & Noble, so I am tempted to go there as well.  They have a coffee shop on site.  And a bargain table.



When I go to a restaurant or even the coffee shop, I always take Pippa, my Kindle.  Today I am alternating between reading Lila and A Fatal Grace.










And…as you all know, the whole library comes with me, so I can start reading Lies & Other Acts of Love,  or Breakdown.











So…what will it be on this lovely Spring day? 

Who am I kidding?  I will probably spend the morning curled up here (below)..and take myself out in the afternoon.




What are your Friday bookish dreams?  Reading, errands, or more?



PicMonkey Collage-resized logo

Good morning! Today’s post will link up to The Sunday Salon, The Sunday Post and Stacking the Shelves, for weekly updates.

**Mailbox Monday is hosted at the home site: Mailbox Monday.

And let’s join Kathryn, our leader in It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?, at Book Date.

As you have probably noticed, I have brought the Weekly Updates over here to Curl up and Read.  I like to keep things in a state of flux.  LOL.

The week flew by, as usual.  One minute, it felt like Monday…and then, suddenly, it was Friday.  I did read and review four books this week, and have now read and reviewed 26 books for my Read the Books You Buy Challenge.

I spent some time bingeing on Netflix, with the new series The Ranch.  So far, it’s fun.  I also added a new show to my queue:  American Odyssey.

Midweek, I took a break for lunch with a friend at The Cheesecake Factory…delicious!  But it was a late lunch, so I didn’t feel much like having dinner later.  But that’s okay, too.



cheesecake - april 2

(The cheesecake in the photo above was from The Elephant Bar, the week before.  I forgot to photograph mine from this week….but they looked the same).

Let’s revisit the rest of my week…


Dreaming…Excerpt from “Web of Tyranny”

Sunday Potpourri: A Day of Lazing About

Ignite Your Book Love: Musings

Serendipitous Tuesdays: “Friction”

Curl up and Wait For “It Ends with Us”

Interior Thoughts: Exploring the Past…and Reveling in the Present

Bookish Fridays:  “Dream of the Blue Room”

Review:  Most Wanted (e-book), by Lisa Scottoline (NetGalley – 4/12)

Review:  The Nest (e-book), by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney

Review:  Domestic Secrets (e-book), by Rosalind Noonan

Review:  The Price of Salt (e-book, Carol), by Patricia Highsmith


INCOMING BOOKS:  (Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

Two books came in my mailbox from Amazon Vine…and I downloaded three purchased books…plus, I got an Amazon Prime freebie.

Mother Knows Best, by Karen MacInerney (Amazon Vine)





June, by Miranda Beverly-Whittemore (Amazon Vine)





Blood Defense (e-book), by Marcia Clark (From Amazon Prime)





First Frost (e-book), by Sarah Addison Allen (Purchased)





Lies & Other Acts of Love (e-book), by Kristy Woodson Harvey (Purchased)





River Road (e-book), by Carol Goodman (Purchased)





WHAT’S UP NEXT? (Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

As usual, I have a few books on my stack that I plan to read…but in what order, or when, well, let’s just say that I’m trying for the whimsical.

North of Here (e-book), by Laurel Saville





Dream of the Blue Room (e-book), by Michelle Richmond





A Fatal Grace (e-book, Book 2), by Louise Penny





That’s my week….what did yours look like?  I hope you’ll stop by and leave your links to your posts.


Coffee, Mimosa, & reading - 2






Can close friendship win out over the secrets, lies, and betrayals of those who would threaten them?

Rachel Whalen and Ariel Alexander, both living in a suburb of Portland, Oregon, have enjoyed the bonds of friendship for years. They have had each other’s backs…and been there for their children as well. Or so they have thought.

Rachel’s second husband, Jackson, died a few years before, so she has been struggling. But she has managed to be there for her two sons, Kyle James and Jared, and also runs her styling salon.

Ariel thrives giving voice lessons, but secretly dreams about a return to Hollywood…and her four children get short shrift, according to the perspective of some. Her oldest, Cassie, away at college, is her biggest critic and the voice of reason. Younger children Remy, Trevor, & Maisy appear to be okay…but all will change when Ariel’s inability to stop from seducing every man in sight, including some inappropriate ones, takes her to a dark place. Is she still grieving the loss of her husband Oliver, or is something more going on? What predatory acts will lead to inexplicable violence, and will anyone survive the emotional storm?

Domestic Secrets is the kind of tale that keeps the reader wondering what will come along next, and how the characters will figure out a way through it all. I could not stop reading, and despite the warning signs, I was stunned by how it all played out. 4.5 stars.


wow logo on march 25

Welcome to another Waiting on Wednesday event, hosted by Jill, at Breaking the Spine.

Every week, we gather around the blogosphere and search out the upcoming book releases, sharing our thoughts and blurbs. Today’s spotlight is shining on an adult novel from an author who has given us many YA books:  It Ends with Us, by Colleen Hoover.  Release Date:  8/2/16.




Synopsis:  Sometimes it is the one who loves you who hurts you the most.

Lily hasn’t always had it easy, but that’s never stopped her from working hard for the life she wants. She’s come a long way from the small town in Maine where she grew up—she graduated from college, moved to Boston, and started her own business. So when she feels a spark with a gorgeous neurosurgeon named Ryle Kincaid, everything in Lily’s life suddenly seems almost too good to be true.

Ryle is assertive, stubborn, maybe even a little arrogant. He’s also sensitive, brilliant, and has a total soft spot for Lily. And the way he looks in scrubs certainly doesn’t hurt. Lily can’t get him out of her head. But Ryle’s complete aversion to relationships is disturbing. Even as Lily finds herself becoming the exception to his “no dating” rule, she can’t help but wonder what made him that way in the first place.

As questions about her new relationship overwhelm her, so do thoughts of Atlas Corrigan—her first love and a link to the past she left behind. He was her kindred spirit, her protector. When Atlas suddenly reappears, everything Lily has built with Ryle is threatened.

With this bold and deeply personal novel, Colleen Hoover delivers a heart-wrenching story that breaks exciting new ground for her as a writer. Combining a captivating romance with a cast of all-too-human characters, It Ends With Us is an unforgettable tale of love that comes at the ultimate price.


I was very curious when I found out that Hoover had written an adult novel, so I had to bookmark it on Amazon.  Now I am very eager to read it.  What do you think?  What are you sharing today?



a perfect bookish day

Wow, how did March slip away so quickly?  I have thoroughly enjoyed the books I read this month, and my number is the same as last month.

Three of my books were review books:  2 from NetGalley, and 1 from Amazon Vine.  I am participating in one challenge, Read the Books You Buy, and my total completed so far is 23 books read & reviewed.

I had a nice mix of thrillers, contemporary fiction, and literary fiction.

Click the titles to see my reviews.  Enjoy April!  And check in over at Book Date, to add your post links to the others.



MARCH 2016:

1. A Girl’s Guide to Moving On, by Debbie Macomber – 339 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 3/19/16 (Vine)

2.  A Long Time Gone (e-book), by Karen White – 417 pages – (historical fiction) – 3/12/16

3.  Brooklyn (e-book), by Colm Toibin – 262 pages – (literary fiction) – 3/26/16

4.   Duplicate Keys (e-book), by Jane Smiley – 304 pages – (literary mystery) – 3/20/16

5.  Girl in the Red Coat, The (e-book), by Kate Hamer -322 pages – (suspense thriller) – 3/16/16

6.   If You Lived Here, You’d Be Home Now (e-book), by Claire LaZebnik – 330 pages – (contemporary fiction)  – 3/28/16

7.  Losing Me (e-book), by Sue Margolis -384 pages – (contemporary fiction) – 3/3/2016

8.   Miller’s Valley (e-book), by Anna Quindlen – 273 pages – (literary fiction) – 3/18/16 – (NetGalley)

9.   Next Time You See Me, The (e-book), by Holly Goddard Jones – 361 pages – (suspense, psychological thriller) – 3/14/16

10. No One Knows (e-book), by J. T. Ellison – 384 pages – (psychological thriller) – 3/8/16-(NetGalley)

11.  Remember Mia (e-book), by Alexandra Burt – 336 pages – (psychological thriller) – 3/6/16

12. Shadow Year, The (e-book), by Hannah Richell – 416 pages -(historical/contemporary fiction) – 3/4/16

13.  Somewhere Out There (e-book), by Amy Hatvany – 368 pages – (literary fiction) – 3/24/16

14. Under the Influence (e-book), by Joyce Maynard – 336 pages – (literary fiction) – 3/10/16




BOOKS READ YTD:                                                       43




hummel bookish-LOGO

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, from Tuesday/First Chapter/Intros, hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by Jenn, at Books and a Beat.

Today’s featured book is one of my eARCs from NetGalley:  Most Wanted, by Lisa Scottoline.  Release Date:  April 12.






Intro:  Christine Nilsson walked to the closed door with anticipation.  She knew everyone was waiting for her inside the teachers’ lounge, ready to surprise her.  She’d guessed what they were up to, leaving their classrooms after the dismissal bell, then her principal summoning her for a “quick meeting,” even though there was no such thing at Nutmeg Hill Elementary.  It was sweet of them to throw her a good-bye party, especially on the last week of school when everybody was crazy busy.  She felt grateful and loved all of her fellow teachers, except Melissa Rue, Resident Blabbermouth.


Teaser:  “There’s something I need to tell you.”  Christine braced herself, pulling out the tall cherrywood stool at the kitchen island, feeling that she had to sit down.  She flashed on those scenes in the movies, when the person with bad news says to the person who doesn’t know, “you need to sit down,” but the truth was, she was the one who needed to sit down.


Blurb:  Christine Nilsson and her husband, Marcus, are desperate for a baby. Unable to conceive, they find themselves facing a difficult choice they had never anticipated. After many appointments with specialists, endless research, and countless conversations, they make the decision to use a donor.

Two months pass, and Christine is happily pregnant. But one day, she is shocked to see a young blond man on the TV news being arrested for a series of brutal murders—and the blond man bears an undeniable and uncanny resemblance to her donor.

Delving deeper to uncover the truth, Christine must confront a terrifying reality and face her worst fears. Riveting and fast-paced with the depth of emotionality that has garnered Lisa Scottoline legions of fans, Most Wanted poses an ethical and moral dilemma: What would you do if the biological father of your unborn child was a serial killer?


What do you think?  Would you keep reading?  I’ve been eagerly anticipating this book.