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Review: We Were Liars by e. lockhart

wewereliars

We Were Liars by e. lockhart

Goodreads Summary:

A beautiful and distinguished family.
A private island.
A brilliant, damaged girl; a passionate, political boy.
A group of four friends—the Liars—whose friendship turns destructive.
A revolution. An accident. A secret.
Lies upon lies.
True love.
The truth.

 

My thoughts:  This was one of my summer reads. It was amazing, thrilling, suspenseful and bit creepy. I loved the writing. I had me hooked from page one all the way through to the end. I truly felt for Cadence. And though I felt a twist of some sort was coming, I was truly surprised when it did. I don’t want to give any spoilers, so you’ll have to read the book for yourself. It’s a quick read and certainly worth adding to your TBR list. I hate to say this, but I can imagine this book as a movie and if they don’t dork it up, it would be a good movie.

 

 
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Posted by on September 14, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Swapoween Blogger Signups!

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The wonderful ladies over at Chaotic Goddesses have come up with another excellent blogger swap. The theme is Halloween – one of my favorite holidays.  How could I resist signing up? Here are the details:

Your Swap Objective
Fill a package with at least 5 goodies for your partner that you, yourself, would love to receive.  The package must include items that are Halloween-related.  
 
Dates to Remember:
  • Sign-Ups Start:  Monday, September 8th
  • Sign-Ups End: Monday, September 15th
  • First Post MUST be Posted by: Monday, September 15th
  • Partners assigned: Wednesday, September 17th
  • Packages Shipped By: Saturday October 11th
  • Show-Off Linky Opens: Wednesday, October 15th
  • Show-Off Linky Closes: Friday, October 31st
Swapoween Rules
  • After being accepted, you must post on your blog saying you’re participating.  Post must include the button/link back to the sign-ups and must be posted on or before September 15th.
  • Packages must contain at least 5 items that are related to Halloween, and fit your partner’s preferences.
  • You must respond to emails from the swap hosts within a timely fashion.
  • Packages MUST be mailed on or before October 11th!
  • You must send a tracking number for your package to your partner and to Chaotic Goddess Swaps.
  • You MUST post and link up your swap reveal post (linky goes live October 15th). This is non-negotiable.
 Interested in participating? There’s still a little time left to sign up. Hop on over to Chaotic Goddess Swaps and sign up.
 
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Posted by on September 14, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Local Flavor Swap Show Off

I participated in Chaotic Goddess Local Flavor Swap.  They have some awesome swaps and you get to meet some very nice people.

localflavorswap2014

 

I was paired with Terri LeBlanc from Second Run Reviews.  Terri is from Iowa and is a bookworm like me. I love her blog and I highly recommend you check it out. You got a love a girl who loves Ramona.

Terri sent me a wonderful package from Iowa.

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The package included chocolate (my favorite), cooking oil, magnets, a beautiful bookmark, a postcard I plan to have framed, a passport journal in my favorite color (pink), a book from a local author, lots of great information on Iowa and my absolutely most favorite item – a the wooden block with the picture of a camera on it. That is going right next to the hedgehog figurine one of my favorite students gave me.

I really enjoyed getting to know Terri and I’m looking forward to following her blog.

 
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Posted by on August 28, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

REVIEW: The Fourteenth Goldfish by Jennifer Holm

the fourteenth goldfish

FTC Disclosure: I received an ARC of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

The Fourteenth Goldfish by Jennifer Holm

Goodreads Summary:  Eleven-year-old Ellie has never liked change. She misses fifth grade. She misses her old best friend. She even misses her dearly departed goldfish. Then one day a strange boy shows up. He’s bossy. He’s cranky. And weirdly enough . . . he looks a lot like Ellie’s grandfather, a scientist who’s always been slightly obsessed with immortality. Could this pimply boy really be Grandpa Melvin? Has he finally found the secret to eternal youth?

 

My thoughts:  The story was an interesting concept, a scientific experiment with unusual consequences, but I felt as though something was missing. I loved Ellie. She’s a great character, very likable and a bit more grounded than all the adults around her. However, I found the lack of disbelief Ellie and her mother display upon discovering that Ellie’s elderly grandfather is now a teenage boy to be a big stumbling block. I also felt the flow of the story was a bit choppy. Yet my elementary book sense is nagging at me. Something tells me that it might have more appeal to my students than I suspect.  My first instinct was to not add this book to my fall purchases for the library, but I think I will turn it over to my Review Crew (a new club this year) and let them decide.

 
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Posted by on August 14, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Bewitching Boots by Joyce & Jim Lavene – Guest Post and Review

bewitching boots large banner640 BEEWITCHING BOOTS

FTC Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Bewitching Books by Joyce & Jim Lavene

Goodreads Summary:  Jessie is thrilled when she finds Bill Warren, an old fashioned shoemaker, and he agrees to come back to Renaissance Village with her. She’s not so thrilled when claims to have elf magic, and he falls for Princess Isabelle. The dancing slippers Bill makes for Isabelle make him a suspect when the princess takes a leap from the castle terrace. Now, Jessie must find the lady or lord who helped the princess with her last dance before she loses her star attraction.

I love the Renaissance Faire Mystery Series. It is truly one of my favorite series.  So when Lori over at Escape with Dollycas offered a chance to be a part of the blog tour, I jumped at it.  I’m very pleased to welcome Joyce  to the blog today.

I Love the Ren Faire!

By Joyce Lavene

 

I love the Renaissance fairs and festivals that take place around the world. I make no bones about it. These events take people to another time and place that it’s hard to reach with the encumbrances of today.

In these tiny hamlets, time stops – literally as people are encouraged to throw aside who and what they are for a day. Leave your cell phone behind. Dip your feet in the fountain and enjoy the moments!

Despite these events being taken to all new heights, they still maintain the feel, smell, and fun of the times of magic, giants, simple foods, and wonder. Is that a real unicorn over there in the sunlight? Will the pirates come for us? Will the good guy overcome the bad guy on the field of honor?

I hope we’ve captured the amazement of spending the day in a Renaissance Village surrounded by the pleasures of life in that simpler time. I want our books to reflect the times we’ve spent at Renaissance fairs and festivals. I want people to admire the craftsmanship and the food. Laugh at the fools and shows and applaud the heraldry of the joust.

I guess I want everyone to visit a Ren Faire, as we did many years ago. See what it’s all about. Dress up. Don’t feel silly! Use your imagination. That’s what its there for. Indulge in a dream of what life was once like many years ago.

And I hope you enjoy your experience, and our books. Huzzah!

 

Thanks Joyce! I agree with everything she said, which is one reason I love the series so much. The other reason is that the books are so well written that I often forget I’m not actually at the Ren Faire, just visiting vicariously.

 

My Review:  I have to be honest:   even though this is one of my favorite series, I’m rather behind on the books. I’m behind on all my favorite series. For the last few years (yes, years) I’ve been concentrating on reading elementary level books. I’m an elementary librarian with 3 book clubs. Love my job. Love the books I read for it, but I do miss my favorites.

Bewitching Boots is volume 8 in the series. However, you can easily read Bewitching Boots as stand alone read. (Though I highly recommend that you read them all.) The characters are well developed and likable. I adore Jesse.  She’s level headed, even if she does tend to get caught up in murder often. She’s intensely loyal, the kind of person I would want on my side.  As I mentioned before, one of the reasons I enjoy this series so much is that it really feels as if you are there with the characters. I especially felt this way while reading Bewitching Boots. Of course that could be because it’s Ren Fair time in this part of Colorado.  I’ve been to the local Ren Fair a few times and while it’s fun, I think I’d rather visit Jesse’s. Of course, I’d rather they skipped the dead bodies. :)

Overall, this is a very engaging read, perhaps my favorite of the series so far.  It’s a quick read. If you are looking for one last entertaining end of summer read (well for me it’s the end of summer), then you should run to the nearest book store and grab a copy.

 
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Posted by on August 5, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Mission to Murder by Lynn Cahoon: Review, Guest Post and Giveaway

MISSION TO MURDER SMALL BANNERmission to murder large banner 640

 

FTC Disclosure: I received a free advance copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Summary from Goodreads:  In the California coastal town of South Cove, history is one of its many tourist attractions—until it becomes deadly…
Jill Gardner, proprietor of Coffee, Books, and More, has discovered that the old stone wall on her property might be a centuries-old mission worthy of being declared a landmark. But Craig Thomas, the obnoxious owner of South Cove’s most popular tourist spot, The Castle, makes it his business to contest her claim. When Thomas is found murdered at The Castle shortly after a heated argument with Jill, even her detective boyfriend has to ask her for an alibi. Jill decides she must find the real murderer to clear her name. But when the killer comes for her, she’ll need to jump from historic preservation to self-preservation …

When I first read the summary for this book, I knew it was one that I had to read. I am delighted to be a part of the blog tour and to   welcome Lynn Cahoon as a guest on the blog today.

Lynn:

Thanks for having me over to Booklady’s Booknotes– As I was reading through your blog before I wrote this guest post, I realized we’re both pink sisters. I’ve been in remission now six years.

It was the cancer that got me writing. You know how you think you’re going to do something, someday.

Like learn French. Or visit Hawaii. Or write a book.

When I was diagnosed, I realized someday wasn’t promised. So I started writing. Short stories, mysteries, romance – I wrote a bit of everything. Shopping GUIDEBOOK, the first book of the series, I knew Jill and the South Cove gang would find a home.

MISSION TO MURDER, and the rest of the TOURIST TRAP MYSTERIES, was born out of a spring break trip I took to central coastal California. My sister lives in Santa Maria, so I drove down from Idaho and spent the week exploring.

One little town stood out as somewhere I could live. I could quit my job, move to California, open a bookstore coffee shop, and change my life. Those things didn’t happen then. But a seed was planted that week. One that has turned into my TOURIST TRAP series.

My main character, Jill, has enough problems with her aunt now part of the business. Now she’s trying to get the crumbling wall in her back yard classified as a historic site. In some ways, Jill’s a lot like me. She assumes people will do the right thing, for the right reason. Naïve, you say? Probably, but after living over two decades with a man who saw the worse in mankind in every encounter, I’m willing to be a little naïve.

Often people who say they care about you, want you to change. To become something and someone else. A more politically correct someone. Or a happier someone.

Happiness can’t be bought this way. A lesson that some of the people in South Cove need to learn. Before it kills them.

It is always good to meet someone who has defeated cancer. I like that phrase “pink sisters.” After I completed my radiation treatments three years ago, I created a life celebration list and on the list is a plan to write a book. Hasn’t happened yet, but there’s still time. Meanwhile, I am enjoying the work of authors like Lynn.

My thoughts on Mission to Murder:

This is book two in the series. I did not read the first book GuideBook To Murder first. You can easily follow the story without having read the first book. However, I enjoyed Mission to Murder so much and liked the characters so much that I bought GuideBook To Murder so I could learn more about the characters and “spend” more time in South Cove.

I love Jill. She reminds me of myself. She is never far from a book and she has one of my dream jobs: coffee/book shop owner.  I wish I had more of Jill’s optimism, though. I am not surprised when people don’t do the right thing. I guess I’m a bit more jaded than Jill. I also love the community Lynn has created in South Cove. I would love to visit it for real, though I suspect that if I did, I wouldn’t want to leave.  In fact, South Cover would make a wonderful retirement home.

I love mysteries, especially mysteries with a bookish theme. I’m glad to have a new series to add to my collection. Lynn has created a mystery that will keep the reader engaged throughout the entire book. I was so pleased that the solution wasn’t predictable. There are just enough twists and turns to keep you guessing. I know several cozy mystery fans that will enjoy this series. As I said, I liked Mission to Murder so much I bought the first book in the series and I’m reading it now. I can hardly wait for the next book in the series: If The Shoe Kills which will be released on November 10th.

I have an e-copy of Mission to Murder to give away.  For a chance to win comment on this post by midnight on August 12th and let me know what you would do if you could quit your job and do whatever you wanted.  Be sure to leave your email address so I can contact you if you win.

 
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Posted by on August 2, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Review: The Christie Curse by Victoria Abbot

The Christie Curse The Christie Curse by Victoria Abbott

Goodreads Summary:  In 1926, Agatha Christie disappeared—making headlines across the world—only to show up eleven days later at a spa under an assumed name. During those eleven days, did she have time to write a play? 

Jordan Kelly needs a new job and a new place to live. She’s back in Harrison Falls, New York, living with her not so law-abiding uncles, in debt thanks to a credit card–stealing ex and pending grad school loans.

Enter the perfect job, a research position that includes room and board, which will allow her to spend her days hunting down rare mysteries for an avid book collector. There’s just one problem: her employer, Vera Van Alst—the most hated citizen of Harrison Falls. 

Jordan’s first assignment is to track down a rumored Agatha Christie play. It seems easy enough, but Jordan soon finds out that her predecessor was killed while looking for it, and there is still someone out there willing to murder to keep the play out of Vera’s hands. Jordan’s new job is good…but is it worth her life?

 

My thoughts:  This has been on my TBR pile for over a year. I’m really sorry I waited so long to read it.

I added this book to my TBR pile for two reasons: it’s a book related mystery AND it has a tie to Agatha Christie. I was reading Dama Agatha’s mysteries when other girls my age were still reading Nancy Drew. (Nothing wrong with Nancy, but she’s no Ms. Marple, Hercule or  Tuppence.)

I love Jordan. She’s a strong female character with her head on straight. Even though she has chosen a different life from that of her uncles, the love and respect she has for them is obvious. I like that even though she was dealt a bad hand from her lowlife ex boyfriend, rather than spend a lot of time moaning and moping about it, she moves on with her life. I especially love how she deals with her cantankerous reclusive employer.

The mystery is very engaging. I was so caught up in the story that I had almost finished the book in one sitting. It would have been one sitting if pesky things like housework and errands hadn’t gotten in the way. Abbott spins a good tale and keeps the reader guessing until almost the end. To be honest, though I like to pride myself on solving the mystery before the end, I also really enjoy it when the author keeps you guessing. Abbott does a great job in that area.

I like mystery series that have a theme, my favorite being those tied to books. If you are a fan of mysteries and classic books, then I highly recommend this series.  Book two is The Sayer’s Swindle and book three The Wolfe Widow will be published on September 2,2014.

To learn more about the writing team behind this series check out their website here.

 

 
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Posted by on July 10, 2014 in Uncategorized

 
 
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