WEEKLY UPDATES: A MOSTLY UNREMARKABLE WEEK….

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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.

 

We had some rain this week, but on other days, the sun made an appearance.  Then the clouds hung overhead, like a foreshadowing of more rain to come.  I stayed in most of the time, though, but only read and reviewed THREE books this week, bringing my challenge total up to SIXTEEN.

I did manage one outing on Monday to the Passport Place, at the university,  where they now handle passport applications and renewals.  It’s hard to believe that it’s been ten years already!  That day was so windy that I felt like I was flying across the parking lot.

I didn’t even connect to Netflix this week, but enjoyed the return of some of the shows I like:  The Fosters, Switched at Birth, and the TGIT lineup.

So…what next?  I must have done more this week, since I only read three books…but obviously the events were not that remarkable.   Oh, right, I did change up the theme, background, and header here…and the header over at Serendipity.  If that counts.

Grab some coffee…and a mimosa, and let’s chat.

 

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LAST WEEK ON THE BLOGS:

Tuesday Potpourri:  “Things We Didn’t Say”

Hump Day Potpourri:  Bingeing on Coffee and Books….

Hump Day Sparks:  Impulse Reading…

Hump Day Obsessions:  From Blog Posts to Headers…

Bookish Thursday #40: (After a Short Break)…

Thursday Potpourri:  Distractions, Etc.

Bookish Friday:  “Behind Her Eyes”

A Ditty Playing in My Head:  Monday’s Child, Etc.

Let’s Chat Over Coffee:  Family Moments…

Review:  Pretty Little World (e-book), by Melissa DePino, et. al.ratings-worms-4-croppedReview:  Behind Her Eyes (e-book), by Sarah Pinboroughratings-worms-4-croppedReview:  Things We Didn’t Say (e-book), by Kristina Riggleratings-worms-4-cropped

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INCOMING BOOKS: (Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

My mailbox had TWO books I had purchased, and I downloaded ONE from Amazon.

The Girl:  A Life in the Shadow of Roman Polanski, by Samantha Geimer

 

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Z:  A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald, by Therese Anne Fowler

 

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Download:

The Fifth Letter (e-book), by Nicola Moriarty

 

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WHAT’S UP NEXT?

Currently Reading:  My Husband’s Wife (e-book), by Jane Corry

 

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Then, maybe….

The Best Awful, by Carrie Fisher

 

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The Vanishing Year (e-book), by Kate Moretti

 

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And…that was my week.  What did yours look like?  Here’s a dessert I enjoyed last weekend….Key Lime Pie and Coffee with Jameson…

 

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WEEKLY UPDATES: RAINY DAY READING…

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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.

 

We had quite a bit of rain again this week, and yesterday it pounded so hard that I kept checking the skylight in the kitchen…so far, so good!  It was a good week for reading, though, and I read and reviewed FOUR books.  I have now added THIRTEEN BOOKS to my Read the Books You Buy Challenge.

Today I am going to find a place to have a new passport photo taken…the ten years have gone by, and it’s time to renew!  How did that happen?  It seems as though I just got it.

I settled down last night to watch some Netflix, but kept skipping from show to show, not finding anything I wanted to binge-watch…and then I remembered my Amazon Videos, some of which I added this week.  I started watching Z:  The Beginning of Everything, and several hours later (1:00 a.m.) I had finished!  Whew.  Since it is based on the novel Z:  A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald, by Therese Anne Fowler…I grabbed my iPhone and ordered it!  Yes, I am impulsive like that.  I’ve read other “Zelda” books, but none that were set in the early years.  Looking forward to reading it!

 

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But I woke up late this morning, as a result…and I’m not yet fully caffeinated.  Here’s a photo that might help!

 

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Let’s look at the past week….

LAST WEEK ON THE BLOGS:

Monday Sparks:  Musing About Books…

Let’s Curl up with “Pretty Little World”

Tuesday Potpourri:  Celebrating with Books…and a Martini?

January Wrap-Up:  A Great Reading Month

Hump Day Sparks:  A Delightful Week So Far…

Bookish Friday:  “Rainy Day Women”

Coffee & Family Moments:  Savoring Them…

Weekend Potpourri:  A Switcheroo…

Review:  The Red Car (e-book), by Marcy Dermanskyratings-worms-4-croppedReview:  The Dry (e-book), by Jane Harpercropped-again-5Review:  Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk (e-book), by Kathleen Rooneycropped-again-5Review:  The Bad Things (e-book), by Mary-Jane Rileyratings-worms-4-cropped

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INCOMING BOOKS:  (Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

Nothing in my mailbox this week…but I downloaded four books.

A review book came on Saturday!

Slightly South of Simple, by Kristy Woodson Harvey (Author Review Request)

 

 

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Downloads:

 

Right Behind You (e-book), by Lisa Gardner

 

 

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Behind Her Eyes (e-book), by Sarah Pinborough

 

 

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My Husband’s Wife (e-book), by Jane Corry

 

 

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After She Fell (e-book, Alex Devlin Book 2), by Mary-Jane Riley

 

 

 

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Now…what’s up next?

Currently Reading:  Pretty Little World (e-book), by Melissa DePino & Elizabeth LaBan

 

 

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Then….who knows?  Maybe one of these…

 

The Princess Diarist, by Carrie Fisher

 

 

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Rainy Day Women (e-book, Book 2), by Kay Kendall (I love this cover!)

 

 

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That was my week…what did yours look like?  Here’s a tease from midweek….a breakfast at Mimi’s…with a Bloody Mary and an omelet.

 

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WEEKLY UPDATES: HELLO, 2017!

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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.

 

Happy New Year!  Did 2016 fly by, or what?  In many ways, I am happy about that fact, as there were some moments so sad and so frustrating that nothing but a New Year on the horizon could give us HOPE, which is my One Word.

Check out my First Book of 2017!  I do love this event.

The week was pretty good…until yesterday, when I got a flat tire!  In the ten years I have had this car, I have never had one.  Thank goodness for Triple A!  After the tire change, I had lunch at California Pizza Kitchen before heading over to get a new tire.  (The rest of them are good…I haven’t had these tires that long!).  But at the tire shop, there was a two-hour wait while they installed the new tire.  I am grateful that I had Pippa, my Kindle, with me!  But after already reading three books this week, I couldn’t find anything that engaged me!  All the newer books I’m holding off on until tomorrow…when I can start reading for the Read the Books You Buy Challenge for 2017.

My Reading Wrap-Up for the Year was an opportunity to spotlight my stats…and showcase my December reading.  Here’s a peek:

167 BOOKS READ IN 2016:

100 of those were purchased books that I read for the Read the Books You Buy Challenge: books I bought between June 2015-December 2016

40 of the books were review books

27 books were a mix of older books that I had purchased…

Let’s take a look at last week…

LAST WEEK ON THE BLOGS:

Monday Sparks:  What Are You Musing About?

Tuesday Potpourri:  “Never Alone”

Top Ten Favorites of 2016!

Coffee Morning:  Pondering the Old, Looking Ahead to the New…

Hump Day Reading:  Let’s Talk About It!

Thursday Potpourri:  Countdown to Year’s End….

2016 Review Books:  Check My Progress!

Looking Back on Cozy Moments:  A Journey

Bookish Friday:  “The Missing”

Review:  The Things We Wish Were True (e-book), by Marybeth Whalen Mayhewratings-worms-4-croppedReview:  Last Night at the Viper Room (e-book), by Gavin Edwardsratings-worms-4-croppedReview:  The Girl Before (e-book), by J. P. Delaney – (NetGalley – 1/24/17)ratings-worms-4-cropped***

INCOMING BOOKS: (Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

One review book came in the mailbox…from Amazon Vine.  And I downloaded a review book from NetGalley.  I am pleased to report that I stuck to my vow not to buy any more books in 2016!  After tomorrow, I can go nuts with that new Amazon gift card!  LOL.

The Orphan’s Tale, by Pam Jenoff (Amazon Vine)

 

 

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It Happens All the Time (e-book), by Amy Hatvany (NetGalley – 3/28/17)

 

 

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WHAT’S UP NEXT?

I am reading my First Book of the Year…check the link above to find its identity…Yes, sneaky here.

There are a few books on my list as well…

The Woman in Cabin 10 (e-book), by Ruth Ware

 

 

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Missing, Presumed (e-book), by Susie Steiner

 

 

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Tonight, I’ll do some reading, watch some movies, (I’ve started watching The Crown on Netflix, and I’m hooked!), and see the ball drop at midnight…while sipping Champagne and eating popcorn.  I think.  What are your plans?

 

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WEEKLY UPDATES: WELCOME TO MY “NEW” VENUE!

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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.

 

Welcome to our New Venue for the upcoming weeks (or months).  I do like moving events around to my various sites.  This blog was feeling “overlooked.”

Another week has flown by, but despite the fact that I had outings, including lunch at Pismo’s with a friend, I actually read more than usual.  FOUR books and one short story.  My Read the Books You Buy total is now 95!

I didn’t watch Netflix at all this week, but I did enjoy catching up on my DVR.  I deleted some of the recorded Christmas movies after watching for less than half an hour.  Why?  Well, I guess I was starting to get a sugar rush.  LOL.

I have a low tolerance for Christmas sentimentality, with all of it’s saccharine moments.  A little bit goes a long way.  I did enjoy the Dolly Parton Circle of Love movie, with that sweet little actress who plays “Faith” on The Young and the Restless. (Alyvia Alyn Lind).

Let’s take a look at the week….and enjoy caffeine while you read.

 

 

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LAST WEEK ON THE BLOGS:

Snow Sparks:  Musing About Libraries, Etc.

Tuesday Potpourri:  “The Bad Things”

My Book Journey:  A Dance!

Change of Venue for Weekly Updates…

Hump Day Reading:  Current, Past, & Future…

Bookish Thursday #39:  Serendipitous Moments

Bookish Friday:  “When All the Girls Have Gone”

Weekend Potpourri:  ‘Tis the Season…

My Interior World:  Upcoming Book Releases!

Review:  Little Deaths, by Emma Flint – (Amazon Vine)ratings-worms-4-croppedReview:  The 4th Man (e-book, short story), by Lisa Gardner (NetGalley – 1/3/17)cropped-again-5Review:  In a Dark, Dark Wood (e-book), by Ruth Wareratings-worms-4-croppedReview:  In Her Wake (e-book), by Amanda Jenningsratings-worms-4-croppedReview:  When All the Girls Have Gone (e-book), by Jayne Ann Krentzcropped-again-5

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INCOMING BOOKS: (Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

Nothing in the mailbox!  Three purchased downloads, however.

The Woman in Cabin 10 (e-book), by Ruth Ware

 

 

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The Premonition (e-book, prequel to The Sleepwalker), by Chris Bohjalian

 

 

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Missing, Presumed (e-book), by Susie Steiner

 

 

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WHAT’S UP NEXT?

Currently Reading:  The Premonition (e-book, prequel), by Chris Bohjalian

 

 

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The Sleepwalker (e-book), by Chris Bohjalian (NetGalley – 1/10/17)

 

 

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Sweet Lamb of Heaven (e-book), by Lydia Millet

 

 

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That’s it for my week.  What did yours look like?  I have no lovely food to showcase this week…but here’s another glimpse of my Christmas decorations.  I found the red table runner and place mats in a drawer…I had forgotten about them!

 

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BOOKISH FRIDAY: “I AM NO ONE”

Married to Books-BOOKISH LOGO

Welcome to another Bookish Friday, in which I  share excerpts from books…and connect with other bloggers, who do the same.

Let’s begin the celebration by sharing Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and let’s showcase The Friday 56 with Freda’s Voice.

To join in, just grab a book and share the opening lines…along with any thoughts you wish to give us; then turn to page 56 and excerpt anything on the page.

Then give us the title of the book, so others can add it to their lists!

What better way to spend a Friday!

Today’s feature is I Am No One, by Patrick Flanery, a tense, mesmerizing novel about memory, privacy, fear, and what happens when our past catches up with us.

 

 

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Beginning:  At the time of my return to New York earlier this year I had been living in Oxford for more than a decade.  Having failed to get tenure at Columbia I believed Britain might offer a way to restart my career, though I always planned to move back to America, imagining I would stay abroad for a few years at most.  In the interim, however, America has changed so radically—by coincidence I left just after the attacks in New York—that I find myself feeling no less alienated now than I did during those long years in Britain.

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56:  As I showed her to the door, I turned and said, before thinking about the words or what their effect might be, “You know, Rachel, one of the great things about America, one of the reasons I wanted to come home to my country, is that anyone can speak any language in any possible accent and still be accorded the status of American.”

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Synopsis:  After a decade living in England, Jeremy O’Keefe returns to New York, where he has been hired as a professor of German history at New York University. Though comfortable in his new life, and happy to be near his daughter once again, Jeremy continues to feel the quiet pangs of loneliness. Walking through the city at night, it’s as though he could disappear and no one would even notice.

But soon, Jeremy’s life begins taking strange turns: boxes containing records of his online activity are delivered to his apartment, a young man seems to be following him, and his elderly mother receives anonymous phone calls slandering her son. Why, he wonders, would anyone want to watch him so closely, and, even more upsetting, why would they alert him to the fact that he was being watched?

As Jeremy takes stock of the entanglements that marked his years abroad, he wonders if he has unwittingly committed a crime so serious as to make him an enemy of the state. Moving towards a shattering reassessment of what it means to be free in a time of ever more intrusive surveillance, Jeremy is forced to ask himself whether he is “no one,” as he believes, or a traitor not just to his country but to everyone around him.

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I love the sound of this one. What do you think?

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REVIEW: I’VE GOT SAND IN ALL THE WRONG PLACES, BY LISA SC0TTOLINE, ET. AL.

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Lisa Scottoline and Francesca Serritella are adept at humor, as exemplified in I’ve Got Sand in All the Wrong Places, the latest in a series of such collections that offer up short and witty vignettes on a variety of topics.

They bring us right into the thick of it all, as they alternately share anecdotal incidents from their lives, mostly about all the daily things everyone experiences, but also spiced with their take on clothes; their unique book signings; gardening, especially fantasies about the perfect garden; food and metabolism; life with dogs; friendships; and romantic relationships, to name a few.

Lisa is famous for her labeling of her two ex-husbands as Thing One and Thing Two. Thing One has redeeming social value: he is Francesca’s father, whereas Thing Two barely gets a mention.

Francesca shares a frightening assault she experienced, and walked us through how she healed from it, while still acknowledging that she relives it at times. Her writing about her relationships, her dogs, and her single life in Manhattan help us see her perspective on a variety of issues, including her connection to her mother, and the importance of that connection in getting through life’s challenges.

Another topic many of us “people pleasers” can relate to is how to say no and how to do it without guilt. Lisa shares how she came to a realization that trying to make everybody happy was not a good thing for her own life.

“It took me fifty years to figure out what I was doing wrong, and how to fix it. I started saying no, and the world did not end. Then I kept saying no, and it got easier and easier.

“It takes practice….and I taught myself that every time I said no to someone else, I was saying yes to myself….I started living—my own life.”

I loved the section on The Empty Nest, and how Lisa dealt with it as a celebration, which does not in any way negate how much she loves and enjoys her daughter. But being able to own your day, without having responsibility for another human being under your roof, is a freedom unmatched by any other kind. She describes how her world is rocked a little when her daughter comes to visit, though, and that they get into little conversations about “why is the TV on CNN” all the time, or why are there closed captions? I got a giggle out of this one, as I love having the captions on, too, not because I can’t hear, but so I can mute the TV and still glance up to see what is going on. When I am reading or working, the TV, with captions, is muted and is like a backdrop to my other activities.

I thoroughly enjoy these chats with the authors, which make me feel as though I know them and that I’m joining them for coffee…or a drink. So I can’t wait for the next installment.

Rating:  cropped again 5

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BOOKISH FRIDAY: “I’VE GOT SAND IN ALL THE WRONG PLACES”

Married to Books-BOOKISH LOGO

Welcome to another Bookish Friday, in which I  share excerpts from books…and connect with other bloggers, who do the same.

Let’s begin the celebration by sharing Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and let’s showcase The Friday 56 with Freda’s Voice.

To join in, just grab a book and share the opening lines…along with any thoughts you wish to give us; then turn to page 56 and excerpt anything on the page.

Then give us the title of the book, so others can add it to their lists!

What better way to spend a Friday!

Today’s feature is a collection of stories by Lisa Scottoline and Francesca Serritella, I’ve Got Sand in All the Wrong Places.

 

 

 

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Beginning:  (Lisa)

Who doesn’t love summer?

It is our reward for three seasons of going full speed, twenty-four/seven, in a world that is too complex and way too fast.

We all need a break, especially mothers.

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56:  These new friends reminded me that sometimes you have to quit to create who you really are.  Sometimes the parameters someone else sets for you aren’t the ones to build your life upon.  Life’s a gamble; make sure you’re risking it all for the right reward.

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Synopsis:  Lisa and Francesca are back with another collection of warm and witty stories that will strike a chord with every woman. This six book series is among the best reviewed humor books published today and has been compared to the late greats, Erma Bombeck and Nora Ephron. Delia Ephron said of the fifth book in the series, Have a Nice Guilt Trip, “Lisa and Francesca, mother and daughter, bring you the laughter of their lives once again and better than ever. You will identify with these tales of guilt and fall in love with them and fierce (grand) Mother Mary.” This seventh volume will not disappoint as it hits the humorous and poignant note that fans have come to expect from the beloved mother-daughter duo.

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What do you think?  Would you love a good laugh and pick up this book?

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TUESDAY INTROS: “BEACH BLUES”

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

Today’s featured book is my current read, and a review book from the author, Joanne DeMaio.   Beach Blues takes us back to Stony Point,  bringing you right to a secluded fishing shack and weathered boardwalk, to its wooden rowboat and lantern-lit porches. A novel that welcomes you, as much as it may break your heart.

 

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Intro:  If a little beach cottage could look forlorn, this one does.  Though she’s not sure why.  It’s just a bungalow, really, in need of a fresh coat of white paint.  Still, that’s not it.  Celia considers the cottage before her.  It sits on a small hill, so the sea breezes will reach into its windows.  And those sheer curtain panels on the top of each paned window look like white sails, puffing in the wind.  It all perfectly suits the cottage name:  Summer Winds.

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Teaser: “Can’t believe summer’s here again.”  Kyle Bradford tips his glass of beer to Jason’s.  “Cheers, man.”

“What are we toasting?”

“Life.  Beautiful life.”  Kyle sips his beer.  “You saved mine, been two years now, on a night that started right in this very bar.  And I’m here to tell you, it’s good to be alive, man.” (p. 17).

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Blurb:  New York Times bestselling author Joanne DeMaio invites you to spend the summer by the sea, in a quaint New England beach town where friends and love await just outside the cottage doors.

Celia Gray finds herself house-sitting a silver-shingled cottage at Stony Point. She arrives with her guitar, a few staging jobs … and a bit of summertime sadness. That is, until an unforgettable group of beach friends draws her in like a breath of salt air.

Sal DeLuca heard the words in a dream: Take me to the sea. So after a decade of demanding work, he takes his first vacation in years. Trading in his suit and tie for blue jeans and boat shoes, Sal unexpectedly arrives at his mother’s shabby inn on the Connecticut shore, winding his way into the lives and hearts of the close-knit beach community.

When Stony Point’s two wash-ashores, Sal and Celia, meet, some say it’s a match made in beach-heaven. And so begins a sweet seaside summer … forging friendships, adventures and new love. But all is not at ease in the gentle sea breeze as a dark secret turns the tide for the Stony Point crew.

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I have loved every one of these beautiful books that bring the reader to gorgeous settings, reuniting old friends and introducing new ones.  What do you think?  Would you keep reading?

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RAINY DAY READING: CURLING UP WITH BOOKS & NETFLIX

When I woke up this morning, I peered out the window, as I usually do…and I was surprised to see the rain.  Yes, it was a little cloudy yesterday, but I hadn’t actually realized it might rain.

 

But…it’s okay!  I planned to stay home today and curl up and read…and one of my favorite Netflix shows has added Season II today (Grace and Frankie).

 

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My viewing station in the bedroom is all ready…because of my changes this week, with several switcheroos.  Check my Shake-ups post, or the one that started it all, Favorite Places:

 

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But I have reading to accomplish first….I’m currently reading What We Find, by Robyn Carr…Book One in the Sullivan’s Crossing series.

 

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Between the urban bustle of Denver and the high-stress environment of a career in neurosurgery, Maggie Sullivan has hit a wall. When an emergency high-risk procedure results in the death of a teenager, Maggie finds herself in the middle of a lawsuit—and experiencing levels of anxiety she’s never faced before. She knows she needs to slow down before she burns out completely, and the best place she can think to do that is Sullivan’s Crossing.

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I’m loving the setting and the characters…hope to finish this one today!

I changed the theme and header here last night….I always love making changes, whether they are in my home interiors…or on my blogs.

What do you enjoy fixing or changing?  Or do you like things to remain the same?

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RAINY DAY READING: SUNSHINE INTERRUPTUS

After a week of perfect spring weather, all sunshine and blooms, I woke up to a rainy day!  But I was planning to stay home and read, anyway, so it works for me.

Last night I started one of my week’s stack of reads…a book that has been languishing on Pippa since September 2014.  Yes, imagine that!

Dream of the Blue Room, by Michelle Richmond, is one I featured yesterday on my Bookish Fridays post. 

 

 

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I started it last night, and plan to keep reading today.  Lyrical prose that is as dreamy as the title, we are also brought into some very real moments.

I read and loved The Year of Fog by this author…but I read it in my pre-blogging life…(was there life before blogging?), so I don’t have a review of it.  I just remember loving it.

 

 

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A more recent read by this author, Golden State, earned five stars from me. (Click for my review).

 

 

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If I finish my chosen book today, I will probably start reading North of Here, by Laurel Saville, which fascinates me because I know nothing about it…but I love the cover!  LOL  I did read a memoir by the author, though, Unraveling Anne, about her mother.  Haunting story.  Click title for my review.

 

 

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Here’s the blurb for North of HereThe sounds of unexpected tragedies—a roll of thunder, the crash of metal on metal—leave Miranda in shock amid the ruins of her broken family.

As she searches for new meaning in her life, Miranda finds quiet refuge with her family’s handyman, Dix, in his cabin in the dark forests of the Adirondack Mountains. Dix is kind, dependable, and good with an ax—the right man to help the sheltered Miranda heal—but ultimately, her sadness creates a void even Dix can’t fill.

When a man from her distant past turns up, the handsome idealist now known as Darius, he offers Miranda a chance to do meaningful work at The Source, a secluded property filled with his nature worshipers. Miranda feels this charismatic guru is the key to remaking her life, but her grief and desire for love also create an opportunity for his deception. And in her desperate quest to find herself after losing almost everything, Miranda and Dix could pay a higher price than they ever imagined

 

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So…that’s my reading for the day…I think.  I will also be bingeing on Netflix shows and movies.  What do you enjoy on a rainy day?  Or just a weekend?

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