WEEKLY UPDATES: THE NEW YEAR AHEAD!

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Good morning!  Today’s post will link up to Sunday Salon, The Sunday Post,  and Book Journey, for  Weekly Updates.

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

Grab some coffee (or a pot of tea!), and let’s talk about our weeks.

 

 

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I had a nice quiet New Year’s, and today went shopping with Fiona, my granddaughter, to get a new iPhone.  I have moved on up technologically…LOL

Here’s what is happening in my Blog World:

LAST WEEK ON THE BLOGS:

A Quiet New Year’s Eve: Another Way to Chase Away the Blues

Creative Tuesday:  Intros – “One Step Too Far”

Monthly Wrap-Up:  Goodbye to 2014

New Year’s Eve Thoughts:  On Book Buying, Purging, & a Clean Slate

My First Book of the Year:  2015

I Couldn’t Help Myself:  Book Buying Already!

Friday Potpourri:  Book Beginnings/Friday 56 – “The Cinderella Murder”

Come Monday, I’ll Be Ready for a New Week

Bookish Saturdays:  Planning My Reads

Review:  The Matchmaker (e-book), by Elin Hilderbrand

Review:  Lillian on Life, by Alison Jean Lester

Review:  Everything I Never Told You (e-book), by Celeste Ng

Review:  The Cinderella Murder, by Mary Higgins Clark & Alafair Burke (First Book of the Year)

Review:  One Step Too Far, by Tina Seskis

 

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INCOMING BOOKS:  (Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

There were no books in my mailbox!

But I downloaded three e-books for Sparky.

Watermelon (e-book), by Marian Keyes

 

 

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February the fifteenth is a very special day for me. It is the day I gave birth to my first child. It is also the day my husband left me…I can only assume the two events weren’t entirely unrelated.

Claire has everything she ever wanted: a husband she adores, a great apartment, a good job. Then, on the day she gives birth to their first baby, James informs her that he’s leaving her. Claire is left with a newborn daughter, a broken heart, and a postpartum body that she can hardly bear to look at.

She decides to go home to Dublin. And there, sheltered by the love of a quirky family, she gets better. So much so, in fact, that when James slithers back into her life, he’s in for a bit of a surprise.

 

Garden Spells (e-book), by Sarah Addison Allen

 

 

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In a garden surrounded by a tall fence, tucked away behind a small, quiet house in an even smaller town, is an apple tree that is rumored to bear a very special sort of fruit. In this luminous debut novel, Sarah Addison Allen tells the story of that enchanted tree, and the extraordinary people who tend it.…

The Waverleys have always been a curious family, endowed with peculiar gifts that make them outsiders even in their hometown of Bascom, North Carolina. Even their garden has a reputation, famous for its feisty apple tree that bears prophetic fruit, and its edible flowers, imbued with special powers. Generations of Waverleys tended this garden. Their history was in the soil. But so were their futures.

A successful caterer, Claire Waverley prepares dishes made with her mystical plants—from the nasturtiums that aid in keeping secrets and the pansies that make children thoughtful, to the snapdragons intended to discourage the attentions of her amorous neighbor. Meanwhile, her elderly cousin, Evanelle, is known for distributing unexpected gifts whose uses become uncannily clear. They are the last of the Waverleys—except for Claire’s rebellious sister, Sydney, who fled Bascom the moment she could, abandoning Claire, as their own mother had years before.

When Sydney suddenly returns home with a young daughter of her own, Claire’s quiet life is turned upside down—along with the protective boundary she has so carefully constructed around her heart. Together again in the house they grew up in, Sydney takes stock of all she left behind, as Claire struggles to heal the wounds of the past. And soon the sisters realize they must deal with their common legacy—if they are ever to feel at home in Bascom—or with each other.

Enchanting and heartfelt, this captivating novel is sure to cast a spell with a style all its own….

 

Last Night at the Viper Room (e-book), by Gavin Edwards

 

 

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Acclaimed author and journalist Gavin Edwards vividly recounts the life and tragic death of acclaimed actor River Phoenix—a teen idol on the fast track to Hollywood royalty who died of a drug overdose in front of West Hollywood’s storied club, the Viper Room, at the age of 23.

Last Night at the Viper Room explores the young star’s life, including his childhood in Venezuela growing up under the aegis of the cultish Children of God. Putting him at the center of a new generation of leading men emerging in the early 1990s— including Johnny Depp, Keanu Reeves, Brad Pitt, Nicolas Cage, and Leonardo DiCaprio—Gavin Edwards traces the Academy Award nominee’s meteoric rise, couches him in an examination of the 1990s, and illuminates his lasting legacy on Hollywood and popular culture itself.

 

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

 

Currently Reading:  I Love You More (e-book), by Jennifer Murphy

 

 

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A Small Indiscretion, by Jan Ellison (Vine review)

 

 

 

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Betrayed (e-book), by Lisa Scottoline
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And that’s my week…and what my new week will look like.  I decided not to join any challenges this year, except for the Goodreads Challenge, and I lowered my books to 100.  Last year was 150, and the previous one, 200.  I exceeded the goals, but I am wanting to lower the pressure.What challenges, if any, are you doing?  What does the New Year look like for you?***

 

 

 

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WEEKLY UPDATES: WELCOME TO 2015!

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Good morning!  Today’s post will link up to Sunday Salon, The Sunday Post,  and Book Journey, for  Weekly Updates.

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

Good morning, Bloggers!  Grab some coffee (or a pot of tea!), and let’s talk about our weeks.

 

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Is everyone enjoying the aftermath of Christmas?  Looking forward to the New Year?  I am participating in The First Book of 2015 event through Book Journey, so check in at my An Interior Journey blog on the first to see what I’m featuring.

This weekend has been one of enjoying movies more than books.  Today I saw Big Eyes, with Amy Adams, and last night I watched Men, Women, and Children On Demand, with Jennifer Garner, Rosemarie DeWitt, and Judy Greer.

 

 

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I am looking forward to more reading in the coming week….but here’s what happened on that front last week:

LAST WEEK ON THE BLOGS:

Blue Mondays Again? – Holidays Can Bring Them On

Tuesday Potpourri:  Intros/Teasers – “Lillian on Life”

Merry Christmas!

Let’s Chase Away the Blues:  Book Beginnings/Friday 56 – “Catch Me”

The Pleasure of it All:  Christmas!

Bookish Saturdays:  Top Ten Favorites of 2014

Review:  A Fireproof Home for the Bride, by Amy Scheibe

Review:  The Last Anniversary (e-book), by Liane Moriarty

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INCOMING BOOKS: (Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

I received two review books in the mail; purchased one book at Barnes & Noble; and downloaded three e-books.

One Step Too Far, by Tina Seskis (Vine)

 

 

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A mesmerizing and powerful novel that will keep you guessing to the very end.

No one has ever guessed Emily’s secret.

Will you?

A happy marriage. A beautiful family. A lovely home. So what makes Emily Coleman get up one morning and walk right out of her life—to start again as someone new?

Now, Emily has become Cat, working at a hip advertising agency in London and living on the edge with her inseparable new friend, Angel. Cat’s buried any trace of her old self so well, no one knows how to find her. But she can’t bury the past—or her own memories.

And soon, she’ll have to face the truth of what she’s done—a shocking revelation that may push her one step too far. . . .

 

A Small Indiscretion, by Jan Ellison (Vine)

 

 

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A Small Indiscretion fixes an unflinching eye on the power of desire and the danger of obsession as it unfolds the story of one woman’s reckoning with a youthful mistake.

At nineteen, Annie Black trades a bleak future in her washed-out hometown for a London winter of drinking to oblivion and yearning for deliverance. Some two decades later, she is married to a good man and settled in San Francisco, with a son and two daughters and a successful career designing artistic interior lights. One June morning, a photograph arrives in her mailbox, igniting an old longing and setting off a chain of events that rock the foundations of her marriage and threaten to overturn her family’s hard-won happiness.

The novel moves back and forth across time between San Francisco in the present and that distant winter in Europe. The two worlds converge and explode when the adult Annie returns to London seeking answers, her indiscretions come to light, and the phone rings with shocking news about her son. Now Annie must fight to save her family by piecing together the mystery of her past—the fateful collision of liberation and abandon and sexual desire that drew an invisible map of her future.

 

The Underside of Joy, by Sere Prince Halverson (Purchased)

 

 

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Set against the backdrop of Redwood forests and shimmering vineyards, Seré Prince Halverson’s compelling debut tells the story of two women, bound by an unspeakable loss, who each claims to be the mother of the same two children.

To Ella Beene, happiness means living in the northern California river town of Elbow with her husband, Joe, and his two young children. Yet one summer day Joe breaks his own rule-never turn your back on the ocean-and a sleeper wave strikes him down, drowning not only the man but his many secrets.

For three years, Ella has been the only mother the kids have known and has believed that their biological mother, Paige, abandoned them. But when Paige shows up at the funeral, intent on reclaiming the children, Ella soon realizes there may be more to Paige and Joe’s story. “Ella’s the best thing that’s happened to this family,” say her close-knit Italian-American in-laws, for generations the proprietors of a local market. But their devotion quickly falters when the custody fight between mother and stepmother urgently and powerfully collides with Ella’s quest for truth.

 

Downloads:

Fear Nothing (e-book), by Lisa Gardner

 

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The last thing Boston Detective D. D. Warren remembers is walking the crime scene after dark. Then, a creaking floorboard, a low voice crooning in her ear. . . . She is later told she managed to discharge her weapon three times. All she knows is that she is seriously injured, unable to move her left arm, unable to return to work.

 

The Way Life Should Be (e-book), by Christina Baker Kline

 

 

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Angela Russo is thirty-three years old and single, stuck in a job she doesn’t love and a life that seems, somehow, to have just happened. Though she inherited a flair for Italian cooking from her grandmother, she never has the time; for the past six months, her oven has held only sweaters. Tacked to her office bulletin board is a picture torn from a magazine of a cottage on the coast of Maine, a reminder to Angela that there are other ways to live, even if she can’t seem to figure them out.

One day at work, Angela clicks on a tiny advertisement in the corner of her computer screen—“Do Soulmates Exist?”—and finds herself at a dating website, where she stumbles upon “MaineCatch,” a thirty-five-year-old sailing instructor with ice-blue eyes. To her great surprise, she strikes up a dizzying correspondence with MaineCatch—yet as her online relationship progresses, life in the real world takes a nosedive. Interpreting this confluence of events as a sign, Angela impulsively decides to risk it all and move to Maine.

 

Precious Thing (e-book), by Colette McBeth

 

 

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Some friendships fizzle out. Rachel and Clara promised theirs would last forever.

They met in high school when Rachel was the shy, awkward new girl and Clara was the friend everyone wanted. Instantly, they fell under one another’s spell and nothing would be the same again. Now in their late twenties Rachel has the television career, the apartment and the boyfriend, while Clara’s life is spiraling further out of control. Yet despite everything, they remain inextricably bound. Then Rachel’s news editor assigns her to cover a police press conference, and she is shocked when she arrives to learn that the subject is Clara, reported missing. Is it abduction, suicide or something else altogether?

Imagine discovering something about your oldest friend that forces you to question everything you’ve shared together. The truth is always there.  But only if you choose to see it.

 

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

Currently Reading:  The Matchmaker (e-book), by Elin Hilderbrand

 

 

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Lillian on Life, by Alison Jean Lester

 

 

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Everything I Never Told You (e-book), by Celeste Ng

 

 

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And:  Drum Roll, please!  Check in at An Interior Journey on January 1st to see my First Book of 2015.

 

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What did your week look like?  What are you anticipating in the week ahead?  I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and that you enjoy a safe and Happy New Year!

 

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