Sunday Post

Book arrivals:

Elizabeth the 1st wife death by chocolate

  • Elizabeth the First Wife by Lian Dolan
  • Death by Chocolate by Sally Berneathy

Last Week on Bookfan:

Books I read last week:

  • Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
  • Just Over the Mountain by Robyn Carr

FYI:

Bonnie at Redlady’s Reading Room has a giveaway of Me Before You. If you haven’t read it head over and enter – I loved this book!

Happy Easter! 

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Our granddaughter Grace with her Peter Rabbit book

 

Spotlight on: And Then I Found You by Patti Callahan Henry

and then I found youTwenty-two years ago, New York Times bestselling author, Patti Callahan Henry’s sister placed a baby girl for adoption. Then in April 2010, a Facebook request put an end to all the waiting and wondering. Patti’s sister’s daughter had found her.

Henry’s latest novel, AND THEN I FOUND YOU, coming this April 2013, is a unique story inspired by Henry’s personal family history with adoption.  The novel, much like the true story, is a compelling narrative of love lost, love found, and a miraculous reunion that changed everyone’s lives forever.

Told from the points of view of birth mother, Kate Vaughn, and her thirteen year-old daughter Emily, AND THEN I FOUND YOU (St. Martin’s Press; Hardcover; April 9, 2013; 272 pp.) spans over twenty years and follows the characters as they move through their lives in South Carolina, Arizona, Alabama and New York.  Now thirty-four years old, Kate seems finally ready to begin her life with someone else, but memories keep holding her back.  In her wish to conquer her painful past, Kate decides to visit Jack, the father of the baby she placed for adoption many years before.  Their reunion and an unexpected Facebook request starts a chain reaction that will change not only Kate’s life, but that of her loved ones too. AND THEN I FOUND YOU is ultimately a story about brave choices, our yearning for certainty and the courage it takes to find our place in the world.

About PATTI CALLAHAN HENRY:

Patti Callahan Henry is a New York Times Bestselling novelist. She has published nine novels (Losing the Moon, Where the Patti Callahan HenryRiver Runs, When Light Breaks, Between the Tides, The Art of Keeping Secrets, and Driftwood Summer, The Perfect Love Song, Coming up for Air and the upcoming And Then I Found You –April 2013, St. Martins Press). Patti has been hailed as a fresh new voice in southern fiction, appearing in numerous magazines (Good Housekeeping; SKIRT; The South; Southern Living, etc..). She has been short-listed for the Townsend Prize for Fiction. She has been nominated four different times for the Southeastern Independent Booksellers Fiction Novel of the Year. Her work is published in five languages and all novels are on Brilliance Audio.  Two of her novels were OKRA picks and Coming up For Air was an Indie Next choice. Patti is a frequent speaker at fundraisers, library events and book festivals, discussing the importance of storytelling. Her next novel, AND THEN I FOUND YOU, will be released on April, 9th, 2013 by St. Martins Press. Patti Callahan Henry is a full time writer, wife and mother of three living in Mountain Brook, AL.

Treadmill Reads: What She Wants by Sheila Roberts

what she wants

  • Title:  What She Wants – Life in Icicle Falls #4
  • Author:  Sheila Roberts
  • Genre:  Contemporary Fiction; series
  • Published:  March 2013 – Harlequin MIRA
  • Source:  Publisher via NetGalley

Synopsis (publisher): What do women want? Jonathan Templar and his poker buddies can’t figure it out. Take Jonathan, for instance. He’s been in love with Lissa Castle since they were kids but, geek that he is, she’s never seen him as her Mr. Perfect. He has one last shot-their high school reunion. Kyle Long is equally discouraged. The pretty receptionist at his office keeps passing him over for other guys who may be taller but are definitely not superior. And Adam Edwards might be the most successful of Jonathan’s friends, but he isn’t having any success on the home front. His wife’s kicked him out. 

When Jonathan stumbles on a romance novel at the Icicle Falls library sale, he knows he’s found the love expert he’s been seeking-Vanessa Valentine, top-selling romance author. At first his buddies laugh at him for reading romance novels, but soon they, too, realize that these stories are the world’s best textbooks on love. Poker night becomes book club night…and when all is read and done, they’re going to be the kind of men women want!

My take: I think I’ve found the first beach book of 2013 to recommend! Sheila Roberts made me laugh out loud as I read about Jonathan, Kyle, and Adam trying to figure out what women, more specifically the women they want, well, WANT.

The discussions at the weekly poker games were funny yet made the point that men probably go through as much anxiety about finding The One as women do. Vance, who was married once upon a time, and Bernardo, currently happily married, give advice to the three younger men in as few words as humanly possible – they’re such guys!

But what ends up being the most helpful are Romance novels. Jonathan convinces his friends to read one or two. They’re so desperate that they’ll try just about anything. It was fun watching them try out various things learned from the Romance heroes. 

You’ll have to read the book to see if they get their dream girls or if they find they’ve been dreaming of the wrong girl all along! I recommend What She Wants to anyone looking for a light, fun read. Perfect for vacation, stay-cation, or even the treadmill :).

The Wanderer by Robyn Carr

the wanderer (robyn carr)

  • Title:  The Wanderer – Thunder Point series, #1
  • Author:  Robyn Carr
  • Genre:  Contemporary Romance, series
  • Published:  March 2013 – Harlequin MIRA
  • Source:  Publisher via NetGalley

Synopsis (publisher):  Nestled on the Oregon coast is a small town of rocky beaches and rugged charm. Locals love the land’s unspoiled beauty. Developers see it as a potential gold mine. When newcomer Hank Cooper learns he’s been left an old friend’s entire beachfront property, he finds himself with a community’s destiny in his hands. 

Cooper has never been a man to settle in one place, and Thunder Point was supposed to be just another quick stop. But Cooper finds himself getting involved with the town. And with Sarah Dupre, a woman as complicated as she is beautiful. 

With the whole town watching for his next move, Cooper has to choose between his old life and a place full of new possibilities. A place that just might be home.

My take:  Robyn Carr has done it again. She’s imagined a community of interesting characters as the basis of a new series – and I was sold from the first page.

I loved the Oregon coast setting and the people who live in the small town of Thunder Point. There’s Hank Cooper and Sarah Dupre, Mac McCain and Gina James, Mac’s aunt Lou and her beau, Joe. These characters and the people in their lives experience relatable challenges that kept me interested and turning the pages. A bit of mystery was woven throughout the book and was satisfactorily solved by the end. 

I’m so glad Robyn Carr has ventured outside of Virgin River (the series that made me a fan) and look forward to reading the second book in the Thunder Point series. 

Sunday Post

Book arrivals:

He's Gone attachments Lucky Bastard

return to willow lake how to eat a cupcake Admission

Last week on Bookfan:

Book I’m in the middle of:

  • Life After Life by Kate Atkinson

As promised, here are some photos from our winter break:

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The reason for taking our winter break

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We went to warm and sunny Arizona

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My husband picking a grapefruit

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He also picked some tangelos

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We visited FLW’s Taliesin West near Scottsdale

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I bought a few souvenirs at the bookstore

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We saw a Spring Training game – our team won 🙂

A very hungry hummingbird

We still have several inches of snow on the ground but Spring is officially here and we know the weather will figure it out soon.

Happy reading!

Treadmill Reads: Lucky Bang by Deborah Coonts

lucky bang

Synopsis (publisher):  Having a blast on the 4th of July in Vegas takes on a whole new meaning for Lucky O’Toole, head of customer relations for the Babylon, a major Strip property, when she discovers a bomb in a friend’s restaurant and narrowly escapes becoming part of the “explosive entertainment.” And this wasn’t the first time. Years ago, when Lucky was small, she’d had another narrow escape. Could the two be related? Missing dynamite, an old grudge, and whispers from the past, force Lucky to delve into dark secrets best left alone. And when her father disappears, things become personal.

My take:  What a fun read! Deborah Coonts offers fans of the Lucky O’Toole series a novella that starts with a bang and doesn’t let up until you’ve turned the last page. It’s enough to hold me over until the next novel in the series is published. Loved it! Can’t wait to see where things go with Lucky and her growing list of admirers. This series has become an auto-buy/read for me. Lucky Bang could be a stand-alone but I recommend reading the series in order. 

  • Title:  Lucky Bang – A Lucky O’Toole Original Novella
  • Author:  Deborah Coonts
  • Genre:  Romantic Suspense
  • Publisher:  June 2012 – Deborah Coonts
  • Source:  I bought it

Guest post: Joanne DeMaio

I’m so happy to welcome author Joanne DeMaio to the blog today. Joanne’s new novel Blue Jeans and Coffee Beans was published last week. I loved her first book Whole Latte Life and look forward to reading her second:

BlueJeansandCoffeeBeans

In my new novel, Blue Jeans and Coffee Beans, the main character Maris Carrington is a denim designer. Her denim specialty connects her to the summers she spent at a close-knit beach community while growing up, to memories of her and her mother walking the sandy shoreline, to the breeziness of the whole beach essence that has long been a part of her life.

 So today, let’s take a fashion quiz to see how blue jeans connect to your life. I think that our denim preferences say a lot about our personalities, and I hope you’ll give it a try. Which jean style represents the true-blue you? Feel free to stitch another style into the mix, too.
 
Bootcut ~ You’re relaxed, easy-going, a bit bohemian.
 
Flares ~ You’re a Free-spirit, love live music and the arts.
 
Straight-leg ~ You’re classic and dependable, a good friend.
 
Skinny ~ Fun and upbeat, you’re the life of the beach party.
 
Boyfriend Jeans ~ Artistic, comfortable, confident … You enjoy lazy reading days.
 
Trouser Jeans ~ You’re professional and polished, a go-getter.
 
Cropped Jeans ~ Cheerful, sunny, calming … Walking along a beach is your perfect day.
 
Carpe Denim!
 
~Joanne
Thanks so much for visiting today, Joanne. I wear bootcut the most but choose trouser jeans when I want to dress up a bit and can still get away with wearing denim. I also have a pair of white denim cropped jeans that I love to wear in the summer months.
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JoanneJoanne DeMaio is the award-winning author of Blue Jeans and Coffee Beans and the bestselling novel Whole Latte Life, which won First Place in the 2012 Discovery Awards and was named a Kirkus Reviews Critics’ Pick. It has also been featured in USA Today, The Huffington Post and other outlets. Blue Jeans and Coffee Beans is her second novel. Both books explore the intricate relationships between mothers and daughters, sisters and friends. In addition, her music essays have appeared in literary journals, celebrating her passion for song. Joanne lives with her family in Connecticut, where the coffee and stories are always brewing. She is currently at work on her next book.

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After years of pursuing a denim design career, Maris Carrington never imagined trading her Chicago studio for a New England BlueJeansandCoffeeBeansshingled cottage. But a forgotten home movie tucked inside a dusty attic box leads to an unexpected summer . . . One of uncovering family secrets while settling her father’s estate, one of inheriting a forlorn German Shepherd, one of reconnecting with old friends on a weathered boardwalk, beneath starlit skies on a beach nestled in a crook of the Connecticut coast. Her design career had become a shell, curving around her like the intricate whorls of a conch, shielding her until now. Until fried clam dinners and carousel rides beckon a lost love. But can Maris ever really go back? Can these beach friends ever be who they were to each other all those summers ago? Now one of her circle is dead; another unemployed and struggling in a tenuous marriage; another regretting a fateful decision; while one is missing a mother, ever seeking a connection she longs for. To the backdrop of seaside cottages and a boarded up beach hangout, to the soundtrack of whispering lagoon grasses and a vintage jukebox, Blue Jeans and Coffee Beans asks if we can really design our own lives, or if our fate lies somewhere in the stars.

You can buy Blue Jeans and Coffee Beans here.