Spotlight/US Giveaway: All the Time in the World by Caroline Angell

all the time in the world

Description:

Charlotte, a gifted and superbly trained young musician, has been blindsided by a shocking betrayal in her promising career when she takes a babysitting job with the McLeans, a glamorous Upper East Side Manhattan family. At first, the nanny gig is just a way of tiding herself over until she has licked her wounds and figured out her next move as a composer in New York. But, as it turns out, Charlotte is naturally good with children and becomes as deeply fond of the two little boys as they are of her. When an unthinkable tragedy leaves the McLeans bereft, Charlotte is not the only one who realizes that she’s the key to holding little George and Matty’s world together. Suddenly, in addition to life’s usual puzzles, such as sorting out which suitor is her best match, she finds herself with an impossible choice between her life-long dreams and the torn-apart family she’s come to love. By turns hilarious, sexy, and wise, Caroline Angell’s remarkable and generous debut is the story of a young woman’s discovery of the things that matter most.



About the Author:

Caroline Angell grew up in Endwell, N.Y., the daughter of an electrical engineer and a public school music teacher. She has a B. A. in musical theater from American University and currently lives and works in Manhattan. As a playwright and director, she has had her work performed at regional theaters in New York City and in the Washington, D.C., area. All the Time in the World is her first novel. Follow Caroline on Twitter


Praise for All the Time in the World by Caroline Angell

“An extraordinary book. Caroline Angell is wise beyond her years in rendering the heartache of grief, and all the different kinds of love we are capable of feeling. I was haunted by All the Time in the World long after finishing the last page. It reads like the work of a mature writer at the height of her powers, not a debut novel. I can’t wait to see what Ms. Angell will write next.”  —Alice LaPlante, New York Times bestselling author of Turn of Mind

“In All the Time in the World, Caroline Angell explores the different ways in which people find their way through grief, and she does it bravely and masterfully. A heart wrenching yet life affirming novel. What a debut!”  — Ann Hood, author of The Knitting Circle

“Caroline Angell deftly handles the complexities of love, grief, hope, humor and family. All the Time in the World is funny, beautifully textured and deeply moving. An absolute joy to read.” 
— Allie Larkin, author of Stay and Why Can’t I Be You?

“There’s wit, wisdom, and insight on every page of Caroline Angell’s great debut novel. But, more importantly than any of that are the emotional truths she reveals at every turn.” — Matthew Norman, author of Domestic Violets


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all the time in the world
Giveaway ends on July 15, 2016

Riverbend Road by RaeAnne Thayne

  • Riverbend Road (6:21)Title:  Riverbend Road
  • Author:  RaeAnne Thayne
  • Series:  Haven Point, #4
  • Genre:  Contemporary Romance
  • Pages:  368
  • Published:  June 2016 – HQN Books
  • Source:  Publisher; NetGalley

Description:  Protecting the streets of Haven Point isn’t just a job for police officer Wyn Bailey, it’s a family tradition. But lately she’s found herself wanting more, especially from her boss—and overprotective brother’s best friend—sexy chief of police, Cade Emmett. The only problem is getting Cade to view her as more than just a little sister. 

Cade’s hands-off approach with Wyn isn’t from lack of attraction. But his complicated past has forced him to conceal his desire. When Wyn is harmed in the line of duty, Cade realizes the depth of his feelings, but can he let his guard down long enough to embrace the love he secretly craves? (publisher)

My take:  The latest addition to the Haven Point series is Riverbend Road. RaeAnne Thayne gives readers a look into the lives of a couple of Haven Point’s finest. Cade and Wyn have known each other since childhood and have worked together for the past few years. Gradually their friendship grows to a surprising (to them) romance of sorts. That’s a problem because he’s her boss. Along with this dilemma Wyn is concerned about a new family that moved into her neighborhood. Her internal radar tells her something’s not quite right. And on top of everything else she suspects her recently widowed mother has started dating someone. How can that be?

Riverbend Road features two people who’ve faced challenges in life and were made stronger as a result. It was easy to cheer for Wyn and Cade. This is a romantic story that focused on the importance of family and friends.

I love RaeAnne Thayne’s novels and Riverbend Road was no exception. They are warm and charming and this was a perfect in-between book. I’d read some heavier books and this was a welcome escape. It’s the fourth book in the series but can easily stand alone. Recommended to fans of the author and contemporary, small town romance.

Spotlight/US Giveaway: When the Moon is Low by Nadia Hashimi

when the moon is low

Now available in Trade Paperback

WHEN THE MOON IS LOW

by

Nadia Hashimi

Praise for WHEN THE MOON IS LOW:

“A must-read saga about borders, barriers, and the resolve of one courageous mother fighting to cross over.”  –  O, the Oprah Magazine

“Expertly depicting the anxiety and excitement that accompanies a new life, Hashimi’s gripping page-turner is perfect for book clubs.”  – Library Journal (starred review)

“A fascinating look at the unspoken lives of Afghani women, separated by generations and miles, yet achingly similar. This is a story to transport you and make you think.” – Shilpi Somaya Gowda, New York Times bestselling author of The Secret Daughter 


About the book:

In her bestselling debut, The Pearl That Broke Its Shell, Nadia Hashimi deftly wove a spellbinding tale of the heartache, hardship and triumph of Afghan women. In her follow-up, When The Moon Is Low, we meet Fereiba – a motherless young girl whose passion for learning helps her survive early heartbreak to become a successful educator paired in an arranged marriage that beats the odds and proves a love match. But when the Taliban come to power, Fereiba’s happy life crumbles, and she and her three children are forced to flee Kabul, headed for a glimmer of hope thousands of miles away in London, where Fereiba’s sister offers the promise of family and asylum.

With forged papers in hand, Fereiba and her children trek into the darkness of the Iranian mountains, eventually traversing Greece, Italy and France on their quest for stability and freedom. Through Fereiba’s eyes, we learn the kindnesses and cruelties experienced by thousands of refugees throughout Europe each day. But in a terrible turn of fate, Fereiba is separated from her oldest son, teenaged Saleem, in a busy market place in Greece. Will destiny ultimately make right the many losses and heartaches Fereiba has endured and reunite her with her son? Will Saleem, forced into adulthood under the worst circumstances, be able to fend for himself and be reunited with his family?

Nadia Hashimi paints a richly detailed, moving, and ultimately hopeful story about the strength and resilience of women and their families, the plight of migrants, and the refugee crisis we see in numerous regions of the world today.

Like The Pearl That Broke Its Shell, When The Moon Is Low is a heartfelt revelation of a novel, extremely readable and thought-provoking, with characters who haunt the reader long after the last page is turned.


About the author:

Nadia Hashimi’s parents left Afghanistan in the 1970s, before the Soviet invasion. In 2002, Hashimi visited Afghanistan for the first time. She lives with her family in suburban Washington, D.C. where she works as a pediatrician.

Social Media links:


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when the moon is low

July 4th

IMG_0714.JPG

Happy Independence Day 

Five years ago I was in Maine to help our daughter plan her wedding. One morning I walked to the beach and passed by this building. I think there’s at least one story here, don’t you? It’s one of my favorite photos of Americana.

Sunday Post

Book arrivals:  (linked to Mailbox Monday)

girl in the afternoon (7:12) here's to us (audiobook) the tie that binds (kent haruf) I like you just fine when you're not around

Last week on Bookfan:

the big sheep sweet little lies - audio (6:28) Flight Patterns (6:30 blog tour) Happy Ever After in Christmas (6:28)

Reading plan for this week:

Falling (7:19)  Once Upon a Wine (7:26 NAL)

Happy Ever After in Christmas by Debbie Mason

  • Happy Ever After in Christmas (6:28)Title:  Happy Ever After in Christmas
  • Series:  Christmas, Colorado #7
  • Author:  Debbie Mason
  • Genre:  Contemporary Romance
  • Published:  June 2016 – Forever Romance
  • Source:  Publisher; NetGalley

Description:  It’s beginning to look a lot like love . . .

Spring fever has hit the small town of Christmas, and deputy Jill Flaherty has developed a serious case. The object of her unrequited longing is none other than a former pro hockey player who’s her long-time crush and the most eligible bachelor in town. As her thirtieth birthday nears, Jill’s determined to finally get Sawyer Anderson’s attention . . . and keep it forever.

Everyone in town knows Sawyer is a player on and off the ice. So no one suspects that he’s been yearning to settle down and have a family, to be just as happy as his best friend and his beautiful wife. But when his best friend finds out the bride Sawyer has in mind for his happy ever after is his off-limits baby sister, it might be a hot summer in Christmas in more ways than one . . .  (publisher)

My take:  I’m jumping into the Christmas, Colorado series with the 7th book. Debbie Mason explained enough about characters from previous books that I didn’t feel lost and made me want to go back to the first book and catch up!

Sawyer and Jill were easy to like despite some frustrating situations involving the pair. Sawyer is in his mid-thirties and tired of meaningless relationships. He’s ready to settle down – especially since so many of his friends are happily married and becoming fathers. Jill has never felt good enough in most things – a product of being raised by a tough grandmother. She’s a great police officer though and aspires to be chief. She also yearns to find a partner and be a mother. She’s secretly been in love with Sawyer her whole life. Will these two be able to overcome the obstacles that seem to pop up everywhere?

Happy Ever After in Christmas is a warm novel filled with family relationships, friendships, and love. There’s also drama and heartbreak that I thought Mason handled very well. I enjoyed it all and recommend it to fans of contemporary romance and the author.

Blog Tour – Flight Patterns by Karen White

  • Flight Patterns (6:30 blog tour)Title:  Flight Patterns
  • Author:  Karen White
  • Genre:  Women’s Fiction
  • Pages:  416
  • Published:  May 2016 – NAL
  • Source:  Publisher

Description:  Georgia Chambers has spent her life sifting through other people’s pasts while trying to forget her own. But then her work as an expert of fine china—especially of Limoges—requires her to return to the one place she swore she’d never revisit…

It’s been thirteen years since Georgia left her family home on the coast of Florida, and nothing much has changed, except that there are fewer oysters and more tourists. She finds solace seeing her grandfather still toiling away in the apiary where she spent much of her childhood, but encountering her estranged mother and sister leaves her rattled. 

Seeing them after all this time makes Georgia realize that something has been missing—and unless she finds a way to heal these rifts, she will forever be living vicariously through other people’s remnants. To embrace her own life—mistakes and all—she will have to find the courage to confront the ghosts of her past and the secrets she was forced to keep… (publisher)

My take:  Flight Patterns is a novel about a family with secrets, long-held hurts, and an unsolved mystery or two. Two sisters, Georgia and Maisy, have been estranged for over ten years but are brought back together when Georgia is sent by her New Orleans auction gallery to research a china pattern for a man from New York.

I enjoyed all aspects of the Limoges research Georgia did and how it worked into finding her way back home. I also loved the storyline about the beekeeping her grandfather did. Each chapter begins with a short passage from his beekeeping journals and corresponded with what transpired in that chapter.

The setting of Apalachicola, Florida with its humidity and flora and fauna added a lot to the novel. Flight Patterns is full of interesting characters – some quirkier than others, some stranger than others, and some who know just when to impart their quiet wisdom.

Quotes I marked while reading:

“Sometimes all we need to do to forgive our parents is to understand their childhoods.” 

“If you want things to change, you have to stop waiting for someone else to make the first move.”

Flight Patterns is a novel about learning to forgive and how that will impact a person’s life. I really liked it.

Sweet Little Lies by Jill Shalvis (audiobook)

  • sweet little lies - audio (6:28)Title:  Sweet Little Lies
  • Series:  Heartbreaker Bay #1
  • Author:  Jill Shalvis
  • Genre:  Contemporary Romance
  • Narrator:  Karen White
  • Time:  9 hrs. 35 mins.
  • Published:  June 2016 – Harper Audio
  • Source:  Publisher

Publisher’s description: Choose the one guy you can’t have….

As captain of a San Francisco Bay tour boat, Pru can handle rough seas – the hard part is life on dry land. Pru loves her new apartment and her neighbors; problem is, she’s in danger of stumbling into love with Mr. Right for Anybody but Her. 

Fall for him – hard…

Pub owner Finn O’Riley is six-foot-plus of hardworking hottie who always makes time for his friends. When Pru becomes one of them, she discovers how amazing it feels to be on the receiving end of that deep green gaze. But when a freak accident involving darts (don’t ask) leads to shirtless first aid, things rush way past the friend zone. Fast. 

And then tell him the truth.

Pru only wants Finn to be happy; it’s what she wishes for at the historic fountain that’s supposed to grant her heart’s desire. But wanting him for herself is a different story – because Pru’s been keeping a secret that could change everything….

My take:   Sweet Little Lies is book one in the Heartbreaker Bay series by Jill Shalvis. It is set in San Francisco, more specifically an apartment building (a renovated warehouse) with a ground floor pub and a courtyard fountain that just might grant wishes. We’re introduced to several characters who live in the building or frequent the pub so it’s easy to imagine possible future books in the series. This book is about Pru, a tour boat captain, and Finn, owner of the pub.

Pru and Finn strike up an instant friendship that escalates quickly. The reader discovers that Pru has a secret – a big one – and the longer she waits, the harder it will be to tell Finn.

Finn gave up a lot several years ago when he was left to raise his little brother. Now the two of them own the pub but it seems Finn does most of the work. Pru is a welcome distraction for Finn.

I enjoyed the story even though the “big secret” trope is not a favorite. Jill Shalvis used humor and her usual fun dialogue along with a dose of drama to form a good start to her new series. It’s a sweet, sexy (you might want to use ear buds for some scenes) and funny novel. I look forward to the next book in the series.

Karen White did a fine job with the narration. I liked how she voiced each character and I had no trouble determining who was speaking. One particular scene involving a character who experienced possible food-poisoning had me laughing – all thanks to White’s delivery and Shalvis’s words, of course.

Recommended to fans of Jill Shalvis, contemporary romance and Karen White.

Spotlight/US Giveaway: The Big Sheep by Robert Kroese

the big sheep

Description:  In THE BIG SHEEP (Thomas Dunne Books; Hardback; ISBN 978-1-250-08844-4; June 28, 2016; $25.99), a genetically modified sheep and a gorgeous television star take center stage in a future dystopic Los Angeles. In 2039, Los Angeles is a baffling and bifurcated place. After the Collapse of 2028, a vast section of LA, the Disincorporated Zone, was disowned by the civil authorities, and became essentially a third world country within the borders of the city. Navigating the borders of DZ and LA is a tricky task, and there’s no one better suited than Erasmus Keane, an eccentric private investigator.

When a valuable genetically altered sheep mysteriously goes missing, Keane is the one they call. But while Keane and his more grounded partner, Blake Fowler, are on the trail of the lost sheep, they land an even bigger case. Beautiful television star Priya Mistry suspects that someone is trying to kill her, and she wants Keane to find out who. Pray vanishes, but soon returns, with no memory of having hired them. Keane and Fowler unravel the threads of the mystery, and it soon becomes clear that the two cases are linked – and both point to a sinister conspiracy involving the most powerful people in the city. Saving Priya and the sheep will take all of Keane’s wits and Fowler’s skills, but in the end, they may discover that some secrets are better left hidden.


About the author:

Robert Kroese honed his sense of irony growing up in Grand Rapids, Michigan. After barely graduating from Calvin College, he stumbled into software development. In 2009, he called upon his extensive knowledge of useless information and love of explosions to write his first novel, Mercury Falls. He has written three more books in the Mercury series and a humorous epic fantasy, Disenchanted. The Big Sheep is probably something like Kroese’s  eleventh book, but there’s no way to know for certain.


Praise for the works of Robert Kroese:

“Kroese (Disenchanted) demonstrates his creative imaginative world building in this sci-fi mystery series debut set in 2039 Los Angeles.” – Publishers Weekly

“Kroese’s writing is whip smart and funnier than hell. I loved it.” – S.G. Redoing, author of Flowertown and Damocles on Schrodinger’s Gat

“My favorite read this year. A hilarious space adventure. Hard book to put down.” – Hugh Howey, author of WOOL on Starship Grifters 


US Giveaway

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the big sheep

Sunday Post and a review: Living Large in Our Little House by Kerri Fivecoat-Campbell

Book arrivals:  (linked to Mailbox Monday)

you will know me (7:26)  the life she wants (9:27)  image001-2  Untitled-1

Last week on Bookfan:

sunshine beach (6:21) Berkley   pound for pound by Shannon Kopp

Reading plan for this week:

the secrets she kept (7:26)

Same as last week. We’re in the middle of a kitchen renovation so reading time has been limited.


  • living large in our little houseTitle:  Living Large in Our Little House
  • Author:  Kerri Fivecoat-Campbell
  • Genre:  Non-fiction
  • Published:  June 2016 – Reader’s Digest
  • Source:  FSB Associates; Publisher

My take:  I’m a fan of the cable shows about finding the perfect tiny house to live in but I’m not sure it would be the right permanent housing choice for me. Maybe for a weekend.

Kerri Fivecoat-Campbell and her husband Dale found it to be the best choice for them. Kerri’s book is a combination memoir and How To guide for anyone thinking of making the leap to living in a little house. She uses her experiences of what to do and what not to do when building a small home. Included are lists of pantry/kitchen necessities, details about financial considerations, a helpful index, and a resource list – just to name a few. Kerri and Dale know what they’re talking about – they went from a three bedroom home in the suburbs to a 480 square feet home in the woods!

Several little house owners are spotlighted in the book. They all have unique experiences. There are many photographs scattered throughout. If you’re a fan of shows about this trend or you’re serious about making the move to a little house I think you’ll enjoy this book.


Author Bio:
Kerri Fivecoat-Campbell is a journalist and author who has written a column on small space living for Parade.com. She’s also written on small space living for Mother Earth News and Realtor.com and has been interviewed extensively on her tiny house expertise. Her work has also appeared in Audubon MagazineEntrepreneur Magazine, Yahoo! News, MSN.com and NBC Digital’s pet channel. A member of the American Society of Journalists and Authors, the Society of American Travel Writers, and the Society of Environmental Journalists, a past national board member of the Society of Professional Journalists, and a past president of the Kansas City Press Club, Kerri’s other writing specialties includes animals and pets, business, travel, and the environment. She loves boating and fishing, hiking, and spending time with her husband of 30 years and their dogs. Kerri lives an intentional life with an eye toward sustainability in a 480-square-foot cabin in the Ozark Mountains with her husband and five “recycled” (rescue) mutts, which she documents on her blog, Living Large in Our Little House.

For more information visit her website http://livinglargeinourlittlehouse.com and follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

Pound For Pound by Shannon Kopp

  • pound for pound by Shannon KoppTitle:  Pound for Pound – A Story of One Woman’s Recovery and the Shelter Dogs who Loved Her Back to Life
  • Author:  Shannon Kopp
  • Genre:  Memoir
  • Pages:  288
  • Published:  October 2015 – William Morrow
  • Source:  Publisher via FSB Associates

Description:  “The dogs don’t judge me or give me a motivational speech. They don’t rush me to heal or grow. They sit in my lap and lick my face and make me feel chosen. And sometimes, it hits me hard that I’m doing the exact thing I say I cannot do. Changing.”

Pound for Pound is an inspirational tale about one woman’s journey back to herself, and a heartfelt homage to the four-legged heroes who unexpectedly saved her life.

For seven years, Shannon Kopp battled the silent, horrific, and all-too-common disease of bulimia. Then, at twenty-four, she got a job working at the San Diego Humane Society and SPCA, where in caring for shelter dogs, she found the inspiration to heal and the courage to forgive herself. With the help of some extraordinary homeless animals, Shannon realized that her suffering was the birthplace of something beautiful. Compassion.

Shannon’s poignant memoir is a story of hope, resilience, and the spiritual healing animals bring to our lives. Pound for Pound vividly reminds us that animals are more than just friends and companions—they can teach us how to savor the present moment and reclaim our joy. Rich with emotion and inspiration it is essential reading for animal lovers and everyone who has struggled to change.  (publisher)

My take:  Pound for Pound is a deeply personal look at bulimia, the disease that dominated author Shannon Kopp’s life for several years. As hard as it was to read the details I found it difficult to put the book down as she explained how she went into the downward spiral of the disease and ultimately began to climb out of it.

If you’re an animal lover you’ll understand why it was her connection to volunteering at dog shelters that started her on the road to self-discovery and wellness. She also had people in her life who stood by her during the toughest days. Also important was learning when to ask for help. I’m impressed by the inner-strength she found to keep going.

I applaud Kopp’s willingness to share such private details in order to possibly help someone else on the same journey. If you have someone in your life who struggles with an eating disorder or you just want to learn more about it I highly recommend this memoir.


Author Bio
Shannon Kopp, author of Pound for Pound, is a writer, eating disorder survivor, and animal welfare advocate. She has worked and volunteered at various animal shelters throughout San Diego and Los Angeles, where shelter dogs helped her to discover a healthier, more joyful way of living. Her mission is to help every shelter dog find a loving home, and to raise awareness about eating disorders and animal welfare issues.

For more information visit her website www.shannonkopp.com and follow her on Facebook and Twitter.


Reviews
“Anyone who has ever loved an animal, battled depression, or struggled with an addiction of any kind will not be able to put down Pound for Pound . . . brave account of the healing power of shelter dogs is not only a page-turner, but a true inspiration.” — Laura Maloney, former Chief Operating Officer of the Humane Society of the United States, current COO of Panthera

“Every now and again a book comes along that can help millions of people deal with all sorts of difficult and challenging times and guide them to change their ways for a better and healthier life. Pound for Pound is one of those inspirational gems. Shannon Kopp’s personal story — the incredibly hard work she had to do and her opening her heart to the dogs with whom she worked — is a must read. She shows how compassion, trust, and love can open the door for people and dogs in need to heal and to grow together” — Marc Bekoff, author of Rewilding our Hearts: Building Pathways of Compassion and Coexistence

“Don’t miss Pound for Pound — a uniquely touching memoir about a woman bravely struggling with bulimia and self-judgment, ultimately healed by the miraculous power of the rescue dogs she devotes herself to.  It’s a story you’ll always remember, a testament to the healing energy of our canine companions, who ask only for love and then give it back in spades.” — Glenn Plaskin, Author of Katie Up and Down the Hall, The True Story of How One Dog Turned Five Neighbors Into a Family

Pound for Pound is an emotional reminder of the strength of the human spirit and how dogs are more than our best friend; they can also be guides, inspiring us to be compassionate, share joy, and live life in the moment.” — Booklist

Guest Post by Shannon Kopp, author of Pound for Pound

An Exercise in Compassion:
When My Dog Walks Me Back to the Moment
By Shannon Kopp,
Author of Pound for Pound: A Story of One Woman’s Recovery and the Shelter Dogs Who Loved Her Back to Life

pound for pound by Shannon Kopp

During the rare mornings I don’t press snooze on my alarm four times, I wake up, grab a cup of coffee, and go for a walk with my dog. In the beginning, I told myself I was doing this for her. I work long days at an eating disorder treatment center, and unlike when I worked at the San Diego Humane Society, I can’t bring Bella with me. She’s a five-year-old, poodle/terrier mix, and frisky to the core. I tell myself that I walk her to get some of her energy out in the morning, but the truth is, these walks are more for me.

During the eight years I was bulimic, throughout high school and college and into my early twenties, I never walked. I only ran. Most of my friends ran for healthy reasons — they ran to feel their own strength, to relieve stress and take care of themselves, to push themselves farther than they ever thought they could go. But I ran for one purpose only: to burn calories. I didn’t really enjoy the angry music blasting in my headphones, but that didn’t matter. The point was to run harder.

Walks with Bella are the exact opposite of this. We stop every few feet because she catches the scent of something she wants to savor. I never listen to music, just the sound of her panting and my breathing and the morning wind. I often don’t know where we are walking to — I let her guide me. She listens to her body, and when her little legs start to get tired, she turns around and we head back home.

I’m still learning how to listen to my body. I have much more experience hating and judging it, rather than fully inhabiting it. But the good news is this: it’s only seven a.m., and I’ve already felt the earth beneath my feet, air moving in and out of my lungs, a heartbeat pulsing in my chest. I’ve watched the sky turn from dark to light. I’ve reached down and touched my dog’s soft coat, and stared into her shining eyes.

I’ve kissed my dog. I’ve thought about the girl who couldn’t run hard or far enough. And I’ve kissed her, too.

5 Lessons on Life Learned from Morning Walks with my Dog:

  1. Chart Your Own Course
  2. Live in the Moment
  3. Allow Yourself to Pause and Enjoy
  4. Listen to Your Body, Not Just Your Mind
  5. Learn to Experience Life

© 2016 Shannon Kopp, author of Pound for Pound 


Shannon Kopp, author of Pound for Pound, is a writer, eating disorder survivor, and animal welfare advocate. She has worked and volunteered at various animal shelters throughout San Diego and Los Angeles, where shelter dogs helped her to discover a healthier, more joyful way of living. Her mission is to help every shelter dog find a loving home, and to raise awareness about eating disorders and animal welfare issues.

For more information visit her website www.shannonkopp.com and follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

Sunshine Beach by Wendy Wax

  • sunshine beach (6:21) BerkleyTitle:  Sunshine Beach
  • Series:  Ten Beach Road #4
  • Author:  Wendy Wax
  • Genre:  Women’s Fiction
  • Pages:  432
  • Published:  June 2016 – Berkley
  • Source:  Publisher

Description:  There’s nothing that a fresh coat of paint and a few glasses of wine can’t fix…
 
After losing their life savings in a Ponzi scheme, Maddie, Avery, and Nikki banded together to make the most of what they’ve got left through determination, ingenuity, guts, and a large dose of elbow grease. It’s Maddie’s daughter Kyra who stumbles across a once glorious oceanfront hotel that has fallen into disrepair. The opportunity to renovate this seaside jewel is too good to pass up—especially when they come up with the idea of shooting their own independent television show about the restoration. What could possibly go wrong?
 
Everything. With the cameras rolling, Maddie’s second-chance romance with her all-too-famous new boyfriend gets complicated, Avery struggles with grief over the loss of her mother, and Nikki’s reluctance to commit to the man who loves her could leave her to face the biggest challenge of her life. Even the hotel seems to be against them, when their renovation uncovers a decades-old unsolved murder which just might bring their lives tumbling down all over again… (publisher)

My take:  If you can’t get to the beach this summer you’ll feel like you’re there when reading Sunshine BeachMaddie, Avery, Nikki and Kyra are back together looking for a new renovation project. While on a morning walk Kyra comes across a small, partially hidden, falling-down but perfectly situated hotel and just knows it has potential. When the other women agree they assume their roles and get the wheels of renovation turning. 

Wendy Wax’s novel hit all the marks I’ve come to appreciate in this series: women’s friendship, perseverance when life gets tough, and the ability to get along even when they didn’t always agree. There’s a mystery to solve along the way and the return appearances of all love interests from the previous novels. I enjoyed it all and recommend it to fans of the series and women’s fiction.

This book can stand alone but I recommend reading the series in order because you’ll get a deeper understanding of the growth in each character. Also, I’m the type of person who can get sucked into a HGTV marathon so I loved reading about the project at the center of each novel.

Blog Tour/Giveaway: One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid

  • one-true-loves-9781476776903_hrTitle:  One True Loves
  • Author:  Taylor Jenkins Reid
  • Genre:  Women’s Fiction
  • Pages:  352
  • Published:  June 2016 – Atria Books; Washington Square Press
  • Source:  Publisher; NetGalley

Description:  In her twenties, Emma Blair marries her high school sweetheart, Jesse. They build a life for themselves, far away from the expectations of their parents and the people of their hometown in Massachusetts. They travel the world together, living life to the fullest and seizing every opportunity for adventure.

On their first wedding anniversary, Jesse is on a helicopter over the Pacific when it goes missing. Just like that, Jesse is gone forever. Emma quits her job and moves home in an effort to put her life back together. Years later, now in her thirties, Emma runs into an old friend, Sam, and finds herself falling in love again. When Emma and Sam get engaged, it feels like Emma’s second chance at happiness.

That is, until Jesse is found. He’s alive, and he’s been trying all these years to come home to her. With a husband and a fiancé, Emma has to now figure out who she is and what she wants, while trying to protect the ones she loves.

Who is her one true love? What does it mean to love truly? Emma knows she has to listen to her heart. She’s just not sure what it’s saying.  (publisher)

My take:  Be sure to read the description above. I wasn’t sure how much to reveal about the story so I went with the publisher’s summary. Sounds like an emotional read, right? It is and I liked it.

I’ve enjoyed all of Taylor Jenkins Reid’s novels and her newest didn’t disappoint. What seemed like an improbable premise played out more believable than I initially thought it could. It’s a sweet (but not saccharine) story about the truth about love. I cared about Emma, Jesse and Sam and wondered how they would cope with the new reality each faced at the turning point of the novel. And wondered what I would do in their shoes.

I’ve come to expect that I’ll love reading one of Reid’s novels because I feel good when reading it – meaning I enjoy how she tells a story so much it doesn’t matter whether it’s heartbreaking or hilarious. One True Loves is all that and more and I enjoyed every page.

Recommended – especially to fans of the author and women’s fiction.


author pic TJRTaylor Jenkins Reid is an author and essayist from Acton, Massachusetts. She is the author of Forever, Interrupted, After I Do and Maybe In Another Life. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Alex, and her dog, Rabbit. You can follow her on Twitter @TJenkinsReid.

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US Giveaway: Radio Girls by Sarah-Jane Stratford

radio girls

London, 1926: The Great War is over, and change is in the air. Maisie Musgrave is thrilled to land a job as a secretary at the BBC, whose use of radio—still new, strange, and electrifying—is captivating the nation. But the hectic pace, smart young staff, and intimidating bosses only add to Maisie’s insecurity.

Soon, she is seduced by the work—gaining confidence as she arranges broadcasts by the most famous writers, scientists, and politicians in Britain. She is also caught up in a growing conflict between her two bosses, John Reith, the formidable Director-General of the BBC, and Hilda Matheson, the extraordinary director of the hugely popular Talks programming, who each have very different visions of what radio should be. Under Hilda’s tutelage, Maisie discovers her talent, passion, and ambition. But when she unearths a shocking conspiracy, she and Hilda join forces to make their voices heard both on and off the air. . . and then face the dangerous consequences of telling the truth for a living.
Throw in illicit romantic relationships between 1920’s literati; a dark political conspiracy; and a compelling fictional portrayal of one of the most influential feminists you’ve never heard of; and you’ve got a script for one of the most original historical fictional novels released this year.


Sarah-Jane Stratford author photoSarah-Jane Stratford is an author and essayist who has written for the GuardianBoston GlobeLos Angeles Review of Books, Slate, Salon, and Guernica, among others. She is also a member of WAM! (Women, Action, and the Media).


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radio girls