Monday, May 2, 2016

China Rich Girlfriend

Synopsis (from Amazon):  On the eve of her wedding to Nicholas Young, heir to one of the greatest fortunes in Asia, Rachel should be over the moon. She has a flawless Asscher-cut diamond from JAR, a wedding dress she loves more than anything found in the salons of Paris, and a fiancĂ© willing to sacrifice his entire inheritance in order to marry her. But Rachel still mourns the fact that her birthfather, a man she never knew, won't be able to walk her down the aisle. Until: a shocking revelation draws Rachel into a world of Shanghai splendor beyond anything she has ever imagined. Here we meet Carlton, a Ferrari-crashing bad boy known for Prince Harry-like antics; Colette, a celebrity girlfriend chased by fevered paparazzi; and the man Rachel has spent her entire life waiting to meet: her father. Meanwhile, Singapore's It Girl, Astrid Leong, is shocked to discover that there is a downside to having a newly minted tech billionaire husband. A romp through Asia's most exclusive clubs, auction houses, and estates, China Rich Girlfriend brings us into the elite circles of Mainland China, introducing a captivating cast of characters, and offering an inside glimpse at what it's like to be gloriously, crazily, China-rich.

One (or more) Sentence Summary: Crazy Rich Girlfriend is just crazy good! Great story with crazy twist.  I loved all the characters too.  Crazy clothes, apartments, cars, and lifestyle made this so much fun.  I didn't realize this was a sequel.

Fast read/slow read:  I listened to China Rich Girlfriend on Audible.  

Would I Read Other Books by the Author:  I would.  I just found out there is Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan and I want to check out.

Kevin Kwan is the author of "Crazy Rich Asians," the international bestseller now being adapted as a major motion picture. Born and raised in Singapore, Kwan has called Manhattan home for the past two decades but still craves pineapple tarts and a decent plate of Hokkien mee. For the latest news and information, please visit:


Saturday, April 30, 2016

The Art of Calm

~ I received no compensation and opinions are 100% my own or my family. ~

Synopsis (from Amazon): Let's face it: the more we rush around, the shorter the days can seem. Packed with page after page of inspirational ideas to help you bring your life back to center, this is the perfect antidote to reducing the chaos of everyday life. Filled with exquisite photographs and insightful quotations, this elegant book offers an opportunity to enjoy guilt-free "me" time, as well as easy suggestions for a more peaceful existence—from keeping a bud vase on your desk to tucking yourself into bed an hour early with a book you love. The brilliant images are a reminder to savor the world's natural beauty—and ease the mind in an instant. This enriching, beautifully illustrated book is an inspiring guide to relaxation and harmony. Simple tips for how to unwind, ideas for spending quality time with loved ones, and illuminating quotes offer ideas on how to slow down and savor life's simple moments.

One (or more) Sentence Summary: The Art of Calm is a very beautiful book.  I had a massage scheduled and took the book with me.  I sat in the calming room and read it before my massage.  The pictures are perfect as well.  Here are some of my favorites.

"Keep a beautiful flower on your desk."  I started doing this as part of my 2015 new year's resolution.  I have kept this up in 2016 and extended it to my house.  I have them in my kitchen window for all of us to enjoy.

"Say something nice to a stranger."  Love this one.  

"Make a playlist of your favorite songs from high school."  I just join my music (I think through apple) and I downloaded so many of my favorite old songs.  I rock out in the car on the way to work.  Great way to start my day.

Fast read/slow read:  Very quick.

Cover:  So beautiful and I love symbolism of the lavender.
What Others Are Saying:  Make sure you check out the other reviews on the TLC Book Tours
Thursday, April 7th: Book Nerd
Tuesday, April 12th: Kahakai Kitchen
Friday, April 15th: Create With Joy
Friday, April 15th: Patricia's Wisdom
Monday, April 18th: Raven Haired Girl
Tuesday, April 19th: A Bookish Way of Life
Wednesday, April 20th: Creating My Kaleidoscope
Thursday, April 21st: she treads softly
Monday, April 25th: Ms. Nose in a Book
Tuesday, April 26th: A Bookworm's World
Wednesday, April 27th: 5 Minutes For Books

Thursday, April 28th: Dwell in Possibility

Would I Read Other Books by the Author: Yes, I loved The Art of Calm.

REBECCA ASCHER-WALSH is a journalist who covers celebrities and lifestyle. She contributes to many newspapers and magazines, including Entertainment WeeklyThe Wall Street Journal and The L.A. Times.


Wednesday, March 9, 2016

All The Light We Cannot See

Synopsis (from Amazon): From the highly acclaimed, multiple award-winning Anthony Doerr, the beautiful, stunningly ambitious instant New York Times bestseller about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II.

Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History, where he works as the master of its thousands of locks. When she is six, Marie-Laure goes blind and her father builds a perfect miniature of their neighborhood so she can memorize it by touch and navigate her way home. When she is twelve, the Nazis occupy Paris and father and daughter flee to the walled citadel of Saint-Malo, where Marie-Laure’s reclusive great-uncle lives in a tall house by the sea. With them they carry what might be the museum’s most valuable and dangerous jewel.

In a mining town in Germany, the orphan Werner grows up with his younger sister, enchanted by a crude radio they find. Werner becomes an expert at building and fixing these crucial new instruments, a talent that wins him a place at a brutal academy for Hitler Youth, then a special assignment to track the resistance. More and more aware of the human cost of his intelligence, Werner travels through the heart of the war and, finally, into Saint-Malo, where his story and Marie-Laure’s converge.

Doerr’s “stunning sense of physical detail and gorgeous metaphors” (San Francisco Chronicle) are dazzling. Deftly interweaving the lives of Marie-Laure and Werner, he illuminates the ways, against all odds, people try to be good to one another. Ten years in the writing, a National Book Award finalist, All the Light We Cannot See is a magnificent, deeply moving novel from a writer “whose sentences never fail to thrill” (Los Angeles Times).

One (or more) Sentence Summary: The Book Thief + The Da Vinci Code.  My sister recommend All The Light We Cannot See and I have no idea why, but I thought it was about aliens.  This books is truly, WOW!  So amazingly intertwined and cleverly written.  I just LOVED it!

Favorite Character(s):  Maure-Laure is my favorite character, even though there were several others I truly enjoyed.  I can't believe what she went through and was blind as well.  She can do wrong in my book!

Fast read/slow read:  Super, super fast.

Cover:  Given I thought the book was about aliens, I do not really care for the cover.

What Others Are Saying:  USA Today - Sharon Peters
“This tough-to-put-down book proves its worth page after lyrical page…Each and every person in this finely spun assemblage is distinct and true.”
NPR - Alan Cheuse
“Doerr is an exquisite stylist; his talents are on full display.”
New Yorker
“Intricate… A meditation on fate, free will, and the way that, in wartime, small choices can have vast consequences.”

Would I Read Other Books by the Author:  Sign me up right away.

Anthony Doerr is the author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel All the Light We Cannot See. He is also the author of two story collections Memory Wall and The Shell Collector, the novel About Grace, and the memoir Four Seasons in Rome. He has won four O. Henry Prizes, the Rome Prize, the New York Public Library’s Young Lions Award, the National Magazine Award for fiction, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and the Story Prize. Doerr lives in Boise, Idaho, with his wife and two sons.


Monday, March 7, 2016


~ I received no compensation and opinions are 100% my own or my family. ~

Synopsis (from Amazon): So. You want to work in advertising. The glitz, the glamour, the cocktail-fueled brainstorming sessions and Xbox breaks. Sounds like a dream job, right?

Wrong. The reality can be a nightmare. There are five simple rules for succeeding in the ad world—and I think I’ve already broken every single one…

1) Never let them see you cry. Even if your best friend breaks your heart. And posts it all over social media.

2) Be one of the boys. And, if you were born with the wrong equipment, flaunt what you've got to distract them while you get ahead.

3) Come up with the perfect pitch in an instant—or have your resumĂ© ready to go at all times.

4) Trust no one. Seriously. If you don't watch your back, they'll steal your ideas, your pride, even your stapler.

5) Most importantly, don’t ever, under any circumstances, be a CopyGirl.

Trust me. I know…

One (or more) Sentence Summary:  Kay is a very smart and talented copygirl.  I was so mad at how some people treated her in the beginning of the book.  As we start to cheer Kay on, she becomes an extremely important part of a team and the advertising firm she works for.  She stands up breaks that glass ceiling.  I was in Kay's corner from the beginning and so happy with the ending.

Favorite Character(s):  Suit is my favorite character.  I loved that he stuck it out and continued to pursue Kay.  He believed in her as person first and her talents second.

Setting:  New York City, one of my favorite cities!

Fast read/slow read:  Copygirl started out on the slower side for me, and turned into a quick read about a third of the way.

What Others Are Saying:  “Here’s what happens when girl power storms Mad Men….Wickedly funny and smartly sweet….A high-octane, electric look at Madison Avenue craziness from a pair who’ve been there and done that.”—Publishers Weekly

Copygirl is my new girl crush. Always looking to discover more Cool Funny Working Girl Heroines. A great, great read.”—Lucy Sykes, bestselling coauthor of The Knockoff

Would I Read Other Books by the Author:  Absolutely I would.  I really enjoyed the book.

Anna Mitchael is a Louisiana-born writer who now lives on a ranch in Texas with her family, lots of cattle and a one-eyed dog. She is the author of a memoir entitled Just Don’t Call Me Ma’am, a monthly magazine column and a blog on positive living. She often writes about the modern female experience, hope, perseverance and the comfort of coyotes. 

Michelle Sassa is a freelance writer who has created memorable ad campaigns for brands like Coca-Cola, Reebok and New York Road Runners. She lives with her husband and three kids by the Jersey Shore, where she is an avid soccer player, rock music aficionado, and disciple of stupid humor. CopyGirl is Michelle's first novel.


Sunday, March 6, 2016

From A to Zoe

~ I received no compensation and opinions are 100% my own or my family. ~

Synopsis (from Amazon): Zoe Zimmerman wants a new start. So she does the logical thing: she moves to New York City. But when a man from her past finds her—and a lump in her breast—Zoe realizes that troubles can follow you no matter where you go and that you have to roll with the punches. 

Thankfully, Zoe knows how to do just that. When she finds a rat in her new apartment, she doesn’t freak out—she figures out that he prefers Swiss cheese to mozzarella. And when the woman who offered her a job dies suddenly and Zoe finds herself a suspect in the murder investigation, she vows to frame whoever is trying to frame her. 

With humor and spunk, "From A to Zoe" chronicles the adventures of one woman just trying to make it in New York. Whether she’s taking a taxi-driving lover from Guadeloupe, battling cancer, or solving the murder she’s being blamed for, Zoe doesn’t back down from the opportunities or challenges of modern life. 

Take the mystery-solving pluckiness of Janet Evanovich’s characters, add a good dose of David-Sedaris-style humor, and you get Zoe Zimmerman, one of the most memorable personalities out there.

One (or more) Sentence Summary: One minute I was mad at Zoe for being the mistress and the next minute I was laughing at the pet rat in her apartment. Another minute I was mad that she was being set up for murder and the next minute I was laughing about Zoe's brother.

Favorite Character(s):  Zoe, of course.  She was first a victim and came out the super hero!

Fast read/slow read:  I thought the book had slow parts, and fast parts.  

Marie-Jo Fortis is the author of the critically acclaimed satirical thriller "Chainsaw Jane". Come and pay her a little visit at


The Changing Season

Brief Synopsis:
A beautifully crafted and poignant coming of age story where loyalties will be divided, friendships will be tested, teenage love will be discovered, and through it all, the enduring bond between a boy and his beloved dog will always be remembered.

This was supposed to be a simple summer for Billy: one more lazy expanse of time before college began. He'd fill the hours playing with Jimmy - his canine best buddy - going camping and doing all the things he promised Jimmy they'd do before Billy left. But that was before the accident that shook the entire town. It was before the summer job that turned into something so much more than a way to get a paycheck. And it was before Vicki. This summer was destined to be many things to Billy, things he didn't truly understand until now. But it was definitely not going to be simple.

An enormously touching, richly textured, deeply moving novel of new adulthood, The Changing Season is an experience to savor.

Early Praise:
"The Changing Season is a story that will bring you back to that awkward period of time between childhood and adult life. I highly recommend this book." - Richard Paul Evans, #1 NYT Bestselling Author, THE CHRISTMAS BOX and THE MISTLETOE PROMISE

"Manchester's The Changing Season will be to young adults what Old Yeller is to my grandson."
- Ed Asner, Actor, Up, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Lou Grant, Elf

"The Changing Season is a thought-provoking coming-of-age tale that explores the complicated themes of love, faith, family and, above all, loyalty. Mr. Manchester's portrayal of a boy at the cusp of manhood is evocative and sympathetic." - Susan Wilson, NYT Bestselling Author, ONE GOOD DOG

"Heartfelt, emotional, and beautifully written, The Changing Season is captivating. Steven Manchester is one gifted storyteller!" - Carla Neggers, NYT & USA Today Bestselling Author, HARBOR ISLAND and ECHO LAKE

My Thoughts:
Steve writes such beautiful books.  His books are well written and contain many life lessons.  They are clean, wholesome, and meaningful. The Changing Season is on my to read very soon book list.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Glory Over Everything, Beyond The Kitchen House

I just had to share this with you all because I am so excited.  As you may remember, I absolutely LOVED The Kitchen House (My Review Kitchen House).  My ROC MOM bookclub read it so long ago.  However, I could never get the book out of my head.  So I reached out to the author Kathleen Grissom and started emailing with her every few months.  She would always give me an update regarding her next book and promised me an advanced copy.

Imagine my surprise when I got a package that contained Glory Over Everything inside.  I have two more books that I need to read, but have been carrying Glory Over Everything around for a week.  I want to crack open the cover SO, SO, SO badly.

Also, Kathleen sent out an email, so I thought I would share it with you all.  Kathleen is just too cool for words!  Keep a look out for my review.  I will post it as soon I am finished!

A note to all of my wonderful blogger and bookclub friends:

Along with sending my best wishes for 2016, I want to thank each of you for your incredible support of The Kitchen House. Over the past few years, I have been truly overwhelmed with gratitude with all of the notes I’ve received, book club invitations extended, and the genuine connection you have made with me and the Kitchen House characters. I truly feel blessed.

With your enthusiasm and encouragement spurring me on, I have now completed my second novel, Glory Over Everything, set to be released April 5, 2016 and I simply can’t wait for you to read it and to hear what you think!

In this second book, it is 1830 and we find Jamie, Belle’s son from The Kitchen House, assuming a secret identity, living the life of a wealthy aristocrat in Philadelphia society, passing as white. Compelled by a promise he made to the man who saved his life when he was a runaway slave, Jamie is led back to Virginia, down to North Carolina and finally into the complex twists of the underground railroad and the Great Dismal Swamp.

What made the publication of The Kitchen House so special for me were the personal conversations that I had with so many of you during our book club meetings. You shared so openly with me how the characters touched you. I often felt that we shared a family history. So now, I present to you Jamie and his extended family in Glory Over Everything. I hope you will love them as much as I do.

Always, with deepest gratitude,