Saturday, June 1, 2024

2024 What's In Your Beach Bag?


With Summer 2024 officially kicked off, it is the perfect time to determine what books I will put in my beach bag!  

This is where I list 10 (sometimes more) books that I want to read over the summer.  I seem to get the reading done most years but have lagged in getting all the reviews posted.  My list for 2023 did not get completed.  I have been working on a project at work for the past 13 months and it has taken everything out of me and then some. Hoping the summer of 2024 is back to normal and I can get the books read and reviewed. 

Books that made the previous lists:

  2019 - What's in Your Bag?

  2020 - What's in Your Bag?


2022 - new job, twins graduated high school, my son finished his junior hockey career and all three kids were starting college - it slipped my mind.













Looking back at the titles, I don't seem to have many "beachy-themed" books.  I am sure they will all take me on an adventure. 

Happy Summer Reading and please don't forget to post a comment with recommendations!

Tuesday, May 7, 2024

Annie in Paris

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




Synopsis:  

Personal shopper Annie Valentine is back! Older and bolder!

Fashion guru Annie is struggling to cope with her hectic life. With the demands of two older children, plus four-year-old twins, her marriage to Ed is in a romance-free rut and she’s clinging by a couture thread to her job as the nation’s favourite fashion fixer.

And where is Svetlana, her multi-millionaire friend, when Annie needs her? Busy with an expensive mid-life crisis, that's where!

When Ed gets the chance to teach in Paris, Annie thinks time apart could be the answer. Wrong!

In Paris, Ed transforms into a debonair silver fox, attracting the attentions of stylish siren Sylvie.

Annie can’t lose her man or the job she loves, so bundling her bags, her babies and a reluctant Svetlana onto the Eurostar, she sets off to the rescue. But can the City of Love deliver the ooh la la that her marriage, and her fashion series, so desperately needs?

Another brilliant laugh out loud emotional read, perfect for fans of Fiona Gibson, Tracy Bloom and Sophie Ranald!




Purchase:  https://mybook.to/AnnieinParisSocial




One (or more) Sentence Summary: Emily in Paris for adults! I didn't realize until after I finished the book and went to look for other books by Carmen Reid that this was actually book 7 of a series.  It is 100% a stand-alone, but now I can't wait to read other books in the series. Get book 1 for free here. Books 2- 7 are free with Kindle Unlimited!

Annie is one of those characters that makes you laugh out loud and can only imagine how crazy her life really is.  She takes care of everyone - two older children and young twins, her husband, and friends. I absolutely love how she just packs up the twins and off she goes to Paris where her husband is spending the summer on sabbatical. I think the funniest part was getting locked in a courtyard (no spoiler here).  

Both Annie and her friend (Annie used to be a personal shopper for her) Svetlana grew a lot during the journey. I really liked how Svetlana went from wanting to have more plastic surgery to selling her designer clothes for charity and converting a plot of land into a community garden. She really grew a lot throughout the book. 

Very enjoyable read!





Carmen Reid is the bestselling author of numerous woman’s fiction titles including the Personal Shopper series starring Annie Valentine. After taking a break from writing she is back, introducing her hallmark feisty women characters to a new generation of readers. She lives in Glasgow with her husband and children.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/carmenreidwrites

Twitter: https://twitter.com/thiscarmenreid

Instagram; Carmen Reid (@carmenreidwrites) • Instagram photos and videos

Newsletter Sign Up: https://bit.ly/CarmenReidNews

Bookbub profile: Carmen Reid Books - BookBub





Tuesday, February 6, 2024

The Brilliant Life of Eudora Honeysett

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

Never miss out on future posts by following Seaside Book Nook.




Synopsis (from Amazon):  It's never too late to start living.

Eudora Honeysett is done with this noisy, moronic world - all of it. She has witnessed the indignities and suffering of old age and has lived a full life. At 85, she isn’t going to leave things to chance. Her end will be on her terms. With one call to a clinic in Switzerland, a plan is set in motion. 

Then she meets 10-year-old Rose Trewidney, a whirling, pint-sized rainbow of sparkling cheer. All Eudora wants is to be left alone to set her affairs in order. Instead, she finds herself embarking on a series of adventures with the irrepressible Rose and their affable neighbor, the recently widowed Stanley - afternoon tea, shopping sprees, trips to the beach, birthday celebrations, pizza parties. 

While the trio of unlikely BFFs grow closer and anxiously await the arrival of Rose’s new baby sister, Eudora is reminded of her own childhood - of losing her father during World War II and the devastating impact it had on her entire family. In reflecting on her past, Eudora realizes she must come to terms with what lies ahead. 

But now that her joy for life has been rekindled, how can she possibly say goodbye? 


"One adorably British odd couple ... Charming." (People)

“An exquisitely poignant tale of life, friendship and facing death ... heart-breaking yet ultimately uplifting .. Everyone should read this book.” (Ruth Hogan, author of Queenie Malone’s Paradise Hotel)

Infused with the emotional power of Me Before You and the irresistible charm of Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine and Be Frank with Me, a moving and joyous novel about an elderly woman ready to embrace death and the little girl who reminds her what it means to live.


One (or more) Sentence Summary: ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT! I fell in love with Rose and the impact she had on Eudora's life.  A beautiful story of innocent children and those that have lost hope. The book reminded me of Fredrick Baackman's Britt-Marie Was Here, which I loved (this is meant to be a huge compliment to Annie Lyons).

I couldn't put it down and want a sequel of Rose as young adult! I can't wait to read Annie Lyons' other novels. 

Caution: reading The Brilliant Life of Eudora Honeysett at the beach and wiping tears away can cause you to get sand and sunscreen in your eyes!

Annie Lyons has written several books since her first book was published in July 2013.  Not Quite Perfect reached number one in the Kindle bestsellers. Her latest book is The Air Raid Book Club, which is on my TBR list. Okay, all other books are now on my TBR list and I can't wait to read them.

Instagram: @annielyonsauthor

Twitter: @1AnnieLyons

Facebook: www.facebook.com/annielyonswriter

Website: www.annielyons.com



Sunday, February 4, 2024

Not Another Roman Holiday

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



Synopsis (from Amazon):  In the novella NOT ANOTHER ROMAN HOLIDAY, an American blogger meets a European Prince in Italy. She needs a story. He needs an escape from the paparazzi. Neither thought love would hit them in the eye like a grande pizza pie – but that's Rome for ya. (And, okay, it might also be amore.)


______

A modern, role-reversing twist on the classic film 
Roman Holiday by New York Times & USA Today bestselling author Marilyn Brant!

American entertainment blogger and aspiring poet, Jenna Bradley, is spending the summer in Rome, visiting her grandparents and working remotely for the online magazine/ezine WORLD VIBE. She's assigned to write a feature on the latest Goodwill Tour of an Eastern European royal – handsome and wealthy, perhaps, but aloof and surely dull. Definitely not her type.

The night before the big meet and greet, however, she comes face to face with an incredibly attractive man who surprises her and quickly wins her over with his wittiness, depth, and charm. He couldn't be more different from the royal stiff she's supposed to interview...or could he?

On the eve of his 26th birthday, Prince Andrei of Saragovia has had a long day of official duties followed by a little too much Grappa and some unexpected paparazzi stalking him at his hotel. While making his escape, the Prince inadvertently crosses paths with a cute American named Jenna and her friends, and he finds himself caught up in an action-packed 36-hour spree through the Italian capital.

Adventurous, fun, and romantic, Andrei is given a birthday celebration he never would have imagined, and Jenna gets the scoop of a lifetime. But the clock is ticking... What if they could spend more than just a day and two nights together in Rome?


One (or more) Sentence Summary: I have always been a big fan of Marilyn Brant's books and Not Another Roman Holiday didn't let me down.  I loved it!  Great story, fast read, fun characters, rom-com, laugh out loud while reading, and royals! All of my favorite things. Not Another Roman Holiday is a MUST READ!

Marilyn Brant is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling author of contemporary fiction. Her debut novel won RWA's prestigious Golden Heart Award® in 2007 and she was named the 2013 Author of the Year by the Illinois Association of Teachers of English. She wrote ACCORDING TO JANE, the story of a modern woman who receives dating advice from the spirit of Jane Austen, FRIDAY MORNINGS AT NINE, and A SUMMER IN EUROPE, all women's fiction releases from Kensington Books.

She's also a #1 Kindle & #1 Nook Bestseller and has written a series of fun and flirty contemporary romantic comedies, such as ON ANY GIVEN SUNDAE and PRIDE, PREJUDICE AND THE PERFECT MATCH, along with a bestselling coming-of-age romantic mystery (THE ROAD TO YOU), a sweet holiday romance (THE KNIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS), and the 7-book "Mirabelle Harbor" contemporary romance series. Look for her latest release, THE SECRET LIFE OF MAGGIE BLAKE, a light romantic suspense/fantasy/action & adventure tale, in May 2022!

Marilyn lives in the northern Chicago suburbs with her family, analyzing novels for the storytelling website Save the Cat! and working on her own writing projects. When she isn't rereading Austen's books or enjoying the latest releases by her author friends, she's daydreaming plot ideas for her next novel, eating chocolate indiscriminately and hiding from the laundry.

Visit her website: www.marilynbrant.com

Sunday, September 24, 2023

Santa's Slip Up


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

Never miss out on future posts by following Seaside Book Nook.


Book Summary:  

It’s the night of Halloween. Spooks, spiders, and skeletons abound, the full moon glows – so who is cheering, “Ho, ho, ho!”? Apparently, Santa Claus has come to town, though it’s the wrong time of year! But what could be a bad situation, is wittingly handled with humor, and there’s a new winner at this year’s Halloween parade

For fans of Room on the Broom and The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything.


Publisher: Pen It Publishing

ISBN-10: 1639844635

ISBN-12: 978-1639844630

Print Length: 38 pages



Purchase a copy of Santa’s Slip Up on Amazon, Bookshop.org, or Barnes and Noble. You can also add this to your GoodReads reading list.




One (or more) Sentence Summary: Really cute book that combines Halloween and Christmas.  Since all the Christmas decorations are out in the stores starting in October, this is a perfect book combining the two in a silly kids' books.  

I think kids will love it and is a perfect gift for their plastic pumpkin! It would make a great gift to a preschool - kindergarten teacher too!




Raven Howell writes stories and poetry for children. Having published several award-winning picture books, she enjoys sharing her love of literature by visiting classrooms and libraries. Raven is Creative & Publishing Advisor for Red Clover Reader, Poetry Director for Monster Magnificent, and writes The Book Bug column for Story Monsters Ink magazine. Her poems are found in children’s magazines such as Ladybug, Spider, Highlights for Children, Humpty Dumpty, and Hello Magazine. She’s a Collaborating Author for Reading is Fundamental SoCal and writes storybooks for Reading Gate.


You can find her online at:


https://www.ravenhowell.com

https://twitter.com/atpearthkeeper

https://www.instagram.com/atpearthkeeper/

https://www.facebook.com/raven.howell.75/

https://www.facebook.com/RavenHowellAuthorandPoetPage/

https://www.pinterest.com/pickward/_saved/

https://www.linkedin.com/in/raven-howell-5a813015b/

https://www.tiktok.com/@ravenhowell22



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Saturday, September 2, 2023

The Everyday Psalmist

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

Never miss out on future posts by following Seaside Book Nook.




Book Summary:  “If there’s anything we can learn from the many writers of the Psalms,” explains Leslie Calhoun, associate editor of Ink & Willow, “it’s that talking to God doesn’t have to be hard. Prayer can be raw, honest, and messy, and it doesn’t require fancy words or insider language to be meaningful and restorative on a deep soul level.”

 

The twenty-one devotions are divided into three sections—Life Is Beautiful, Life Is Hard, and God’s Got This—that each focus on different aspects of the spiritual journey with the accompanying appropriate Psalms. In addition to the guided prompts, each devotion also ends with a “Getting Real” section that invites readers to jot down what is beautiful about the day, what is hard, and where they need to see God most. 


This beautiful journal lays out simple, inviting prompts for readers who are longing to deepen their relationship with God through prayer but who might be struggling to find the words to accurately express how they’re feeling. Using the prayer language of the psalms as a starting point, The Everyday Psalmist provides an interactive, creative space for Christians to explore writing their own psalms and prayers as part of their daily spiritual practice while learning more about the biblical psalms—what they are, the different types, the origin, and how they are arranged. With quotes and reflections, this journal acts as writer’s guide that encourages reflection and, in the words of Eugene Peterson, helps get “everything out in the open before God.” 


With undated pages, an approachable layout, and calming images of nature, The Everyday Psalmist awakens gratitude and honesty, and most importantly, will enrichen spiritual lives in a personal, transformative way. 


One (or more) Sentence Summary:  The Everyday Psalmist is a beautiful book that encourages you to connect with God through thoughtful prayer. I really liked the thought-provoking prompts.  I read the section and questions and would think them over for a few days before journaling. I found I needed more time to really think about the prompts and what they meant to me.  I found writing a psalm very difficult, but I believe it is because I have never done so and felt it had to be one certain way. The guide will walk you through how to write one. 

The photos and saying thoughts in the journal are so beautiful.  There are several I would like to frame, however, that would mean tearing my journal apart....which I could never do. My favorite part of the journal (and easiest for me) was the "Getting Real" sections. Three questions are asked:
  •     What's beautiful today?
  •     What's hard right now?
  •     Where do you need God most?
Even after completing The Everyday Psalmist, I can still answer those 3 questions in a daily journal.

The Everyday Psalmist would make a wonderful gift, but make sure you pick up a copy for yourself!



Ink & Willow products infuse contemplation and inspiration into the regular spiritual practice of creative-minded Christians, wherever they are in their faith journey. Each thoughtfully curated gift product is based in biblical truth and sparks a reminder of how God reveals beauty in the midst of our ordinary.


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