Wednesday, November 29, 2017


Synopsis (from Amazon): Trees can't tell jokes, but they can certainly tell stories....

Red is an oak tree who is many rings old. Red is the neighborhood "wishtree" - people write their wishes on pieces of cloth and tie them to Red's branches. Along with her crow friend, Bongo, and other animals who seek refuge in Red's hollows, this "wishtree" watches over the neighborhood. 
You might say Red has seen it all. Until a new family moves in. Not everyone is welcoming, and Red's experiences as a wishtree are more important than ever. 
Funny, deep, warm, and nuanced, Wishtree is Newbery Medalist and New York Times best-selling author Katherine Applegate at her very best - writing from the heart and from a completely unexpected point of view.

One (or more) Sentence Summary: ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT! What a wonderful story.  Loved her book The One and Only Ivan as well.  I love how Red Oak and the animals brings two families (really the adults) to a common understanding that being different and being from different places is okay.  My neighbors have a huge tree that hangs into our yard - I now think that it watches over the neighborhood.  My neighbors must think I am crazy when I am outside and say hello to her (the tree).  She had such beautiful organ/red leaves this fall too.  

The Wishtree concept is so beautiful.  I work in higher education and think this idea would be so cool on campus.  

Beautiful story for all ages!

Would I Read Other Books by the Author:  Yes, I love her books.  She my review on The One and Only Ivan (need to write that review!).  I need to read Crenshaw.

Katherine Applegate is the author of THE ONE AND ONLY IVAN, winner of the 2013 Newbery Medal. Her novel CRENSHAW spent over twenty weeks on the New York Times children's bestseller list, and her first middle-grade stand-alone novel, the award-winning HOME OF THE BRAVE, continues to be included on state reading lists, summer reading lists, and class reading lists. 

Monday, November 27, 2017

Confession of a Domestic Failure

Synopsis (from Amazon): From the creator of The Honest Toddler comes a fiction debut sure to be a must-listen for moms everywhere. 

There are good moms and bad moms - and then there are hot-mess moms. Introducing Ashley Keller, career girl turned stay-at-home mom who's trying to navigate the world of Pinterest-perfect, Facebook-fantastic, and Instagram-impressive mommies but failing miserably. 

When Ashley gets the opportunity to participate in the Motherhood Better boot camp run by the mommy-blog-empire maven she idolizes, she jumps at the chance to become the perfect mom she's always wanted to be. But will she fly high or flop? 
With her razor-sharp wit and knack for finding the funny in everything, Bunmi Laditan creates a character as flawed and lovable as Bridget Jones or Becky Bloomwood while hilariously lambasting the societal pressures placed upon every new mother. At its heart, Ashley's story reminds moms that there's no way to be perfect - but many ways to be great.

One (or more) Sentence Summary: HILARIOUS! I couldn't get enough of a Confession of a Domestic Failure.  I completely agree that Ashley is a lovable as Bridget Jones and Becky Bloomwood. Her participation in Motherhood Better boot camp is laugh out loud funny.  The underwear video conference was the absolute best!  The craft project in the oven....oh my gosh!  These are just two or many, many funny things that happen to Ashley.  Confession of a Domestic Failure is a must read!

Would I Read Other Books by the Author: For sure.  I would love to see Ashley in a sequel.  The book left it open for one!

Bunmi Laditan is a contributor to,,, and The Huffington Post. She lives with her family outside of Montreal. The Honest Toddler is based on her youngest child. Not potty trained, not trying, HT enjoys attention, cake, television, running & games.

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Caroline: Litte House, Revisited

Synopsis (from Amazon): In this novel authorized by the Little House estate, Sarah Miller vividly recreates the beauty, hardship, and joys of the frontier in a dazzling work of historical fiction, a captivating story that illuminates one courageous, resilient, and loving pioneer woman as never before - Caroline Ingalls, Ma in Laura Ingalls Wilder's beloved Little House books. 
In the frigid days of February 1870, Caroline Ingalls and her family leave the familiar comforts of the Big Woods of Wisconsin and the warm bosom of her family for a new life in Kansas Indian Territory. Packing what they can carry in their wagon, Caroline, her husband, Charles, and their little girls, Mary and Laura, head west to settle in a beautiful, unpredictable land full of promise and peril. 
The pioneer life is a hard one, especially for a pregnant woman with no friends or kin to turn to for comfort or help. The burden of work must be shouldered alone, sickness tended without the aid of doctors, and babies birthed without the accustomed hands of mothers or sisters. But Caroline's new world is also full of tender joys. In adapting to this strange new place and transforming a rough log house built by Charles' hands into a home, Caroline must draw on untapped wells of strength she does not know she possesses. 
For more than 80 years, generations have been enchanted by the adventures of the American frontier's most famous child, Laura Ingalls Wilder, in the Little House books. Now that familiar story is retold in this captivating tale of family, fidelity, hardship, love, and survival that vividly reimagines our past.

One (or more) Sentence Summary:  I was (and am) a HUGE fan of Little House on the Prairie books and the TV show.  When I first heard about this book, I couldn't wait to read it.  The books and the show never really focused on Caroline.  The book Caroline: Little House, Revisited, is a wonderful tribute to Ma!  We are allow to really get to know and understand her, including how important family was to her.  She made so many sacrifices for her family and was a very strong and caring women. 

I really enjoyed Caroline: Little House, Revisited and am hoping there will be more (at least a sequel).  Please let there be more!

Would I Read Other Books by the Author: Yes.  I am hoping there is a sequel to Caroline: Little House, Revisited.

Sarah Miller began writing her first novel at the age of ten, and has spent the last two decades working in libraries and bookstores. She is the author of two previous historical novels, Miss Spitfire: Reaching Helen Keller, and The Lost Crown. Her nonfiction debut, The Borden Murders: Lizzie Borden and the Trial of the Century, was hailed by the New York Times as "a historical version of Law & Order." She lives in Michigan.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Amanda Wakes Up

Synopsis (from Amazon): When Amanda Gallo, fresh from the backwater of local TV, lands the job of her dreams at FAIR News - the coveted morning anchor slot - she's finally made it: a six-figure salary, a wardrobe allowance, plenty of on-air face time, and a chance to realize her dreams, not to mention buy herself lunch. Amanda Wakes Up takes off as Amanda feels for the first time that she can make her mom and her best friend proud and think about an actual future with her boyfriend, Charlie. But she finds her journalistic ideals shredded as she struggles to keep up with the issues in a ratings-crazed madhouse - battling for hair and makeup time, coping with her sexist (but scathingly handsome) coanchor, Rob, mixing up the headlines with pajama modeling on the street, and showing Benji Diggs, her media maestro boss, that she's got what it takes. 

As the news heats up in a hotly contested election season and a wild-card candidate, former Hollywood actor Victor Fluke, appears on the scene, Amanda's pressure-cooker job gets hotter and her personal life unravels. Walking a knife's edge between ambition and survival, and about to break the biggest story of her career, Amanda must decide what she's willing to give up to get ahead - and what she needs to hold on to to save herself.

One (or more) Sentence Summary: I liked reading about all the nutty things Amanda had to go through all for "the story."  Amanda Wakes Up was very entertaining hitting several different emotions - funny, energizing, nerve wrecking, and sexy/romantic. The story ties in so many similar recent events, it made it a very interesting but fun read.  I really liked the ethical challenge Amanda took us through the entire book.  I also liked the outcome and how she handled the challenges.  She made the right choice and did the right thing (in my opinion!).

Would I Read Other Books by the Author: I would, read other books by Alisyn Camerota.  

Alisyn Camerota is a journalist and cohost of CNN's morning show New Day. Prior to joining CNN, Camerota was cohost of FOX News Channel's morning show FOX + Friends Weekend. She has been a national correspondent for NBC's morning magazine show Real Life and the crime show America's Most Wanted

Saturday, November 18, 2017

One Good Thing

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

Synopsis (from Amazon): Before you can fix it up, you might have to tear it down.... 

Embroiled in a battle to regain control of their renovation turned reality TV show, Do Over, Maddie, Avery, Nikki, and Kyra find themselves holding tight to the frayed ends of their friendship and relationships. 
Maddie must face the realities of dating a rock star once again topping the charts and deal with her hapless ex-husband while Avery is caught up in family drama even as she attempts to transform a tiny cottage into a home for the newly impoverished heiress who helped bankroll their last renovation. Put on bedrest, a hugely pregnant Nikki can't quite believe love can last or trust in her own maternal instinct. And Kyra, who has secretly put Bella Flora at risk in an attempt to salvage Do Over, must decide whether to accept a desperately needed bailout from her son's famous father that comes with far too many strings attached.... 
But friendship is made for times like these, to keep each other - and their dreams - from crumbling.

One (or more) Sentence Summary: Nice story, easy read and a series that doesn't require you read to the books in order.  They are are all stand alone novels.  The characters are great and all work together to make a good story.  I don't feel like this series is about one of the characters with the others in the background like other series.  If you are looking for a good, easy, take me to the beach type of read, One Good Thing would fit the bill.

Would I Read Other Books by the Author: Yes...I am currently reading A Bella Flora Christmas.  Also check out my review for Sunshine Beach.

Wendy Wax was born in St. Petersburg, Florida, and graduated from University of Georgia. After college she worked in radio, television, and film. Her books include Ocean Beach, Ten Beach Road, Single in Suburbia, Hostile Makeover, Leave it to Cleavage, and 7 days and 7 Nights. She resides in Atlanta, Georgia.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Best Day Ever

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

Synopsis (from Amazon): In the bestselling, page-turning vein of The Couple Next Door and The Dinner, Kaira Rouda weaves a gripping, tautly suspenseful tale of deception and betrayal dark enough to destroy a marriage…or a life. 

“I glance at my wife as she climbs into the passenger seat, and I am bursting with confidence. Today will be everything I’ve promised her…and more…” 

Paul Strom has the perfect life: a glittering career as an advertising executive, a beautiful wife, two healthy boys and a big house in a wealthy suburb. And he’s the perfect husband: breadwinner, protector, provider. That’s why he’s planned a romantic weekend for his wife, Mia, at their lake house, just the two of them. And he’s promised today will be the best day ever. 

But as Paul and Mia drive out of the city and toward the countryside, a spike of tension begins to wedge itself between them and doubts start to arise. How much do they trust each other? And how perfect is their marriage, or any marriage, really? 

Forcing us to ask ourselves just how well we know those who are closest to us, Best Day Ever crackles with dark energy, spinning ever tighter toward its shocking conclusion. 

One (or more) Sentence Summary: What a thriller!  Best Day Ever kept me on my toes the entire story.  It also ended in a perfect situation for a sequel!  Paul is one devious man.  Once I figured out what Paul was up to, he surprised since he was just so evil. All the crazy things he did once he was confronted by Mia was unbelievable.  Great thriller - quick read!

I liked the scenes at Lakeside (which I didn't realize is a real place).  I have been reading a lot of books that seem to take place in Ohio lately.  Best Day Ever takes place in Columbus and Lakeside

Would I Read Other Books by the Author: Yes, I would read another book by Kaira.  I have read Here, Home, Hope, and In the Mirror.

Kaira Rouda is the USA Today bestselling author of novels including Here, Home, HopeThe Goodbye Year, In the Mirror and All the Difference. Her stories explore what goes on behind closed doors of seemingly perfect lives. She lives in Southern California with her family and she's at work on her next novel. Visit her website, Connect with her on; and on Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter - @KairaRouda.