Friday, January 31, 2020

The Secret Mother

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

Synopsis (from Amazon):  'Are you my mummy?’

Tessa Markham returns home to find a child in her kitchen. He thinks she’s his mother. But Tessa doesn’t have any children. 

Not anymore.

She doesn’t know who the little boy is or how he got there. 

After contacting the police, Tessa is suspected of taking the mystery child. Her whole life is turned upside down. And then her husband reveals a secret of his own…

Tessa isn’t sure what to believe or who to trust. Because someone is lying. To find out who, she must confront her painful past. But is the truth more dangerous than Tessa realizes? 

One (or more) Sentence Summary:  Oh My Gosh!  What a great book.  Totally unexpected beginning, middle and end!  Super fast read that kept me up all night because I couldn't put it down. Great, great book!

Would I Read Other Books by the Author: This was the first book by Shalini Boland the I have read and it will not be the last one.  I am so happy I found a new author!

Shalini Boland is a USA Today bestselling author of psychological thrillers The Girl from the SeaThe Best FriendThe Millionaire's Wife, and The Child Next Door. Shalini lives in Dorset, England with her husband, two children, and their cheeky terrier mix. Before kids, she was signed to Universal Music Publishing as a singer/songwriter, but now she spends her days writing suspense thrillers in between school runs and endless baskets of laundry. She is also the author of two bestselling young adult series as well as a children's World War II novel with a time-travel twist.

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

The Permanent Weight Loss Plan + Giveaway

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

BOOK DESCRIPTION:  Diets come and go, and the scale needle swings as you drop pounds and then gain them back. But what if there were a weight loss solution for forever? Not another fad diet based on deprivation and restriction, but a holistic system for shedding pounds and maintaining your weight?

In The Permanent Weight Loss Plan, Janice Asher, MD, and Fulbright Open Research Fellow, Jae Rivera, reveal (from their own first-hand experiences) that it’s not just about the food you eat or don’t eat—it’s about a mindset and lifestyle change. After collectively losing 170 pounds and maintaining their weight for years, Janice and Jae share scientific evidence, personal experiences, and practical insights on how you can successfully reframe your relationship with food.

It’s about stopping the shame associated with body size, recognizing instances of disordered eating, equipping yourself with the knowledge of what behaviors contribute to lasting weight loss, and making use of proven strategies. Get actionable tips on how to:

  • Overcome barriers like stress, shame, and emotional eating
  • Escape the comfort food circle of hell
  • Eat food that nourishes your intestinal microbiome and brain
  • Replace unhealthy habits with new ones that will treat your body well
  • Boost your metabolism by eating during the right times of the day
  • Commit to an exercise regime you can enjoy
  • Transform your kitchen from danger zone to a safe space
  • Survive potential landmines like holidays and parties
  • Develop strategies for not gaining back the weight you lose
  • Stop the cycle of fat-shaming and treat yourself with kindness
Complete with 26 recipes for cauliflower quinoa puttanesca, “umami bomb” roasted portabella mushrooms, blueberry breakfast smoothie, curried lentil salad, and more, The Permanent Weight Loss Plan encourages readers, with gentle humor and compassion, to embrace a paradigm shift and transform their lives for good.


Book Title The Permanent Weight Loss Plan: A 10-Step Approach To Ending Yo-Yo Dieting by Dr. Janice Asher; Jae Rivera
Category:  Adult Non-Fiction (18+), 308 pages
Genre How-To
Publisher Skyhorse Publishing

Release date:   January 2020

Tour dates: January 7 to February 3, 2020
Content Rating: PG

iRead Book Tours: Check out other blogs and tour stops:

Jan 7 – Working Mommy Journal – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 7 - Over Coffee Conversations – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 7 - Reading Authors - book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 8 – A Mama's Corner of the World – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 9 – Rockin' Book Reviews – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 10 – Tabi Thoughts - book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 13 – Literary Flits – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 14 – Library of Clean Reads – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 15 – Locks, Hooks and Books – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 15 - The 411 on Books, Authors, and Publishing News - book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 16 – b for bookreview – book spotlight
Jan 21 – Laura's Interests – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 22 – Words And Peace – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 23 – - book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 28 – Rainy Day Reviews – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 29 – Seaside Book Nook – book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 30 – StoreyBook Reviews - book spotlight / giveaway
Jan 30 - eBook Addicts - book spotlight / giveaway

Amy Oestreicher
Dr. Janice Asher
Janice Asher is a gynecologist at the University of Pennsylvania. In addition to being a clinician there, she began the MILE (mindful, intuitive living & eating) Program, and the PANDA (Physicians And Nurses Domestic Abuse) Program. She is a co-author and co-editor of a textbook on sexual assault.

Jae Rivera
Jae Rivera is a biological anthropologist specializing in human osteology. She received her BA from the University of Pennsylvania, and continued on to work at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. Presently, she is living in Peru analyzing human remains with a Fulbright Open Research Grant. and will begin her PhD when she returns in 2018.
Connect with the author:    website ~ twitter
Win one of five hardcopy of THE PERMANENT WEIGHT LOSS PLAN (USA) (5 winners)
(ends 2/10/2020).  I so want to win a copy…..I need this book!

Buy the Book

Ten Things My Husband Hated

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

Synopsis (from Amazon):  Maggie Moone is happily divorced.

And with her talent for fixing things, she’s perfectly content with her mundane life in the sleepy English village of Saffron Sweeting. That is, until one humiliating March evening when she learns everyone else assumes she’d love to mend her broken marriage.

Determined to prove them wrong, Maggie and her friends concoct a list of ten ways to assert her independence and live large. But her mission to move on leads to unexpected encounters, and Maggie soon finds herself mixing business with pleasure. Is the attractive young Irishman just another item on her list, or is he something more?

Before long, unresolved issues from her past begin to clash, and Maggie is forced to wonder if antagonising her ex-husband was such a stellar idea.

No sooner does she begin to understand what’s important to her, than she stands to lose everything that truly matters.

This is the fourth in the collection of Saffron Sweeting romantic comedies, which can be read in any order. If you like gentle British humour and deliciously resilient heroines, you’ll love Ten Things My Husband Hated.

One (or more) Sentence Summary:  I loved going back to Saffron Sweeting with Ten Things My Husband Hated.  Maggie, Maggie, Maggie….I was SO happy to see her grow stronger each chapter.  She seemed to be under her ex-husband thumb and afraid to do anything to upset him, even if it meant giving up her own happiness.  I love how she finally fought back in all aspects of her life and came out on top.

Loved all the characters, especially her girlfriends.  Really liked the tree house aspect and the end result.  Growing up at my grandparents cottage, there was a tree with the perfect lounging branch.  You could find me up there reading on summer days when I wasn't in the lake.  I would have loved a tree house to escape too as well.

Great read, fast, easy, lovely characters and a great ending!

Would I Read Other Books by the Author: I am a fan of Pauline Wiles.  I have read Saving Saffron Sweeting, and Secrets in the Sky.  I have not read Attention Spam (it is currently free on Amazon - kindle version and I just downloaded it) or Sweet Pursuits (a Saffron Sweeting novel).  I will have to add them to my reading list.

British by birth, Pauline Wiles is now a contented resident of California, although she admits to occasional yearnings for afternoon tea and historic homes.

Her debut novel, Saving Saffron Sweeting, reached the quarter final of the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award. Three further romantic comedies set in the same village are now available, along with a free collection of short stories. Pauline has also published Indie With Ease, to help other independent authors conquer stress and boost productivity.

When not writing, Pauline designs and builds simple, stylish websites for other writers and authors. She can also be found running, reading, or searching for her next venue to enjoy tea and a slice of cake.

To learn more, visit:

Monday, January 27, 2020

The Starter Wife

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

Synopsis (from Amazon):  From the bestselling author of Girl Last Seen comes "a spine-tingler" (Booklist) of a psychological suspense, perfect for fans of Lisa Jewell and Jessica Knoll. 
Local police have announced that they're closing the investigation of the suspected drowning of 37-year-old painter Colleen Westcott. She disappeared on April 11, 2010, and her car was found parked near the waterfront in Cleveland two days later, but her body has never been found. The chief of police has stated that no concrete evidence of foul play has been discovered in the probe. 
I close the online search window, annoyed. These articles never have enough detail. They think my husband's first wife disappeared or they think she is dead. There's a big difference. 

My phone rings, jarring me away from my thoughts, and when I pick it up, it's an unknown number. The only answer to my slightly breathless hello is empty static. 

When the voice does finally come, it's female, low, muffled somehow. "Where is it, Claire? What did you do with it? Tell me where it is."

A woman. A real flesh-and-blood woman on the other end of the phone. She's not just in my head.

A wave of panic spreads under my skin like ice water. It's Colleen.

One (or more) Sentence Summary:  Great page turner with crazy twists. The book grabbed my attention on page 1 and kept it to the very last page.  The Starter Wife reminds me of Gone Girl mixed with The Heart Keeper.  Extremely entertaining and kept me on the edge of my seat.  I was even late for work a day or two, since I couldn't book the book down. 

If you are looking for a thriller (not the blood and guts kind), I highly recommend The Starter Wife.  

Would I Read Other Books by the Author:  I have read What My Sister Knew and would love to read Girl Last Seen.

Nina Laurin studied Creative Writing at Concordia University in Montreal, where she currently lives. She arrived there when she was just twelve years old, and she speaks and reads in Russian, French, and English but writes her novels in English. She wrote her first novel while getting her writing degree, and Girl Last Seen was a bestseller a year later in 2017. The follow-up, What My Sister Knew, came out in summer 2018 to critical acclaim. Nina is fascinated by the darker side of mundane things, and she's always on the lookout for her next twisted book idea. She blogs about books and writing on her own site,

Facebook: @GirlInTheTitle
Twitter: @NinaLaurinBooks

Friday, January 24, 2020

Wife After Wife

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

Synopsis (from Amazon):  Divorced. Murdered. Died. Divorced. Departed. Survived.

A modern take on the life and marriages of Henry VIII, if he were a 21st century womanizing media mogul rather than the king of England.

Master of the universe Harry Rose is head of the Rose Corporation, number eighteen on the Forbes rich list, and recently married to wife number six. But in 2018, his perfect world is about to come crashing to the ground. His business is in the spotlight--and not in a good way--and his love life is under scrutiny. Because behind a glittering curtain of lavish parties, gorgeous homes, and a media empire is a tale worthy of any tabloid. 

And Harry has a lot to account for.

One (or more) Sentence Summary: Crazy good. Harry is for sure a lady's man and puts women under his spell.  Rich, powerful, sexy, Harry is wanted by many women.  The women that he marry's are all different as well and maybe not what most would expect.  I really enjoyed all the characters in the book, including Harry's family and friends.  I was hooked by page 2 and couldn't get through it fast enough.  In fact, while driving I had to listen to the text-to-speak feature on my kindle.   If you ever used that feature - it isn't the best (by any means) voice, but I couldn't wait to finish Wife After Wife.  

The crazy ending made it all worth while and I would love to see sequel, maybe on one of Harry's siblings or Charles' story?  Of course we get glimpses of their lives in Wife After Wife, but I think there are still some stories about the other characters that would make some great books. Wife After Wife would make a great movie too! 

Would I Read Other Books by the Author:  Wife After Wife is Olivia Hayfield's first adult novel and I sure hope she writes more because I loved it.

Olivia Hayfield is the pseudonym of British author Sue Copsey. Sue is usually in her office editing other people's books, while Olivia is often in her writing hut at the bottom of the garden. After several years in London Zoo's press office, Sue became an editor at Dorling Kindersley. She later moved to New Zealand, where she continues to work in publishing. Sue has written several children's books, including The Ghosts of Tarawera, which was a Storylines Children's Literature Trust Notable Book. Wife After Wife is her first adult novel. She is married with two children.

Thursday, January 23, 2020

How Quickly She Disappears

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

Synopsis (from Amazon):  It's been twenty years since Elisabeth’s twin sister, Jacqueline, disappeared without a trace. Now thirty-year-old Elisabeth is living far from home in a small Alaskan town. She's in a loveless marriage and has a precocious young daughter she loves more than anything but who reminds her too much of her long-missing sister.

But then Alfred, a dangerous stranger with a plan of his own, arrives in town and commits an inexplicable act of violence. And he offers a startling revelation: He knows exactly what happened to Elisabeth's sister, but he'll reveal this truth only if she fulfills his three requests.

Increasingly isolated from her neighbors and imprisoned by the bitter cold and her own obsession, Elisabeth can almost hear her sister's voice saying, Come and find me. And so she will, even if it means putting herself—and her family—in danger.

One (or more) Sentence Summary:  As the back cover of How Quickly She Disappears describes it as "The Dry meets The Silence of the Lambs", I would have to agree with The Silence of the Lambs part.  I have never read The Dry, so I really can't comment on that part of the descriptions. How Quickly She Disappears had my by chapter 3 or 4 and once I was hooked, I couldn't stop reading it.  

I would have to say Alfred was down right creepy to me and Elisabeth was caught in web of wanting to know what he knew about her sister's disappearance and being rid of him due to Mack's death.  The plot thickened more when Elizabeth's daughter was pulled into the web.

Lots of unexpected, lots of creepy unknowns, and lots of good reading!  The ending left me wanting more and ended in a perfect spot for a sequel (please)!

Would I Read Other Books by the Author:  This was Raymond Fleischmann's first book and what a great one!  I would love to read his next novel (even if he went to OSU - sorry but i am a Michigan girl)!

Raymond Fleischmann received his MFA from Ohio State University, and he’s earned scholarships and fellowships from Richard Hugo House, the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, and others. He lives in Indiana with his wife and three daughters. How Quickly She Disappears is his first novel.

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Summer Reading Update

As I sit wrapped in a blanket, looking at the freezing rain outside, I was thinking of this past summer and the wonderful weather!  I realized I never updated my summer reading list.  

I read a lot of different genre of books and enjoyed them all!

1. In the Swim of Things by Traci Banister 

2. Summer on Mirror Lake by JoAnn Ross

3. The Summer Guests by Mary Alice Monroe

4. The Summer of Sunshine & Margot by Susan Mallery  

5. A Thread So Fine by Susan Welch

6. Life and Other Inconveniences  by Kristin Higgins

7. Donna Has Left the Building by Susan Jane Gilman

8. One More Lie by Amy Lloyd 

9. Chasing Kate by Christina George (will post once author has a release date)

10. A Bend in the Stars by Rachel Barenbaum

11. The Bookish Life of Nina Hill by Abbi Waxman 

Monday, January 20, 2020

Donna Has Left The Building

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

Synopsis (from Amazon):  From the beloved, New York Times-bestselling author of Hypocrite in a Pouffy White Dress comes a hilarious, timely, and big-hearted new novel about rebuilding life in the face of disaster.

Forty-five-year-old Donna Koczynski is an ex-punk rocker, a recovering alcoholic, and the mother of two teenagers whose suburban existence detonates when she comes home early from a sales conference in Las Vegas to the surprise of a lifetime. As her world implodes, she sets off on an epic road trip to reclaim everything she believes she's sacrificed since her wild youth: Great friendship, passionate love, and her art. But as she careens across the U.S. from Detroit to New York to Memphis to Nashville, nothing turns out as she imagines. Ultimately, she finds herself resurrected on the other side of the globe, on a remote island embroiled in a crisis far bigger than her own.

Irresistibly funny, whip-smart, and surprisingly moving, DONNA HAS LEFT THE BUILDING spins an unforgettable tale about what it means to be brave -- and to truly love -- in a tumultuous world.

One (or more) Sentence Summary:  Donna Has Left The Building is a great book about self-discovery during what I would call a mid-life crisis.  I was a little stunned by what Donna does to her husband, only because I don't recall reading a book with such a strong character.  However, he did have it coming! I really enjoyed going on the journey with Donna  and had some laughs along the way.

Would I Read Other Books by the Author:  I would love to read other books Susan Jane Gilman.  I love the titles of her books.  Her next book I would like to read is Kiss My Tiara.

Susan Jane Gilman, a native New York writer known for combining sharp wit with lyrical pathos, is the bestselling author of three nonfiction books: "Undress Me in the Temple of Heaven," "Hypocrite in a Pouffy White Dress" and "Kiss My Tiara," plus the novel, "The Ice Cream Queen of Orchard Street." Her second novel, "Donna Has Left the Building," arrives June 4, 2019, from Grand Central Publishing, and can be pre-ordered now. 

Gilman has written for the New York Times, the L.A. Times, Real Simple, and Ms. magazine among others, been a contributor to NPR's "All Things Considered," and won literary awards for her journalism and short fiction. She was also the recipient of a "Golden Earphones" Award for her Audiobook recording of "The Ice Cream Queen of Orchard Street."

She once told an interviewer: "I never set out to write books that made people laugh. My main love has always been literary fiction. However, even with my darkest work, people always tell me that parts of it are funny. This used to annoy me because I aspired to be an American Dostoevsky with Breasts.

Yet when I was living in Washington DC, I took a writers’ workshop at the Bethesda Writers’ Center. The first story I submitted was a heartbreaking tale of a man’s addiction, which impressed the class. The second was an absurd story about mistaken identity full of Jews, Rastafarians, lesbians, and dental hygienists. To my great irritation, the class liked this one infinitely more. After class, a man pulled me aside. 'I have to tell you,' he said. 'My wife has been battling breast cancer. I read her your story last night, and it was the first time in two years she really laughed. You’ve got a gift. Please don’t ignore it. Not everyone can make a sick woman laugh in her hospital bed.' That’s when I finally saw the merit in my own, lurking smart-ass and stopped fighting it."

Although she currently resides primarily in Switzerland, her heart and her feet are never far from her homeland.