Time To Get Out The Rainstick, Y’all!

I was trying to clean up my Kindle this morning and came across these lovely titles that I decided had to stay there. I could not hit that delete button on them. Each one of them speaks of a time or a place that is a part of me.

So of course I had to share them. Do you have books that you keep forever for that reason? What are they?

I was so hoping that rain they promised would come our way, but no. Supposedly it should come through tonight, but unless we all get together and dance with the rainstick, I don’t see that happening. In this part of the country its feast or famine. Extremes. Ask for a nice soaking rain and you’ll get a Cat.5 tornado or a drought and heat so extreme you think you are in the Dustbowl!

Gardens are shriveling up and water restrictions are in place which doesn’t bode well for my favorite Watermelon Festival.

I am seriously going to bet on that TBR list today. So if the rain gods would cooperate that would be great!

Stay Cool Y’all!

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Really, Can You Ever Have Too Many Books? ( The answer is no, shhh)

bookhaul

Yesterday was opening book gifts! There are actually more as some were Kindle editions. But these will keep me out of trouble for a while at least.

After the fiasco at the Phone Store, yesterday was perfect. OU Boy was home and washed my hair so I didn’t get any water in my new eye, which I am calling Drew now. Anyway, this man gives a mean head wash! I was like a cat purring it felt so good! So thanks for that!

We went out to lunch to a new pizza place. It was one of those experiences where you say, Well, we did that. Let’s not do it again. The pizza was really nice, but the televisions were all over but they were all muted so some canned music  could pump over the speakers. Really ticked me off as ESPN was on.

I think someone did some grocery shopping because there is food in the refrigerator. I know it wasn’t me though as I was otherwise engaged. I was reading a book by a self published author because someone asked me to as a favor. I won’t be doing that again.

Today, all my birthday people have left. Here I am all alone, with no supervision. So I am going to pop on my headphones and listen to my fellow Georgia Girl, Karin Slaughter’s book on audio while I try really hard to paint my toenails.

I hope your May is off to a good start. I know all of you gardeners are busy doing gardening things and the farmers are seeing new life born every day now, and I am just thankful that I can just lay around the pool in the sunshine being lazy.

xx Patriciabirthdaystuff

The Hope Chest by Viola Shipman

The Hope Chest

The most recent book from Shipman, following close behind the best selling The Charm Bracelet is as brilliantly done as The Charm Bracelet was.

Shipman is so good at weaving themes into his writing. Hope, Love, Faith, Kindness  and Family. This particular story was beautiful. And sad. And hearbreaking. It was also full of hope and love and family and how important they are to us all.

We begin in the present with Don and Mattie Tice packing up all of their belongings from their home on the lake in Michigan and getting ready to move into town. Mattie has ALS and has advanced to the point where she is wheelchair dependant. As Don packs everything up, Mattie relives all of the wonderful memories she had in this house. With her parents, and then Don. It’s where her heart is. She never thought she would leave it. Hope Dunes is in her heart and soul.

As they settle into the house in town, Don is to the point where he knows he needs help with Mattie and here we meet Rose and her young daughter Jeri. Rose has her own problems and one is keeping her family home from being sold. She needs a job now.

When Don and Mattie meet Rose and Jeri they all know it’s a perfect match. And the book bounces between the past and the present, as they go through all the memories in Mattie’s hope chest.

All the special things that would have gone to Mattie and Don’s daughter if they had been blessed with children are taken out and stories told and new memories are made.

What a moving and lovely story this was. This is a book with a lot of feeling. And yes, there was some crying, but laughing too.

Thank you Netgalley and St.Martin’s Press for this early copy. The book is available on March 21, 2017.

Books,Books and More Books Reviews

The Guestbook(Madrona Island Series 1) by Andrea Hurst

The Guestbook (Madrona Island Series 1) by [Hurst, Andrea]

On Madrona Island, Washington, Miss Maggie has successfully run the Madrona Island Bed and Breakfast for years. Now at the end of her life, she looks back at The Guestbook and remembers all of the wonderful guests she has had and how much they enjoyed staying at Maggie’s B&B. She is also remembering her only grandchild, Lily. So close when she was a little girl but then whisked away by her mother, never to see Maggie again. But Maggie knows in her heart that Lily will come back.

From the outside, it looks as if Lily Parkins has it made. A handsome husband, a huge home in Brentwood and expensive cars. She really doesn’t even have to think for herself as her husband excels at that. Until the night she discovers he has been unfaithful.

Having been left the B&B on Madrona Island by her grandmother upon her death, Lily goes to the only place she has ever really felt was home. Back to Madrona Island.

Is this where she is supposed to be? Can she even run an Inn? Should she just suck it up and go back to Brentwood and her controlling husband?

This book was a story of second chances, on yourself,on love and on living life on your own terms. The characters were real and most of them have their own stories to tell and I am sure we will see more of them soon. I hope so! Especially Kyla and Jude.

The descriptions of the food was spot on. My nose was twitching and my mouth was drooling!

The second book in this series is Tea and Comfort

 

About the Author:

When not visiting local farmer’s markets or indulging her love for chocolate, Andrea Hurst is an author and literary agent. Her passion for books drives her to find and write stories that take readers on a journey to another place and leave them with an unforgettable impression. She is a developmental editor for publishers and authors, an instructor in Creative Writing at the Northwest Institute of Literary Arts, and a webinar presenter for Writers’ Digest. She lives with her two dachshunds in the Pacific Northwest, on an island much like the fictional Madrona, with all of its natural beauty and small town charm.

Her published books include The Lazy Dog’s Guide to Enlightenment and Everybody’s Natural Foods Cookbook , and she co-authored A Book of Miracles: Inspiring True Stories of Healing, Gratitude, and Love with Dr. Bernie Siegel. To learn more about Andrea and her books, visit AndreaHurst.com6553580

All The Presidents’ Gardens by Marta McDowell

All the Presidents' Gardens: Madison’s Cabbages to Kennedy’s Roses, How the White House Grounds Have Grown with America

Madison’s Cabbages to Kennedy’s Roses-How the White House grounds have grown with America.

Starting with the plant-obsessed George Washington and ending with Michelle Obama’s kitchen garden, All the Presidents’ Gardens is a rich and compelling narrative that masterfully reveals how the White House grounds reflect what is happening in the country.

The book is written in chronological order beginning with George and Martha Washington in the years 1789 to 1797, the original inhabitants of what was called Versailles on the Potomac.

Ms. McDowell takes us through the centuries and how those 18 acres surrounding the White House have been nurtured, designed, planted and re-planted, changing with the times as well as each of the families who lived there and contributed their own personal mark on the gardens.

The book is full of rich history of not only our Presidents, but the whys and hows each plant came to be in the garden. The stories are informative as well as entertaining.

Each horticulturist is mentioned as well as every shrub and plant growing in the garden, with information about every one. The book is full of lovely illustrations and photographs, along with quotes from our past Presidents and their families.

I found this book to be not only educational, but I will definitely keep it as a resource for my own garden. Ms. McDowell took on a huge task with this project and I for one am glad she did!

The Author:

Marta McDowell lives, gardens and writes in Chatham, New Jersey. She teaches garden history and horticulture at the New York Botanical Garden. where she studied landscape design. A popular lecturer, she speaks to gardening groups across the country. She is also the author of Beatrix Potter’s Gardening Life.

I received an ARC copy of this book from the publisher.