The First Kiss of Spring ~An Eternity Springs Novel~ By EMILY MARCH

The First Kiss of Spring (Eternity Springs #14)

Spring has come to Eternity Springs in the newest installment in this New York Times bestselling series by Emily March.

When Josh Tarkington gets stuck on a gondola with the lovely Caitlin Timberlake, he thinks his consistently bad luck might have changed.

After their blossoming romance is interrupted, Caitlin realizes that her encounter with Josh was a sign that she needed to make a major life change. So she packs up her things and moves to Eternity Springs, opens a day care, and sets her cap for the town’s mechanic—Josh.

But Josh is hiding a well of secrets that would ruin him, and his relationship with everyone in Eternity Springs—especially Caitlin. When tragedy strikes, Josh and Caitlin find themselves, and their relationship, tested beyond imagining. Will they be able to find their way back to each other?

The latest in the series centered around Eternity Springs.

The minute Caitlin kissed Josh she knew she was going to marry that man!

With fair warning to Josh that he should be prepared to surrender, she set out to make him her own. But Josh has made up his mind to never fall in love or get married.

Josh has been fighting demons for a long time. And it sure seems as if bad luck is on his heels. Coming from Oklahoma’s Tornado Alley, he has had his heart destroyed as well as his business and home. Not once, but several times. Just when he seems to be making a home and a good name for himself and his business, little Miss Caitlin drops in his lap, and he has some serious thinking to do!

Caitlin is busy setting up her new daycare business, plotting to make Josh her own, and wondering what the heck is up with her parents who are acting awfully strange.

When everything hits the fan, will family and love win? You’ll have to read the book. And I loved every bit of it!

Netgalley/St.Martin’s   February 27, 2018

Advertisements

MAYBE THIS TIME~A Whiskey and Wedding Novel~By Nicole McLaughlin

Maybe This Time (Whiskey and Weddings, #2)

Jen Mackenzie has been knocked down more than a few times, but she always gets up and makes sure she has the last word. It’s the reason she now considers herself equal parts self-sufficient and free-spirit. But since losing her job and trying to help her mother beat cancer, real life―and her occasional careless choices―have begun to catch up with her. Her one saving grace: The Stag, a boutique distillery that has become Kansas City’s go-to wedding venue. The only catch: One of the owners, TJ Laughlin, happens to be the one man who somehow manages to make Jen feel inadequate.

TJ has secretly had a thing for Jen since high school. Now, as her new boss, it’s a daily struggle between revealing his feelings and wringing her beautiful neck. Only one thing is for certain: he can’t stand idly by and watch the woman he cares for struggle. She may be convinced that accepting TJ’s help is a weakness. But all he sees in Jen is beauty and strength, inside and out. As things finally heat up between them, can TJ find a way to convince Jen that love is about give and take―and having it all, together?

This is the second book in the Whiskey and Weddings Series.

Jen has had a hard life growing up on the wrong side of town and developed a hard shell around her heart. In high school she was the odd one. Until the entire school found out she had a talent. All she wants is to act and sing in theater and when that dream closes she does the best she can to take care of her mother and herself, but she’s made some bad financial choices and she’s suspicious of any kindness towards her.

TJ seems like the perfect guy. Rich parents, huge home, owns his own business and is in all accounts perfect. But what he sees is his distant, philandering father, his alcoholic mother and feeling like he will never measure up to his siblings.

Can two slightly damaged people open their hearts to love? Well you have to read the book!  This was a good read. I love the characters, there was a lot of depth there and I can’t wait to see who is next to take the plunge in the next book!

Well Done!

Netgalley/St.Martin’s Press   February 27,2018

Boys Keep Swinging: A Memoir by Jake Shears

Boys Keep Swinging: A Memoir

In the bestselling tradition of Bruce Springsteen’s Born to Run, Patti Smith’s Just Kids, and Carrie Brownstein’s Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl, the lead singer of the multiplatinum-selling band Scissor Sisters explores his evolution as a young artist: coming of age in the Pacific Northwest and Arizona, his entry into New York City’s electrifying, ever-changing music scene, and the Scissor Sisters’ rise as they reached international fame in the early 2000s.

Before hitting the stage as the lead singer of the iconic glam rock band Scissor Sisters, Jake Shears was Jason Sellards, a teenage boy in Arizona living a double life and unable to hide it any longer, resulting in a confusing and confining time in high school as his classmates bullied him and teachers showed little sympathy.

It wasn’t until years later, during a trip to visit a childhood friend in New York City, that Jake met a talented musician nicknamed Babydaddy—the stage name of Scott Hoffman. Jake had found a kindred spirit, someone thirsting for stardom and freedom. Their instant bond led them to form Scissor Sisters. First performing in the smoky gay nightclubs of New York City, then finding massive success in the United Kingdom, Scissor Sisters would become revered by the LGBTQ community, reach platinum status, and also win multiple accolades with hits like “Take Your Mama” and “I Don’t Feel Like Dancin’,” as well as their cult-favorite cover of Pink Floyd’s “Comfortably Numb.”

Candid and courageous, Shears’s writing sings with the same powerful, spirited presence that he brings to his live performances. Following his development from a misfit boy who grew to a dazzling rock star, this entertaining and evocative memoir will be an inspiration to anyone with determination and a dream.

In his memoir, Jake takes us from his childhood in Arizona and the Pacific Northwest, and in neither place did he fit in. He was too flamboyant, too out there, just too over the top. But he didn’t know how to be anything other than what he was. Gay, in a time and place that could get you ostracized and hurt.

The relationship with his mother was one of total acceptance. His father more stoic silence.

Trying to find his own identity and voice, he realizes he wants to sing. On stage. Be the center of attention, which he loves. When he moves to New York, his meeting with Babydaddy is pivotal and begins the formation of the band Scissor Sisters.

The beginning was pretty good. The description of the gay community as well as the Seattle music scene was very interesting. Then we got to the middle and I was really trying hard to step over the names being dropped.

I would have liked to know more about his depression and how the band wasn’t that huge in the U.S. and why.  Were there parts that were a little slow? Yes. Was the gratuitous name dropping necessary? Not that I could tell. I would read the first half again.

Netgalley/Atria  February 20, 2018

THE WITCHES OF CAMBRIDGE by MENNA VAN PRAAG

The Witches of Cambridge: A Novel by [van Praag, Menna]

For fans of Alice Hoffman, Sarah Addison Allen, and Adriana Trigiani, The Witches of Cambridge reveals an astonishing world where the heart’s deepest secrets give way to the magic of life-changing love.

Be careful what you wish for. If you’re a witch, you might just get it.

Amandine Bisset has always had the power to feel the emotions of those around her. It’s a secret she can share only with her friends—all professors, all witches—when they gather for the Cambridge University Society of Literature and Witchcraft. Amandine treasures these meetings but lately senses the ties among her colleagues beginning to unravel. If only she had her student Noa’s power to hear the innermost thoughts of others, she might know how to patch things up. Unfortunately, Noa regards her gift as a curse. So when a seductive artist claims he can cure her, Noa jumps at the chance, no matter the cost.

Noa’s not the only witch who’s in over her head. Mathematics professor Kat has a serious case of unrequited love but refuses to cast spells to win anyone’s heart. Kat’s sister, Cosima, is not above using magic to get what she wants, sprinkling pastries in her bakery with equal parts sugar and enchantment. But when Cosima sets her sights on Kat’s crush, she conjures up a dangerous love triangle.

As romance and longing swirl through every picturesque side street, the witches of Cambridge find their lives unexpectedly upended and changed in ways sometimes extraordinary, sometimes heartbreaking, but always enchanting.

Magical Realism is what the author calls her writing. I call it really, really good! This author was recommended by a lovely lady over at insearchofitall

Now that I know about this author and her books, I’ve ordered them all! That is how much I loved this book. It’s smart, funny, heartbreaking and a well written story. My next one to read is The Dress Shop of Dreams.

Now to get back to the TBR pile….maybe it will magically disappear!

xx Patricia

 

Pressing The Issue by Daryl Wood Gerber

Pressing the Issue (Cookbook Nook Mystery, #6)

The Agatha Award–winning author of Grilling the Subject returns to the Cookbook Nook in Crystal Cove, where the annual Renaissance Fair serves up a helping of crafty courtiers, damsels in distress, and medieval murder . . .

As the annual Renaissance Fair comes to Crystal Cove, Jenna Hart’s Cookbook Nook is packed with tasty treats and all things medieval, while her pal Bailey is ready to swoon over her upcoming nuptials at a local vineyard. But when the two friends discover the body of the vineyard’s owner bludgeoned by a winepress, all their merriment fades, along with their hopes for a vintage year.

Which churlish varlet did the deed? Was it the victim’s errant brother, who stood to inherit the vineyards? Or the owner’s crestfallen ex-girlfriend? Mayhap it was the newly arrived comely wench, or her jealous husband. Fie on them all! Verily, Jenna can’t rest until justice is served, and she vows to track down the killer. But can she sniff out the truth before the villainous culprit strikes again?

Includes tantalizing recipes!

Oh to be in Crystal Cove at the Ren Fair! The entire town gets into the fun with booths and special faire events. Jenna is busy with her own shop as well as helping Bailey with her wedding which is supposed to take place at Nick’s vineyard.

Love is definitely in the air with more than one couple getting shot with Cupid’s arrow, but some couples aren’t all they appear to be. Could one of them be the killer? There are suspects coming out of the woodwork and everyone is acting oddly, even the cat!

If you haven’t tried this author, please do! The recipes are drool worthy and Crystal Cove is worth dropping in on!

February 20th 2018 by Beyond The Page   NetGalley Review

Agatha Award-winning Daryl Wood Gerber writes the brand new French Bistro Mysteries as well as the nationally bestselling Cookbook Nook Mysteries. 

As Avery Aames, she pens the popular Cheese Shop Mysteries. A DEADLY ÊCLAIR, the first French Bistro Mystery, comes out November 2017. 

Daryl also writes stand-alone suspense: DAY OF SECRETS and GIRL ON THE RUN. 

Fun tidbit: as an actress, Daryl appeared in “Murder, She Wrote.” She loves to cook, and she has a frisky Goldendoodle named Sparky who keeps her in line!

Visit Daryl at www.darylwoodgerber.com

SONG of a CAPTIVE BIRD By Jasmin Darznik

Song of a Captive Bird

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A spellbinding debut novel about the trailblazing poet Forugh Farrokhzhad, who defied Iranian society to find her voice and her destiny

“Remember the flight, for the bird is mortal.”—Forugh Farrokhzad

All through her childhood in Tehran, Forugh is told that Iranian daughters should be quiet and modest. She is taught only to obey, but she always finds ways to rebel—gossiping with her sister among the fragrant roses of her mother’s walled garden, venturing to the forbidden rooftop to roughhouse with her three brothers, writing poems to impress her strict, disapproving father, and sneaking out to flirt with a teenage paramour over café glacé. It’s during the summer of 1950 that Forugh’s passion for poetry really takes flight—and that tradition seeks to clip her wings.

Forced into a suffocating marriage, Forugh runs away and falls into an affair that fuels her desire to write and to achieve freedom and independence. Forugh’s poems are considered both scandalous and brilliant; she is heralded by some as a national treasure, vilified by others as a demon influenced by the West. She perseveres, finding love with a notorious filmmaker and living by her own rules—at enormous cost. But the power of her writing grows only stronger amid the upheaval of the Iranian revolution.

Inspired by Forugh Farrokhzad’s verse, letters, films, and interviews—and including original translations of her poems—Jasmin Darznik has written a haunting novel, using the lens of fiction to capture the tenacity, spirit, and conflicting desires of a brave woman who represents the birth of feminism in Iran—and who continues to inspire generations of women around the world.

Told in the first person, one would think they were reading a memoir. Facts mix with Fiction to flesh out the story and the life of Forugh Farrokhzad. A woman born in Iran in the 1930’s and dying much too young at the age of 32. She was an Iranian poet and film director at a time when women were most definitely not doing those types of things.

Her poetry was controversial and pointed out the injustices and inequality women suffered. She was a true feminist. But the things she wanted cost her dearly. Her only son, prison, and even a mental institution. But none of that stopped her from publishing her poetry and fighting to be her own person.

Her writing was banned for over 10 years after the Islamic Revolution. There have been a few documentaries of her life.

The author, who fled to America from Iran with her family when she was five, has a voice of authenticity which gives the book the feel of a memoir.

This is one of the most painful and beautiful books I have ever had the pleasure to read.

Well Done!

Netgalley/Ballentine/Random House   February 13, 2018

Surprise Me! by Sophie Kinsella

Surprise Me

After being together for ten years, Sylvie and Dan have all the trimmings of a happy life and marriage; they have a comfortable home, fulfilling jobs, beautiful twin girls, and communicate so seamlessly, they finish each other’s sentences. However, a trip to the doctor projects they will live another 68 years together and panic sets in. They never expected “until death do us part” to mean seven decades.

In the name of marriage survival, they quickly concoct a plan to keep their relationship fresh and exciting: they will create little surprises for each other so that their (extended) years together will never become boring. But in their pursuit to execute Project Surprise Me, mishaps arise and secrets are uncovered that start to threaten the very foundation of their unshakable bond. When a scandal from the past is revealed that question some important untold truths, they begin to wonder if they ever really knew each other after all.

Everyone knows that Sophie’s books are my guilty pleasure! And this one didn’t disappoint.

Sylvie and Dan have been married 10 years now. With adorable girls and jobs they enjoy. After an annual check up they are both given a clean bill of health and told they would probably live a nice long life. Which leads them to question how they are going to keep this thing going for the next 7 decades!

The characters in the book are all hilarious in their own way and some of the “surprises” they come up with are beyond funny! And embarrassing.

When Sylvie suspects Dan of an affair things come out that have been hidden for years. Which leads Sylvie to ask if she ever really knew her family at all or has she been carrying around a little girl’s view of her family?

This was great fun with a bit of mystery thrown in, so go ahead and Surprise Me! anytime Ms. Kinsella!

February 13, 2018  Netgalley/DialPress