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Saturday, October 26, 2013

A Final October Book Haul~10/27/13

Is either of these a better picture?  I was having a hard time tonight...  I know I keep showing some of these same ones and don't get to acknowledge them specifically, so here's to the final effort of the month.

Some of these are gifts, sends from authors and publishers, and some are my own purchases.

I'm going to try to wrap this up as easily and quickly as I can...but you know me, those two words hardly fit my MO.

LET me first talk about:

OMG!!!  I could just eat this book up with my daily dose of Gummie Vitamin Ds!!!  Tarina Tarantino is like nobody else on earth.  She is fabulous.  Her creativity is only out-shown by her physical and inner beauty.  You have to get your hands on a copy of this glorious book.  I reviewed it here last year.  Here's the link:

Tarina was so darling, she sent me a signed copy and a note of thanks this past month!!!  I couldn't believe it.  She said I was the first to review her book and her favorite review of it.  I was so thrilled.
This is a fun factory of jewelry you can truly make on your own.  Absolutely love her ideas and affordable trinkets that are really "in" right now.

Thank you so much for the book and your note, Tarina!



I bought this one because I couldn't wait for it to come out in paperback.  Here's a quickie summary:

"Sisters Natalie and Alice Kessler were close, until adolescence wrenched them apart. Natalie is headstrong, manipulative—and beautiful; Alice is a dreamer who loves books and birds. During their family’s summer holiday at the lake, Alice falls under the thrall of a struggling young painter, Thomas Bayber, in whom she finds a kindred spirit. Natalie, however, remains strangely unmoved, sitting for a family portrait with surprising indifference. But by the end of the summer, three lives are shattered..."

Two strange sisters, an artist and a mystery?  I'm there.  This one is on my Nov. reading list for review.    Published by:  SIMON & SCHUSTER

“Novelists get called master storytellers all the time, but Sittenfeld really is one, a kind of no-nonsense, BabyBjörn-wearing Scheherazade.”—Maggie Shipstead, The Washington Post
“Palpably real . . . so psychologically vivid.”—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
“[Sittenfeld’s] gifts are in full effect with this novel, and she uses them to create a genuinely engrossing sense of uncertainty and suspense.”—Sloane Crosley, NPR’s All Things Considered

Curtis Sittenfeld, author of American Wife and Prep, returns with a mesmerizing novel of family and identity, loyalty and deception, and the delicate line between truth and belief.

From an early age, Kate and her identical twin sister, Violet, knew that they were unlike everyone else. Kate and Vi were born with peculiar “senses”—innate psychic abilities concerning future events and other people’s secrets. Though Vi embraced her visions, Kate did her best to hide them.
HELLO!!!   I'm dying to read this one in the next couple of weeks.  I've had it in my stacks for a month trying to tell you about it.  I bought it because I was chomping at the bit to get to it.  Now in Nov. you'll hear from me...absolutely.  Cannot wait any longer!!!   
Published by:  RANDOM HOUSE

SUMMARY:   Award-winning and Boston Globe bestselling author Hank Phillippi Ryan presents a spine-chilling, heart-wrenching suspense novel that explores a terrifying scenario striking at the heart of every family.
Does a respected adoption agency have a frightening secret? Tipped off by a determined ex-colleague on a desperate quest to find her birth mother, Boston newspaper reporter Jane Ryland begins to suspect that the agency is engaging in the ultimate betrayal—reuniting birth parents with the wrong children.

Strangeness and adoption agencies grab me right from the get-go.  I'm also a huge Hank Phillippi Ryan fan.  She's a tremendous writer who sounds like she has the perfect chemistry for a new best seller!   Thanks to the publisher for this fantastic book I'm dying to get my mind around:  FORGE/TOM DOHERTY ASSOCIATES, LLC

Quick note:          
A compelling alternate history of the Romanov family in which a secret fifth daughter—smuggled out of Russia before the revolution—continues the royal lineage to dramatic consequences
In her riveting debut novel, The Secret Daughter of the Tsar, Jennifer Laam seamlessly braids together the stories of three women: Veronica, Lena, and Charlotte...

The Romanov family has always held a fascination for me.  I'm delighted to have received a copy of this book.  With thanks to ST. MARTIN'S PRESS


From Barnes & Noble
The two couples could not be more unlike, especially in their present situations. Ira Levinson is 91 years old, injured and stranded, perhaps forever, after a car crash; yet comforted by visions of his beloved wife Ruth, who died nine years before. Not far away is Wake Forest senior Sophia Danko, enraptured head over heels with an equally enthralled cowboy named Luke. In his new cinematic novel, Nicholas Sparks weaves together the stories of these two completely different pairs as only he could. A certain bestseller published in simultaneous English and Spanish language editions. (P.S. Read it now; see it later: The Longest Ride is slated to be a film, due to be release on Valentine's Day weekend 2015).

I have to tell you, I'm not such a great reader of Nicholas Sparks's books, but I do like his movies.  I was graciously sent this book by GRAND CENTRAL/HACHETTE PUBLISHING, and I'm very appreciative.  It gives me an opportunity to read one of his books after many years.  I'll post a review in Nov.
NOTE:  I apologize for this image...couldn't find a clearer one for you.  But it shows you can find a copy on Amazon!!  LOL

Here's a quick blurb:   London 1609 ~ Elspet Leviston’s greatest ambition is to continue the success of her father Nathaniel’s lace business. But her dreams are thrown into turmoil with the arrival of her mysterious cousin Zachary Deane – who has his own designs on Leviston’s Lace. Zachary is a dedicated swordsman with a secret past that seems to invite trouble. So Nathaniel sends him on a Grand Tour, away from the distractions of Jacobean London. Elspet believes herself to be free of her hot-headed relative but when Nathaniel dies her fortunes change dramatically. She is forced to leave her beloved home and go in search of Zachary - determined to claim back from him the inheritance that is rightfully hers. Under the searing Spanish sun, Elspet and Zachary become locked in a battle of wills. But these are dangerous times and they are soon embroiled in the roar and sweep of something far more threatening, sending them both on an unexpected journey of discovery which finally unlocks the true meaning of family . . .

I was most kindly sent a copy of this book from the publisher PAN BOOKS.   I will be reviewing it for Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours in a few days.  Love the cover....so gorgeous!!!

Look at this preview!!

"There is no difference between the saint who gives food to starving children and the worker who operates the gas chamber that kills them, except that one is making money and the other is losing it."
CHARLES THATCHER is a private citizen, which is to say that he's the private property of the Ackerman Brothers Securities Corporation. He's got problems: the cost of air is going up, his wife wants to sell herself to another corporation...

Wow!!!  This sounds so good.  A winner of the Kirkus Star award.  Revolutionary....  Very unusual cover.   Thanks to Kelley & Hall Book Publicity and Promotion for this beautiful little book.  Soon to be reviewed.

I found this one while tripping the light fantastic at my local Target tonight! Perfect size for a quickie read on Halloween Night while my husband is away....  Creepy cover and it looks like a great read...  Here's a summary:

"This summer's Gone Girl –  I gobbled it down in one sitting." – Anne Lamott, People

Jodi and Todd are at a bad place in their marriage. Much is at stake, including the affluent life they lead in their beautiful waterfront condo in Chicago, as she, the killer, and he, the victim, rush haplessly toward the main event. He is a committed cheater. She lives and breathes denial. He exists in dual worlds. She likes to settle scores.

Published by PENGUIN

As we sit here, I can hardly even share this small summary with you.  I'm getting ready to tear into this book....  Gratefully published by:  PENGUIN BOOKS

The New York Times Book Review - Liesl Schillinger
When I finished this novel, I didn't want to review it; I wanted to reread it. Which might seem perverse if you know that for most of the last hundred pages I was dissolved in tears. Jojo Moyes…knows very well that Me Before You…is, as British critical consensus affirms, "a real weepy." And yet, unlike other novels that have achieved their mood-melting powers through calculated infusions of treacle…Moyes's story provokes tears that are redemptive, the opposite of gratuitous. Some situations, she forces the reader to recognize, really are worth crying over…Moyes disarms the reader with the normalcy of her voice. Her language is never lofty…This is a love story that's eloquent not so much in its delivery as in its humanity.

Kindly sent to me by CROWN PUBLISHING, this is a novel about:

"In The Last Secret, Mary McGarry Morris tells the story of Nora Hammond, a woman blessed with the perfect life: a charming husband, two bright teenage children, a successful career in the family's newspaper business, and an esteemed role in the charity work of her New England town. But Nora's comfortable existence threatens to unravel when she learns of her husband's longtime affair - and when the specter of a sordid incident from her youth returns with terrifying force." Confronted by shame and betrayal, Nora suddenly feels dangerously alone. With no one to turn to, she becomes easy prey to a ghost from her past - the cunning, relentless Eddie Hawkins."

You may know Mary McGarry Morris from others of her wonderful books:  "Vanished," "A Dangerous Woman," and "Songs in Ordinary Time."  I'm a huge fan, and am looking forward to this read.  Can't wait to tell you about it...know it's going to be complex and eerie!

"A Colin Pendragon Mystery"    Let me "read" you the back cover....

"Set against the fog-shrouded backdrop of turn-of-the-century London, Gregory Harris's new historical mystery series introduces tenacious sleuth Colin Pendragon, and a case that illuminates the darkness lurking in the heart of one of England's most notable families."

Kindly sent to me for review by KENSINGTON PUBLISHING CORP.

 And, finally, the gorgeous cover of this novel speaks of the jewel that lies within, doesn't it?  A historical fiction from the 1600's in England...Restoration Period.


In 1660, the Restoration of Stuart Monarchy in England returns Frances Stuart and her family to favor. Frances discards threadbare gowns and goes to gilded Fontainebleau Palace, where she soon catches the Sun King’s eye. But Frances is no ordinary court beauty—she has Stuart secrets to keep and her family to protect. King Louis XIV turns vengeful when she rejects his offer to become his Official Mistress. He sends her to England with orders to seduce King Charles II and help him ...

Thanks to THOMAS DUNNE BOOKS/ST. MARTIN'S PRESS  for this beautiful copy for review.


I picked up this movie to keep me company tonight.  I missed it when it was in the theatres, but had reviewed it here for you last year, so I'm looking forward to seeing how they translated the story to film.

Here's a summary from Kirkus Reviews:

Kirkus Reviews
This smart, textured and romantic Southern Gothic takes place in Gatlin, S.C., where cheerleaders and the basketball team run the high school and the Daughters of the American Revolution and Civil War re-enactors run the town. Ethan Lawson Wate, raised by his authoritative and spiritually inclined housekeeper Amma in the months since his mother's death, can't wait to leave Gatlin's predictable monotony. Then Stonewall Jackson High's first new student in years, headstrong, vulnerable and expressive Lena Duchannes, shows up driving her reclusive uncle's hearse, and Ethan recognizes her from his dreams. Compelled to explore his connection to the new girl, Ethan learns that Lena's family are magic Casters and that Lena's supernatural fate will be chosen for her when she turns 16. Community outrage, emotional tension and Lena and Ethan's doomed search for a way around her uncertain destiny build to a boil in the expansive but tightly plotted march toward Lena's 16th birthday. Ethan's wry narrative voice will resonate with readers of John Green as well as the hordes of supernatural-romance fans looking for the next book to sink their teeth into. (Paranormal romance.

that's my final line-up for the month of October, 2013...

What's in  your reading stack for October and November??????




Wow, that is quite a haul! I know the note from Tarantino means a lot to you!


That note and the book was amazing! I just screamed! She's so sweet to do that, Kathy.
Have to report to everyone that I was slightly disappointed in the movie, "Beautiful Creatures." Some of the actors were fabulous, but some were really lacking sparkle. Too bad. It could have been a good one...

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