Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Paris in July begins...NOW!

Yep, its that time again!  Thyme for Tea's annual Paris in July month long event is back.  Hurrah!  All things French all month long - how exciting is that!?!  I am super excited to join in on the fun.  I plan on reading some great books, listening to Tiersen (my go-to for French music), and finding some new-to-me films to watch.   And, I'll be indulging in some macarons as well.

Here are the books I plan on reading:

What do you think? Not a bad batch, eh?  Do you have any suggestions for me?  I'm excited for the Hemingway and the Laurain.  I'm also hoping to watch a movie or two.  And, I can't wait to read what everyone else posts about for  Paris in July.  Should be a fun month! If you want to join in, then head on over to Tamara's blog, Thyme for Tea, to get all the details.  Hope to see you there!  Au revoir!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Royal Wedding: A Princess Diaries Novel by Meg Cabot

(Thank you to the publisher and TLC Book Tours for providing me with a copy of this book!)
about book:

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Princess Diaries series, comes the very first adult installment, which follows Princess Mia and her Prince Charming as they plan their fairy tale wedding—but a few poisoned apples could turn this happily-ever-after into a royal nightmare.

For Princess Mia, the past five years since college graduation have been a whirlwind of activity, what with living in New York City, running her new teen community center, being madly in love, and attending royal engagements. And speaking of engagements. Mia’s gorgeous longtime boyfriend Michael managed to clear both their schedules just long enough for an exotic (and very private) Caribbean island interlude where he popped the question! Of course Mia didn’t need to consult her diary to know that her answer was a royaloui.

But now Mia has a scandal of majestic proportions to contend with: Her grandmother’s leaked “fake” wedding plans to the press that could cause even normally calm Michael to become a runaway groom. Worse, a scheming politico is trying to force Mia’s father from the throne, all because of a royal secret that could leave Genovia without a monarch.  Can Mia prove to everyone—especially herself—that she’s not only ready to wed, but ready to rule as well?

my thoughts:

I am a HUGE fan of The Princess Diaries movie - they are so fun to watch!  So, when I heard about Cabot's latest book, Royal Wedding, I jumped at the chance to read it.  I had to find out who Mia was going to marry and how the Big Day would turn out.  And let me just say, I'm so happy that I read this book - it was the best way to reunite with Mia Thermopolis!

Now 25, Mia is living in NYC, running a teen community center, and enjoying her princess duties.  She's got her family, friends, and longtime boyfriend in her corner offering love and support.  Life is good.  And it gets even better when Michael whisks her away and proposes to her.  Talk about exciting!!  I guess his "foot popping" kisses are simply too good to give up - LOL!  Of course, once news of a fake wedding hit the papers, life gets a bit chaotic for Mia.  Of course it doesn't help that her father is dealing with the law over a traffic violation.  Oh, and then there's that pesky problem of somebody trying to take her father's rightful place at the throne.  Cripes!  Seems like life is getting even more complicated.  Yikes!

Luckily, Mia has the strength within herself to step up to each and every challenge thrown her way.  Plus, not all of the challenges are bad news - think new family member in the form of a half-sister.  Yep, Mia has a sibling!  I swear, this book is chock full of DRAMA and I absolutely loved it all.  Cabot has written a clever, funny story about that awkward teen with the frizzy hair we all grew to love, finally stepping into her role as an adult woman on the verge (of marriage, ruling Genovia, and finding herself).  Talk about a treat to read!  Royal Wedding was such a fun book!  I would happily recommend it to fans of Meg Cabot and her A Princess Diaries series - you will LOVE this book!!!

Here's the link to the TLC Book Tour schedule for: Royal Wedding
Thank you to the publisher and TLC Book Tours for providing me with a copy of this book!

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

The Wolf Border: A Novel by Sarah Hall

(Thank you to the publisher and TLC Book Tours for providing me with a copy of this book!)
about book:

She hears them howling along the buffer zone, a long harmonic.
One leading, then many.
At night there is no need to imagine, no need to dream.
They reign outside the mind.

Rachel Caine is a zoologist working in Nez Perce, Idaho, as part of a wolf recovery project. She spends her days, and often nights, tracking the every move of a wild wolf pack—their size, their behavior, their howl patterns. It is a fairly solitary existence, but Rachel is content.

When she receives a call from the wealthy and mysterious Earl of Annerdale, who is interested in reintroducing the grey wolf to Northern England, Rachel agrees to a meeting. She is certain she wants no part of this project, but the Earl’s estate is close to the village where Rachel grew up, and where her aging mother now lives in a care facility. It has been far too long since Rachel has gone home, and so she returns to face the ghosts of her past.

my thoughts:

Compelling.  Beautiful.  Haunting.  The Wolf Border is a literary delight.  I absolutely loved losing myself in a story about relationships, familial bonds, and wolves (the grey wolf in particular).  Written without quotations marks, this story may frustrate some who find that distinguishing between dialogue and a character's musings to be rather difficult.  I found it to be rather freeing.  The lack of quotations felt in line with the character of Rachel who is rather an earthy, minimalist loner type who spends her days observing wolves.  Suddenly pregnant she takes on a new job that will bring her back to a home and family she's left behind - dying mother and estranged brother.  Talk about facing family issues head on (or at least trying to). 

Told at a slow and steady pace, the story unfolds rather passively.  You feel as if you are observing Rachel's life and dramas in real time, along with the mundane details of her job as a zoologist.  Its may sound boring, but truth be told, I was fascinated by it all.  As for Rachel, I found her to be the epitome of unlikeable.  Yet, I couldn't help but want to know what would happen to her and the wolves.  I wanted to know her story.  And that is what I loved about Hall's writing - it was spellbinding!  I absolutely loved The Wolf Border and plan on reading more of Hall's works in the future.

I would most definitely recommend The Wolf Border to fans of Hall's works and fans of literary fiction.  You will LOVE this book! 

Here's the link to the TLC Book Tour schedule for: The Wolf Border
Thank you to the publisher and TLC Book Tours for providing me with a copy of this book!

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Find Momo: Coast to Coast by Andrew Knapp

(Thank you to Quirk Books for providing me with a copy of this book!)
Look who's back!?! That adorable pooch named Momo!  Yep, Andrew Knapp is at it again - photographing his playful pup all over the the US and Canada.  This time round they head from coast to coast stopping off at some of the MOST amazing landmarks - think the White House and the French Quarter in New Orleans.  Plus, a lot of other quirky and cool spots off the beaten track.  Knapp's colorful and vivid photographs really capture the essence of each pit stop, along with providing a "Where's, Waldo?" experience - Momo is hidden in each photo.  How cool and fun is that?

I had an absolute blast flipping through this book and getting lost in these fantastic photos.  Searching for Momo in each picture was such a treat.  I have to admit that I couldn't find him in all of the photos - he's just really enmeshed in the scene or background.  Of course, that's the fun in the book - spending time poring over the photos and looking for Momo.  I know that I'll definitely be dipping in and out of this book for quite some time.

I would definitely recommend Find Momo: Coast to Coast to fans of Knapp's popular Instagram feed (andrewknapp) and his first book, Find Momo.  You will just LOVE this book!!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

The Wrong Man: A Novel of Suspense by Kate White

(Thank you to the publisher and TLC Book Tours for providing me with a copy of this book!)
about book:

She wanted to be more daring, but one small risk is about to cost her everything­—maybe even her life.

Bold and adventurous in her work as owner of one of Manhattan’s boutique interior design firms, Kit Finn couldn’t be tamer in her personal life. While on vacation in the Florida Keys, Kit resolves to do something risky for once. When she literally bumps into a charming stranger at her hotel, she decides to make good on her promise and act on her attraction.

But back in New York, when Kit arrives at his luxury apartment ready to pick up where they left off in the Keys, she doesn’t recognize the man standing on the other side of the door.

Was this a cruel joke or part of something truly sinister? Kit soon realizes that she’s been thrown into a treacherous plot, which is both deeper and deadlier than she could have ever imagined. Now the only way to protect herself, her business, and the people she loves is to find out the true identity of the man who has turned her life upside down.

Adrenaline-charged and filled with harrowing twists at every turn, The Wrong Man will keep readers riveted until the final page.

my thoughts:

Kate White has done it again - another great suspense-thriller!  This time round we have a woman named Kit whose on work/vacation in the Florida Keys.  She meets a man and winds up having a fling with him.  He's everything she would want in someone, so she's excited to see him again in NYC.  Except, when she knocks on his door, she finds herself face-to-face with a stranger.  Yep, she's been conned.  Apparently the guy at the door is the real Matt Healy and the man she met in the Keys is not.  Whoa Nelly!  How crazy and confusing is that?  Poor Kit!  She's gobsmacked and feeling so betrayed.  The only problem is that her life gets a bit crazier from then on.  I'm talking break-in at her apartment, illegal business dealings, and murder - oh my!  Talk about drama galore. 

The Wrong Man is chock full of twists and turns that will have you guessing whodunit left and right.  The writing is fast-paced, engrossing, and makes for the perfect beach read.  I absolutely loved getting to know Kit and following  her on this dangerous and suspense-filled mystery that became her life.  What a fun read!  I would most definitely recommend The Wrong Man to fans of Kate White and fans of suspense-thrillers! 

Here's the link to the TLC Book Tour schedule for: The Wrong Man
Thank you to the publisher and TLC Book Tours for providing me with a copy of this book!