Tag Archive | Women’s Fiction

REVIEW: Cure for the Common Breakup by Beth Kendrick

Cure for the Common Breakup by Beth Kendrick

Series: Black Dog Bay #1

Read: June 22-28, 2017

Format: Hardback

My Book Rating: 4.5 Stars

Publisher: Penguin

Release Date: May 6, 2014

Genre: Chick Lit / Womens Fiction / Romance

Pages: 336

Reading Challenge(s): Beat the Backlist 2017

 

ABOUT THE BOOK

Welcome to Black Dog Bay, a tiny seaside town in Delaware known as “the best place in America to bounce back from your breakup.” Home to Better Off Bed-and-Breakfast, the Eat Your Heart Out bakery, and the Whinery bar, Black Dog Bay offers a haven for the suddenly single.

Flight attendant Summer Benson lives by two rules: Don’t stay with the same man for too long and never stay in one place. She’s about to break rule number one by considering accepting her boyfriend’s proposal—then disaster strikes and her world is shattered in an instant.

Summer heads to Black Dog Bay, where the locals welcome her. Even Hattie Huntington, the town’s oldest, richest, and meanest resident, likes her enough to give her a job. Then there’s Dutch Jansen, the rugged, stoic mayor, who’s the opposite of her type. She probably shouldn’t be kissing him. She definitely shouldn’t be falling in love.

After a lifetime of globe-trotting, Summer has finally found a home. But Hattie has old scores to settle and a hidden agenda for her newest employee. Summer finds herself faced with an impossible choice: Leave Black Dog Bay behind forever, or stay with the ones she loves and cost them everything…


REVIEW

I won a copy of this book from Goodreads with no expectation of a review.

This book is as utterly delightful as that cover. It is a laugh out loud ’till you cry, unputdownable joy of a book.

This book throws you right into the thick of the plot. To be honest, I didn’t care for the beginning. It felt rushed and Summer felt like such an over the top cariacture I didn’t think I’d like this book.

Then she arrived in Black Dog Bay. And ran over the mayors rose bushes. And blamed it on turtles and Taylor Swift. From this point on I was 100% sold on this charming rom com.

I ended up absolutely loving Summer. She has her baggage, and at times it felt like she fell for Dutch too quickly (specifically because of all that baggage!) but I can look past that. Summer is charming and brass and fearless.

I loved Dutch. He’s a great hero. He’s a sweet, no-nonsense kind of guy. I hate politicians on principal, but Beth Kendrick had me falling in love with this mayor.

The chemistry between Summer and Dutch was amazing. The little inside jokes and flirtations they had were hot, hot, HOT — especially for such a clean book!

The side characters were all so charming. I was able to quickly give them all unique voices and even imagine my dream cast for the movie playing in my head. (Kelly Bishop [aka Emily Gilmore] as either Hattie or Pauline – can’t decide which! Diane Wiest as Marla, Lennon Stella [Maddie from ‘Nashville’] as Ingrid, Leslie Mann [from ‘Knocked Up’, ‘The 40 Year Old Virgin’, and ’17 Again’] as Summer—that voice of her is perfect.)

Every single chapter had me wishing I could read JUST ONE MORE, to the point where I accidentally read 50% of the book in one night. I only went to bed because my eyes refused to stay open and the words stopped making sense.

And here’s a word to the wise, don’t read this book anywhere you can’t let out a good belly laugh. Because I was holding in laughter while reading this late at night while my husband slept, and it just wasn’t the same.

I need to find out what happens next in Black Dog Bay.

If you’re in the mood for a light, comedic, romantic page turner, THIS is the book to read!



Get the Book here:

Amazon | Nook | iBooks

~ Add to Goodreads ~

 


QUOTES

 

Summer had never been accused of being sensible.

 

Rustic outdoorsmen weren’t Summer’s type, but something about him… He looked like he could ravish you so right and then stride off to chop a cord of wood.

 

“I promise you, I’m coming back to fix your landscaping situation.”
“Please don’t.”

 

If Barbie hired Hello Kitty to decorate her dream house, the result would be the Winery.

 

He caught her gaze and held it, and in that moment, she saw him as everyone else in Black Dog Bay did: strong and stern and quietly authoritative. Someone who took his responsibilities seriously. Someone who was not to be trifled with.
And it only increased her desire to trifle with him.

 

“Can you talk sense into a bunch of adolescents sloshed on Alabama slammers?”
”Like a professional hostage negotiator.”

 

“Just make me look like I’m a lobotomized lady who lunches. On something other than grilled cheese.”

 

He took in the activity pages and the facial expressions and the iced tea before asking, very slowly, “What are you doing?”

“Connecting the dots,” Jenna said.

“Coloring a frog,” Hollis said.

“Making this word search my bitch,” Summer said.

Dutch glanced behind him. “Is this… am I missing something here?”

 

He made her laugh. He made her think. He made her want to stay.
Oh no.

 

REVIEW: Me Before You by Jojo Moyes

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes

Series: Me Before You #1

Read: November 17 – December 16, 2016

Format: Paperback

My Book Rating: 4 Stars

Publisher: Penguin

Release Date: January 5, 2012

Genre: Women’s Fiction

 

ABOUT THE BOOK

Louisa Clark is an ordinary girl living an exceedingly ordinary life—steady boyfriend, close family—who has barely been farther afield than their tiny village. She takes a badly needed job working for ex–Master of the Universe Will Traynor, who is wheelchair bound after an accident. Will has always lived a huge life—big deals, extreme sports, worldwide travel—and now he’s pretty sure he cannot live the way he is.

Will is acerbic, moody, bossy—but Lou refuses to treat him with kid gloves, and soon his happiness means more to her than she expected. When she learns that Will has shocking plans of his own, she sets out to show him that life is still worth living.


REVIEW

Warning – if you’ve been living under a rock and don’t know what this book is about, there will be spoilers. You’ve been warned.

 

With the movie based on this book, I heard about Me Before You everywhere. Everyone absolutely loved it and I had to read it. I put myself on the list at the library – I was something like 685 on the wait list. I ended up removing myself from the list when my mom bought the book for herself, then let me have it when she was done.

I wasn’t so sure at first that I would like the book. I mean, I love romantic comedies when it comes to movies, but but I have yet to find a contemporary romance or women’s fiction that really drew me in. Until now.

Louisa Clark is such an easy to like character. She’s naive and happy to live her simple existence in her tiny town living with her parents, sister, and nephew. But after she loses her job, she realizes she’s not really qualified to do much of anything. On a whim she interviews and is offered a job as a caretaker for a paraplegic. Enter Will Traynor.

Will is an arrogant, depressive, asshole. But I couldn’t really hate him for that. He went from an extremely active and independent life, to being a slave to a wheelchair. The common cold could easily turn to pneumonia and kill him. His existence since his accident has been nothing short of hell for him. Will is not the type of man to rely on others. Yet that is now his reality.

The main issue of this book, the right to end ones own life, is heavy and depressing. I really think Moyes did an excellent job of remaining neutral on the subject. Will is hard set on ending his misery. Louisa, ever the optimist, is convinced she can change his mind and give him something to live for.

The romance in this book is a slow build, but easy to see coming. There were little moments where Will would show just a glimmer of happiness, even if it was just a slight smile, and my hopes would rise.

If you have been living under a rock, I won’t tell you how this ends. I’ll just leave you with my final Goodreads update upon reading THE END: “I’m not crying, you’re crying! *Sniffles* What a beautiful story.”

There you have it.

Bring tissues.


Get the Me Before You here:

Amazon | Nook | iBooks | Kobo

~ Add to Goodreads ~


QUOTES

 

“Um. . . Have you ever considered joining the entertainment industry?”

“What, as a mime artist? Opera singer?”

“Actually, no. But there is an opening for a pole dancer. Several, in fact.”

 

 “Believe me, when you’ve done shifts at a chicken processing factory, working in Guantanamo Bay for six months looks attractive.”

 

“What the hell else have you been sneaking into my food? You’ll be telling me to open the tunnel so that Mr. Train can deliver some mushy Brussel sprouts to the red bloody station next.”

I considered this for a minute. “No,” I said, straight-faced. “I deal only with Mr. Fork. Mr. Fork does not look like a train.”

 

 Dear Clark,

This is to show you that I am not an entirely selfish are. And I do appreciate your efforts.

Thank you. Will.

 

 “… I cannot for the life of me see how you can be so content to live this tiny life. This life that will take place almost entirely within a five-mile radius and contain nobody who will ever surprise you or push you or show you things that will leave your head spinning and unable to sleep at night.”

 

 “There have been times when I’ve stayed over and he’s woken up screaming because in his dreams he’s still walking and skiing and doing stuff and just for those few minutes, when his defenses are down and it’s all a bit raw, he literally can’t bear the thought of never doing it again. He can’t bear it….”

 

REVIEW: Keep Me Posted by Lisa Beazley

Keep Me Posted by Lisa Beazley
Read: February 11 – 19, 2016
Format: ARC Print Books (Goodreads Win
My Book Rating:  3.5 Stars
Genre: Women’s Fiction / Chic-Lit

I received an ARC of this book from Goodreads First to Win. This in no way affects my review or feelings toward the book.

Keep Me Posted is a book that’s hard for me to review. I don’t really read Women’s Fiction, so I’m really not the target audience. I’ll get to more on why it’s hard for me to review in a bit.

The basic premise is two sisters, Cassie in NYC and Sid in Singapore, who decide to start writing each other letters and mailing them to one another, in order to reconnect the old fashion way. All is good and well, until the letters become public on the Internet and the sisters become pseudo-celebrities on the Net.

So, as I said before, this is a hard one for me to review. I don’t read Women’s Fiction, so I don’t have anything to compare it to. I will start by saying that I loved the letters. I honestly didn’t know if I would, but I really enjoyed reading the letters each sister wrote to the other. The story is told from Cassie’s POV, but even reading Sid’s letters, I felt like I knew her. I think that’s not always easy to do, so well done Ms. Beazley!

On the other hand, I didn’t really like Cassie. She’s the protagonist of our story, but she was very hard for me to like. Which is kind of funny, because I see a lot of myself in her as well. Cassie is in her mid-30’s, married to a wonderful man, and in the last year or so she’s given up her career in order to stay home and raise her twin boys. She pokes fun at crunchy mommy bloggers (I only know these terms because I myself had my last baby 4 years ago and was immersed in much the same world as Cassie.) I laughed and agreed with a lot of what she had to say about those kinds of parents. I shared a lot of the same habits and feelings as her (she’s a social media addict, as am I. She has an incredibly well-liked big sister and has always been in her shadow, as do I. She constantly questions whether she should have even had kids and feels like an utter failure, to which I think all moms can relate!)

However, I hard a hard time connecting with her because of how she’d throw around money like it was going out of style, and this is probably my own hang up from not being in the same income bracket as this character. $3,900 on a new summer wardrobe — which, I get how it is after having a baby and having no clothes that fit — but that seems excessive to me. Or a spur of the moment trip to Singapore to see her sister, there’s a few thousand more. But what kills me is when her husband makes a comment to the extent of, “I guess we’re eating rice and noodles for a while,” and then she throws around more money! Again, I’m in a different income bracket as this character, and I have a hard time relating to someone who doesn’t seem to understand the value of a dollar, but other readers may not take issue with that at all.

The first half of the book felt like a lot of filler to me as well. Some parts were funny, but there were a lot of tangents that didn’t move the plot forward, info dumping at times. When I reached the end, I think a lot of it could have been left out. Maybe this is how Chic Lit is, I don’t know, like I said, I don’t usually read it.

Chapter fifteen though? That’s when things got real. Cassie discovers that the blog where she’d backed up all of the letters between her sister and herself, has suddenly gone live. She was sure she set the privacy settings to PRIVATE, and yet, there’s her blog, out for the world to see… gone viral. Now she has to deal with the aftermath, all of her and her sisters private thoughts out in the world. Confessions about her in-laws, her husband, and her friends. She has to tell her sister what happened, and her husband, and she confessed to some terrible things in those letters that her husband can’t just brush aside. I really felt for her there and in the end I was rooting for her.

I think my favorite character of the whole book, however, was Uncle Sal, Cassie’s husbands uncle. Cassie and her sister-in-law are convinced he’s in the mafia, and he’s just a delight to read.

Ultimately, I think my biggest hang up with this book was that it often wasn’t told in chronological order, the tangents I mentioned before. That and Cassie’s throwing around money like it’s going out of style. But, the ending was beautiful and full of heart, which ultimately saved me from regretting having read this book.

Would I recommend Keep Me Posted? Yes. But not to everyone. Those who like Women’s Fiction and more literary works might enjoy this, or even those with young children who can commiserate with Cassie and her feelings. Those who stick mostly with genre-based fiction probably wouldn’t enjoy this as much.

NOTE: After writing this review and sitting on it for a while, it occured to me what I think my problem with this book was. It read more like a memoir instead of fiction. 

REVIEW: A Thousand Sunsets by Jannie Lund

No Tidy up Tuesday today. I think that will become a more sporadic thing, since I’m not being very good about working on it daily. I did conquer some clutter this past week, but I was too lazy to pull the photos from my phone to the computer so… maybe next week?

I do have a review of a book I really enjoyed though!


A Thousand Sunsets by Jannie Lund

Read:
December 2015

Format:
Kindle Ebook

My Book Rating:
4/5 Stars

Genre:
Contemporary Romance

 
I didn’t read this book for the longest time because, based on the blurb, I didn’t think I’d like it. I gave it a chance after reading another of the author’s books, Finding Clara. In the end, I really enjoyed this story. Jannie Lund has become a MUST READ author for me, as this is the second book I’ve read and really enjoyed from her. (Her new Vintage Dreams will hopefully be read and reviewed within the next couple months as well!)

Anyway, in this book, Alexander was rescued from the streets as a kid by an old man named Patrick McCullough, and later adopted by the man, and now he’s a doctor.

Sarah is the granddaughter of Patrick, an artist, who has dealt with both the loss of her grandmother—Patrick’s wife—many years ago, as well as her father more recently.

When Patrick, on his death bed, asks that all of his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren come see him at his manor, things are shaken up and will never be the same. Patrick was born in Ireland to a poor farmer, he never expected to be anything more than a poor farmer himself. However, he fell in love, proposed marriage, and asked her to go with him on a journey to a new life in America, where he became very successful. In trying to give his family everything he didn’t have growing up, he neglected to give them his time and attention. Before he’s realized it, his life has passed and his kids want nothing to do with him.

This isn’t a typical romance in that the story isn’t just about Alexander and Sarah. They are a big part of it, and sort of the glue that holds things together, but the bigger theme of the book is learning to forgive and make the best of what you have.

By the end of this book, Patrick may not have had all of his wishes granted, but he’s able to move on knowing he’s done all that he could do to repair the scattered remains of his family.

I definitely recommend this book to those who are looking for a romance that’s a little outside of the box.


Disclaimer: I work for the company that released this book, however I receive no monetary compensation for any sales of this book. My employment with the company in no way changes my opinions or rating of the book.