Friday, July 19, 2019

Bedtime Story: The Rabbit Listened by Cori Doerrfeld

Read for: Children's Book Challenge & Borrowed Books

Synopsis: "With its spare, poignant text and irresistibly sweet illustrations, The Rabbit Listened is a tender meditation on loss.

When something terrible happens, Taylor doesn't know where to turn. All the animals are sure they have the answer. The chicken wants to talk it out, but Taylor doesn't feel like chatting. The bear thinks Taylor should get angry, but that's not quite right either. One by one, the animals try to tell Taylor how to process this loss, and one by one they fail. Then the rabbit arrives. All the rabbit does is listen, which is just what Taylor needs.

Whether read in the wake of tragedy or as a primer for comforting others, this is a deeply moving and unforgettable story sure to soothe heartache of all sizes."

My Review: I have heard a lot of great things about this book so when I saw it available at my library I picked it up. This is such a sweet and simple story but a great one with fantastic messages throughout. It is a great way to help little ones start to define and understand their 'big' feelings. This is also a nice reminder to parents that sometimes we just need to sit and listen to kids when they are feeling those emotions and let them work through them in their own time. I loved the illustration style, it is soft and simple and lends to the feel of the story. It is a great bedtime story!

My Rating: I really loved this book, I wish I had read it with Munchkin when he was little. Even though he didn't have an interest in reading it (he only wants to read chapter books now), it was still a great reminder to me as a parent to listen more instead of trying to tell him how he is feeling.  I give it a rating of Four Paws!

Good Night! Sweet Dreams!

Thursday, July 18, 2019

TBR Thursday (3)

So I stumbled upon this feature at Purple People Readers (I am totally in love with the blog name LOL) and was originally created by Kimberly Faye Reads.

As you may know, I like so many other book lovers out there am struggling with a towering TBR.  I have been currently working on narrowing it down a little (check out my Instagram stories for Trash My TBR Thursdays). But I thought I would also bring that idea to my blog, where you can get a bit of a say in what stays on my TBR and what books it may be time to let go.

So let me know, should I keep it on my TBR, prioritize it, or let it go.  Have you read it? Let me know your thoughts on . . .

Title: Summer Secrets
Author: Jane Green
Series: Standalone 
Genre: Chick Lit
Format: Hardcover
Length: 308 pages
Average Rating on Goodreads: 3.64 stars
Time on TBR: since June 25, 2015
Synopsis: "June, 1998: At twenty seven, Catherine Coombs, also known as Cat, is struggling. She lives in London, works as a journalist, and parties hard. Her lunchtimes consist of several glasses of wine at the bar downstairs in the office, her evenings much the same, swigging the free booze and eating the free food at a different launch or party every night. When she discovers the identity of the father she never knew she had, it sends her into a spiral. She makes mistakes that cost her the budding friendship of the only women who have ever welcomed her. And nothing is ever the same after that.

June, 2014: Cat has finally come to the end of herself. She no longer drinks. She wants to make amends to those she has hurt. Her quest takes her to Nantucket, to the gorgeous summer community where the women she once called family still live. Despite her sins, will they welcome her again? What Cat doesn’t realize is that these women, her real father’s daughters, have secrets of their own. As the past collides with the present, Cat must confront the darkest things in her own life and uncover the depths of someone’s need for revenge."

This was another of those FOMO books, I was at an author function and go caught up in having an author I have never read a book by sign my copy. I was drawn into this one with the pretty cover and the local setting. I will on occasion read chick lit books but not often.  I am also a little leery of the alcoholism and mystery in this one, not really my cup of tea. But again this could end up being a great summer read.

What do you think? Try it even though it is outside my comfort zone or make so space on my shelves for a book I know I will enjoy?

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Review of Window on the Bay by Debbie Macomber

Read for: Netgalley/Requested Review & I love her books

Synopsis: "When a single mom becomes an empty nester, she spreads her wings to rediscover herself--and her passions--in this heartwarming novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Debbie Macomber.

Jenna Boltz's life is at a crossroads. After a messy divorce from her surgeon husband nearly twenty years ago, she raised her two children on her own, juggling motherhood with her beloved job as a Seattle intensive-care nurse. Now that Paul and Allie have gone to college and moved out, Jenna can't help but wonder what her future holds.

Her best friend, Maureen, is excited for Jenna's newfound independence. Now is the perfect time to finally book the trip to Paris they've been dreaming of since their college days. But when it comes to life's other great adventure--dating--Jenna still isn't sure she's ready to let love in . . . until an unexpected encounter begins to change her mind.

When Jenna's elderly mother breaks her hip, Dr. Rowan Lancaster saves the day. Despite his silent, stoic exterior, Rowan is immediately smitten with Jenna. And even though Jenna is hesitant about becoming involved with another surgeon, she has to admit that she's more than a little intrigued. But when Jenna's children approach her with shocking news, she realizes that she needs to have faith in love and embrace the unexpected--before the life she has always dreamed of passes her by."

My Review: If you have taken a peek at my reviews at all you will find out that I am a big Debbie Macomber fan, I generally read her new releases right away and am obsessed with her Christmas stories. So, of course, I jumped at the chance to read this newest release. I was thinking this might be a continuation of Cottage by the Sea, her release from last year, but it doesn't seem to be, they both seem to be standalone books which I am 100% happy with reading. I love how this book follows two middle aged moms with recent empty nests, I am not quite there yet but getting close (other than the single parent part) and was really able to relate to them and their struggles to find their new definitions now that Mom wasn't the main focus anymore. The friendship between Jenna and Maureen was so inspiring, we should all have a friendship like that in our lives, someone who just gets us, supports us and guides us. The romances are slow burn, clean and realistic with all the baggage that comes with dating later in life. Macomber really pushed her characters outside their comfort zones and made them look past their preconceived notions of what the perfect partner should be. The romance also didn't completely take over the story, so much of the story is focused on friendships and family dynamics as well. I really appreciated the little peek into the struggles of letting your adult child make their own decisions and how the relationships shift as they grow up. 

My Rating: I really appreciated how this story was so full of various plot lines and that it wasn't solely focused on the romance.  It was a nice reminder of what a great friendship looks like.  I thoroughly enjoyed it and give it a rating of Four Paws!

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley. The above is my honest opinion and review.

You can find out more about Debbie Macomber and her wealth of books on her Goodreads Page or Website.

Window on the Bay was just released yesterday, July 16th, so you can now obtain your own copy in digital or print format from Amazon or Barnes & Noble or check at your library or local bookstore! 

Monday, July 15, 2019

Monday Reading List

It is Monday again, and time to update with what I read last week, what I am currently reading and what to look forward to next week.

Reviews Posted Last Week:
Links will take you to my review

Spin the Dawn by Elizabeth Lim
Midsummer's Mayhem by Rajani LaRocca

 Books Finished Last Week:
Reviews will be posted at a later date

The Rabbit Listened
Pete the Cat and the Treasure Map

Currently Reading:

Realm by Alexandrea Weis - Ebook - 11%
The Storm Crow by Kalyn Josephson - Print - on page 104 of 352
The Kingdom by Jess Rothenburg - Multiple Formats - on page 128 of 352
The Window on the Bay by Debbie Macomber - Ebook - on page 35 of 336

Pages Read/ Time Listened
351:45 Hours Listened (None listened this week)
18,262 Pages Read (56 this week)

Books Added to Shelves Recently: TBR
The Snow Gypsy
Lost Boy
Year One
Girl Who Drank the Moon
King of Scars
Dactyl Hill Squad
The Darkdeep
Lord of the Fading Lands
Shadow of Doubt
Gates of Stone
A Conspiracy of Truths
Vortex Visions
Through the White Wood
Descendant of the Crane
Holy Sister
Dark Harmony
We Rule the Night
The Sea Queen
The Mountain of Kept Memory
Misfits of Avalon Vol. 1
Misfits of Avalon Vol. 2
The Sea King
Ride Hard
Ride Rough
Ride Wild
Force of Attraction
Primal Force
Rival Forces
A Rogue by Any Other Name
A Scot in the Dark
The Day of the Duchess
The Pirate Bride
Pirate Stories
Man Made Boy
This Monstrous Thing
Dear Santa
An Endless Christmas
Christmas Magic
Falling Softly
Christmas Town
The Christmas Star
Highland Crown
Gris Grimly's Frankenstein
The Strange Case of the Alchemist's Daughter
The Beholder
We Hunt the Flame
Dreaming the Bear
A New Hope
The Trial of Joan of Arc
Midsummer's Mayhem
The Monsters We Deserve
Strange Star
Hephaistos: God of Fire
Ghostly Tales from the Lost Summer of 1816
Till There Was You
The Bride Test
The Kingdom
Storm and Fury
Queen of Ruin
The Lost Vintage


It ended up being another extremely busy week last week between a super insane week at the office, Summer camp and swim lessons for Munchkin, hubby injuring himself and installing new french doors in our house.  There was very little time for reading, it has been rather frustrating for me not to be able to read more than a chapter or two a day of any books, even audio books. I have been focusing a lot on going through my TBR books though; we have to let our dog out through the basement door because the deck is gone and my TBR shelf is right by that door. I spend a lot of time each day waiting for Niko to come back in and just staring at that mess of a shelf.  So far this last week I have pulled 25 books off the shelf that I don't have much interest in reading any more and made another pile of about 20 books that are a maybe (I will probably post those on my Instagram stories for Trash My TBR Thursdays).  Clearing out even a few of those books has made me feel better about not getting as much reading done as I would like, not so much pressure to read the books to reduce my TBR.

How often do you go through your TBR and clear out books you may not be interested in anymore?