You’re Gonna Love Me

Author: Robin Lee Hatcher
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Genre: Christian Fiction
Source: Purchased

 

Goodreads:  Who knew fate could twist a tragedy into a second chance at love?

Samantha Winters lives her life the way a good accountant should—measured, deliberate, and safe. After watching her father die in a tragic skiing accident, she decided never to allow risk into her life again. But she didn’t count on falling for Nick Chastain, who embodies everything she doesn’t want in her safely constructed world.

Against Samantha’s warnings, Nick plans a dangerous kayaking trip over spring break. Furious that he’s so careless with his life, she ends their fledgling relationship with harsh words.

Two years later, Samantha is desperately in need of a change. When she learns her grandmother has had an accident and is in need of a caretaker, Samantha quickly packs her bags and heads to Thunder Creek, Idaho. But nothing could prepare her for the surprise awaiting her in her grandmother’s hospital room . . . Nick.

With the charming backdrop of small-town friends, beloved cousins, and a whole church congregation rooting for them, can they set aside the disastrous ending of their first try at love? Has Nick changed enough to meet Samantha in the middle—and can she realize that a risk in love might be worth taking?

Ope’s Opinion: This story started out really well, but after a while I was tired of the back and forth – Sam and Nick got close, Sam got scared and pulled away – they got close again, Sam got scared and pulled away – over and over again.  The first time – okay, but after a while it got old.  

I really liked Sam’s Gran and the relationship between the two of them.  Gran was a wise women, who did not interfere with Sam’s and Nick relationship, but was there for guidance.

The ending was what you expect – it was good, but rushed.

Home Work: A Memoir of My Hollywood Years

Author: Julie Andrews
Publisher: Hachette Audio
Genre: Nonfiction
Source:  Library

Goodreads:   In this follow-up to her critically acclaimed memoir, Home, Julie Andrews shares reflections on her astonishing career, including such classics as Mary PoppinsThe Sound of Music, and Victor/Victoria.

In Home, the number one New York Times international bestseller, Julie Andrews recounted her difficult childhood and her emergence as an acclaimed singer and performer on the stage.
With this second memoir, Home Work: A Memoir of My Hollywood Years, Andrews picks up the story with her arrival in Hollywood and her phenomenal rise to fame in her earliest films–Mary Poppins and The Sound of Music. Andrews describes her years in the film industry — from the incredible highs to the challenging lows. Not only does she discuss her work in now-classic films and her collaborations with giants of cinema and television, she also unveils her personal story of adjusting to a new and often daunting world, dealing with the demands of unimaginable success, being a new mother, the end of her first marriage, embracing two stepchildren, adopting two more children, and falling in love with the brilliant and mercurial Blake Edwards. The pair worked together in numerous films, including Victor/Victoria, the gender-bending comedy that garnered multiple Oscar nominations.

Cowritten with her daughter, Emma Walton Hamilton, and told with Andrews’s trademark charm and candor, Home Work takes us on a rare and intimate journey into an extraordinary life that is funny, heartrending, and inspiring.

Ope’s Opinion: Julie Andrews voice was such a pleasure to listen to.  She spoke of personal things that were happening and behind scenes of Mary Poppins, Sound of Music and other things that she did.  

I always feel a memoir is hard to review.  It is her perspective of her life – it can’t be negative or positive.  It is what ever she remembers.

I just enjoyed listening to this.  I am not a big fan of reading memoirs, but I do enjoy listening to them.

Paris Never Leaves You

Author: Ellen Feldman
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Genre: Historical Fiction
Source:  St. Martin’s Press

 

Goodreads:  Living through WWII working in a Paris bookstore with her young daughter, Vivi, and fighting for her life, Charlotte is no victim, she is a survivor. But can she survive the next chapter of her life?

Alternating between wartime Paris and 1950s New York publishing, Paris Never Leaves You is an extraordinary story of resilience, love, and impossible choices, exploring how survival never comes without a cost.

The war is over, but the past is never past. 

Ope’s Opinion: Although I am not usually a historical fiction reader, I decided to try this one.  It was not for me, but I do think if you are a WWII reader you may enjoy it.  There were two story lines that felt disconnected.  The characters left me wanting something ( not even sure what.. just didn’t connect with them ).

I did enjoy all the parts of the story that had to do with the book store in Paris and the publishing house in NYC.  It was interesting to hear about how things were handled in the publishing world.

You may want to give this one a chance if you are more of a historical reader.

 

Who Do You Love

Author: Jennifer Weiner
Publisher: Atria Books
Genre: Fiction
Source: Purchased

 

 

Goodreads:  Rachel Blum and Andy Landis are eight years old when they meet late one night in an ER waiting room. Born with a congenital heart defect, Rachel is a veteran of hospitals, and she’s intrigued by the boy who shows up all alone with a broken arm. He tells her his name. She tells him a story. After Andy’s taken back to the emergency room and Rachel’s sent back to her bed, they think they’ll never see each other again.

Rachel, the beloved, popular, and protected daughter of two doting parents, grows up wanting for nothing in a fancy Florida suburb. Andy grows up poor in Philadelphia with a single mom and a rare talent that will let him become one of the best runners of his generation.

Over the course of three decades, through high school and college, marriages and divorces, from the pinnacles of victory and the heartbreak of defeat, Andy and Rachel will find each other again and again, until they are finally given a chance to decide whether love can surmount difference and distance and if they’ve been running toward each other all along.

With honesty, wit, and clear-eyed observations about men and women, love and fate, and the truth about happy endings, Jennifer Weiner delivers two of her most memorable characters, and a love story you’ll never forget.

Ope’s Opinion: The idea of the story was amazing.   I could feel what the characters were feeling.  The decisions that were made were believable, especially when each person did not have the full story – only their own perspective.

The detailed steamy parts were too explicit for what I like to read.  The whole story could have been complete without those parts being described in detail. The back and forth, together, apart, together, apart, etc. was drug out a bit for me.  

The ending was what you would expect, until the next bump in the road!

 

The Next Always

Author: Nora Roberts
Publisher: Berkley Books
Genre: Romance
Source: Kristin of Kritters Ramblings

 

Goodreads:  #1 New York Times bestselling author Nora Roberts introduces you to the Montgomery brothers – Beckett, Ryder, and Owen – as they bring an intimate bed-and-breakfast to life in their hometown.

The historic hotel in Boonsboro has endured war and peace, the changing of hands, and even rumored hauntings. Now it’s getting a major face-lift from the Montgomery brothers and their eccentric mother. As the architect in the family, Beckett’s social life consists mostly of talking shop over pizza and beer. But there’s another project he’s got his eye on: the girl he’s been waiting to kiss since he was sixteen.

After losing her husband and returning to her hometown, Clare Brewster soon settles into her life as the mother of three young sons while running the town’s bookstore. Though busy and with little time for romance, Clare is drawn across the street by Beckett’s transformation of the old inn, wanting to take a closer look…at both the building and the man behind it.

With the grand opening inching closer, Beckett is happy to give Clare a private tour – one room at a time, in between blueprint meetings and kindergarten pickups. It’s no first date, but these stolen moments are the beginning of something that could arouse the secret yearning that resides in Clare’s independent heart – and open the door to the extraordinary adventure of what comes next…

Ope’s Opinion:  Nora Roberts usually catches me on the first page and keeps my attention – not this time.  For the reader that is strictly a romance readers, you might enjoy this – it has some steamy parts ( too much for me ) and the romance moves quickly – I am more of a slow moving relationship reader.  

There was too much foul language ( seemed to just be stuck in there ).  I hope not to spoil too much, but there is a ghost – really not my cup of tea.  So I won’t be continuing with this series.

If you enjoy all of the above – give it a read and hopefully you will enjoy it.

Jackie O: On the Couch

Author: Alma H. Bond
Publisher: Bancroft Press
Genre: Nonfiction
Source:  Kristin at Kritters Ramblings

 

Goodreads:  Jackie O: On the Couch is the story of Jackie Kennedy Onassis as she might have written it.

This is not just another biography. For the first time, Jackie O: On the Couch highlights Jackie’s life from her own perspective, as imagined by author Dr. Alma Bond, a psychoanalyst and long-time student of Jackie lore.

The facts are all historically correct, as are the ideas, the Washington intrigue and politics, and the examination of the role of women in society and in the White House. Jackie speaks of her need to record her story truthfully-to replace the hodgepodge of lies published during her lifetime. Speaking as an older woman, she ponders how her points of view have changed from those she held when she was young.

The book delves into her childhood and explores how and why Jackie became the person she was. It also explores the Kennedys, and how John F. Kennedy’s background affected his marriage. Jackie’s deep love for Jack, his early inattentiveness, their difficulties together, his outrageous womanizing, happy times at the White House, and the tragedy of his assassination-all are viewed through Jackie’s eyes.

Jackie writes of her need for Aristotle Onassis, debunking the notion that she married him purely for his money, and traces the joyful early years of the marriage through to its dramatic collapse and Ari’s difficult death.

A different Jackie emerges into the world of publishing. Her new persona allows her to establish her very best relationship with the stout and adoring Maurice Tempelsman, until non-Hodgkins lymphoma takes her life in 1994, at age 64.

Jackie O: On the Couch is a unique exploration of the life and loves of a great historical figure. Jackie Kennedy Onassis deeply prized her privacy and, as a result, she was both revered and mysterious. In this book, much of the mystery is shed as Jackie finally emerges as a fully fleshed-out, three-dimensional person-a true human being, with enormous strengths and shortcomings, who all of us can now understand and appreciate, perhaps for the first time.

Ope’s Opinion:  Along with a lot of other people, I have always been fascinated by Jackie O.  This book gave me a new look at her life.  It was a little depressing – she had a hard life.  The way it was written, I didn’t feel too much for her – not sorry or sad.  It felt like the book was written from a very negative perspective.  It took any shine off of my thoughts of what she might really be like.  I don’t think I will seek out any other books about her.  My daughter read this book and had a completely different reaction to it, so read it for yourself and see what you think.

 

 

 

The Daughters Break the Rules

Author: Joanna Philbin
Publisher: Poppy Books
Genre: Young Adult
Source: Kristin of Kritters Ramblings

 

Goodreads: Daughters Rule Number Six: Never talk to the press about your parents.
After leaking a story about the family business, impetuous high school freshman Carina Jurgensen is cut off by her billionaire father. Always resourceful, she fibs her way into a job as a party planner for New York’s annual Silver Snowflake Ball. But when Carina finds out that the party committee expects favors and freebies from her dad’s A-list connections, a choice must be made: Does she get real about her downgraded status, or pretend she’s still the ultimate heiress?
Best friends and fellow daughters of celebrities Lizzie Summers, Carina Jurgensen and Hudson Jones are back in Joanna Philbin’s second stylish and heartfelt Daughters novel.

Ope’s Opinion: It was really hard for me to have any sympathy or to relate to Carina or her friends.  I like to read young adult books to see if my grandkids would enjoy them.  I would not recommend them to read this strictly because these girls lives are not a good example.   

This was the second in the series.  I did not read the first one.  I was not lost and did not feel like I had missed anything.  This could be a stand alone.

I have the fourth book – The Daughters Join the Party on my shelf.  I may read it to see if it has a better story line.

 

Coming Soon…

…. On a Bookshelf near you!

In September I hope to read….

 

Publication Date: Spetember 15, 2020
Publisher: Clarkson Potter Publishers

Goodreads: The New York Times bestselling authors and stars of the upcoming Netflix series The Home Edit teach you how to apply their genius, holistic approach to your work life, on-the-go necessities, and technology.

When at home or on the go, you don’t have to live like a minimalist to feel happy and calm. The Home Edit mentality is all about embracing your life–whether you’re a busy mom, a roommate living with three, or someone who’s always traveling for work. You just need to know how to set up a system that works for you.

In the next phase of the home organizing craze, Clea Shearer and Joanna Teplin go beyond the pantry and bookshelf to show you how to contain the chaos in all aspects of your life from office space to traveling bags to pet supplies and holiday storage. Take quizzes and get to know your organizing style, tailor it to your family’s lifestyle, and lead the low-guilt life as you apply more genius ideas to every aspect of your life.

Clea and Joanna are here to remind you that “it’s okay to own things” (we all do!) in the quest for pretty and smart spaces. With The Home Edit Life, you’ll be corralling phone cords, archiving old photos, packing your suitcase like a pro, and arranging your phone apps by color in no time.

 

What is coming soon …. to a bookshelf near you?

Let me know – I am always looking for a good read!

Until I Find You

Author: Rea Frey
Publisher: St. Martin’s Giffin 
Genre: Thriller
Source: Sarah at St. Martin’s Press

Goodreads:  In Until I Find You, celebrated author Rea Frey brings you her most explosive, emotional, taut domestic drama yet about the powerful bond between mothers and children…and how far one woman will go to bring her son home.

“”Frey is a rising star in the suspense scene”” – Booklist

2 floors. 55 steps to go up. 40 more to the crib.

Since Rebecca Gray was diagnosed with a degenerative eye disease, everything in her life consists of numbers. Each day her world grows a little darker and each step becomes a little more dangerous.

Following days of feeling like someone’s watching her, Bec awakes at home to the cries of her son in his nursery. When it’s clear he’s not going to settle, Bec goes to check on him.
She reaches in. Picks him up.
But he’s not her son.
And no one believes her.

One woman’s desperate search for her son . . .

In a world where seeing is believing, Bec must rely on her own conviction and a mother’s instinct to uncover the truth about what happened to her baby and bring him home for good.

Ope’s Opinion:   Rea Frey has done it again!  She wrote a book that has you looking over Bec’s shoulder from the first page – Yes first page!  The writing is so good you can feel Bec’s fear.

The part that let me down just a bit was Bec’s constant refusal of help.  There were people in her life that were willing to help and she wouldn’t accept the help.  She also didn’t act rational some times, then wondered why people didn’t believe her.

The ending was a little off for me. I don’t know what I was expecting, but this wasn’t it.  The epilogue felt like the end of chick lit novel, not a thriller novel.

The Silent Patient

Author: Alex Michaelides
Publisher: Celadon Books
Genre: Mystery
Source: Borrowed from a friend

Goodreads:  Alicia Berenson’s life is seemingly perfect. A famous painter married to an in-demand fashion photographer, she lives in a grand house with big windows overlooking a park in one of London’s most desirable areas. One evening her husband Gabriel returns home late from a fashion shoot, and Alicia shoots him five times in the face, and then never speaks another word.

Alicia’s refusal to talk, or give any kind of explanation, turns a domestic tragedy into something far grander, a mystery that captures the public imagination and casts Alicia into notoriety. The price of her art skyrockets, and she, the silent patient, is hidden away from the tabloids and spotlight at the Grove, a secure forensic unit in North London.

Theo Faber is a criminal psychotherapist who has waited a long time for the opportunity to work with Alicia. His determination to get her to talk and unravel the mystery of why she shot her husband takes him down a twisting path into his own motivations—a search for the truth that threatens to consume him…

Ope’s Opinion:  It took me a little while to get into this story.  There were two story lines you knew where going to cross at some point, so it was a little confusing at the start.  Once I got into it, it moved really fast.  The short chapters kept the pace going.  

There were definitely some unexpected twists in the story – maybe not completely believable, but it is fiction!

The ending felt a little rushed, not exactly what I expected and sort of odd.  You have to read it to understand – I don’t want to give anything away.