I Hate This Book and I Love This Book: Ghosted {Rosie Walsh}

Man do I have a lot to say about Rosie Walsh’s Ghosted. I HATE this book…..aaaaaaand I LOVE this book. How does that even happen???? My thoughts on this one are truly all over the place.

Goodreads Synopsis of Ghosted {Rosie Walsh}:

When Sarah meets Eddie, they connect instantly and fall in love. To Sarah, it seems as though her life has finally begun. And it’s mutual: It’s as though Eddie has been waiting for her, too. Sarah has never been so certain of anything. So when Eddie leaves for a long-booked vacation and promises to call from the airport, she has no cause to doubt him. But he doesn’t call.

Sarah’s friends tell her to forget about him, but she can’t. She knows something’s happened–there must be an explanation.

Minutes, days, weeks go by as Sarah becomes increasingly worried. But then she discovers she’s right. There is a reason for Eddie’s disappearance, and it’s the one thing they didn’t share with each other: the truth. 

I Hate This Book and I Love This Book: Ghosted {Rosie Walsh}:

First of all, it’s like 3 separate books in one. The first third of the book is…not good. Not good at all. It’s super confusing, super hard to follow, and super boring because there is quite literally nothing explained. It’s like the story just STARTS and the reader is thrown right into it without ANY explanation or background knowledge. I HATED the beginning of this book mostly because I had no clue what the hell was going on! A lot of the book is like this but the beginning is especially confusing. Hated it. Almost gave up reading.

The next third of the book is…better! The story starts to come together, characters aren’t quite so random, and you begin to get the sense of what is happening.

And then the last third of the book is….dark. Dramatic. Heavy. AMAZING. SPECTACULAR. IMPOSSIBLE TO PUT DOWN.

Before reading, I assumed this would be a light hearted and fun read! Girl meets boy and boy doesn’t call, sounds light! Spoiler: It’s not.

Something I loved: While I found a few parts of this book very predictable most of it was NOT! The best part of this book were the surprising twists that it took when I least expected it. Story lines completely took paths that I NEVER saw coming.

Something I didn’t love: I found more than 1 story line quite unbelievable and a bit TOO coincidental.

This overall story was incredible…but the actual writing was not. I am NOT a fan of Rosie Walsh’s writing style. I found it so confusing and I kept mixing up the characters right up until the very end. Story lines weren’t fully developed, everything kept bouncing around in terms of timelines and points of view, and overall it all just felt so disjointed to me.

And I’ll just say it. Sarah’s obsessive behavior was cringe worthy.

HOWEVER….the actual story was INCREDIBLE and quite literally left me breathless at the end. I actually heard myself give a big audible sigh after I closed the back cover, lol. There was A LOT of story packed into those 337 pages! I guess that’s what happens when each character and each story line isn’t given enough time to be properly developed and you don’t waste pages filling in the reader of any background knowledge for the entire beginning of the book, lol.

But here’s the confusing part: even though it was completely disjointed, this book as a whole was WONDERFUL. I’m not sure how that even happens but looking back on what I just read…it somehow all just worked to come together to tell this amazing story.

Although I’m clearly not a fan of Rosie Walsh’s writing style, I do respect her ability to write a book like this. Wow.

It turns out that my review of this book is just as confusing as the beginning of the book, lol.

I find it perfect that Liane Moriarty gives her recommendation of this book right on the front cover. I have such a love/hate relationship with Liane Moriarty (you read more about that HERE) and I also have a love/hate relationship with this book! Perfect pairing 😉

Would I recommend Ghosted? For the story as a whole and for the last 100ish pages alone…..HELL YES. I can’t stop thinking about it. Omg. WHAT. A. STORY.

Bottom Line:

If you can make it past the first 100ish pages…this story is truly incredible.

Have you read this book? What did you think? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

Xo,

Jenny

Click the image below to order the book through my Amazon affiliate link. When you order through this link, I receive a tiny commission. Thank you for your support, Xo

This blog is my favorite hobby and I would so love your support!  Here are ways you can help my blog to GROW:

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The ultimate list of my top book suggestions can be found HERE

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How I Became A Library Hero

How fun is this?!? I’m officially a Library Hero! Here is how I became one 🙂

It’s meeeee!

Back in early October, I randomly received the following email from my wonderful local library :

I responded that I was IN! How fun!

Library Hero

And then at the end of January, my friend Allison texted me a screenshot of an email that she had received from the library…with my picture on it! Turns out, this email was sent to 21,000 people!

Next thing I knew I was featured on their Facebook page…

…and Twitter…

…and Instagram!

My family and I visited gorgeous Indian Trails this past weekend and my kids thought it was so cool that THIS is what greeted us riiiiiiiiight as soon as we walked in the front door!

#noautographsplease
The words written underneath my gigantic picture!
My kids hangin’ with Mama!

As we walked through the library, we kept being greeted by my picture! My son literally pointed and yelled, “Moms on the screen! Moms on the screen!”

On your way to the first floor bathroom? Stop by and say hello!
Have a question for Adult Services on the upper level? Wave hello to me when you are there!

I’m so honored to be the face of this important campaign for one of my most favorite places. How fun is all of this?!

WEAR YOUR MASK, EVERYONE!

My dear friend (and fellow book lover) Megan texted me this:

If you go to Indian Trails, text or email me (bookcoffeehappy@gmail.com) a selfie with my poster! I’ll put it on my blog, lol 🙂

Thank you, Indian Trails, for reaching out to ask me to be a part of this! I would love to do it again for you in the future….next time I promise to wear makeup and properly style my hair, lol 😉

Between this and one of my blog posts going viral back in January, I’m feeling quite fancy over here! I should probably start holding interviews for bodyguards, limo drivers, publicists, etc…

And speaking of Indian Trails, I’m so excited about their new App which has now officially launched! You can find it in the Google Play Store and in the Apple Store (search Indian Trails Public Library). You KNOW I got mine all set up immediately! It’s GREAT and very user friendly!

I hope you are having a lovely day! Don’t forget to WEAR YOUR MASK!

Xo,

Your Favorite Library Hero 🙂

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Random Book Blogger Thoughts

I have so many random thoughts to share with you today that I decided to dedicate an entire post to them, lol. I actually think I will do this as a regular series on Book Coffee Happy 🙂 Welcome to the the first installment of Random Book Blogger Thoughts!

Thank You

Thank you so much for all of your kind comments on my LAST POST. To be completely transparent, I was nervous to write that post and after I finally did write it…I almost deleted it before posting. I was very worried that I was going to come across as insincere and that was absolutely NOT my intention! I was so pleasantly surprised to see that I am not the only one who feels the way that I do. Book related discussions are so amazing and some of the comments on that post brought up such excellent points! I would still love to hear from the other side but I completely respect why you might not want to comment on this topic.

Book I Recently Read

I finished reading Kelly Yang’s Parachutes yesterday. I’ll post my review here next week…stay tuned!

A Book Poll

Thank you to everyone who has answered my poll on Instagram! SO many of you did and I appreciate the advice! I have these 2 books both currently checked out of the library and I truly couldn’t decide which to read next…I’ve heard great things about both! Here are the final results! Excited to start reading Invisible Girl tonight 🙂

My Daughter’s Homework

My daughter’s 3rd grade teacher has assigned each student to read for 20 minutes each day and it has quickly turned into one of my favorite times of the entire day! She grabs a book, I grab a book, my son grabs a book, and the 3 of us cuddle up and silently read for 20 minutes. I light a candle and have a mug of steaming coffee. HEAVEN. I promised her that whenever she needs to read for homework, I will ALWAYS join her! I love, love, love this time in the day. NOTE: The second that 20 minute timer goes off, my children literally RUN out of the room…but you KNOW Mama stays and finishes whatever chapter she’s in the middle of, lol.

This Book Blogger’s Biggest Fan

Nobody on Earth has a more wonderful father than I. He reads every single post I write and always has such wonderful and supportive things to say. I LOVE YOU, DAD!

Children’s Book Giveaway

I have an AWESOME giveaway coming up on Wednesday for a BEAUTIFUL children’s book! This book truly speaks directly to my heart and I’m so excited to share it with you! Be sure to check back here on Wednesday for your chance to win.

Your turn…tell me something random in the comments below!

Xo,

Jenny

This blog is my favorite hobby and I would so love your support!  Here are ways you can help my blog to GROW:

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The ultimate list of my top book suggestions can be found HERE

The 12 best books I read in 2020 can be found HERE

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**READ THIS BOOK** Book Review: The Chicken Sisters {KJ Dell’Antonia}

I first saw KJ Dell’Antonia’s The Chicken Sisters when I browsing the shelves at the most amazing bookstore I’ve ever visited. I read the back cover on the book and immediately knew that I wanted to read and review it! Reality tv + small town+ family relationships??? Count me IN!

After I took the above picture, my kids each took a side of the wishbone and made a wish as they pulled it apart. My daughter won. My son cried. I digress….

Goodreads Synopsis of The Chicken Sisters {KJ Dell’Antonia}

Three generations. Two chicken shacks. One recipe for disaster.

In tiny Merinac, Kansas, Chicken Mimi’s and Chicken Frannie’s have spent a century vying to serve up the best fried chicken in the state–and the legendary feud between their respective owners, the Moores and the Pogociellos, has lasted just as long. No one feels the impact more than thirty-five-year-old widow Amanda Moore, who grew up working for her mom at Mimi’s before scandalously marrying Frank Pogociello and changing sides to work at Frannie’s. Tired of being caught in the middle, Amanda sends an SOS to Food Wars, the reality TV restaurant competition that promises $100,000 to the winner. But in doing so, she launches both families out of the frying pan and directly into the fire. . .

The last thing Brooklyn-based organizational guru Mae Moore, Amanda’s sister, wants is to go home to Kansas. But when her career implodes, Food Wars becomes her chance to step back into the limelight. Mae is certain she can make the fading Mimi’s look good–even if that pits her against Amanda and Frannie’s. With a greedy producer stoking the flames, their friendly rivalry quickly turns into a game of chicken. Yet when family secrets become public knowledge, the sisters must choose: Will they fight with each other, or for their heritage?

My Review of The Chicken Sisters {KJ Dell’Antonia}

I absolutely LOVED this book. From the very first page, I was alllllll in. I read this book slowly just to savor it, I truly didn’t want for it to end!

It is such a lovely and beautifully written book. Everything about this book is just wonderful! The character development, the complicated story lines, the small town atmosphere, and an added bonus…a behind scenes glimpse into the making of a reality tv show!

The Chicken Sisters was the Reese Witherspoon Book Club pick last December…Excellent choice, Reese 🙂

The timing of my reading this book was so ironic. When we were on our southern vacation in December, my husband had his heart SET on eating delicious fried chicken while we were there. He insisted on us driving 30 minutes to a bordering state just to enjoy fried chicken from a tiny place with the word “shack” in it’s name (he had done extensive fried chicken research before we arrived and apparently this was THE PLACE). Him and our kids enjoyed their fried chicken and fries on a random bench outside of the restaurant with plastic utensils and a roll of paper towels. They all LOVED it and my husband declared that it was definitely worth the drive. This experience was a perfect reference for me as I was reading The Chicken Sisters! Exactly how I pictured Mimi’s!

***Side Note*** Fried chicken and fries aren’t my thing and I may or may not have brought my own lunch of a turkey sandwich and baked chips to enjoy on that bench…oh MAN would Mimi and Frannie have been disappointed in me! I’m so sorry Mimi and Frannie!

My favorite things about this book are the absolutely beautiful takeaways it left me with. Without giving away spoilers, I will just say that this book has so many beautiful lessons within these pages and so many lovely quotes that I wrote down from these characters.

Do you remember the post I wrote titled The Best Books I Read in 2020? I can already promise you that this book will be on my 2021 post.

Bottom Line

Absolutely loved every second of reading this lovely book. Highly recommend!

Have you read this book? What did you think? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

Xo,

Jenny

Click the image below to order the book through my Amazon affiliate link. When you order through this link, I receive a tiny commission. Thank you for your support, Xo

This blog is my favorite hobby and I would so love your support!  Here are ways you can help my blog to GROW:

*Please share this page with your book and blog loving friends!*

*Please share this page with your book and blog loving friends!*

*Subscribe with your email address to my blog (scroll all the way to the bottom of this page on mobile devices OR check the top right of this screen to enter your email address)*

*If you already have a blog, please “follow” mine*

*”Like” my Facebook page (and please comment on, “like”, and share my posts)*

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*Clicking and buying products through my Amazon Affiliate links.  The cost to you is exactly the same and I receive a tiny commission off of your purchases.*

*Leaving a positive review on my Facebook page*

The ultimate list of my top book suggestions can be found HERE

The 12 best books I read in 2020 can be found HERE

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The Sunshine Blogger Award

Thank you so much Lauren of LaLa’s Book Reviews for nominating me for the Sunshine Blogger Award!

What is the Sunshine Blogger Award?

The Sunshine Blogger Award is given to those who are creative, positive and inspiring while spreading sunshine to the blogging community.

How does it work?

  • Thank the blogger(s) who nominated you in a blog post and link back to their blog.
  • Answer the 11 questions sent by the person who nominated you.
  • Nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions.
  • List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post and/or on your blog.

Lauren’s Questions for Me:

You’re stranded on a deserted island. Which 3 book characters would you want to be with you to get you back?

Lexie Vidler because she truly knows the skill of devoting everything she has to solving the problem at hand. She would absolutely be able to think of a plan to get us off that island!

Emoni Santiago because she would make sure that we would be well fed while trying to figure out a way off that island!

Becky Bloomwood because she’s such a good friend…I would think having a good friend with me while in this situation would be KEY!

Do you listen to music while you read?

HELL NO.

What’s an unpopular book that you love?

Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata. Loved it. Read it’s synopsis and my review of it HERE.

Who is your favorite bookish couple?

My first thought was Mallory Blessing and Jake McCloud buuuuuuut then I remembered the circumstances behind their love and now that answer feels icky.

Would you rather listen to an audiobook or read an ebook?

NEITHER! More on my thoughts HERE.

What’s one of your unpopular bookish opinions?

I wrote an entire post on this topic HERE!

Roughly how many books do you own and haven’t read?

Just a handful! Proud to be a minimalist! More on my thoughts around that HERE 🙂

What’s a book that you always recommend?

The Most Fun We Ever Had by Claire Lombardo. Such a beautifully written book! Read it’s synopsis and my review of it HERE.

Do you have designated time to read each day?

I’m a stay at home mom of 2 young children currently quarantining, remote learning, and homeschooling all during a global pandemic. So….no.

Do you have an organization system for your books?

I do! My desk has built in shelves. Library books waiting to be read on the left, books I own and waiting to be read on the right, books I’ve finished and need to blog about on the top. I’m pretty Type A when it comes to organization. Read (and watch the video!) about how I organize my life HERE.

What has been a book that you’ve been wanting to read forever?

Love in the Time of Cholera! I have been wanting to read it for years ever since it was referenced so many times in my favorite movie of all time. I’ve owned the book for years but have never actually read it…maybe this is the year??

11 Questions for the people I tag (if I didn’t tag you or you don’t have a blog but still want to participate, feel free to answer in the comments below! I’d love to hear your answers)!

Best book you have ever read?

Worst book you have ever read?

Book you are currently reading?

If you could visit the home of any fictional character, where would you like to go?

Describe your perfect scenario/surroundings for enjoying a good book.

Least favorite book character of all time?

Most favorite book character of all time?

What was the last book you read and would you recommend it to others?

Book that made you cry?

Book that made you laugh out loud?

Tagging:

Misty’s Book Space

Bantering Books

By Hook or By Book

Reading by the Moonlight

The Book Chatter

Chick Lit Central

By the Letter Book Reviews

A Court of Coffee and Books

Mani’s Book Corner

Jenna, Stop Reading!

Reading Frenzy Book Blog

Xo,

Jenny

This blog is my favorite hobby and I would so love your support!  Here are ways you can help my blog to GROW:

*Please share this page with your book and blog loving friends!*

*Please share this page with your book and blog loving friends!*

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*Clicking and buying products through my Amazon Affiliate links.  The cost to you is exactly the same and I receive a tiny commission off of your purchases.*

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The ultimate list of my top book suggestions can be found HERE

The 12 best books I read in 2020 can be found HERE

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Let’s Chat: Do You Read the Book Synopsis Before You Read the Book?

When I first started writing my blog, I regularly posted a series called “Let’s Chat” where I would bring up a discussion topic and then share my thoughts and feelings on it. Those posts always brought upon such wonderful discussions! It has been a VERY long time since I have written one of these posts! So today, I’m bringing back the Book Coffee Happy old school “Let’s Chat” with this discussion topic: Do you read the book synopsis before you read the book?

***I regularly use the term “book synopsis” on my blog to describe the brief description of what the book is about (what you would read on the back or inside cover of the book). Other terms that describe this same description which I don’t use can include “book blurb”, “book description”, etc. All of these terms are a bit subjective and interchangeable! It’s important to note that the synopsis that I am referring to is NOT a complete book summary which would include all major points in the book including the ending. ***

Do You Read the Book Synopsis BEFORE You Read the Book?

A few weeks ago, one of my very favorite Bookstagrammers Jenna Stop Reading mentioned not reading the book synopsis before reading a book and it got me thinking…I could NEVER do that!

This is quite a debatable topic in the book blogger world. Apparently some people prefer to read the book going into it completely blind as to what the book is going to be about while others (ME) absolutely, 100 percent read the synopsis on the back or inside cover EACH AND EVERY TIME.

I have no idea how someone could read a book without knowing what the book is going to be about! Like…how do you very literally just choose the book by it’s cover??? Mind. BLOWN.

The very first things I look at while choosing a book off the shelf is the front cover, the title, and the author’s name. Absolutely all important…BUT…then I immediately read the synopsis! There have been PLENTY of times where I pick up a book, I think it looks great aaaaaaaaand then I read the synopsis and I put it right back down. How does one go into that so blindly? (I did once write an entire post called “Judging Books by Their Covers”! You can read that post HERE).

Not only do I read the synopsis before deciding what the book is going to be about but I actually read it quite a few times to familiarize myself with the characters and overall story lines.

I also tend to go and read it a few MORE times WHILE reading the book as a reference as to the characters and story lines.

Now there IS a very fine line between reading the book synopsis and learning a potential spoiler. I HATE SPOILERS. Hate, hate, hate (which is why I will NEVER have any book spoilers here on my blog). You can read more about my hatred for spoilers HERE.

Remember a few weeks ago when I was reading Simon Vs The Homosapien Agenda and I was planning on reading it’s sequal without knowing what it was about? I do think that’s a special circumstance as I was afraid if I read the synopsis to the sequel that it would give away spoilers from the original! HOWEVER, as soon as I finished reading Simon, the very first thing I did before reading it’s sequel was to read it’s synopsis! (You can read my review of those 2 books HERE).

When I hear of a book and want to look up the synopsis online the ONLY website that I will do this on is Goodreads. I have found that other websites (I’m looking at you, Amazon!) tend to reveal TOO much of the book description for my liking. Goodreads always shares juuuuuust enough about the book to let me know what it’s about without revealing too much. (FYI this is why I always only share the synopsis from Goodreads on Book Coffee Happy when I write my book reviews :))

So tell me…do you read the book synopsis before reading the book or do you like going in completely blind as to what the book will be about?

Other Book Coffee Happy “Let’s Chat” posts:

Let’s Chat: Tablet Vs Book Vs Audiobook?

Let’s Chat: When Your Opinion Is The Unpopular One

Let’s Chat: I’m A Monster. Anyone Else?

Let’s Chat: Read the Book First or Watch the Movie First?

Let’s Chat: Spoilers. Love Knowing or Better Blind?

Let’s Chat: Is Reading a Social Hobby?

Let’s Chat: Book Clubs…Yay or Nay?

Let’s Chat: How Long Until You Officially Abandon A Book?

Happy Friday! I hope your weekend is filled with love and BOOKS!

Xo,

Jenny

This blog is my favorite hobby and I would so love your support!  Here are ways you can help my blog to GROW:

*Please share this page with your book and blog loving friends!*

*Please share this page with your book and blog loving friends!*

*Subscribe with your email address to my blog (scroll all the way to the bottom of this page on mobile devices OR check the top right of this screen to enter your email address)*

*If you already have a blog, please “follow” mine*

*”Like” my Facebook page (and please comment on, “like”, and share my posts)*

*Follow me on Instagram*

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*Clicking and buying products through my Amazon Affiliate links.  The cost to you is exactly the same and I receive a tiny commission off of your purchases.*

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The ultimate list of my top book suggestions can be found HERE

The 12 best books I read in 2020 can be found HERE

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Book Review: Before I Let You Go {Kelly Rimmer}

If you follow Book Coffee Happy on Facebook you know that I often ask my followers to share what they are reading. I love reading the comments on those posts and seeing how everyone interacts with each other to discover new books to read. The book community is so amazing! When I asked for everyone to share a few weeks ago, my dear friend Julie commented that she was reading Kelly Rimmer’s Before I Let You Go. As soon as I Googled the synopsis, I immediately knew that this was a book I wanted to read and review on the blog…it sounded SO GOOD. When the library called the day before we were leaving for our trip to Tennessee, I took that as a sign that this should be my vacation read. Who knew that I would eventually be stuck on that mountain with little food, no power, and our car in a ditch??? Yup if you missed that crazy story, you can read all about our trip HERE! 1 thing that I DID have up on that crazy mountain with me was a good book 🙂

Goodreads Synopsis of Before I Let You Go {Kelly Rimmer}:

The 2:00 a.m. call is the first time Lexie Vidler has heard her sister’s voice in years. Annie is a drug addict, a thief, a liar—and in trouble, again. Lexie has always bailed Annie out, given her money, a place to sleep, sent her to every kind of rehab. But this time, she’s not just strung out—she’s pregnant and in premature labor. If she goes to the hospital, she’ll lose custody of her baby—maybe even go to prison. But the alternative is unthinkable.

As weeks unfold, Lexie finds herself caring for her fragile newborn niece while her carefully ordered life is collapsing around her. She’s in danger of losing her job, and her fiancé only has so much patience for Annie’s drama. In court-ordered rehab, Annie attempts to halt her downward spiral by confronting long-buried secrets from the sisters’ childhood, ghosts that Lexie doesn’t want to face. But will the journey heal Annie, or lead her down a darker path?

Both candid and compassionate, Before I Let You Go explores a hotly divisive topic and asks how far the ties of family love can be stretched before they finally break.

My Review of Before I Let You Go {Kelly Rimmer}:

Oh this is such a beautifully written book.

I read this entire book while on my vacation in Tennessee. Couldn’t put it down!

This isn’t the usual type of book I read but I’m so glad I did. This is such a complicated topic and one that I’ll admit I’ve never given much thought to. This book really opened my eyes and gave me so much to think about.

Before I Let You Go tugged at my heart and I found myself crying at many points throughout. It was heartbreaking, beautiful, and SO wonderfully written. It was HEAVY, not a light read by any means…but it was so wonderfully written.

This is the first Kelly Rimmer book that I’ve read and I’ve already added 3 of her other books to my list to read. I absolutely love her beautiful and descriptive writing style! I’m already a huge fan and I’ve only read 1 of her books!

I finished reading this beautiful book over a week and a half ago and there hasn’t been a single day since where I haven’t thought of these characters and reflected upon their stories. Their characters and their stories will stay with me for a long, long time.

I highly recommend this one!

Bottom Line:

A beautifully written, extremely thought provoking, absolutely heartbreaking story

Have you read this book? What did you think? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

Xo,

Jenny

Click the image below to order the book through my Amazon affiliate link. When you order through this link, I receive a tiny commission. Thank you for your support, Xo

This blog is my favorite hobby and I would so love your support!  Here are ways you can help my blog to GROW:

*Please share this page with your book and blog loving friends!*

*Please share this page with your book and blog loving friends!*

*Subscribe with your email address to my blog (scroll all the way to the bottom of this page on mobile devices OR check the top right of this screen to enter your email address)*

*If you already have a blog, please “follow” mine*

*”Like” my Facebook page (and please comment on, “like”, and share my posts)*

*Follow me on Instagram*

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The ultimate list of my top book suggestions can be found HERE

The 12 best books I read in 2020 can be found HERE

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Book Review: The Guest List {Lucy Foley}

Lucy Foley’s The Guest List had been on my list to read FOREVER. The wait list for this book at my library was so looooong! Everyone seems to be reading this book! I couldn’t wait to get my hands on a copy to read and review.

Goodreads Synopsis of The Guest List {Lucy Foley}:

The bride ‧ The plus one ‧ The best man ‧ The wedding planner ‧ The bridesmaid ‧ The body

On an island off the coast of Ireland, guests gather to celebrate two people joining their lives together as one. The groom: handsome and charming, a rising television star. The bride: smart and ambitious, a magazine publisher. It’s a wedding for a magazine, or for a celebrity: the designer dress, the remote location, the luxe party favors, the boutique whiskey. The cell phone service may be spotty and the waves may be rough, but every detail has been expertly planned and will be expertly executed.

But perfection is for plans, and people are all too human. As the champagne is popped and the festivities begin, resentments and petty jealousies begin to mingle with the reminiscences and well wishes. The groomsmen begin the drinking game from their school days. The bridesmaid not-so-accidentally ruins her dress. The bride’s oldest (male) friend gives an uncomfortably caring toast.

And then someone turns up dead. Who didn’t wish the happy couple well? And perhaps more important, why?

My Review of The Guest List {Lucy Foley}:

So. Much. YES.

This book was FANTASTIC. I read it over the course of only a few days and truly could not put it down!

The setting for the story is so ominous, let alone each of the mysterious characters that it contains. Everything about this book was so mysterious and creepy and I absolutely loved it!

I will never, ever look at any wedding in the same way ever again. Holy hell.

I had about a million predictions which kept changing as I was reading as to how everything was going to play out in the end. For the most part, all of my predictions were completely wrong. I was able to guess one major twist pretty early on but other than that, I was completely shocked by all of the twists and turns! So, so good!

This book would make an absolutely amazing movie! The setting alone would be so much fun to see on the big screen. Someone is bound to buy the movie rights for this one…??

Bottom Line:

Highly, highly recommend!

Have you read this book? What did you think? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

Xo,

Jenny

Click the image below to order the book through my Amazon affiliate link. When you order through this link, I receive a tiny commission. Thank you for your support, Xo

This blog is my favorite hobby and I would so love your support!  Here are ways you can help my blog to GROW:

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Book Review: My Dark Vanessa {Kate Elizabeth Russell}

Another book I read during the STUPID WORDPRESS SWITCHOVER and therefore couldn’t post my review in a timely manner. I read Kate Elizabeth Russell’s My Dark Vanessa while sitting outside on a beach chair in gorgeous weather months ago. Now I’m typing this review over the Thanksgiving holiday with Christmas music playing on Pandora on my phone next to me. Ugh! Regardless of how long it took me to actually write this review, I have so many thoughts on this book to share with you!

Goodreads Synopsis of My Dark Vanessa {Kate Elizabeth Russell}:

2000. Bright, ambitious, and yearning for adulthood, fifteen-year-old Vanessa Wye becomes entangled in an affair with Jacob Strane, her magnetic and guileful forty-two-year-old English teacher.

2017. Amid the rising wave of allegations against powerful men, a reckoning is coming due. Strane has been accused of sexual abuse by a former student, who reaches out to Vanessa, and now Vanessa suddenly finds herself facing an impossible choice: remain silent, firm in the belief that her teenage self willingly engaged in this relationship, or redefine herself and the events of her past. But how can Vanessa reject her first love, the man who fundamentally transformed her and has been a persistent presence in her life? Is it possible that the man she loved as a teenager—and who professed to worship only her—may be far different from what she has always believed?

Alternating between Vanessa’s present and her past, My Dark Vanessa juxtaposes memory and trauma with the breathless excitement of a teenage girl discovering the power her own body can wield. Thought-provoking and impossible to put down, this is a masterful portrayal of troubled adolescence and its repercussions that raises vital questions about agency, consent, complicity, and victimhood. Written with the haunting intimacy of The Girls and the creeping intensity of Room, My Dark Vanessa is an era-defining novel that brilliantly captures and reflects the shifting cultural mores transforming our relationships and society itself. 

My Review of My Dark Vanessa {Kate Elizabeth Russell}:

This book was so disturbing…and yet…so GOOD? I had heard such mixed reviews prior to reading and I totally understand how everyone feels differently about this book. The subject is…a lot.

The topic is HEAVY and icky and weird and yet this book is GREAT. How???

The writing is fantastic, the characters are interesting, and the “unputdownable” factor is most definitely there. I FLEW through this book. It grabbed my attention from page 1 allllll the way until I closed the back cover. I didn’t want it to end.

Truly so thought provoking on so many levels. I read this book from the perspective of a mother, a daughter, a former teacher, and as a college student (how has it been so many years since that was my life when I can still relate to it so easily??).

My Dark Vanessa has deservingly made it to the final round in the fiction category of the Goodreads 2020 Choice Awards. Have you voted yet? As much as I did enjoy reading about Vanessa, THIS OTHER BOOK actually received my vote 🙂 If you haven’t read THAT book yet, I clearly highly recommend it!

I was pleasantly surprised at how different My Dark Vanessa is to THIS VILE BOOK. The 2 are nothing alike. One book makes you think, the other makes you want to throw up. I HATED THAT DISGUSTING OTHER BOOK SO, SO MUCH.

My Dark Vanessa is a wonderful beautifully disturbing book.

Bottom Line:

It feels weird to say that I loved this book because the subject is just so weird and dark…but…I loved this book.

Have you read this book? What did you think? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

Xo,

Jenny

Click the image below to order the book through my Amazon affiliate link. When you order through this link, I receive a tiny commission. Thank you for your support, Xo

This blog is my favorite hobby and I would so love your support!  Here are ways you can help my blog to GROW:

*Please share this page with your book and blog loving friends!*

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Another Book Accessory Recommendation!

I once wrote a blog post called “My #1 Book Accessory of All Time” (you can read that post HERE) and I still stand by that recommendation. I very literally use mine EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. And she is currently looking as fancy and fabulous as ever:

As I always tell my kids, the more worn and dirty something is, the more that means it’s been loved.  And clearly this book light has been LOVED.

My kids see me use mine every day and always want to borrow it.  A few months ago, they both begged for their own!

Ummm begging for a BOOK LIGHT?!?  #proudmama

Fast forward a few months…

…and both of my kids now use them often (not QUITE as often as their mama…working on it) and they both love them. These specific book lights came as a pack of 2 which was perfect for my 2 kids. I wanted to wait a few months after buying them to write a blog post to make sure that I recommend these. I absolutely do!

Another Book Accessory Recommendation

They are so tiny and so easy to travel with!

The 1 and only complaint that I have with my own book light is that isn’t easy to travel with because I’m always so afraid that the large old school bulb will shatter in my suitcase. I always end up tossing it in with my toiletries in this bag although I’m not sure that’s the safest way to travel with it, lol. (Fun fact: my sister in law gave me this toiletry bag at one of my bridal showers and it has traveled with me on every single trip I have taken over the past 10.5 years! LOVE!)

Large, old school bulb:

Teeny tiny flat LED light:

I will say that these lights aren’t as bright as mine but my kids don’t care. Totally bright enough that they use them to read in the dark all the time! In fact, these lights can usually be found somewhere in their beds because they fall asleep while reading 🙂 I like my book light to be BRIGHT (again, see THIS POST for more info on that) but I’m sure many people out there would prefer a softer light.

FYI…my booklight will always be my #1 must have book accessory, but THIS product remains hands down my #2. I. LOVE. THIS. PRODUCT. Although I still think it looks a bit naughty, lol…I promise it’s not!

You can read my blog post HERE all about that one and why I love it so much. It’s the definition of a product you never realized that you need until you own it and use it ALL THE TIME.

Do you use a book light? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

Xo,

Jenny

Click the image below to order these book lights through my Amazon affiliate link. When you order through this link, I receive a tiny commission. Thank you for your support, Xo

This blog is my favorite hobby and I would so love your support!  Here are ways you can help my blog to GROW:

*Please share this page with your book and blog loving friends!*

*Please share this page with your book and blog loving friends!*

*Subscribe with your email address to my blog (scroll all the way to the bottom of this page on mobile devices OR check the top right of this screen to enter your email address)*

*If you already have a blog, please “follow” mine*

*”Like” my Facebook page (and please comment on, “like”, and share my posts)*

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*Clicking and buying products through my Amazon Affiliate links.  The cost to you is exactly the same and I receive a tiny commission off of your purchases.*

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The ultimate list of my top book suggestions can be found HERE

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