Book Review: The Mother-In-Law {Sally Hepworth}

Before I review Sally Hepworth’s AMAZING new book, The Mother-In-Law, I want to thank all of the bloggers and vloggers who left their links to their websites in the comments on my last post!  I’m still in the process of checking them all out and I’ve already discovered some great new ones 🙂  If you haven’t added your information on that post yet, please do so!

A special welcome to all of my new readers!  I’m so glad you’re here 🙂

*This post contains affiliate links*

The Mother-in-Law was my 3rd Sally Hepworth book that I’ve read. I read The Secrets of Midwives years ago (I thought it was just eh) and last year I read The Family Next Door (you can read my review of that one HERE).  I had been waiting for months to read her newest book, The Mother-in-Law, and it was so worth the wait!

I devoured this book.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

A twisty, compelling novel about one woman’s complicated relationship with her mother-in-law that ends in murder…

From the moment Lucy met her husband’s mother, Diana, she was kept at arm’s length. Diana was exquisitely polite, and properly friendly, but Lucy knew that she was not what Diana envisioned. But who could fault Diana? She was a pillar of the community, an advocate for social justice who helped female refugees assimilate to their new country. Diana was happily married to Tom, and lived in wedded bliss for decades. Lucy wanted so much to please her new mother-in-law.

That was five years ago.

Now, Diana has been found dead, a suicide note near her body. Diana claims that she no longer wanted to live because of a battle with cancer.

But the autopsy finds no cancer.
The autopsy does find traces of poison and suffocation.
Who could possibly want Diana dead?
Why was her will changed at the eleventh hour to disinherit both of her adult children and their spouses?

With Lucy’s secrets getting deeper and her relationship with her mother-in-law growing more complex as the pages turn, this new novel from Sally Hepworth is sure to add to her growing legion of fans.

My Thoughts:

(Disclaimer: I will never post spoilers in my reviews HOWEVER the comment section is completely fair game to discuss any and all specifics including spoilers)

4 Stars

I. LOVED. THIS. BOOK.

This review will be a bit difficult to write without giving anything away but I will say that this book was absolutely nothing like I was thinking it would be. Maybe it was because of the title that I just assumed it was going to be a similar read to this book? It was NOTHING like that one although I did enjoy that book as well (for completely different reasons).

I absolutely love when books contain the magic to make you think about your own experiences and relationships with others in different ways and this book absolutely did that for me. I’ve been quite reflective thinking about various relationships in my own life after finishing this book.

The Mother-In-Law had short (some just a handful of pages) chapters which is always my favorite way for books to be written.  I find it’s so much easier to read books this way as I read them at a quicker pace and they hold my attention for longer period of time!

The Mother-In-Law is a beautifully written, thought provoking, fantastic read that will make you look at all of your personal relationships in a different light. Highly recommend.  I haven’t stopped thinking about these characters and their situations since I finished reading 3 days ago.

The reason for my 4 star review was that some of the time frames were a bit confusing, a few character relationships weren’t as developed as they could have been, and the second half of the book was overall so much more captivating than the first.

Another flaw I did notice about this book is the ridiculous amount of screen time the children have! I’m most definitely NOT one of those moms who never allow TV or the iPad but truly it felt like every time a child was in a scene in this book they were attached to some device.  Play!  Talk!  Create!  There are so many things for children to do to entertain themselves…devices shouldn’t be the only answer.

(And on a side note which has nothing to do with this book…don’t even get me started on seeing children on devices while sitting at tables in restaurants and completely tuning out all of the social situations surrounding them.  MY. BIGGEST. PET. PEEVE).

I digress…

Even with the few flaws that I did find with this book, it’s overall so wonderfully written and fantastic!

A beautiful book.

Did you catch Sally Hepworth on the Today Show last week?  She’s adorable!

Bottom Line:

Read this.  Today.  And then take a step back and look carefully at how you perceive the others around you.

Be sure to check the blog on Wednesday for a GIVEAWAY of an ADORABLE book! 🙂

Xo,

Jenny

Did you read this book?  What did you think?  Have you read others by Sally Hepworth? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

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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

Book Review: How To Find Love In A Bookshop {Veronica Henry}

This book was sitting on a shelf at the library with the front cover facing outward. I walked past, saw the title, and that alone was enough to make me want to read more! A title which contains both the words love AND bookshop?!  Sign me up!  I’d never heard of this book or of this author…but I was intrigued enough to take it home with me and I’m so glad that I did.  I read it and now I have so many thoughts.  There were definitely parts of it that I LOVED…aaaaaaaand then there were parts of it that I didn’t.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

The enchanting story of a bookshop, its grieving owner, a supportive literary community, and the extraordinary power of books to heal the heart

Nightingale Books, nestled on the main street in an idyllic little village, is a dream come true for book lovers–a cozy haven and welcoming getaway for the literary-minded locals. But owner Emilia Nightingale is struggling to keep the shop open after her beloved father’s death, and the temptation to sell is getting stronger. The property developers are circling, yet Emilia’s loyal customers have become like family, and she can’t imagine breaking the promise she made to her father to keep the store alive.

There’s Sarah, owner of the stately Peasebrook Manor, who has used the bookshop as an escape in the past few years, but it now seems there’s a very specific reason for all those frequent visits. Next is roguish Jackson, who, after making a complete mess of his marriage, now looks to Emilia for advice on books for the son he misses so much. And the forever shy Thomasina, who runs a pop-up restaurant for two in her tiny cottage–she has a crush on a man she met in the cookbook section, but can hardly dream of working up the courage to admit her true feelings.

Enter the world of Nightingale Books for a serving of romance, long-held secrets, and unexpected hopes for the future–and not just within the pages on the shelves. How to Find Love in a Bookshop is the delightful story of Emilia, the unforgettable cast of customers whose lives she has touched, and the books they all cherish.

My Thoughts:

(Disclaimer: I will never post spoilers in my reviews HOWEVER the comment section is completely fair game to discuss any and all specifics including spoilers)

3.5 Stars

I’m conflicted with my review of this book.  I loved it…truly!  I thought it was sweet, charming, heartwarming, and lovely.

But I just never felt like picking it up to read it.  Ever.

In all fairness, I started reading this book as soon as I finished this one.  Now THAT book was one that I couldn’t put down and I read it over the course of a few days.  The genres of these 2 books are so completely different but it’s hard to dive right into a book like this one after just finishing a book like that one.  I usually love switching genres before starting a new read but I think this might have just been too great of a switch.  Does that make sense?  Has this ever happened to you?

Of course this lovely book wasn’t suspenseful…it wasn’t supposed to be!  But after just finishing one which quite literally had me on the edge of my seat, this one just felt…a bit…too calm.

The sheer amount of characters in this book were insane.  There were WAY too many characters, WAY too many story lines, and WAY too much jumping around from one to the other!  Just as I was really starting to fall into a story line, the story lines would change and honestly many of them were predictable and unrealistic.  I also didn’t love the endings of more than 1 story line.

HOWEVER…

Despite my issues with this book, it truly is a gem. It’s sweet, touching, and overall just lovely. I teared up quite a few times while reading!

Nightingale Books sounds so charming! If that store were in my neighborhood I would be in there everyday. If you are a book lover like I am, hearing all about Nightingale Books will be your favorite part of this book.  In fact, the entire town of Peasebrook sounds just lovely!  I Googled it and learned that it’s not a real town.  I wish it were, I would so love to visit such a cute and special little corner of the world. 🙂

If you are looking for an easy, lighthearted book…this is a good one!

I truly wonder if my review would have been different had I not just finished such an intense psychological thriller right before I picked this one up?

Bottom Line:

It’s got some issues…but overall I truly did enjoy it!  Also, any book which focuses on an charming independent bookstore is absolutely a book worth reading.

Xo,

Jenny

Did you read this book?  What did you think?  I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

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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

Book Review (Unpopular Opinion): Then She Was Gone {Lisa Jewell}

When I mentioned on Facebook and Instagram that I was going to read this book, I was overwhelmed by the amount of people who said that they LOVED it!  I was so excited to read and review it!

Synopsis from Goodreads:

THEN
She was fifteen, her mother’s golden girl. She had her whole life ahead of her. And then, in the blink of an eye, Ellie was gone.

NOW
It’s been ten years since Ellie disappeared, but Laurel has never given up hope of finding her daughter.

And then one day a charming and charismatic stranger called Floyd walks into a café and sweeps Laurel off her feet.

Before too long she’s staying the night at this house and being introduced to his nine year old daughter.

Poppy is precocious and pretty – and meeting her completely takes Laurel’s breath away.

Because Poppy is the spitting image of Ellie when she was that age. And now all those unanswered questions that have haunted Laurel come flooding back.

What happened to Ellie? Where did she go?

Who still has secrets to hide?

My Thoughts:

(Disclaimer: I will never post spoilers in my reviews HOWEVER the comment section is completely fair game to discuss any and all specifics including spoilers)

3.5 Stars

My vacation is officially over and I officially hardly read ANYTHING while I was there.  SO WEIRD.  I have decided that Disney World is truly the only vacation spot in the history of the world where it is physically impossible to sit down and relax with a book.

The plus side?  I am now having a glorious time back at home working my way through this stack of books, lol!

Two of them have already been returned to the library.  I’m currently reading this one. I’m not quite sure when I will read this one???

I recently started AND finished Then She Was Gone! I read the whole book over a handful of days.  If you follow me on Instagram you know that I’ve been home with 2 sick kids.  Thank you for these extra germy souvenirs, Disney World!  My poor little babies have been sleeping so much so I’ve had extra reading time.  Thankfully everyone is feeling better and today is the first day where they are BOTH back at school!

As for my review, my feelings about this book are so incredibly mixed.

Overall, it was GREAT, I couldn’t put it down! I loved the short chapters, the different points of view, and the highly complicated plot. It held my interest from page 1. Such a quick, fantastic read and so well written!  I can’t wait to read more titles by this author and already have 2 of them on my library waiting list.  She’s clearly talented.

However…

This is one of the most predictable books I’ve ever read. I figured out every major (and more than one minor) twist almost immediately. That NEVER happens! I hate spoilers so much that I don’t even TRY to figure out twists but this book basically begs you to spoil it for yourself.

I kept waiting to be wrong, I kept waiting to be shocked, I kept waiting to be surprised. And yet…I felt none of that. At all.

There were a few minor occurrences I didn’t see coming, but none of them were important enough to the story that they made any kind of difference.

This book reminded me SO much of this one! So well written, so great….but yet so incredibly predictable.

There is absolutely nothing better than a blindsighted twist in a psychological thriller and unfortunately there wasn’t a single one in this book. No big defining moment. No big shocking ending. Unfortunately this will be one of those books months down the road where I won’t be able to recall details.

I wasn’t satisfied with the ending as there were still storylines that weren’t completely tied up and explained.  Plus, the entire ending was just so weird.

Also, this book is DARK.  And disturbing.  So disturbing. All psychological thrillers are dark and a bit disturbing but the subjects in this one took that to a whole different level.  I actually found parts hard to read because of the dark subjects being discussed.

Clearly not my favorite psychological thriller.  If you are looking for a good one in this genre, I HIGHLY suggest reading this one! I loved that book.  Much more than I loved this one.

Bottom Line:

I think I figured out this entire story before all of the characters were even introduced, lol.

Xo,

Jenny

Did you read this book?  What did you think?  So many people love this book…are you one of them?

I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

8 Ways You Can Help Support Book Coffee Happy:

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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

Book Review: Dumplin’ {Julie Murphy}

This book had been on my radar for months…I couldn’t wait to read and review it!

Synopsis From Goodreads:

Self-proclaimed fat girl Willowdean Dickson (dubbed “Dumplin’” by her former beauty queen mom) has always been at home in her own skin. Her thoughts on having the ultimate bikini body? Put a bikini on your body. With her all-American beauty best friend, Ellen, by her side, things have always worked…until Will takes a job at Harpy’s, the local fast-food joint. There she meets Private School Bo, a hot former jock. Will isn’t surprised to find herself attracted to Bo. But she is surprised when he seems to like her back.

Instead of finding new heights of self-assurance in her relationship with Bo, Will starts to doubt herself. So she sets out to take back her confidence by doing the most horrifying thing she can imagine: entering the Miss Clover City beauty pageant—along with several other unlikely candidates—to show the world that she deserves to be up there as much as any twiggy girl does. Along the way, she’ll shock the hell out of Clover City—and maybe herself most of all.

With starry Texas nights, red candy suckers, Dolly Parton songs, and a wildly unforgettable heroine—Dumplin’ is guaranteed to steal your heart.

My Thoughts:

(Disclaimer: I will never post spoilers in my reviews HOWEVER the comment section is completely fair game to discuss any and all specifics including spoilers)

3 Stars

I’m so torn with my review of this book. I REALLY wanted to love it. It has everything in terms of story line that a great book should have. Interesting characters? Check. Interesting story line? Check.

And yet…eh. I found this whole book just fell flat.

If the story had really focused on the pageant and everything leading up to it as the synopsis promises, it would have been so much better. However, the majority of this book focused on a teenager’s day-to-day life which I found boring.

Also, this book has WAY too many characters and WAY too many story lines. None of the characters even had a chance to become fully developed and therefore became unforgettable and interchangeable as the story went on. I also found the majority of these characters to be very unlikable! The only characters I truly liked in the entire book were Mitch (and Lucy).

The main character (Willowdean) was extraordinarily judgmental of other people (and obviously of herself) which is ironic since the entire premise of this book is about breaking through stereotypes.

I found her relationship with her best friend to be obsessive and unhealthy.  I get that we are viewing this relationship through the eyes of a (dramatic) teenager but still…it bothered me that she felt she NEEDED this relationship to feel whole.  In fact, I believe she even made this exact comment in this story!

I had one MAJOR issue with this story which I will say in the comments because it’s also a major spoiler 🙂

However, in between the parts of the book where I found fault, I also found beauty.  There ARE beautiful and important messages, lessons, and moments delivered throughout this story.  Unfortunately, combined with all of the reasons stated above, this book just wasn’t nearly as great as I was expecting it to be.

There is a sequel to this book which unfortunately I have zero desire to read. Ugh! I really thought I was going to love both of these books!  I have already returned both to the library.  Sad.

But here’s the weird thing…The trailer for the movie looks AMAZING. Could this possibly be one of those rare occurrences where the movie is better than the book??? Check out the movie trailer starring Jennifer Aniston:

Looks so amazing, right?!?  Have any of you seen it?  I would love to hear your thoughts.  If any of you have read the book AND have seen the movie, I’m really wondering how they compare?

Bottom Line:

If the movie is truly as wonderful as the trailer makes it out to be, I say skip the book and just watch the movie.  And I NEVER say that.

Foam on the Crest of Waves Giveaway Winners:

Thank you so much to everyone who entered the Foam on the Crest of Waves Giveaway!

Hard Copy Winner:

Melissa A (I am subscribed via my blog account (chicklitcentral). I just went to Miami a few weeks ago and loved the beach there! I used to go to Pompano Beach (also in FL) every year as a kid and that also brings back great memories. I live in the US. Hard copy preferred. Thanks for the chance!)

E-Book Winners (There were so many entries for the hard copy but only 3 for the e-books! So…congratulations to all 3 of you!):

Kelley Blair (My favorite beach is Ocean Isle in North Carolina. I am USA and either hard copy or e-book works for me. Thank you kindly.)

Melissa Strader  (This sounds like a great book! I already follow your blog and love reading it! My favorites beaches are located along the coast of La Jolla, CA – so much to see and do there, not just water activities, but also restaurants and shopping and biking. Kayaking the Sea Caves is the best! I’m ok with a real book or electronic copy. I live in the USA!)

Mistysbookspace (Thank you so much for the chance. I am already a follower. I have only ever been to two beaches and those are New Smyrna beach and Myrtle Beach. I don’t really remember much about my visit to New Smyrna beach because I went when I was younger so I’m going to say Myrtle beach is my favorite. It’s a little crowded at least when I’ve gone but it’s gorgeous and there are so many other activities to do there as well. I live in the US. I would prefer a hard copy but I’m ok with ebooks too. Thank you again for the chance.)

Ladies, please email me (bookcoffeehappy@gmail.com) with your mailing address (hard copy winner) or your email address (e-book winners) of where you would like your book sent!  Congratulations and enjoy!

Have a great weekend, everyone!  I hope you fill it doing things with those you love!

Xo,

Jenny

8 Ways You Can Help Support Book Coffee Happy:

1. 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)

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

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

4. Follow me on Instagram

5. Follow me on Twitter

6. Subscribe to my YouTube channel (search Book Coffee Happy)

7. 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.

8. Leaving a positive review on my Facebook page

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

**DO NOT BUY THIS BOOK** Book Review: Tampa {Alissa Nutting}

This book has been on my radar to read for years due to how highly controversial it is.  Admittingly I have put it off for so long because the subject just made me so uncomfortable.  My fears were warranted.  This entire book was HIGHLY uncomfortable to read. And yet…I couldn’t put it down.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Celeste Price is an eighth-grade English teacher in suburban Tampa. She’s undeniably attractive. She drives a red Corvette with tinted windows. Her husband, Ford, is rich, square-jawed, and devoted to her.

But Celeste’s devotion lies elsewhere. She has a singular sexual obsession—fourteen-year-old boys. Celeste pursues her craving with sociopathic meticulousness and forethought; her sole purpose in becoming a teacher is to fulfill her passion and provide her access to her compulsion. As the novel opens, fall semester at Jefferson Jr. High is beginning.

In mere weeks, Celeste has chosen and lured the lusciously naive Jack Patrick into her web. Jack is enthralled and in awe of his teacher, and, most important, willing to accept Celeste’s terms for a secret relationship—car rides after school; rendezvous at Jack’s house while his single father works late; body-slamming encounters in Celeste’s empty classroom between periods.

Ever mindful of the danger—the perpetual risk of exposure, Jack’s father’s own attraction to her, and the ticking clock as Jack leaves innocent boyhood behind—the hyperbolically insatiable Celeste bypasses each hurdle with swift thinking and shameless determination, even when the solutions involve greater misdeeds than the affair itself. In slaking her sexual thirst, Celeste Price is remorseless and deviously free of hesitation, a monstress driven by pure motivation. She deceives everyone, and cares nothing for anyone or anything but her own pleasure.

My Thoughts:

(Disclaimer: I will never post spoilers in my reviews HOWEVER the comment section is completely fair game to discuss any and all specifics including spoilers)

The above black and white picture that I took is of the cover of the book that I read.  Note the boring cover.  Apparently THIS is the other cover version which my library did NOT have…

tampa

So there’s that.

This book has been banned at many bookstores across the globe. Others have agreed to stock it but only with a warning sticker affixed to the cover warning patrons that this book is only appropriate if you are over the age of 18.

I’m over 18 (way over). I read it. And while I was reading, the same questions kept repeating themselves in my head:

What the HELL am I reading???

HOW do books like this even get written in the first place?

How do authors even come UP with ideas like this?

How do publishers agree to publish books like this?

If you have a preteen or a teenage son, I would highly recommend skipping this book.  Someone on my Facebook page mentioned that she has a 14 year old son and wanted to know my opinion on if she should read this or not.  I told her NO!  I have a 3 year old son and this book was tough for me to read.  There is no way I could have read this if my son were older.

Also, if extremely graphic and detailed sex scenes aren’t your thing, this is NOT a book you will want to read. There are MANY of these scenes.  Graphic isn’t even an adequate word for how descriptive and detailed these scenes are. Now I love to read a good sex scene and the more detailed the better…when it’s consensual sex between 2 adults.  Reading detailed sex scenes of adults with minors?  Absolutely horrific.

The publisher should be ashamed in publishing what is essentially a step by step guide in how to lure and groom underage children into sexual relationships with adults.  Disgusting.

At the bottom of each of my book reviews, I link an affiliate link to buy the book and I make a small commission from your purchase.  I’m not linking this book because honestly, I can’t in good conscience promote anyone to purchase this book.

If you do feel compelled to read this to see what the hype is about (as I did) I would encourage you to check it out of your local library (as I did) and not give the publisher or the author any reason to believe that creating this type of book and making it available to the public is ok.

If you do choose to buy it…that’s your choice but I truly don’t want any type of commission from such a disgusting and dangerous piece of literature.

I cringe to think what could happen to an innocent child if the wrong person got their hands on this book.

In terms of a literary review, the beginning of the book was so disgusting that it was nearly impossible to read. I absolutely hated every second of reading about how to lure a child (14 year old) into a sexual relationship with an adult. From the reviews I’ve read online, many people never make it past the first few chapters. The middle of the book was a bit easier (not much) to read as it focused more on the story and not on the intentional grooming of a child into a sexual relationship with an adult. The end of the book just seemed rushed.

HOWEVER…

Aside from the rushed ending, the actual writing in this book is fantastic although the subject is so, so awful. I literally couldn’t put it down and read the entire book in 2 days. I HAD to know what was going to happen next! I hate to give this book any kind of positive review but I have to say…I couldn’t stop reading. This author is definitely talented.  I would be interested in reading more of her work if the subject was pretty much anything but this.

Also, I can appreciate any book which brings awareness and promotes discussions on otherwise taboo topics such as this. I absolutely hated the way in which this book was written to allow us into the mind of an adult who’s sole purpose was to meticulously create a plan on how she was going to molest children. However, the author clearly has enough literary talent to keep the reader interested enough to continue reading until the end.  At least this reader.  I truly couldn’t stop reading!

I’m so incredibly conflicted on how I would even rate this book and therefore…I’m just not.  No affiliate link, no rating.

The only reason that I’m even writing this blog post is because I mentioned on Facebook and Instagram that I was about to start this book and I know that people are waiting to hear my reaction.  I honestly wish I never would have mentioned this book to begin with…I hate that I’m even putting it out there for people to learn about.  The very last thing that I would ever want to do with a book such as this is to help promote it in any way (even negatively).

Bottom Line:

The mother in me was furious reading this book.  The former teacher in me was appalled reading this book.  The woman in me was disgusted reading this book. The reader in me couldn’t put it down.

I would be so curious to hear other opinions on this controversial book.  Did you read this one?  What did you think?  If not…would you want to?  I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

It would really help me if you could follow/subscribe to my blog.  Also, please “like” my Facebook page ,  follow me on Twitter, and follow me on Instagram!

Local friends, I run a storytime every Tuesday and Friday at Whimsy Cafe in Buffalo Grove, Illinois from 10:00-10:30! Bring your kids (6 months-5 years) for stories, songs, and lots of fun. Price is included in your child’s admission, no need to sign up. If you are a blog reader, please be sure to introduce yourself!  I can’t wait to meet you and your little ones. 🙂

Book Review: What if it’s Us {Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera}

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Arthur is only in New York for the summer, but if Broadway has taught him anything, it’s that the universe can deliver a showstopping romance when you least expect it.

Ben thinks the universe needs to mind its business. If the universe had his back, he wouldn’t be on his way to the post office carrying a box of his ex-boyfriend’s things.

But when Arthur and Ben meet-cute at the post office, what exactly does the universe have in store for them?

Maybe nothing. After all, they get separated.

Maybe everything. After all, they get reunited.

But what if they can’t quite nail a first date . . . or a second first date . . . or a third?

What if Arthur tries too hard to make it work . . . and Ben doesn’t try hard enough?

What if life really isn’t like a Broadway play?

But what if it is?

My Thoughts:

(Disclaimer: I will never post spoilers in my reviews HOWEVER the comment section is completely fair game to discuss any and all specifics including spoilers)

4.5 Stars

I absolutely loved this book.  One of my favorite books that I’ve read so far in 2019!

From page 1 I was hooked.  Everything about this book was awesome and REAL.  The sheer amount of storylines and characters in this book was insane…but in a good way.  I truly loved it all and simply couldn’t get enough of this book!  It was funny, heartwarming, sad, uplifting…it was everything.  I found myself smiling while reading though so many parts of this book.

I’m always so curious when books are co-written.  Do the authors take on specific characters to write?  Do they alternate chapters?  Sections of the book?  I had this thought in the back of my mind while reading and it was all written so smoothly that I truly have no idea how it was written by 2 people.  Mind.  Blown.

The only reasons I can’t give this gem 5 stars are because it was a bit predictable at times and the characters were VERY dramatic at times.  I understand that they are teenagers and teenagers are dramatic…but whoa.  Also, I felt that the conversations between them were spot on at times on how teenagers speak and not realistic at other times when they would become so reflective.  I would be curious to hear others weigh in on this topic if you’ve read it.

I also think it’s worth noting that if you haven’t seen Hamilton and HATE reading about any spoilers of any kind as much as I do, you might not want to read this book until you do.  There are A LOT of Hamilton references throughout this book and there is even a part where the basic story of Hamilton is told.  When I saw Hamilton in Chicago last fall, I went in completely blind…I wanted to know absolutely nothing about the story, the songs, etc.  I truly believe my Hamilton experience was better that way (everyone says to listen to the music first…I say do NOT)!  I would have been super annoyed by all of the Hamilton references in this book if I was planning on seeing the play blindly.  However, having already seen the play…I LOVED all of the Hamilton references!  In fact, I am playing the Hamilton Pandora station as I’m typing this because after reading this book, I needed to hear these songs again STAT.

Please, please, please tell me there is a sequel to this book coming out eventually.  I can’t say good-bye to these characters and storylines just yet!  Everything about this book is just begging for a sequel.

This book would also make a fantastic movie…

Bottom Line:

LOVED.  IT.  SO.  MUCH.

Did you read this book?  What did you think?  I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

It would really help me if you could follow/subscribe to my blog.  Also, please “like” my Facebook page ,  follow me on Twitter, and follow me on Instagram!

Local friends, I run a storytime every Tuesday and Friday at Whimsy Cafe in Buffalo Grove, Illinois from 10:00-10:30! Bring your kids (6 months-5 years) for stories, songs, and lots of fun. Price is included in your child’s admission, no need to sign up. If you are a blog reader, please be sure to introduce yourself!  I can’t wait to meet you and your little ones. 🙂

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

A-Z Book Tag {AKA Random Facts About Myself as a Reader}

Would you like to learn random facts about myself as a reader?  As soon as I saw this book tag on Feed the Crime I knew I wanted to participate.  This one was so much fun!  Thank you to The Perpetual Page Turner for creating it!

*This post contains affiliate links.  When you click on these links to buy the book, I receive a tiny commission.  Thanks so much for your support, XO!*

Author you’ve read the most books from:

Ann M. Martin! The Babysitters Club series were hands down my FAVORITE books while growing up.  And I’m not talking about the current graphic novels…I’m talking the old school novels.  Claudia and Stacey were always my favorites.  I can’t WAIT for my daughter to read these one day!

Best Sequel Ever:

The Wedding
I’ve told this story on my blog before but I’ll tell it again…I read this on an airplane years ago.  As soon as I pulled it out of my carry on bag, the lady sitting next to me handed me a tissue!  She told me that I would be needing it.  Sure enough by the end of the flight…I was SOBBING.  Like…weeping.  Make up everywhere.  Hiccups.  The lady just looked at me, nodded once, and said, “Told you.”  If you loved The Notebook (who didn’t?!) you will love it’s sequel.  Just make sure you have plenty of Kleenex.

Currently Reading:

On The Come Up

Drink of Choice While Reading:

COFFEE.  All day, every day.  Hot, never iced.

E-reader or Physical Book?

Physical book 100% of the time.  I’ve never read anything on an e-reader and I’ve never listened to an audiobook.

Fictional Character You Probably Would Have Actually Dated In High School:

Olly from this wonderful book.  Read my review here!

Glad You Gave This Book A Chance:

The Light Between Oceans Oh how I LOVED this book…once I was able to get past the extremely boring beginning.  Read more on this and my full review here!

Hidden Gem Book:

Young Jane Young!  How is this book not more popular?!?  It’s fantastic!  Read my full review here.

Important Moment in your Reading Life:

As I was reading Becoming, I was struck with the realization that I just don’t enjoy reading memoirs.  Watch my YouTube video to hear me discuss this further!

Just Finished:

Somebody’s Daughter.  Loved it.  You can read my review here.

Kinds of Books You Won’t Read:

Anything with a topic that truly doesn’t interest me.  There are too many wonderful books out there…why waste time reading one that I don’t find interesting?

Longest Book You’ve Read:

No clue…but maybe the hardcover versions of either Small Great Things or Becoming?  I didn’t love either one so maybe they just FELT like the longest books I’ve ever read?  You can read my reviews of these here and here.

Major book hangover because of:

House of Sand and Fog.  I still think about this book and I read it 16 years ago!  Read my review here.

Number of Bookcases You Own:

5

One Book You Have Read Multiple Times:

Shanghai Girls.  It’s so amazing. The sequel Dreams of Joy?  Not so amazing. Read my review of both books here!

Preferred Place To Read:

With a sleeping child on my chest, coffee next to me, and rain (or snow) falling outside.  Literally my version of heaven.

Quote that inspires you/gives you all the feels from a book you’ve read:

“You could jump so much higher when you had somewhere safe to fall” -Liane Moriarty  (Truly Madly Guilty)  I hated the book but loved this quote!

Reading Regret:

Even starting The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.  I hated it so much that I threw it across the room.  You can read more about that here 🙂

Series You Started And Need To Finish(all books are out in series):

Harry Potter ! I read the first one and loved it.  I was halfway through the second…and then I got engaged 🙂  I immediately traded in poor Harry for wedding planning books and never once looked back.  I really should go back and read them.  Maybe one day with my daughter?

Three of your All-Time Favourite Books:

The Catcher in the Rye

The Help

The Hate U Give

Unapologetic Fangirl For:

Mary Kubica 🙂 I just love her writing so much!

Very Excited For This Release More Than All The Others:

The Other Mrs. by Mary Kubica.  Netflix already bought the rights to it to turn the book into a feature film!  Can’t wait to read it first!

Worst Bookish Habit:

This. Yikes.

X Marks The Spot: Start at the top left of your shelf and pick the 27th book:

The Language of Flowers.  If you haven’t yet read this book, you must.  Today.

Your latest book purchase:

Groovy Joe: Dance Party Countdown (Groovy Joe 2) Both of my children LOVE Groovy Joe!  We were all excited to see this new Groovy Joe title at my daughter’s school book fair 🙂

Readers, I would love to hear your answers to some of these (or all of these!) in the comments below!

It would really help me if you could follow/subscribe to my blog.  Also, please “like” my Facebook page ,  follow me on Twitter, and follow me on Instagram!

Local friends, I run a storytime every Tuesday and Friday at Whimsy Cafe in Buffalo Grove, Illinois from 10:00-10:30! Bring your kids (6 months-5 years) for stories, songs, and lots of fun. Price is included in your child’s admission, no need to sign up. If you are a blog reader,