Book Connections

Family Features Strongly in my Reading

I love a book that explores family in all it’s depths and heights. This is my second post looking at family in books, I did one  back in August 2019, but with different books.These were all 4.5 to 5 stars for me and would love to reread them all.

book coverAt present I am reading and really enjoying this first one at the moment. Almost finished. The heroine lost her mother when she was very young and was brought up by a very ungracious aunt. Her heart is hungry for family. Jack is the Dad of two girls who lost their mother a year ago. One of the girls takes to Flora but Izzy, the other daughter, has huge issues and there is tension. The author’s intention I would hazard a guess at is to model really good openness and discussion within relationships.

 

book coverThis one explores what happens when a young aunt takes on the care of two nieces while there Dad is in a submarine and their mother is missing. And within the book there is mystery, shocks and an absorbing family story.

 

Book coverA single mother and her son and three children wo have been abandoned by their mother and their father is a wreck. Can a new blended family form?

 

book coverFor  the Guinness family a happy ending looks out of reach. Olly and Mae’s marriage is crumbling, their teenage daughter Evie is on a mission to self-destruct and their beloved Pops is dying of cancer. Their once strong family unit is slowly falling apart. Yes that is the opening and it sure just is a wonderful journey of family.

 

book coverIt is complicated family relationships at its best. It made me waver back and forth about all the characters – did I like them, did I agree with them, could I accept them for all their flaws? Final verdict is that I did hold them in my heart – wept at times and smiled at times. Cheered them on.

 

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Month in Review

May Month Look Back

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Total books read this month: 11

New to me authors:

Anne Tyler

Top Book for May

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Looking forward to reading in  June

I have other books ordered but whether they turn up or not is another story. As you all know transport is slow within a country and between countries but we shall see what turns up. I so miss that international ability to purchase. I do have the Kindle of course but some books I want in total 3D!

Incoming Books for May.

Library Books

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From NetGalley or Edelweiss

Audio Books Purchased

Linking up with Nicole at Feed Your Fiction Addiction

#IMWAYR

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a place to meet up and share what you have been, and are about to be reading over the week. It’s a great post to organise yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment and er… add to your groaning TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started on J Kaye’s blog and then was hosted by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn here at The Book Date.
Jen Vincent, Teach Mentor Texts, and Kellee of Unleashing Readers decided to give It’s Monday! a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels or anything in those genres – join them.

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I seem to be mostly on a romance reading kick at the moment. Not intentional but that’s how it’s rolling. A mix of old and new books.

Thinking of you all in the USA with the turbulence happening there.  Take care all.

What I read last week:

What I am reading now:

 

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And just started listening to…

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Up next:

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Last Week’s Posts

Breakfast at the Honey Creek Cafe.  Jodi Thomas

Pre-Internet Reading

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Book Connections

Pre-Internet Authors Still on my Shelves.

The internet opened up a huge number of authors for me. Suddenly there was Amazon and various second hand book stores all over the world I could access books from. I could see via an author board what readers were reading. Facebook and Goodreads hadn’t quite come into my places to go but they soon would.

Here are some authors who still sit on my shelves from pre-internet times.

Jean Auel

book coverThis series started out in the 1980’s and they were in our shops and so accessible to me. I read them all except for the last one which didn’t seem to be that successful. I don’t have this book any longer but three of the later ones I do.

 

Rosamunde Pilcher.   book cover

Being English all of her books were in our shops as they came out. I picked up Winter Solstice as one of the ones that happen to be on my shelf but I read so many of hers.

Susan Howatch. book cover

Another British author so of course her books were in the shops too. I really got hooked by her Church of England series and followed it right through.

 

Diana Gabaldonbook cover
An American author but her books were in our shops right from the start so no problem. I started reading this series back then and am waiting for the next book!  The first one here was called Cross Stitch but later on was named Outlander.

Andrew Greeley

book coverI read a number of books by this author, not sure how I came to find out about them. Usually romance and mystery with a Catholic/religious flavour. Haven’t read one for years, should try one to see how I go with them these days.

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Review

Breakfast at the Honey Creek Cafe

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Publisher: Kensington Books
Date: 26th May 2020
Source: Publisher via NetGalley

Immediately Jodi Thomas draws the reader in, with intriguing characters in the middle of odd situations right in the middle of a little dusty town in Texas.  We have the Mayor Piper Mackenzie – she seems to be in a spot of trouble, and then along comes a preacher who has been a soldier  and a smoke jumper and is now trying on a preacher’s suit – Sam. And along with the preacher someone else is dressing up as a cowboy, that would be Colby. And he has a mission.  Great set up.

And so the story begins. It’s entertaining and as always the characters are delightful. I loved almost each and everyone.  Pecos – the kid just finishing high school and leaving home and the girl he gets entangled with. Old Mr Winston was another loveable person, plus the widows. And of course red headed Anna. And my favourites – three children with a wagon.

This is the first in a series and I look forward to meeting them again as hopefully at least some of them will make an appearance in the next book.

Two things Jodi Thomas does well. Makes a small town in Texas come alive and she writes characters who are warm and very likeable. The plot has some mystery, some romance and sheer good heartedness. Perfect for an escape read.

#IMWAYR

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a place to meet up and share what you have been, and are about to be reading over the week. It’s a great post to organise yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment and er… add to your groaning TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started on J Kaye’s blog and then was hosted by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn here at The Book Date.
Jen Vincent, Teach Mentor Texts, and Kellee of Unleashing Readers decided to give It’s Monday! a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels or anything in those genres – join them.

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Hope you are all doing well and for those celebrating Memorial Day, hope you have found some good way of remembering.

Yesterday I returned my books to the library as they are taking them again and are open except on Sunday. I then ventured into local bookshop but new bookshelves had no new ones much since the virus outbreak so I wandered out. My own bookshelves have plenty!

Hope you are all doing well.

What I read last week:

I enjoyed all these books. Feels Like Falling was my audiobook.

What I am reading now:

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And I started listening to

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Up next:

Will decide later! While standing at my bookcase this morning to choose a book we were hit with a 5.9 earthquake. No damage but shook me up!!  Centre not far from here. We are on sand and we roll!!  If you are familiar with earthquakes you’ll know how you shake along with the quake!

Last Week’s Posts

One Perfect Summer Brenda Novak

The Best of Friendships

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Book Connections

The Best of Friendships

When reading I love coming across really good friendships, doesn’t matter who they are between. There is something both inspiring and wholesome about it. These are five books where I came across that kind of friendship.

 

book cover We watch the unlikely friendship of a ninety two year old woman – Mrs G, and Raymond a seventeen year old, develop.  And its a meaty friendship – genuine and full of caring. I loved both these characters and how they related to each other.  Mrs G is blind, she has lived a full life and has a lot of wisdom. But she is in need of help big time. Raymond is a lonely seventeen year old – one who feels he has never been “seen” or understood. Mrs G really sees him! Loved this relationship.

 

book coverIn One Summer in Paris we see the friendship between Grace – in her forties and a teen Audrey. Grace has come to Paris to escape the fact her husband has left her for a “new version” about the same age as their daughter! Audrey has come to escape the alcoholism disease that her mother has. Due to various circumstances they form a great friendship that helps both of them move forwards in their lives.  Loved the two of them, loved the book.

 

book cover The beautiful friendship that develops between Arthur and Maddy. An old man who visits his wife at the cemetery every day, and Maddy an eighteen year old teen who really is very alone.

 

book coverThere’s more than friendship in this book, but.. there is some examples of wonderful, positive friendship. Especially the one that develops between Gray and Diana. Gray is divorced and 34. Diana is about 40 and is really down on her luck. Diana ends up working for Gray who is a reasonably wealthy woman who needs some good organisation and Diana is your one. They both have big challenges in life but the bond that forms between them, moves each of them forwards and into what is likely to be a life long friendship.

book coverI’ve mentioned this book before in terms of an author I now want to read everything he writes. But here I want to mention the theme of friendship where it makes a huge difference in some lives. It’s between an old woman and a young child and the old woman and the little girls parents. I really loved seeing how it all developed.

 

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Review

One Perfect Summer Brenda Novak

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Publisher: Harlequin
Date: April 2020
Source: Publicist via NetGalley

After taking a DNA test three women find out they are half sisters. But how? Serenity sees herself as coming from a happily parented family, with a brother and two sisters. Reagan has just her mother, but there is a no hint of anything odd. Lorelei has spent many years in foster care, after being found wandering the streets.

They come together over one perfect summer, where they get to know each other. Each in there own way are grappling with crisis life situations. Serenity’s husband is in prison and it was she who ensured he went there. Now her writing has dried up and she can’t get to write the book that is overdue. Reagan had an office affair that has left her anxious and Lorelei has found that her husband slept with her best friend. What a hotpot of challenges.

The story is told in turn by the three sisters and occasionally by their neighbor Finn – he and his two brothers are staying next door. It helped me the reader to really empathise with each woman and see exactly how they felt and what they were struggling with.

There is a little touch of romance, but essentially it is the story of each woman and the challenges she must accept and grow through. I thoroughly enjoyed it. And… I wouldn’t mind seeing more of them!

#IMWAYR

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a place to meet up and share what you have been, and are about to be reading over the week. It’s a great post to organise yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment and er… add to your groaning TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started on J Kaye’s blog and then was hosted by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn here at The Book Date.
Jen Vincent, Teach Mentor Texts, and Kellee of Unleashing Readers decided to give It’s Monday! a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels or anything in those genres – join them.

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Just a little reading this week, still such good weather for being outside and of course quilting!

This week we went down a level and all shops are open and most things are back, although only groups of 10 allowed so no church and no bars yet. Schools went back today. We can travel anywhere within New Zealand. We are only getting 0 – 1 cases a day so feels pretty safe. However I disliked coming out of lockdown and don’t want to move too quickly. And I am totally sick of radio talk back hosts stirring up negativity and doom and gloom. Off my Christmas list they go!

Hope you are all doing well and staying clear of the virus.

What I read last week:

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What I am reading now:

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And still listening to Feels Like Falling.

Up next:

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Last Week’s Posts

Books I am Most Likely to Read from the Modern Mrs Darcy Summer Reading Guide

Best Behavior. Wendy Francis

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Book Connections

Books I am Most Likely to Read from the Modern Mrs Darcy Summer Reading Guide 2020

The Modern Mrs Darcy Summer Reading Guide 2020 is out. Here are my picks.

book cover Well mainly because I picked it up at NetGalley so I now have it to read and review.  It’s a complicated family story and I enjoy those.

 

 

 

book cover This was already on my TBR. Yes its another WW2 book. But I’ve already read a brief short story of this woman who was a spy in France. She was born in New Zealand and grew up in Australia. So that’s all the read on I need.

book cover This is another historical fiction book. It’s set in England just after WW2. A group of disparate people come together to save Jane Austen’s home and legacy. Sounds interesting.

book cover A romance writer who no longer believes in love. And a literary writer who happily kill of his cast. Hmm they meet and what happens next?

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This is a mystery set in Cape Cod. And includes friendship, family and figuring out what matters most. I could give that a whirl.

 

 

 

I already had one other on my reading plan and I have already read another. I may try some others but on the whole not that many appealed to me as much as they did last year.

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