Review

The Little Teashop on Main by Jodi Thomas

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Publisher: Harlequin
Date: 7th May 2019
Source: Little Bird Publicity via NetGalley

 

Set in Laurel Springs, The Teashop on Main, is a beautifully crafted story of friendship and love. Jodi Thomas brings this little town in Texas alive, with her dusty creek beds and shadowy figures that are very much a signature of her stories.

Three young girls bond over a tea party –  a bond that is going to take them right through life. There is Zoe – daughter of Alex, a single mom. Zoe is a free and beautiful spirit, who cares about others and their happiness, and searches for her own sense of “home”.

Shannon has been raised by her Dad – Mack, her mother having walked out on them. He is often away working but there is no doubt of his love for Shannon and the other two girls.

Lastly Emily, somewhat lost and unhappy, with a mother who has smothered her. But… she has Zoe and Shannon who support and worry over her. And then their is Fuller who has a special reason to keep an eye on her. And lastly Jack, who loves all three girls and would do anything for all of them. But… he has a strong attraction and eventually a special love for one of them.

The story ranges over a good time period, so that we see the young people grow up, seek to find themselves and their place in the world, but always is the ongoing friendship that is so strong, that it is forever friendship. And their is that ritual of joining for tea that so important to them.

I loved this story and while tears slid down my cheeks as I finished, I closed the book, with some heartache and a whole lot of admiration for the friends and their various relationships.

#IMWAYR

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? Into May

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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 all had a good week. Mine was. I did a variety of things like visit with family, visit with friends, went to craft night with friends, went to a Quilt show – read and may have done some basic housework!

What I read last week:

I finished listening to this audiobook – it was a reread, I loved it the first time and loved it in the audiobook version as well. So good

I also read

What I am reading now:

I am listening to this second one in this series. Listened to the first one awhile ago but should be okay.

I am reading a review book.

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Up next:

One from my recently bought shelf.

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Last Week’s Posts

The View from Alameda Island   Robyn Carr

April Reading in Review

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Month in Review

Reading in April

Total books read this month:  10

New to me authors:

Thea Harrison
Eva Jordan
Liz Byrski

Breaking it Down

Audiobooks   1
Review   4
From the TBR shelves  5

8 of them are contemporary fiction. 1 is historical fiction and 1 is fantasy/paranormal.

Reading Challenge Update:

We are at the one third mark in the year. I am keeping up with the audiobook and Modern Mrs Darcy challenge, but the library challenge is behind and I didn’t even read one library book this month.  Just keeping abreast of the audiobook challenge.

Top Book for April

This one was about older women, a book club where there was real discussion about real books. It was thought provoking and I grew to love the characters.

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Looking forward to reading in May

Main Reading Goal for May

Last month I wanted to pick a big book to read. Well I did the minimum and have earmarked Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry. For May each week I want to read some of it.

Incoming Books from April

Purchased

Library Books

From NetGalley or Edelweiss or Author

Audio Books Purchased

Linking with Nicole at Feed Your Fiction Addiction

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Review

The View from Alameda. Robyn Carr

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Published: Harlequin – MIRA
Date:  30th April 2018
Source: Little Bird Publicity via NetGalley

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The View from Alameda Island by Robyn Carr – another of her books that held my interest all the way through.

Lauren is married to a surgeon – Brad, but… he is manipulative, controlling and abusive. She stays in the marriage because of her two daughters, Lauren wants the best for them – in a money sense, however most likely it isn’t good for them really. Lauren is a competent person but she is told by Brad that she is useless. Finally after many attempts Lauren makes plans and leaves him. What a relief!

She meets another man, Beau one day at a garden and they strike up a conversation. Soon they are developing a friendship and spending more time together. However he too is going through a divorce and life is not exactly straight going for him. What I really liked about him was his care for his two step sons – 18 and 21. While his ex wife was the mother, it was Beau who had always stepped up for them.

So a divorce should be straight forward – right? Well not in both Beau’s and Lauren’s cases. They have cray, cray, crazy ex partners who go to extraordinary lengths to put a spanner in the works to prevent the divorces going through. I kept thinking – what next? No! Really!

This is a very good story of a woman finding her way, choosing happiness and a full life. It is about friendship, family and people standing with you and supporting you.  It is about being there for others – being able to admit mistakes and readjust living to a better, more wholesome path.

I really liked Lauren and Beau as characters and was so sorry to have to close the book.

#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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Well the end of April. I hear rain drumming on my roof as I write this. Last night I saw snow and tulips on Bookfan Mary’s blog. So we are getting a bit of weather! The sun will be out again tomorrow and a bit of rain is good.

I had a quiet week, one trip into the city  and a few walks along by the beach. I have got quite lazy so I need to get going again. I have to admit the weather deters at times. I get inspired by seeing Debbie’s walk paths on instagram and think “Today is the day”.

Talking of Instagram this cute photo of my grand niece was on IG last night so just gotta share it as she is so cute. Just six years, a few weeks ago I shared the books I bought her for her birthday. I share today because she has cuddled around her the quilt I made her about three or four years ago.

They have had two weeks school break and go back today. Ouch with all that rain. I sit back with relief knowing I no longer have to make that dash from my car to the classroom in the rain!

photo of grand niece

What I read last week:

Two great books to read. A Month of Sundays was a real treat with four women in their sixties/early seventies who had been long time members of a skype online book club. Now they meet up together for a holiday and are to bring one book that says something about themselves. So that they can get to know each other better. They will spend a week reading each and then discussing. Sorry that this is Australian and that it may not be available worldwide.

What I am reading now:

Throughly enjoying this review book.

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Up next:

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Last Week’s Posts

The Land Girls   Victoria Purman

Join in Connect 5 Books Reading Challenge April – June

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Review

Join in Connect Five Books April-June

BannerJoin me for 2019 in Connect Five – Books.

Congratulations to the giveaway winner for the second link up.

The five books were connected by all having “One” in the title.  You can read the post here.
so another idea – watch the words in the titles.

Other ideas were:

  • 5 Debut books
  • Contained diversity
  • Women growing into themselves
  • 5 Goosebump horror books
  • A theme of Animals
  • 5 Books with List in the title

Thanks to everyone playing along. As you can see, it can be done and now that we are further into our reading year, our book count is growing.

You didn’t need to sign up for this challenge

you can just join in as you see you have five connections.

When you have five that connect in whatever way you are able to group them then link up. How might you do this?  One of these ways is good.

  • Write and link up a blog post
  • Share the five books on Instagram and link up
  • Have a Goodreads shelf and link that up – this may be a little different but maybe use it in combination with a comment would be helpful.
  • Or… if you belong to none of these places, share five books in a comment.

What’s the Challenge?

To look for connections between books you read. There will be  many connections that just float over our awareness. Let’s see can we raise that a bit, whether its fairly surface level or something deeper.

If you need some guidelines for this then see the original post. Connect Five Books.

Remember:

  • A book can only be used once for this challenge in the year.
  • The books must be read in 2019.
  • Books can be carried over until you have five of something. It may take a few months to gather five of something.
  • You may have  many connections of five to link up . So if you have two groups of five then you can link up twice and so on within a month.
  • You may just link one group of five during the year, or many each month. It depends on how many connections you come across!
  •  Use the hashtag  #connect5books2019 if sharing on social media.

When?

Every second month I will post a link up on the last Wednesday of the month. This one will finish on the last Wednesday of June.  (I have changed this, I was going to do it every month, but every second month seems more realistic!)

#connect5books2019

A Giveaway

For those who have a five book connection and link up there will be a random prize draw for one reader who will win a book of their choice for that link up from the Book Depository. The last link up will be posted in November and go through December. At the end of the year there will be one draw as well for all those who have participated during the year, –  a book of choice from the Book Depository up to the value of $18 U.S

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Review

The Land Girls Victoria Purman

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Published: Harlequin Australia
Date: 15th April 2019
Source: Publisher via NetGalley

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Three women join the women’s land army in Australia during World War 2. The Land Girls introduces the reader to them and by the end of the book, each woman found a place in my heart and my very sincere admiration.

Flora is thirtyish and from Melbourne, she lives with her Dad, a brother who can’t go to war (Jack) and Frank who is fighting in the war overseas and they haven’t heard from him. A white feather given to her brother Jack on the street one day, decides Flora  to join the Land Girls – her first assignment  is picking grapes – hard work but she meets up with a delightful family. Slowly a relationship develops between Flora and Charles the owner of the farm but she is only there for a few weeks.

Lily is   18  from an Adelaide wealthy family, she has a sister a doctor working in the war overseas but Lily  hasn’t found her own niche. She finds it hard to even learn shorthand and typing. She is in love with David who is going off to war. Taking up her courage she too joins the land girls – unusual for some one from such a family. She is sent out to a place north of Adelaide to pick cherries

Betty is almost 18, friends all her life with Michael next door, she is an only child and she too decides to join Land Girls when Michael joins up in 1942 when he turns 18. She starts this life picking grapes in Mildura, many miles north of Melbourne, on the edge of the outback. She is among 20 other girls. It’s hard work and Betty is homesick. One Sunday she meets Flora who gives her words of encouragement, that really help.

I loved the Australian setting, the  realistic painting of what it was like to live in that time during war. The women who joined the land army worked hard, and it changed them in so many ways.  How worrying though for them for the loved ones who fought overseas and often when bad news came, so heart breaking.

Victoria Purman had me fully invested in each woman, each story so real. I loved the way the woman put their hands up and contributed. The way they supported each other and developed such important and memorable friendships.

Review

It’s Monday! What are you Reading this Easter?

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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 all had a great Easter break. We had a couple of gorgeous days Friday and Saturday and then Sunday…. very wet!  But I had a delicious dark chocolate egg that was very yummy to chase away the wet!

In this last week I got out finally and did a small bit of gardening. I also visited a friend in hospital and got horribly lost on the way, in a very hilly area and narrow roads and even a one way that you guessed it, I might have had to turn around on! The problem was I discovered later that right at the beginning I took a wrong turn.  Needless to say I did arrive at my destination, but somewhat stressed!

On Thursday it was the birthday of my sister who passed away last year. So a number of us gathered at the cemetery in the sunshine and toasted her with a small glass of wine and some memories. Then we gathered at the home of one of my other sisters for dinner. I have to say it was rather special.

I also read and worked on a second quilt for the first responders of the Christchurch shootings. And of course did some reading!

What I read last week:

The Things We Do For Love from my TBR was a Kristin Hannah worthy story that I really enjoyed. 183 Times a Year was about a mother and two teens and the rest of the family. I read it as a humour/funny challenge book…. but my sense of humour is different I guess. Still I will count it!  This was a UK book, I think as a New Zealander I might have a different kind of sense of humour!

What I am reading now:

A review book…

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Up next:

One I bought last year from a local bookshop, I think the author is Australian. My excuse for buying – well it had a bookcase on the cover!

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Last Week’s Posts

The Girl He Used to Know Tracey Garvis Graves

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Review

The Girl He Used to Know. Tracey Garvis Graves

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Published: St Martin’s Press
Date: 2nd April 2019
Genre: Romance
Source: Publisher via NetGalley

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Right from the beginning I was hooked into this book and the story. I just totally loved Annika and her background story.  In college she was not very socially adept, missed cues, spoke her mind, hated loud noise and wasn’t keen on being touched. But… what a heart and gorgeous person. I also fell for her room mate Janine who was kind enough to reach out in genuine friendship and help Annika to find her way through the world that mystified her.

In college she meets Jonathan and he is everything you’d like in a male. We find out that something separated them and now as they meet ten years later and begin to find their way with each other, we are led on, wondering what on earth went wrong between this wonderful pair.

The story is told in two time lines, college days and 2001. They fit together seamlessly and as I read, the question I held about what went wrong was answered. And no more about the plot – its best discovered as you read.

This book was a fast read, I picked it up every moment possible. It was emotional – heart warming and heart breaking. If you love unforgettable characters, a little mystery, and an emotional read with an intense ending – pick this one up. I hated it had to finish!

#IMWAYR

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? Mid April

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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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On Saturday I went to a 6 year old party for my grand niece. And what do you take for a gift when you are a booklover and so is she!!   Well books of course and not just one. I had a great time picking them off  the shelf at the bookstore.

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What I read last week:

I read The Little Teashop on Main – a review book, Love Letters is a continuing series and I have to say this one wrapped me round its little finger, and I finished listening to the delightful Mariah Stewart The Goodbye Cafe – so well narrated it put it into the 5 star category for me.

What I am reading now:

I have just started listening to this. I read it when it published in 2017 and now doing a reread via audio. I love Cathy Lamb books – thanks to Shellyrae who shared a review of one of her books on Book’d Out, and totally hooked me into her books.  Bloggers are influencers!

I am reading this from the backlist of Kristin Hannah, it won’t be as heavy as her more recent ones and that’s totally okay. Another author I read anything she writes.

Up next:

I need a funny good feel book for my next read as that is a challenge book for this month. When I saw a review for this from Trish at Between My Lines , it sealed the choice. She says “It is loaded with laugh out loud moments that had my stomach in a knot.” Has to qualify don’t you think!

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Last Week’s Posts

Come From Away Genevieve Graham

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