September Show Us Your Books

Our chief homework supervisor

Our chief homework supervisor

We’re back to school now, and I can already feel my reading life shifting. Luckily I had a great reading month in August to sustain me through all of the notices to be read and forms to be filled out ahead.

Here are my top nine from last month:

Best In Show (It’s a Tie)

A Better Man by Louise Penny - I love this series so much that I left my house after my bed time to be around other people. If you know me, you know this is a huge deal. See my book launch report here.

After the Flood by Kassandra Montag - This reminded me of a more feminine version of The Road by Cormac McCarthy. (I mean that in a good way; I didn’t really like The Road.) It starts slow, but then sucks you in. Not everyone liked the ending, but I did, a lot. I got an ARC from William Morrow, and my full review is here.

Sweet Romances Perfect for Hot Days

The Stationary Shop by Marjan Kamali - This is the story of two Iranian kids who fall in love, but it’s also more than that. It’s about the revolution, living with mental illness, and what it’s like to move to a new country. It’s great as an audiobook.

A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer - I’m a sucker for Beauty and the Beast retellings, and this was no exception. I just didn’t know it was part of a series, and was frustrated when a whole new set of problems started right at the end.

Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys - A story about the daughter of a prostitute in 1950’s New Orleans. Hi-jinks ensue. An entertaining and easy read.

Non-Fiction For Fiction Lovers

Furious Hours by Casey Cep - This was about a series of suspicious deaths in Alabama told from the points of view of the suspect, a lawyer, and Harper Lee. I found it fascinating, and wanted to know more about each part, but could see why the author couldn’t give it to me. In a weird way the inability to tell the full story made me appreciate the Harper Lee section more. You’d have to read it to understand, and I suggest you do.

Dead Presidents by Brady Carlson - I visit a lot of presidential historic sites, so this book about traveling to presidential graves was right up my alley.

A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson - I almost never recommend the abridged version of anything, but for this and A Walk In the Woods those are the only versions the author reads himself, and it adds so much.

I Finally Finished This Damn Book

The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck - This is a good book, a classic. It’s themes are still relevant today, and I’m glad I took time for a post high school re-read. But man, is it slow in parts.

Life According to Steph

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Writing Prompt: Mollie Garfield In Love

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Mollie Garfield was just a young teen when her dad, the president James A. Garfield, was shot and killed. Imagine having to live with grief like that on a public stage. She moved back to Mentor, Ohio with her mom Lucrecia who dedicated herself to preserving her late husband’s papers. When her Dad’s former private secretary Joseph Stanley Brown came to help it’s no wonder she fell in love with him.

This is the historical fiction book I would love to read, but no one has written yet. If you write it please send me an ARC!

Related books:

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[REVIEW] The Road to Paradise by Karen Barnett

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I love a book about mountains, and when you combine mountains with historical romance you really can't go wrong. Hence I spent a pleasant day curled up with Karen Barnett's The Road to Paradise.

As I mentioned it wouldn't take much for this book to keep me entertained, but even so, the lovely vintage cover drew me in right away. And Margie's story was a good one too. Margie went to Mt. Rainer both to indulge her love of nature, and to escape her shady ex-fiance. Of course there's a hunky ranger on the mountain. I'm telling you; it's everything good for a cozy day of reading.

Note: A copy of this book was provided by Blogging For Books in exchange for an honest review.

[REVIEW] The Angel of Forest Hill by Cindy Woodsmall

This has been a rough couple of weeks in the way that normal weeks can be rough. No emergencies, but grinding, persistent nonsense that has been wearing me down. There was nothing I needed more than a Saturday afternoon on the couch with a pleasant romance to fill my tanks enough to face another week.

I was so glad when The Angel of Forest Hill by Cindy Woodsmall arrived in my mail box. Rose and Joel, two members of the Amish faith, both feel that they have no choice but to marry after Joel's wife dies. Joel has no one to care for his three small children while he keeps his business alive, and Rose can see no other way to get away from her abusive family. They form a practical partnership, but eventually individually decide they want more. The only problem is the series of mishaps and misunderstandings that keeps them apart. That this all plays out on the days before Christmas makes for a delicious and heartwarming tale that soothes all your mental aches.

Note: The book was provided in exchange for a honest review from Blogging For Books.

Three Heroines Who Compare Real Life To Romance in Popular Culture, and Find It Lacking

I love the idea of flights of books (TM Modern Mrs. Darcy.) It's like wine flights only with reading. You don't do a deep dive on a subject, you take a small taste of several different varietals and compare and contrast the tastes.

I've stumbled upon an unintentional book flight this week:

Three Heroines Who Compare Real Life To Romance in Popular Culture, and Find It Lacking:

I haven't even finished two of these books, but I can tell you that if you, like me, are stuck in a seemingly never ending cycle of rainy days and public transportation delays you could do much, much worse.

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