The Guest List

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5

the guest list book by lucy foley
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Author: Lucy Foley

Published: June 2, 2020

Pages: 330

Goodreads Rating: 3.89/5

Disclaimer: I was not paid for this review, and all opinions are my own. If you are interested in purchasing this book, please consider using my Amazon affiliate link (by clicking on the top or bottom pictures) and helping a fellow book blogger out 🙂 I will receive a small fee from Amazon, but your book will still cost the same.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

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 Mini Review:

This is a five star read mainly because I did not see that coming! I’ve read so many books that it’s hard for me to be surprised by a twist or an ending, and this one surprised me on both counts. This book had me hooked from the beginning and I just had to keep reading until I uncovered all its mysteries. It was very plot driven, and Foley did a good job flawlessly switching timelines. The characters had all the qualities that make for a good story. They were interesting, realistic, and had unique backgrounds and personalities. There were some surprising twists, and that “aha!” moment that keeps me coming back to this genre, you know that moment when you finally figure it out? I’m definitely going to have to read more from this author. I highly recommend this one to all Mystery/Thriller and who-done-it fans.

WWW Wednesday

This is a meme hosted by Taking on a World of Words where you answer three questions: What are you reading now? What did you just read? What will you be reading next? Now on to the books!

Disclaimer: All opinions on this blog are my own. If you are interested in purchasing any of these books, please consider using my Amazon affiliate link by clicking on the pictures and/or links and I will receive a small fee, but your book will still cost the same.

splintered book one by a.g. howard
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What I’m reading now

I’m currently reading three books in different formats:

-Splintered (#1) by A.G. Howard (audio book is free if you have an audible membership right now, and this one has been on my TBR forever)

-Rules of Engagement by J.T. Geissinger (e-book is free on kindle unlimited and I needed something funny and light to read)

-Blood and Honey (Serpent and Dove, #2) by Shelby Mahurin (the hardback just arrived yesterday and I’m super excited to start it!)

the vanishing half book by brit bennett
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What I just read

-The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett -you can read my review here.

-The Shadows by Alex North -review coming soon

-The Guest List by Lucy Foley -review coming soon

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These are the books I plan to read next, all subject to change of course

-The Lost Book of the White (The Eldest Curses, #2) by Cassandra Clare

-Fable (#1) by Adrienne Young

-Anxious People by Fredrik Backman

Let me know what your WWW’s are in the comments!

September TBR

I have some anticipated reads coming up in September so I’m super excited about those. I also have a tentative list of other books to choose from. I tried to include different genres so that I always have something to choose no matter what mood I’m in. Tell me about your most anticipated September books in the comments!

Disclaimer: All opinions on this blog are my own. If you are interested in purchasing any of these books, please consider using my Amazon affiliate link by clicking on the pictures and/or links and I will receive a small fee, but your book will still cost the same.

the lost book of the white by cassandra clare eldest curses book 2
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The Lost Book of the White (The Eldest Curses, #2) by Cassandra Clare

This one will hopefully arrive on my doorstep on its release day September 1, and I cannot wait!

blood and honey by shelby mahurin serpent and dove book two
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Blood and Honey (Serpent and Dove, #2) by Shelby Mahurin

This one should also be arriving on my doorstep on September 1, and I’m going to have trouble choosing which one to read first!

to sleep in a sea of stars by christopher paolini
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To Sleep in a Sea of Stars by Christopher Paolini

Paolini hasn’t written anything since the Eragon series, which I loved, so I’m really looking forward to this one. It will be released September 15, and I have already pre-ordered it, but it might take me the rest of the month to read since it’s a massive 880 pages!!

Other books I plan to pick from:

-Lord of Shadows (The Dark Artifices, #2) by Cassandra Clare

-From Blood and Ash (Blood and Ash, #1) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

-Felix Ever After by Kacen Callender

-The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary

-The Space Between Worlds by Micaiah Johnson

-What You Wish For by Katherine Center

WWW Wednesday

www wednesday pic acotar books on a bicycle and acotar water bottle
Buy on Etsy Water bottle from The Bookish Creations Shop Use DEE15 to SAVE!

It’s time for another WWW Wednesday post! This week has flown by, and I can only hope the rest of the year does the same. I’m super excited for Fall, but I hate that many of the Fall activities, like taking my kids trick or treating, will not be possible this year. We will still be decorating some pumpkins, which is another one of my favorite things. What are some Fall activities you are looking forward to?

This is a meme hosted by Taking on a World of Words where you answer three questions: What are you reading now? What did you just read? What will you be reading next? Now on to the books!

Disclaimer: All opinions on this blog are my own. If you are interested in purchasing any of these books, please consider using my Amazon affiliate link by clicking on the pictures and/or links and I will receive a small fee, but your book will still cost the same.

the shadows by alex north book
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What I’m reading now

I’m currently finishing up The Shadows by Alex North and Wolfsong by T.J. Klune. Both are great books and I cannot wait to tell you all about them.

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What I just read

I just read The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennet, and it was an amazing book but I haven’t had a chance to write a review yet.

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What I will be reading next

I’m super excited for all the September releases that I have been waiting for a while for. I have pre-ordered all of them and I cannot wait to get them in the mail 🙂

-Serpent and Honey (Serpent and Dove, #2) by Shelby Mahurin releases September 1.

-The Lost Book of the White (The Eldest Curses, #2) by Cassandra Clare releases September 1.

-To Sleep in a Sea of Stars by Christopher Paolini releases September 15.

Let me know what you’re currently reading in the comments!

WWW Wednesday

This is a meme hosted by Taking on a World of Words where you answer three questions: What are you reading now? What did you just read? What will you be reading next? I can’t believe we are already half-way through August, and I’ve barely made a dent on my TBR. Help! I’ve just been in one of those moods where I lose interest in all the books I pick up. I’ve also been dealing with my first-born starting Kindergarten in the middle of a pandemic. I finally just decided to home school him for the time being, until all this is over. It’s what I felt was right for my family. To all the parents out there struggling with what to do, just do what feels right and what works for you and your family. Every situation and child is different. Lets not judge others and just offer our support in any way we can in these difficult times. Now on to the books!

Disclaimer: All opinions on this blog are my own. If you are interested in purchasing any of these books, please consider using my Amazon affiliate link by clicking on the pictures and/or links and I will receive a small fee, but your book will still cost the same.

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What I’m reading now

As you guys know, I usually read three books at a time in different formats. I’m currently reading Wolfsong (Green Creek, #1) by T.J. Klune in ebook form, and I’m really enjoying it. I recently discovered Klune’s books after reading The House in the Cerulean Sea, and I completely fell in love with his writing. His characters are so adorable, they are the kind of people you root for during the whole book. I’m also rereading the Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas because I haven’t reread them in a while and I was missing them. I had never listened to the audio books before and I’m loving it. I’m also reading The Shadows by Alex North, the hardback. I loved The Whisper Man by him and I’m liking this one too. I’m new to the concept of lucid dreaming and I’m enjoying learning about it.

Midnight Sun Twilight book five by stephenie meyer
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What I just read

I just read Midnight Sun (Twilight,#5) by Stephenie Meyer, you can click on the link to read my nostalgic ramblings. I also read Love and Other Words by Christina Lauren, which I really enjoyed. It quickly became my favorite book by these authors.

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What I plan to read next

Seeing how I’m enjoying the Green Creek series by T.J. Klune, I’ll probably continue on to book two. I also plan to keep rereading the Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas. This might all change with my mood though since I’m unfortunately a mood reader.

Let me know what you are reading in the comments? Or any recent books you’ve read that you think I should read!

The Happy Ever After Playlist

⭐️⭐️⭐️/5

the happy ever after playlist book by abby jimenez picture
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Author: Abby Jimenez

Published: April 14, 2020

Pages: 401

Series: The Friend Zone, #2

Goodreads rating: 4.26/5

For fans of: Romance, Contemporary Romance, Domestic Fiction, The Friend Zone, Beach Read

Good to know before you read: explicit sex scenes, substance abuse, grief

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Two years after losing her fiancé, Sloan Monroe still can’t seem to get her life back on track. But one trouble-making pup with a “take me home” look in his eyes is about to change everything. With her new pet by her side, Sloan finally starts to feel more like herself. Then, after weeks of unanswered texts, Tucker’s owner reaches out. He’s a musician on tour in Australia. And bottom line: He wants Tucker back.

Well, Sloan’s not about to give up her dog without a fight. But what if this Jason guy really loves Tucker? As their flirty texts turn into long calls, Sloan can’t deny a connection. Jason is hot and nice and funny. There’s no telling what could happen when they meet in person. The question is: With his music career on the rise, how long will Jason really stick around? And is it possible for Sloan to survive another heartbreak?

My Mini Review:

I had a love-hate relationship with this book. For a book with the word “happy” in the title, it was actually really sad. The story dealt with themes such as overcoming grief, and struggling with substance abuse. It started out as a really nice story with a cute dog linking these two strangers together. Then, when I thought the story was all done and these two people had overcome all their differences and the main character had struggled more than enough, the story didn’t end. Instead, the plot went on this dramatic downward spiral with no end in sight and a lot of what I thought were unnecessary struggles and depressing moments.

It surprises me when almost all the characters in a book are all likeable, but unique in their own ways. My favorite of course was Tucker, since I am a sucker for smart dogs. I also enjoyed the friendship between Sloan and Kristen. The romance was a slow-burn one, which I felt was realistic given the fact that Sloan was still grieving. I liked that Sloan and Jason had good relationship role models, starting with their parents, and in Kristen and Josh. There was an emphasis on caring for family and friends and being there for them when they need you. I recommend this book if you love Romance and you can deal with some unnecessary drama.

Have you read this one? Are you planning to read it? Let me know your thoughts and opinions in the comments!

booktag image

Prediction Book Tag

Illuminae Files series by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff and the Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings series by J.R.R. Tolkien
Pictures from Goodreads

I found this book tag on Sophie’s Corner, her blog is amazing and this looked like a very fun tag! Just like Sophie, I am a major mood reader so this will be a bit hard for me, but I will do my best. If you are reading this, then consider yourself tagged, and please tag me back so that I can read your answers. Now on to the books!

Disclaimer: All opinions on this blog are my own. If you are interested in purchasing any of these books, please consider using my Amazon affiliate link by clicking on the pictures and/or links and I will receive a small fee, but your book will still cost the same.

Obsidio Illuminae files book three by amie kaufman and jay kristoff
Picture taken by me. Buy book on Amazon.

Prediction for my next read

I’ve been rereading the Illuminae Files, so my next read will definitely be Obsidio (Illuminae, #3) by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff. I’ve been reading along with my husband, who is reading them for the first time, and it’s really fun! I’ve also just started to read The Hobbit (I know I know where have I been?). I’ve seen the movies, but I’ve never read the books so I’m doing that now and then I will be moving on to The Lord of the Rings. I’m in an epic Fantasy type of mood lately 🙂

The hobbit book by j.r.r. tolkien
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Prediction for my next five star read

I’m predicting The Hobbit will be a five star read for me since it’s such a classic and so many people have such great things to say about it. Obsidio will of course also be a five star read. I guess you can say I will be having a good next few days!

Prediction for my next one star read

Like Sophie said, I don’t read books that I know I won’t enjoy. If I start reading a book and I’m not enjoying it I usually stop. I feel bad giving books one star ratings, because the author probably worked really hard on it and it could just be I wasn’t in the right frame of mind for it, or it just wasn’t for me. Also, I don’t like bashing books online. If I really didn’t like a book I would rather just quietly put it away and give it a two star rating on Goodreads and move on.

Picture from Amazon (click to buy)

Prediction for my next love interest/ cool character

In the Hobbit movies I really loved Bilbo Baggins. I’m hoping I will love the book character just as much ❤

the hobbit and the lord of the rings series books by j.r.r. tolkien
Picture from Amazon (click to buy)

Prediction for my next book buy

I will definitely be buying the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings books. I really like the hardback editions I’ve seen around online, so I will be hunting those down. For now I’ll be reading the e-books I got from my Library. It’s so handy that I have a Library that offers that option and I’m aware a lot of people don’t have access to e-books they can borrow. I wish more public Libraries did this.

Picture taken by me. Buy book on Amazon

Prediction for my next book to give me a hangover

I’m predicting I will be in a major hangover after I’m done with the Illuminae Files. That’s the main reason I’m starting this other major Epic Fantasy series (The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings) along with it so that I will have something to keep me reading and I don’t land into a dreaded reading slump.

The Bromance Book Club

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5

the bromance book club book by lyssa kay adams
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Author: Lyssa Kay Adams

Published: November 5, 2019

Pages: 352

Goodreads Rating: 3.95/5

Series: The Bromance Book Club, #1

For fans of: Romance, Sports Fictions, Humor, Get a Life Chloe Brown, Beach Read, The Happy Ever After Playlist, Well Met

Good to know before you read: explicit sex scenes

Synopsis from Goodreads:

The first rule of book club: You don’t talk about book club.

Nashville Legends second baseman Gavin Scott’s marriage is in major league trouble. He’s recently discovered a humiliating secret: his wife Thea has always faked the Big O. When he loses his cool at the revelation, it’s the final straw on their already strained relationship. Thea asks for a divorce, and Gavin realizes he’s let his pride and fear get the better of him.

Welcome to the Bromance Book Club.

Distraught and desperate, Gavin finds help from an unlikely source: a secret romance book club made up of Nashville’s top alpha men. With the help of their current read, a steamy Regency titled Courting the Countess, the guys coach Gavin on saving his marriage. But it’ll take a lot more than flowery words and grand gestures for this hapless Romeo to find his inner hero and win back the trust of his wife.

My Mini Review:

This was a very cute romantic read. The story was fast paced and full of humor. It dealt with marital problems, child rearing, and family drama, but in a very light-hearted way. There was some unnecessary drama towards the middle, which is what made me dock one star from my rating.

I thought the fact that Gavin had a speech impediment was very unique, I personally have never read a book where the main character has one. I am looking forward to reading the second book in this series, but I’m not sure if I will like Liv, Thea’s sister, as the main character, since I did not like her very much in this book. Overall, I would recommend this book to all Romance fans.

Have you read this one? Do you plan to read it? Let me know in the comments!

booktag image

I Should Have Read that Book Tag

book I should have read book tag picture
Pictures from Goodreads

I saw this tag on Nikita’s Prose and Pancakes Blog, her blog is amazing and you should follow if you aren’t! Everyone who reads this is welcome to participate, and remember to tag me back so that I can read your answers. Okay, moving on to the books!

Disclaimer: All opinions on this blog are my own. If you are interested in purchasing any of these books, please consider using my Amazon affiliate link by clicking on the pictures and/or links and I will receive a small fee, but your book will still cost the same.

ninth house book alex north series by leigh bardugo
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A book that a certain friend is always telling you to read

Ninth House (Alex Stern, #1) by Leigh Bardugo. I actually made a friend try this one out before I did, because I had heard it has some triggers which included rape. My friend has much tougher skin than I do, and she said the rape scene was not very explicit and that it was necessary to the story. This book has been sitting on my TBR ever since, and she still tells me to read it every once in a while.

love and other words by christina lauren
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A book that has been on your TBR forever and you haven’t read it

I love books by Christina Lauren, but somehow I’ve been putting off reading Love and Other Words. It has been sitting on my TBR forever. I tried the audio book at some point, but the narrator’s voice really annoyed me so I stopped. I will definitely have to read this one soon!

thunderhead by neal shusterman
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A book series you’ve started and haven’t gotten around to finishing

I’ve read Scythe, the first book in this series (you can read my review here). But since the book had some closure at the end and it wasn’t really a major cliff-hanger I didn’t feel like immediately picking up the second book in the series right away. Now I still have to read Thunderhead (Arc of a Scythe, #2), and The Toll (Arc of a Scythe, #3).

moby dick by herman melville
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A classic you like the sound of, but have never read

I had a college Professor who would talk so passionately about Moby Dick by Herman Melville, he could talk about it for a whole lecture. Ever since then I ‘ve been curious about reading it, but it’s so massive and intimidating that I just haven’t wanted to dedicate the time to it.

A popular book that everyone but you has read

ask again yes by mary beth keane
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I heard Ask Again, Yes, is about forgiveness. Holding a grudge is one of my biggest character flaws, so I thought I should definitely read this. EVERYONE except me has read it, and they all have such great things to say about it.

the maze runner book by james dashner
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A book that inspired a movie/tv adaptation that you really love, but you haven’t gotten around to reading yet

I liked the movie The Maze Runner, but I’ve never read the books. I recently added this one to my list of Dystopian books I need to read, and I hope to get to it soon.

the dutch house by ann patchett
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A book you see all over Instagram but haven’t picked up yet

I’ve seen The Dutch House everywhere, especially on Instagram. I heard a sample of the audio book and I love that Tom Hanks is the narrator. Can he just narrate EVERY single book from now on please? I love his voice. I can’t wait to finally read this one!

Things You Save in a Fire

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5

things you save in a fire book by Katherine center
Picture taken by me. Buy book on Amazon.

Author: Katherine Center

Published: August 13, 2019

Pages: 320

Goodreads Rating: 4.04/5

For fans of: Domestic Fiction, Romance, Ask Again Yes, The Giver of Stars, Beach Read, The Unhoneymooners, books about forgiveness, books with strong female leads

Good to know before you read: mentions of child sexual abuse

Disclaimer: I was not paid for this review, and all opinions are my own. If you are interested in purchasing this book, please consider using my Amazon affiliate link (by clicking on the top or bottom pictures) and helping a fellow book blogger out 🙂 I will receive a small fee from Amazon, but your book will still cost the same.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Cassie Hanwell was born for emergencies. As one of the only female firefighters in her Texas firehouse, she’s seen her fair share of them, and she’s excellent at dealing with other people’s tragedies. But when her estranged and ailing mother asks her to uproot her life and move to Boston, it’s an emergency of a kind Cassie never anticipated.

The tough, old-school Boston firehouse is as different from Cassie’s old job as it could possibly be. Hazing, a lack of funding, and poor facilities mean that the firemen aren’t exactly thrilled to have a “lady” on the crew, even one as competent and smart as Cassie. Except for the handsome rookie, who doesn’t seem to mind having Cassie around. But she can’t think about that. Because she doesn’t fall in love. And because of the advice her old captain gave her: don’t date firefighters. Cassie can feel her resolve slipping…but will she jeopardize her place in a career where she’s worked so hard to be taken seriously?

Katherine Center’s Things You Save in a Fire is a heartfelt, affecting novel about life, love, and the true meaning of courage.

My Review:

People who wanted to wrestle with complicated emotions became therapists, or poets. People who wanted to keep things simple became firefighters.”

I have been a 911 Dispatcher for seven years now, so this book hit very close to home. I handle emergencies through the phone on a daily basis, and I can only imagine what it would be like to handle these situations in person. As a dispatcher I’ve been through training exercises in which I had to wear full firefighter gear so that I could really see what it’s like to be in their shoes, and why they have to scream to speak into their handheld radios during a fire. I got to experience how heavy the gear is, how hot it gets in the Florida heat (let alone an actual fire) , and how strong the water pressure feels when I was holding the hose (it almost knocked me down when the person helping me let go). I felt so claustrophobic inside the gear, and breathing through the oxygen tank was uncomfortable. I could picture all of these things very vividly while I read this book.

Center mentioned that her husband is a firefighter, so all her descriptions and scenes were very accurate. I can also attest to how real all these situations she talked about are, even the most ridiculous calls she mentioned (don’t want to ruin it for you guys with details). I was laughing out loud at times, and almost in tears at others (I’m not a crier so this is rare for me). I enjoyed the hilarious pranks the firefighters played on each other. The dialogue between the characters felt natural and realistic, and the playful banter was entertaining.

Knowing everything we know about how hard life is and choosing to love anyway…That’s not weakness. That’s bravery.”

Even though the book was funny at times, it was not a light read in any shape or form. The story dealt with very serious topics such as grief, rape, forgiveness, abandonment, and substance abuse, to name a few. I liked how Center approached the topic of workplace equality for women in a male dominated occupation. Cassie, the main character, was definitely a bigger person than I am, but I admit I don’t deal well with forgiveness. There were many situations in which I wondered if I would’ve made the same decisions as she. This story is a good one to make you ponder social, workplace, and family moral dilemmas.

The romance was very realistic. It took a while for the characters to get together, and I liked that they took it slow given Cassie’s abusive past. The story did become a bit too dramatic for me at one point in which everything seemed to be going wrong for Cassie. It reminded me of one of those Lifetime movies that I don’t enjoy. I felt like Cassie had already been through enough and she did not need the extra drama. With that said, this was a great book with so many good life lessons and great advice. I highly recommend it to all Romance and Domestic Fiction fans.

pin hoop ocean themed by the bookish creations etsy shop
Pin hoop by The Bookish Creations Etsy Shop

I got all these pins from handling different calls at work. Some are life saves and some are teamwork awards. I recently handled my first baby delivery through the phone (it was a baby boy), and I’m still waiting for my little stork pin to arrive 🙂

If you are wondering where I got this amazing underwater themed pin hoop, you can click on The Bookish Creations Etsy Shop link and use code DEE15 to save! I represent Chelsea’s shop on Instagram, and she is a wonderful person and creator 🙂 She sells great quality bookish and K-Pop themed totes, water bottles, bookmarks, and pin hoops.