Wednesday, December 29, 2021

Other Favorites of 2021...

 Favorite fiction series read in 2021:

(I read books #4, #5, and #6 this year and loved them all.)

Favorite New-to-Me Author:  Michael Connelly

Favorite movie that I watched this year:

5 Favorite Nonfiction Reads:

7 Favorite Romance Reads:
(This list could also have been MUCH longer because I read a lot of fun romances this year. But I limited myself to listing just these seven.)

What If You & Me by Roni Loren

Favorite new TV series:

Favorite snack:  Dry Roasted Peanuts

Favorite thing about book blogging:  
Chatting about books with all of YOU!

Happy Reading!

Sunday, December 26, 2021

My 12 Favorite Fiction Reads of 2021

It was actually hard to narrow this end-of-year list down to just twelve books. I could easily have done a list of twenty favorites, or more. I read a lot of good books this year, which means that several books I really liked did not make it onto this list. So, in no particular order, here are the books that did (with links to my original reviews):

Honorable Mention: A Long Walk to Water by Linda Sue Park
(Which I got to read with a fun group of 4th graders who loved it, too.)

Happy Reading!

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Haiku Reviews...


Mistle Text by Whitney Dineen & Melanie Summers

Wanted: personal
shopper and fake girlfriend for
the holidays. 

Contemporary romance .... 288 pages .... 3.5/5 stars.
(The texts and interactions between Archie, Holly, and her five-year-old niece, Faith, made me laugh.)

The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood

Can one kiss and a
few fake dates lead to true love?
Olive's about to find out.

Contemporary romance .... 352 pages .... 4.5/5 stars.
(So fun! I loved Adam and Olive and their 'fake' relationship.)

The Last Bookshop in London by Madeline Martin

World War II. London.
A girl. A job in a bookshop.
Refuge found in books. 

Historical Fiction .... 325 pages .... 4/5 stars.
(A lovely and heartwarming book to get lost in.)

Happy Reading!

Saturday, December 18, 2021

December's Bookish Art...


Jessie Willcox Smith 

"When we read together, we connect.
Together, we see the world.
Together, we see one another."
--Kate DiCamillo

Wednesday, December 15, 2021

The Future is Yours by Dan Frey

"If you had the chance to look one year into the future, would you?"

Best friends since college, Ben Boyce and Adhvan Chaudry have created a startup company to build a quantum computer that uses quantum entanglement to connect to the future. It's Adhi's idea; he's the genius in this partnership. Ben brings unrestrained enthusiasm and the marketing savvy they'll need to get their business off the ground. They both believe in their prototype, The Future, but neither foresees the negative consequences of their revolutionary technology. Or the cost it will have on their friendship.

This is an entertaining and thought-provoking science fiction thriller. It's told through a series of emails, texts, blog posts, and transcripts from the Senate Hearings investigating The Future device. And I loved it. But then I'm a huge fan of epistolary novels, so this book totally worked for me. I liked the science of it, too, and the ethical questions that got raised as beta testers began looking into their futures. I also liked Ben and Adhi; both of these characters have their flaws, and some of their decisions made me shake my head, but their loyalty and friendship is what really drives this story. Not only is this novel innovative and unexpected, it's also compelling and reads fast. I even loved that crazy ending. I'd give this one 5 stars. 

Happy Reading!

Tuesday, December 14, 2021

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a fun weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.

This week's theme is supposed to be Books on My Winter 2021 To-Read List. But I wasn't feeling it, so I decided to go rogue and just do Wintry Reads instead.

1. Winter Frost by R. D. Wingfield

2. The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon

3. The Ocean in Winter by Elizabeth de Veer

4. Winter's Bone by Daniel Woodrell 

5. The Winter Girls by Roger Stelljes

6. The Winter Road by Adrian Selby

7. Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones

8. The Winter Cottage by Rachael Lucas

9. Winter Solstice by Rosamunde Pilcher

10. Final Winter by Iain Rob Wright

Happy Reading!

Sunday, December 12, 2021

Wrapping up my Back to the Classics Reading Challenge!

I did it! I actually managed to complete all twelve categories in Karen's Back to the Classics 2021 Reading Challenge. That's a first for me. I've come close two other times, but I always fell short at the end. Not this year! Here are the twelve categories for this year's challenge, and the twelve books I read to fill them:

1. A 19th Century Classic:  Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi

2. A 20th Century Classic:  A Damsel in Distress by P.G. Wodehouse

3. Classic by a Woman Author:  The Young Clementina by D.E. Stevenson

4. A Classic in Translation:  Au Bonheur des Dames by Emile Zola

5. A Classic by a BIPOC Author: The Housing Lark by Sam Selvon

6. Classic by a New-to-you Author:  Miss Pym Disposes by Josephine Tey

7. New-to-you Classic by a Favorite Author: Five Little Pigs by Agatha Christie

8. Classic about an Animal, or with an Animal in the Title:  Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs

9. A Children's Classic:  Queen Zixi of Ix by L. Frank Baum

10. A Humorous classic:  Auntie Mame by Patrick Dennis

11. A Travel or Adventure Classic:  In Morocco by Edith Wharton

So there you have it. Twelve classics I doubt I would have read this year if not for this challenge. Thank you, Karen, for hosting it again! I read some very interesting books. I think my three favorite were The Housing Lark, A Damsel in Distress and Tarzan, although they were all pretty good. And I'm glad I read them. 

Happy Reading!

Thursday, December 9, 2021

Swansong by Damien Boyd


When Detective Inspector Nick Dixon was sixteen, his girlfriend, Fran, disappeared from St. Dunstan's, the private boarding school they both attended. She was never found. It's what made Dixon eventually decide to join the police force. Now, seventeen years later, Isobel Swan, another young girl has been murdered at Brunel's, a nearby boarding school. Her death reminds Dixon of Fran's disappearance. So when he's sent to Brunel as an undercover teacher trainee to investigate Isobel's murder, he thinks he just might find the answer to Fran's long ago disappearance, too. 

Cath @ Read-warbler recommended this mystery this past July, and I'm so glad she did. I loved this one! DI Nick Dixon is such an interesting character; I liked both him and his girlfriend, Detective Constable Jane Winter. Dixon's personal connection to this case made their investigation that much more compelling. This is a very well-written and well-paced mystery. And it was fun seeing Dixon go undercover at Brunel. That private boarding school setting is a favorite of mine, and Dixon certainly knew it well. Now if only I can get my library to buy the rest of the books in this series because I definitely want to read them all.

Happy Reading!

Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a fun weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.

This week's theme is a freebie. So I decided to go with Cute Christmas Romances. (At least, they look like they could be cute; I've only actually read three of them.)

Happy Reading!