Monday, January 28, 2019

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (1-28-19)

Happy (cold, cold, cold) Monday! It's currently 17° with a wind chill of 8, and it's only going to get worse over the next few days. However, I'm thankful that we're not facing the extreme cold that my friends in Indiana, Illinois, and Michigan have coming their way. Can't it be spring yet?

Review: "How the Light Gets In" by Jolina Petersheim

In How the Light Gets In, author Jolina Petersheim takes the biblical story of Ruth and Boaz and transplants it into a modern-day Mennonite community.

Friday, January 25, 2019

First Line Fridays: "How the Light Gets In"

Happy Friday! It's bitterly cold here—January is definitely acting like January—and I can't wait to spend tomorrow curled up with a blanket and a good book!

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Review: "Beauty and the Baron" by Joanna Barker

It's no secret that I'm a sucker for fairy tale retellings! I've read many retellings of Beauty and the Beast, and even though some have been horrifically terrible, I just can't seem to resist picking up another. So when one of the bookstagrammers I follow posted about Beauty and the Baron, I snapped it up on Kindle Unlimited!

Saturday, January 19, 2019

Review: "Who I Am With You" by Robin Lee Hatcher

Robin Lee Hatcher has become one of my go-to romance writers. The lowest star rating I've ever given any of her books is 3-1/2, and I've rated most of her books 4-1/2 or 5 stars. They're always excellent! Who I Am with You is different from the other Hatcher books I've read in that it's a split time (dual timeline) novel; those are often hit or miss for me, so of course I was hopeful that this one would be a hit!

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Top Ten Tuesday: New-to-Me Authors I Read in 2018

Happy Tuesday! This week's topic is Authors I Read for the First Time in 2018 ... and there were a lot of them! I'm focusing on the ones whose books I enjoyed ... because I also discovered some new authors I didn't like, but there's no need to rehash that here 😉

Monday, January 14, 2019

Review: "At First Glance" by Susan L. Tuttle

I remember hearing about At First Glance when it released last year, but I didn't give it much thought—after all, my TBR list was already super long! But I had a lull between review book over Christmas break, and I stumbled across it on Kindle Unlimited, so I decided to give it a shot!

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Review: "Becoming Mrs. Lewis" by Patti Callahan

I'm a huge fan of C.S. Lewis's writing. Narnia, of course, but also his Space Trilogy (my favorite quote of all time comes from Perelandra), Till We Have Faces, and nonfiction like Mere Christianity. I took a C.S. Lewis class in college, and it was by far my favorite lit class.

But with all of my knowledge about Lewis's writing, I knew very little about his personal life. Sure, I knew he'd been a bachelor for most of his life before marrying a divorced American woman who died shortly thereafter, but I didn't really know anything of their story. So when I heard about Becoming Mrs. Lewis, a novel written from Joy Davidman's perspective, I couldn't wait to get my hands on it—but wait I did, as I was way down on the hold list at my library! My hold finally came in just before the new year.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Review: "Betrayed" by Dee Henderson

During my college years, I probably would have said that Dee Henderson was my favorite writer. Her O'Malley series was one of my favorites, and I devoured everything she wrote. But aside from a novella I read (and reviewed) a couple years ago, I haven't read any of her books in probably ten years.

This novella, Betrayed, appears in The Cost of Betrayal, a novella collection that also includes entries from Dani Pettrey and Lynette Eason. (It will also be available for ebook purchase by itself next month.)

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Review: "The Bride of Ivy Green" by Julie Klassen

Julie Klassen's delightful Tales from Ivy Hill series concludes with The Bride of Ivy Green, a book I simply couldn't put down!

(I'm not kidding: I started reading at 7 p.m. and didn't quit until I finished the book at 1:15 a.m.)

Friday, January 4, 2019

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Top 5 Christmas Movies of 2018

Why not keep the lists coming, right? On Monday, I published my rankings of this year's Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movies & Mysteries Christmas movies. But the Hallmark channels weren't the only ones who put out Christmas movies this year, and my favorite movie of the season actually aired on Lifetime. So here are my Top 5 Christmas movies of 2018 ... and a couple honorable mentions at the bottom (just for fun). As I did with my Hallmark list, I'm including the blurbs from my Instagram stories, so you can see what I initially thought of the movies.

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Review: "Novelly Upon a Time" by Sarah Monzon

I mean, this cover! So cute! I've enjoyed Sarah Monzon's books in the past, so when I saw this pop up on Kindle Unlimited, I knew it would be the perfect first read of the new year.

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Best Books of 2018: Top Ten

2018 was a bit of an odd reading year for me. According to Goodreads, I read 104 books, and I can think of a handful of others that I read but didn't review, so the total is probably closer to 115. But out of all of those books, I didn't have that one read that made me think, "This is it—I bet this will be my favorite book of the year!" Don't get me wrong: I read a lot of great books, and some I identified immediately as ones that would probably make this list, but not one stood far out from the rest as the book of the year. I'm still ranking these books from ten to one (as I always do), but I might feel differently about the order tomorrow 🤣.

2018 mini reviews

Here's what I love about my mini reviews: they're perhaps not quite as objective as I try to be in my regular reviews. It's pretty much my "hot take" or gut reaction to the book, and I'm a little more blunt. None of these books are ones I agreed to review (review books always get a full-blown post); I either bought or borrowed them, and, for whatever reason, didn't want to write full reviews of them.