Posts Tagged ‘hooray’

BOOK HUNGRY: county line

November 7, 2013

who says you have to be crowded into the living room, kitchen, and/or dining room to hold a book club? we are ladies of the 21st century. we don’t need no stinkin’ couches. so pull up a blog and join in the conversation.

the members of the BOOK HUNGRY are (alphabetically): patty blount, kelly breakey, blake leyers, karla nellenbachand myself. we pick a book to read. we discuss via phone and/or google hangout and/or on email and/or on twitter. we post a review on our individual blogs the 3rd thursday of the month. click on their names above and enjoy.

this month’s BOOK HUNGRY selection is: 

COUNTY LINE by bill cameron

what it’s about from porter square books: 

When the steadfast Ruby Jane Whittaker drops out of sight, dogged ex-cop Skin Kadash sets out to discover what drove the woman he loves to leave her life behind so suddenly and without explanation. The discovery of a dead man in her apartment, followed by an attack by a mysterious stalker, leads Skin first to California, then across the country on a desperate journey deep into Ruby Jane’s haunted past–and toward an explosive confrontation which will determine if either has a future.

my opinion:

i can’t lie, this book was work. the writing was smart and sophisticated and the plot took all kinds of unanticipated turns and there were shifts in time and perspective, all of which do not mesh well for me when reading on a kindle. i never seem to know this about myself until i’m in the middle of a book that requires it, but apparently i re-read a lot, especially in the middle of a first read. my mind wanders, i can’t help it. with the shifts in perspective and time in this book, i had to turn back a few pages a lot, which is not easy on a kindle.

this is no fault of bill’s. it’s mine.

this is the fourth book in a “series”. i use the term loosely because the main characters and perspectives switch from book to book so they behave more like companion novels rather that a straight series. this book does stand alone, but bill drops enough hints throughout that made me realize i’d feel less like i’d been dropped in the middle of a conversation had i read the other books prior to reading this one. he’s a wily, ambitious, clever writer what with his making me want to read all his books.

in related news, it was also work to wrangle our schedules for the monthly conference call. it took us over a month (including multiple re-schedules) to coordinate our schedules with bill’s so he could join our call, but as they say, the wait was worth it. bill was full of quips and quotes that had us book hungry gals alternately laughing and scrambling to jot them down.

“writing is, ultimately, an act of empathy.”

my overall opinion is that these characters are well rounded and fleshed out and human and flawed and i wish i knew them better. i’d suggest reading these from the beginning because ruby jane and skin and pete are fascinating and i suspect the things we learn about them (RJ especially) in COUNTY LINE would have been even more illuminating and (to quote oprah) ah-ha inducing had i’d known about their previous actions and decisions.

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BOOK HUNGRY: i’ll be seeing you

September 19, 2013

who says you have to be crowded into the living room, kitchen, and/or dining room to hold a book club? we are ladies of the 21st century. we don’t need no stinkin’ couches. so pull up a blog and join in the conversation.

the members of the BOOK HUNGRY are (alphabetically): patty blount, kelly breakey, blake leyers, karla nellenbachand myself. we pick a book to read. we discuss via phone and/or google hangout and/or on email and/or on twitter. we post a review on our individual blogs the 3rd thursday of the month. click on their names above and enjoy.

this month’s BOOK HUNGRY selection is: 

I’LL BE SEEING YOU by suzanne hayes and loretta nyhan

what it’s about from porter square books: 

“I hope this letter gets to you quickly. We are always waiting, aren’t we? Perhaps the greatest gift this war has given us is the anticipation…”

It’s January 1943 when Rita Vincenzo receives her first letter from Glory Whitehall. Glory is an effervescent young mother, impulsive and free as a bird. Rita is a sensible professor’s wife with a love of gardening and a generous, old soul. Glory comes from New England society; Rita lives in Iowa, trying to make ends meet. They have nothing in common except one powerful bond: the men they love are fighting in a war a world away from home.

Brought together by an unlikely twist of fate, Glory and Rita begin a remarkable correspondence. The friendship forged by their letters allows them to survive the loneliness and uncertainty of waiting on the home front, and gives them the courage to face the battles raging in their very own backyards. Connected across the country by the lifeline of the written word, each woman finds her life profoundly altered by the other’s unwavering support.

A collaboration of two authors whose own beautiful story mirrors that on the page, I’ll Be Seeing You is a deeply moving union of style and charm. Filled with unforgettable characters and grace, it is a timeless celebration of friendship and the strength and solidarity of women.

my opinion:

there is something about the act of writing letters that is utterly charming to me and this is the third book i’ve read that’s utilized the letter writing forum to reveal an astonishing story. (the first being the GUERNSEY LITERARY AND POTATO PEEL PIE SOCIETY and the second DADDY LONG LEGS.) i think this form appeals to me because letter writing breeds a particular honesty and in the middle of that, there’s something tangible about the connectivity between these women.

it reminds me of my relationships with my book hungry gals — we’re using the technology at hand to communicate and cajole and teach and learn and laugh and connect. of course, we’re more likely to trade insults than recipes, but that’s just how we roll.

but back to the book, these two women are astonishing in their bravery, resilience, determination, humor, selfishness, unselfishness and strength of character. they both fall into and defy the stereotypes of their ages (rita is a bit older than newlywed glory) as they live and love and struggle. i adore rita and her cast of characters in iowa a bit more than glory and her team, but my not so tender feelings towards glory are redeemed during this won’t part i won’t tell you about because i don’t want to spoil anything, but basically, she earns my respect and gratitude and i’m talking like i know her. that’s how real these characters are.

i also loved learning how loretta and suzy wrote this. how did i learn this? loretta joined our conference call and dished the details. these two ladies “met” on social media and launched into this project much the same way glory and rita began. neither woman had met the other in person, but the tales and emotions and advice and respect grew as the letters flew back and forth.

long story short, this is a delightful book and you should read it.

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BOOK HUNGRY: wreckless

July 25, 2013

who says you have to be crowded into the living room, kitchen, and/or dining room to hold a book club? we are ladies of the 21st century. we don’t need no stinkin’ couches. so pull up a blog and join in the conversation.

the members of the BOOK HUNGRY are (alphabetically): patty blount, kelly breakey, blake leyers, karla nellenbachand myself. we pick a book to read. we discuss via phone. we post a review on our individual blogs the 3rd thursday of the month. click on their names above and enjoy.

this month’s BOOK HUNGRY selection is: 

WRECKLESS by bria quinlan

what it’s about from amazon: 

Wreckless…Where obsession and rebellion collide.

Bridget Larson’s never met a rule she didn’t like. Drawing inside the lines isn’t just a way of life – it’s the only way she can make it through the day. And through it all her BFF Leah has stood inside those lines and weathered the unspeakable with her. Then Bridget catches her boyfriend with Leah–and the last thing on her mind is staying safe.

Salvation… A bad boy and his jacked up pickup.

Jake Moore was everything she needed and nothing he claimed to be. With one night of freedom and a spontaneously scribbled Rebellion List, Jake leads Bridget down every path she thought was forbidden… And into the one place she’d thought was lost to her forever.

my opinion:

having read other books/novellas by bria, i had an idea of her style of writing and i had a sneaking suspicion i was going to like this book, but even so, this book caught me off guard. it has sass, sweetness, charm, charisma, depth (oh so deep), humor, and it packs a punch.

while reading it, i was kind of like this:

but on the other hand, HOLY AMAZING STUFF. every detail was well placed, every twist and turn in the right position, every emotion deserved, and every character wonderfully flawed. this book was a little bit of perfection and i’ve already read it twice. it’s definitely made the list of books i’ll be re-reading for years to come.

AND, SURPRISE!!!

sister E has temporarily joined book hungry and here are her thoughts:

It was a very easy read, but I also couldn’t put it down. The characters weren’t over drawn and were very easy to relate to.  Jake was the hero who stepped in at the right time, but you also knew he wasn’t perfect.  He couldn’t immediately fix all of Bridget’s problems, but you could tell the two of them went well together. They made each other better.

But the character that made the story was Bridget.  I fell in love with her, because she was me.  I do the same silly introverted things, so it was fun to take a journey with her and Jake breaking all the rules in one night, to see her step out of her shell and see her grow, to know she wasn’t the same person at the beginning of the book as she is at the end. I know transformations don’t happen in one weekend, I mean mine didn’t, but its still awesome to be able to witness her transformation.

Favorite scene: The last chapter.  So perfect. I won’t give away spoilers, but this is my favorite line

and there you have it. four thumbs up from two mumford girls.

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conversations with strangers #63

June 28, 2013

strangers? here’s why i’m talking to them.

the final score (6-1) wasn’t a true indicator of the game. they were the defending league champions not to mention they’ve made it to the finals the last 3 years. we’ve squeaked into the playoffs each of those years.

and yet. we high fived after the game, as we do.

there’s never a smooth transition from the orderly line of high fives and “good games” to two teams walking back to their benches. in the middle of the mob, the girl with the hot pink spandex capri pants i’d been wishing i owned the entire game pulled me aside.

her: i wanted to let you know you had a really good hit.

me: oh, thank you!

her: it was very solid.

me: and i wanted to let you know i adore your pants.

her: thanks! they’re from tj maxx. $20.

me: i love them even more now!

our laughter sparkled into the setting sun, highlighting both our sportsmanship and wo-manship.

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BOOK HUNGRY: about that night

June 27, 2013

who says you have to be crowded into the living room, kitchen, and/or dining room to hold a book club? we are ladies of the 21st century. we don’t need no stinkin’ couches. so pull up a blog and join in the conversation.

the members of the BOOK HUNGRY are (alphabetically): patty blount, kelly breakey, blake leyers, karla nellenbachand myself. we pick a book to read. we discuss via phone. we post a review on our individual blogs the 3rd thursday of the month. click on their names above and enjoy.

this month’s BOOK HUNGRY selection is: 

ABOUT THAT NIGHT by julie james

what it’s about from porter square books: 

HE’S PLAYING GAMES

Though Rylann Pierce tried to fight the sparks she felt for billionaire heir Kyle Rhodes the night they met, their sizzling chemistry was undeniable. But after being stood up on their first date, Rylann never expected to see him again. So when she finds herself face to face with Kyle in a courthouse nine years later, she’s stunned. More troubling to the beautiful Assistant U.S. Attorney is that she’s still wildly attracted to him.

BUT SHE’S MAKING THE RULES

Just released from prison, Kyle Rhodes isn’t thrilled to be the star witness in a high-profile criminal case—but when Rylann comes knocking at his door, he finds she may be the one lawyer he can’t say no to. Still as gorgeous and sharp-tongued as ever, she lays down the law: she doesn’t mix business with pleasure. But Kyle won’t give up on something he wants—and what he wants is the one woman he’s never forgotten. . .

my opinion:

a perfect summer read. fun, fast, flirty, smart.

this was actually the third book in a series, but the first one i read. i never felt lost or confused or like i’d missed out by starting with book 3 instead of 1. in fact, i liked the characters and the writing and the premise so much, i ordered the other books in the series from the library and devoured them one quiet weekend.

a lot of times in contemporary stories, references to specific songs or technologies, etc. are avoided so as to keep the story relevant for a long time. ABOUT THAT NIGHT broke that rule as it took on twitter and mentioned facebook and all that jazz. (considering twitter is how us book hungry gals met, it felt a bit like a wink wink nudge nudge.) anyways, this story is a sassy kick in the pants about how tied up in technology we all get — and how things can get blown out of proportion — and how we need to focus on and prioritize the things that do matter.

like romance. and second chances. and family. and twitter. and books. and book hungry gals.

julie james is definitely an author i’ll be keeping tabs on.

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