The Friend Zone by Abby Jimenez

Hi friends! I recently finished listening to The Friend Zone by Abby Jimenez via my local library and let me just say, it was definitely a top favorite for me! I have seen this book floating around bookstagram for quite sometime, but A L W A Y S put it off because of how hyped it was. (do you ever not read a book because of how many people are talking about it?) I guess I do this because I do not want to be disappointed in a book that so many people have loved, but it definitely was one that was memorable and will be in my top five favorite reads of 2020!

One thing that I am big on is how well an author develops each character and Abby Jimenez did a fantastic job. I was able to feel as if I were right there in the story and the characters were all my good friends. Seriously, I am a sucker for books that can do that! I think what I loved most about the book is how Jimenez was able to show the main characters worth and how she would come to realize that she should not settle for mediocre and go for something that would be far more extraordinary. Overall, the story was swoon worthy, the friendships were the best, it made you laugh, it made you cry, it made you angry, but best of all it was the perfect love story. I would highly recommend that you pick this up if you haven’t already and believe me, you are going to pick up book two as soon as you are done!

What has been your favorite read of 2020? Let me know in the comments!

xoxo

Nicole

Pumpkinheads by Rainbow Rowell and Faith Erin Hicks

Have you ever come across an author that you absolutely love—like you have yet to be disappointed in any of their books? Well that is Rainbow Rowell for me, she just has a way with her writing that makes you swoon over every story.

When Pumpkinheads was in the works, I was so excited for it to release–but for some reason I waited FOREVER to pick it up, but I finally picked it up this week and YOU GUYS, It was absolutely adorable. It is one of those graphic novels that makes you want to re-read it ASAP because of how good it was. If you are a fan of all things fall, good food, adventure, friendship, and a possible new love, then is a must read!

Synopsis: ” Deja and Josiah are seasonal best friends.

Every autumn, all through high school, they’ve worked together at the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world. (Not many people know that the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world is in Omaha, Nebraska, but it definitely is.) They say good-bye every Halloween, and they’re reunited every September 1.

But this Halloween is different—Josiah and Deja are finally seniors, and this is their last season at the pumpkin patch. Their last shift together. Their last good-bye.

Josiah’s ready to spend the whole night feeling melancholy about it. Deja isn’t ready to let him. She’s got a plan: What if—instead of moping and the usual slinging lima beans down at the Succotash Hut—they went out with a bang? They could see all the sights! Taste all the snacks! And Josiah could finally talk to that cute girl he’s been mooning over for three years . . .

What if their last shift was an adventure?” (Goodreads)

Are you a fan of graphic novels?

xoxo

Nicole

Christmas Book TBR

Happy December bookworms!

Winter/Christmas books are some of my favorite books to read and though I could read them all year long, there is just something special about reading them in December. There are several new books that I am definitely excited to get into this month. Here is my December To Be Read list:

In a Holidaze by Christina Lauren: I have loved everything that I have read by Christina Lauren, so when I saw that this book would be releasing, I knew I needed to get my hands on it! From what I hear it consists of lots of Christmas, time traveling, and love. I mean what more do you need? Sign me up! What is your favorite Christina Lauren book?

Christmas Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella: This is the first book I will be reading by Sophie Kinsella ( I actually started this one already) and I am so excited! I know may people who love Sophie Kinsella’s writing and I’m excited to see why everyone loves her! Have you read anything by her?

Jingle All the Way by Debbie Macomber: I read my first book by Debbie Macomber the first of the month and I was completely captured, so I knew I need to pick up one of her Christmas Novels. So excited to crack this one open!

Christmas Cupcake Murder by Joanne Fluke: If you have been following me for awhile, you know that I love a good cozy mystery. Joanne Fluke has been one of my go to cozy authors and I know that this one will not disappoint. Christmas, love, pastries, and a murder–talk about a perfect novel! Excited for this one!

The Twelve Dates of Christmas by Jenny Bayliss: I have been seeing this book ALL over bookstagram and I definitely caved and got my hands on a copy. I have started this one and I am loving it so much, it has some good humor and lots and lots of dates! Cannot wait to finish this one up! Review to come soon!

So many great books to look forward to this month! What are you reading to finish up your year?

Let me know in the comments

xoxo Nicole

What a Year

Hi friends!

Wow has it been some time since I last wrote a blog post. It has definitely been a crazy year (obviously) and I have found it hard to find inspiration to write. However, I have been taking the time to truly look at this year and find the blessings within all of the chaos 2020 has brought us. Through this year, I have remained healthy as well as those I love, I got engaged, my fiancé and I bought a new vehicle (finally) I started grad school, I read many books, and I began my weight loss journey. There are so so so so many blessings and I guess I have to say—Thank you 2020 for allowing us to truly see the blessings we have in our lives. Let this year be the stepping stone we need to continue to find the good even in the mundane.

Now looking to the future, my hopes is to begin sharing my book reviews with you again soon. It is something that brought me joy in the past and I am truly missing it! So let’s knock the rest of this year out of the park!

xoxo

Nicole

May 2020 Reading Wrap Up

Hey there my fellow bookworms! I cannot believe that we are already starting a new month, but I am excited to see how much reading I will accomplish during the month of June. May actually started off with me not reading a single book, I was honestly just not in the mood. Thankfully, about halfway through I was able to pick up and finish not only one, but six books! It was a pretty even split between cozy mysteries and other genres. So lets dive into my monthly reading wrap up!

  1. Caught Bread Handed by Ellie Alexander: This Bakeshop Mystery series has been such a fun read. Not only are the characters likeable, but the little town of Ashland Oregon is sure to make you want to visit. It is a small town filled with Shakespearean stores, restaurants, theaters, and of course Torte the local coffee shop/bakery.Being that it is a cozy mystery, you are sure to find yourself joining our sleuth Jules as she cracks the next murder case. In this particular book a new burger shop is moving in, but one morning Jules walks in to find the owner dead. Will she crack down on who the killer is before the cops do?
  2. Tulips and Trouble by London Lovett: This is the fifth book in the Port Danby cozy mystery series. This series has sparked my love for reading again. It is not hard to fall in love with this series because the characters become your best friends. You can picture yourself walking down the streets greeting each of the residents as if you too are a part of the story. Another thing I love is how Lovett is able to capture a murder mystery in its entirety, but still keep it a “cozy.” I never feel as though I am missing information or suspenseful elements.
  3. Daddy Long Legs by Jean Webster: I recently picked up this Puffin Classic and boy am I glad I did so. I have been wanting to dive into classics more and I feel like this was the perfect one for that. This book follows our main character Jerusha also known as Judy. Jerusha received the opportunity to attend college for free under the circumstances that she would write letters to the trustee who has paid her way. Although she was only asked to write about her progress throughout her schooling, Judy would write every week about anything that was happening. Being that she was an orphan, she felt that writing to this stranger was the closest she would get to family. Little did she know the relationship would turn into something much more.
  4. Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid: I have seen this book all over bookstagram and I decided to listen to the audiobook which I am glad that I did. I feel like I may have not been able to get the full experience by reading a physical book. The audio painted such a great picture of each character and because of that you were able to get the full experience the author was wanting you to have. I believe it is such an important book to read because it does touch on racial issues that people face everyday due to the color of their skin. It something that we should read so that we can educate ourselves more to support one another more effectively.
  5. Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon: This book was one of my favorite reads for the month of May! I am so mad at myself that it has taken me so long to read it because I truly enjoyed it that much. This story follows a girl by the name of Madeline and she has been sick her entire life which has prevented her from ever leaving her house. However, a boy named Ollie moves into the house next door with his family and Maddy will do anything to meet him. It takes them awhile to meet in person due to her illness, but once they do they want each other more. She wants the freedom to do as she will and so she will push her limits and go on a trip of a lifetime.
  6. Dahlias and Death by London Lovett: The sixth installment of the Port Danby series is by far my favorite book so far. Relationships are now fully developed and we have been able to get some answers to questions that have formed since the beginning. Particularly why there is so much tension between Detective Briggs and Dash. To me being able to finally have some answers has really helped paint a better picture and it opens up the opportunity for the relationship between our sleuth Lacey “Pink” and James Briggs to truly begin forming. So excited to dive into book seven!

Well there you have it, my May reading wrap up! What did you read this month? Let me know in the comments!

Nicole

Book Review: Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon

Happy Wednesday friends! I finished reading Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon yesterday and I am so mad at myself for waiting so long to read it. It was a quick and lighthearted (for the most part) read filled with teenage love, risk, and redemption. It is a beautiful story told by our protagonist Madeline who has been cooped up in her house with her mom and her nurse Carla her entire life. She was diagnosed with a rare disease when she was a baby which has prevented her from living a normal life. Now she is eighteen and is ready to take some risks especially once she meets her new neighbor Olly who has her smitten beyond belief. However, Maddy will take it too far and push her limits with her health. Little did she know that taking such a big risk would ultimately change her life…..for the BETTER!

Between the captivating story and the writing style, I felt that it was hard to put the book down! I really enjoyed the character development Yoon was able to create. I felt like I knew each character completely and I truly believe that it helped capture the story even more. I also loved that throughout the book you would not only have normal chapters, but you would find diagrams, text messages, emails, and instant messages to help capture the story as a whole. Overall, I would highly recommend that you pick this one up. You will not be disappointed.

Field Notes on Love by Jennifer E. Smith

FNOL

stars

I never thought I would fall in love with Field Notes on Love and yet here I am, a big cry baby because of how much I loved this novel by Jennifer E. Smith! It was the first book that I have ever read by this author and I am so thankful that I was able to get my hands on a copy. I bet you are wondering, “Nicole, why did you love this book so much?” Well bookworms, let me tell you:

It involves a cross country train trip from New York to California

  • I have an aching for wanderlust and knew that this would just make me want to travel even more…preferably by train now.

The dynamic between our two main characters was so perfect.

  • Hugo: an 18 year old boy from England who just so happens to be a sextuplet and is now “famous,” in his little town of Surrey.
  • Mae: an 18 year old from New York who has two dads and a grandma who is spunky and wants Mae to live the best life she can.

The way love comes to be in this story is just so sweet and makes you swoon way too much!

Most things are easier than you think,” She says “It’s deciding to do them that’s hard.”

Hugo has always lived his life in the shadows of his five other siblings and by that I mean that it has always been Hugo and his brothers and sisters. They did everything together….they were a package deal when it came to EVERYTHING. All Hugo wanted was to live a life separate from his siblings, but how can he do that without completely shutting them out and making his family upset. On top of trying to figure that out, he was going through a break-up. All Hugo knew is that he NEEDED to go on the trip that him and his now ex-girlfriend were going to take…..a train trip across America. Once he realized that everything was in her name and that he could not change the reservations…he did something completely out of the ordinary. He was going to find himself another Margaret Campbell and was going to ask her to “pretend,” to be Margaret Campbell his ex-girlfriend!

Mae has always known what she wanted to do, being that both of her dad’s were artistic it was just a given that she would fall in love with film. Her hopes and dreams were to attend school in California at one of the most respected film schools in America and maybe even in the world. However, when she got that rejection letter…Mae did not know what to do. She thought the film she sent the school was perfect! She knew she needed to change something, but what is there to change when you already love it so much? After getting advice from pretty much every person in her life, she found that she needed to experience a little more life. So when her friend Priyanka sends her a link to a wanted ad of a boy looking for a Margaret Campbell to take a cross country train trip with….she decided to do the unthinkable….she responded! Sadly, she did not get chosen and school was about to start…so she just sat it out….until she got another email saying that the previous winner was unable to make it!

Now Hugo and Mae have come together at Penn Station to embark on a trip of lifetime. The catch though, neither of their parents know they are traveling with a complete stranger. Every time their parents call they fib a little in hopes that they won’t find out. Of course Hugo’s parents would eventually find out because when you are part of sextuplets…someone is bound to spill the beans. For Mae though, her little secret remained a secret. Her grandma was the one who knew and being that she too found love on a train many years ago, all she wanted was for her granddaughter to do the same. So off they went on this journey of a lifetime where they each would gain more life experience and even find love! 

You guys, this book was absolutely perfect and all I hope is that there is a second novel that will go a little further into the relationship between Hugo and Mae. Will Mae get into film school? Does Hugo stay in the USA or does he go back to England for good? Do the two of them end up being in a long lasting relationship? So many questions!

Have you read this? Let me know in the comments!

 

xoxo,

Nicole!

 

 

Goodreads | Amazon

How to Walk Away by Katherine Center

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“They say your life flashes before your eyes, but it wasn’t my life as I’d lived it that I saw. It was the life I’d been waiting for. The one I’d never get a chance to live.” 

Happy Tuesday friends! I finished up How to Walk Away by Katherine Center yesterday and WOW! You guys this book was and is everything book dreams are made of! To be honest I never heard of How to Walk Away and it just so happened to pop up on Hoopla so I picked it up and decided that it was the best audiobook I have ever listened to. Here is a little synopsis for you in case you too have not heard of this book.

Margaret Jacobsen has a bright future ahead of her: a fiancé she adores, her dream job, and the promise of a picture-perfect life just around the corner. Then, suddenly, on what should have been one of the happiest days of her life, everything she worked for is taken away in one tumultuous moment.

In the hospital and forced to face the possibility that nothing will ever be the same again, Margaret must figure out how to move forward on her own terms while facing long-held family secrets, devastating heartbreak, and the idea that love might find her in the last place she would ever expect.

How to Walk Away is Katherine Center at her very best: an utterly charming, hopeful, and romantic novel that will capture reader’s hearts with every page. 

Let me start off by saying that I freakin’ love our main character Margaret! She is feisty, strong headed, funny, and independent. Although she has found herself in a less than exciting situation, she refuses to let everyone walk all over her or treat her any different than how they did prior to her accident. I really think that Katherine Center did a phenomenal job developing every character! I love when I can picture every character and feel as if I know exactly who they are. Like I can meet for coffee with Maggie and her sister—-and don’t even get me started on Ian…can we just say hubba hubba!?

Overall though, I loved how Center was able to make me feel so many emotions. One minute she had me literally laughing out loud and the next minute I would feel so much grief. However, despite the grief–I found hope just as Margaret did. At the end Maggie says something that will forever live with me and I hope that it will do the same for you—-“You have to live the life you have, you have to find inspiration in the struggle, and pull joy out of the hardship——Because that is all we can do, carry the sorrow when we have to and savor the joy when can.”  How beautiful is that? I think that at times we forget to find the joy within our struggles and life is far too short to wallow in self pity, so I encourage you to find joy even in the smallest things. 

Have you read this book? Let me know your thoughts in the comments.

xoxo,

Nicole

I am Watching You by Teresa Driscoll

[PDF DOWNLOAD] I Am Watching You by Teresa Driscoll Free Epub

 Happy Thursday bookworms! I am so excited to come to you with a book review being that it has been so long since I have written one! A sweet friend of mine on #bookstagram (@kassyreadsbooks) shared that I am Watching You by Teresa Driscoll was on super sale and decided to pick it up, but thankfully it is part of Kindle Unlimited! Woohoo!

You guys, this book was so so good. I was not sure what to expect from it, but it drew me in right from the start! Not only was it a fast paced book, it changed from different point-of-views every single chapter. Now some people hate when that happens because it can make it hard to keep up with the story, but Driscoll did a phenomenal job!

Without giving too much away, this book follows the story of a young girl named Anna who had gone missing a year ago while on a trip with her friend Sarah. After they had gotten into an argument they ended separating at a club and from there Anna was unable to be found. Now the question is, why did she disappear? Did she go with someone? Was she abducted? Why can’t anyone find her? Between family, friends, by standers, and investigators they will get to the bottom of it…..or will they?

I would highly highly recommend this book if you are at all interested in psychological thrillers.

My Rating

stars

xoxo,

Nicole

Top Five Romances

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Happy Valentines bookworms! In honor of this day of love I thought I would share with you my top five romance novels. These are filled with so much love, acceptance, and very steamy scenes and they are all worth the read!

  1. The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary
  2. Get a Life Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert
  3. The Hating Game by Sally Thorne
  4. The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang
  5. Kissing Tolstoy by Penny Reid

I hope your day is filled with so much love and joy! ❤ Let me know what your top romance novels are!