Posted in Reviews

How to Walk Away by Katherine Center

68511765_10214881214443966_2124989224938635264_n“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

Posted in Uncategorized

What I am Reading 04.24.19

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Happy Wednesday bookworms!

It has been such a great reading month for me. After my March Mystery Month, it ignited a fire in me and I CAN’T STOP READING!! I am just so happy I am out of my reading slump. So what I am reading this week?

 

 

 

  1. This is Not a Love Scene by S.C. Meagle: Thank you to St. Martins Press for providing me with the eARC of this book!
  2. Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire: This is the second book in the Wayward Children’s Series and you guys…it is so good!
  3. The Simple Wild by K.A. Tucker: I have heard so so so much about this book and I finally got my hands on a copy and all I can say is…WHY DID I WAIT SO LONG TO READ IT!!? I cannot wait to get my review up this weekend!

Have you read any of these? What are some books you are looking forward to reading?

 

xoxo

Nicole

Posted in Reviews

A Batter of Life and Death by Ellie Alexander

5star


Jules Capshaw has finally recovered from the murder that took place during the summer and is hoping that the fall season will bring lots of baking and sales for Torte. Now that she is co-owner of her mother’s bake shop, it is time to begin updating her little family owned bakery. Thankfully, Jules will have the opportunity to win $25,000 by competing in a reality TV show called Take the Cake! As easy as that sounds, it will take a turn for the worst….a murder! Once again, Jules finds herself constantly running into bits and pieces of clues that will help her solve the case. Turns out, it was someone she would least expect. Was it someone in her hometown or one of the visitors from the show Take the Cake?

Once again, Ellie Alexander did a fantastic job writing this novel. What I love most about her books so far is that she paints a picture for you so well that you feel like you know the characters first hand. I could see myself sipping on a cup of joe in Torte by a window and eating a delicious pastry having conversation with the locals. I just love this little world in Ashland, Oregon and want to visit ASAP. I also enjoy how she adds in a little bit of suspense into each of these novels without completely going overboard in detail *hence being a cozy ;)* Again, I would highly recommend reading Ellie Alexander’s Bakeshop Mystery Series! If you are an audio book fan, the first three novels are on audible!

Goodreads|Bookbub|Amazon

Posted in Reviews

Meet Your Baker by Ellie Alexander

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stars

Synopsis:


Welcome to Torte-a friendly, small-town family bake shop where the treats are so good that, sometimes, it’s criminal…

After graduating from culinary school, Juliet Capshaw returns to her quaint hometown of Ashland, Oregon, to heal a broken heart and help her mom at the family bakery. The Oregon Shakespeare Festival is bringing in lots of tourists looking for some crumpets to go with their heroic couplets. But when one of Torte’s customers turns up dead, there’s much ado about murder…

The victim is Nancy Hudson, the festival’s newest board member. A modern-day Lady Macbeth, Nancy has given more than a few actors and artists enough reasons to kill her…but still. The silver lining? Jules’s high school sweetheart, Thomas, is the investigator on the case. His flirtations are as delicious as ever, and Jules can’t help but want to have her cake and eat it too. But will she have her just desserts? Murder might be bad for business, but love is the sweetest treat of all…

Review


Meet Your Baker was the perfect cozy mystery! It had such a great balance of suspense, love, humor, and great relationships.  It was the first novel that I have read by Ellie Alexander and it did not disappoint. Once I finished, I was eager to start the second book!

This particular novel follows Jules Capshaw who just moved back home to Ashland, Oregon after being on a cruise ship for several years working as a chef. Her plan was to stay at home for a short while and then move on to her next adventure. Little did she know that her heart would rekindle the love she once had for her small town and her families bakery Torte. However, when one of Torte’s customers is murdered, Jules finds herself in the middle of the investigation. Whether she was seeking answers or not, some how she would find bits and pieces to help her solve the case. Sadly, when Jules finally figures out who committed the murder, she would find herself in the act of another murder….or does she?

I will most definitely catch up on the series and hope to be done before the next novel comes out! I would highly recommend Meet the Baker if you are at all interested in cozy mysteries!

Amazon|Goodreads|Bookbub

 

Posted in Monthly Book Wrap Up

February 2019 Wrap Up

Happy Thursday friends! Can you believe we are already done with February? I mean where does time go? This was a pretty good reading month for me, but fell flat the last full week of the month being that I was sick. I was able to complete seven books which puts me right on track for my yearly goal!

 

Mistletoe and Mayhem: I started this in January and was able to finish it within the first week of the February. I absolutely adore London Lovett’s novels so this was a fun read for me!

A Girl Like Her: This was the Dragons and Tea Book Club February read. This was way better than I thought it would be and was so smitten by the romance in this novel.

Forever Winter: This was a classic Alexa Riley book and was filled with some steamy romance.

The Girl He Used to Know: This was hands down my favorite read of the month! This ARC was provided via St.Martins Press. This novel was everything and left me in tears. Everyone needs to read this! My review can be found here.

Truth or Beard: I listened to the audio version of this book and loved it! I always enjoy Penny Reid’s writing and this did not disappoint. My Review can be found here.

Baby-Sitters Club Mystery #1- Stacey and the Missing Ring: This was just a fun nostalgic read!

Waisted: I received the eARC of this novel via Netgalley and Atria Books. I wanted to love this book so much, but it fell flat for me. My review can be found here.

What books did you read this month?

 

xoxo,

Nicole

Posted in Reviews

Review: The Girl He Used to Know by Tracey Garvis Graves

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Goodreads|Amazon

★★★★★

Title: The Girl He Used to Know

Author: Tracey Garvis Graves

Release Date: April 2, 2019

Pages: 304

Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Romance

My Rating: ★★★★★

 

Goodreads synopsis:

Annika (rhymes with Monica) Rose is an English major at the University of Illinois. Anxious in social situations where she finds most people’s behavior confusing, she’d rather be surrounded by the order and discipline of books or the quiet solitude of playing chess.

Jonathan Hoffman joined the chess club and lost his first game–and his heart–to the shy and awkward, yet brilliant and beautiful Annika. He admires her ability to be true to herself, quirks and all, and accepts the challenges involved in pursuing a relationship with her. Jonathan and Annika bring out the best in each other, finding the confidence and courage within themselves to plan a future together. What follows is a tumultuous yet tender love affair that withstands everything except the unforeseen tragedy that forces them apart, shattering their connection and leaving them to navigate their lives alone.

Now, a decade later, fate reunites Annika and Jonathan in Chicago. She’s living the life she wanted as a librarian. He’s a Wall Street whiz, recovering from a divorce and seeking a fresh start. The attraction and strong feelings they once shared are instantly rekindled, but until they confront the fears and anxieties that drove them apart, their second chance will end before it truly begins. 

My Review:

I cannot even begin to explain how much I adored this novel. Tracey Garvis Graves wrote each character with complete care and detail. It was beautiful watching each character unravel throughout the novel. Annika is the most delicate of all the characters,  she is socially awkward, she loves books, chess, has not dated much, and does not understand why people treat her differently. Jonathan on the other hand is outgoing, has a decent amount of friends, works at a bar, and is advanced in the dating department. They were complete opposites, but that is what made their relationship work so well. I absolutely loved how gentle Jonathan was towards Annika and how he paid so much detail to her facial expressions in order to understand what was going through her mind. He had to work hard at the relationship, but he never let that stop him from falling head over heels for her. 

It broke my heart when they went their separate ways, but was so glad that fate would reunite them. Annika had worked so hard throughout the ten years they were apart and it truly helped her grow to be able to give herself in a way she was never able to. I was definitely cheering them on and wanted them to get back together. Without going into too much detail….the ending wrecked me. I cried for twenty minutes. I literally felt like I was watching my best friends go through such much pain. All I can say is that you need to read this book ASAP so you can see what I am talking about!

Thank you to Macmillan Publishing and St. Martin’s Press for providing me with this ARC copy! 

 

xoxo

Nicole