HUMP DAY SPARKS: BOOK HOPPING….

Today I’m participating in Sam’s WWW Wednesdays Here’s how it works:

 

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next, and/or what are you eagerly awaiting?

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CURRENTLY READING:

I don’t often read more than one book at a time, but this week found me book hopping.

The Best Awful, by Carrie Fisher, the sequel to the bestselling Postcards from the Edge contains Carrie’s Fisher’s trademark intelligence and wit that brought Postcards to the Hollywood movie screen.

 

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Rainy Day Women (e-book), by Kay Kendall, is the second book in the Austin Starr Mystery series. In 1969, during the week of the Manson murders and Woodstock, the intrepid amateur sleuth, infant in tow, flies across the continent to support a friend suspected of murdering women’s liberation activists in Seattle and Vancouver.

 

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JUST FINISHED:

I’ve completed two books so far this week:

Right Behind You (e-book), by Lisa Gardner (click title for my review)

 

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And then….

The Trophy Child (e-book), by Paula Daly (click for review) – a NetGalley review coming out on 3/7/17.

 

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UP NEXT:

Never Let You Go (e-book), by Chevy Stevens (NetGalley – 3/14/17)

 

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Eleven years ago, Lindsey Nash escaped into the night with her young daughter and left an abusive relationship. Her ex-husband, Andrew, was sent to jail and Lindsey started over with a new life.

Now, Lindsey is older and wiser, with her own business and a teenage daughter who needs her more than ever. When Andrew is finally released from prison, Lindsey believes she has cut all ties and left the past behind her. But she gets the sense that someone is watching her, tracking her every move. Her new boyfriend is threatened. Her home is invaded, and her daughter is shadowed. Lindsey is convinced it’s her ex-husband, even though he claims he’s a different person. But has he really changed? Is the one who wants her dead closer to home than she thought?

With Never Let You Go, Chevy Stevens delivers a chilling, twisting thriller that crackles with suspense as it explores the darkest heart of love and obsession.

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So…that’s my week so far.  What does yours look like?

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY! THE MANY FACES OF FIONA…

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Happy birthday, Fiona!  She is a young woman who defines her own unique path…and has been doing so from the beginning.  Let’s look back at her early moments: the newborn…

 

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Then, at around eighteen months, the curly-haired tot clutched her toys, with cousin Aubrey in pursuit…at a family gathering.

 

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A few years ago, Fiona and her “twin cousin” Aubrey (their birthdays are only days apart), were the featured header for this blog…back when it was called Snow Impressions and Connections.

Here they were, at seven years of age, at the snowy cabin owned by Aubrey’s father.

 

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Some pictures of the two of them, growing up:

 

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Fiona has enjoyed showcasing various looks over the years:

 

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She went through a “hat” phase after shaving her head….

 

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And here is one of my favorites:

 

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We can definitely conclude that Fiona is creative and pursuing her own unique identity in life.

As she celebrates her twentieth birthday, we wish for many more years of fun and experimentation…and finding who she is along the way.

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MONDAY SPARKS: MUSING ABOUT BOOKISH SCENTS….

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Welcome to another Monday of Musing with Ambrosia, at The Purple Booker.

Check out these prompts:

I’m currently reading…
Up next I think I’ll read…
I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
I can’t wait to get a copy of…
I wish I could read ___, but…
I blogged about ____ this past week…

THIS WEEKS RANDOM QUESTION: Do you like new book smell? Old book smell? All book smell?

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I love new and old book smells.  My early childhood was spent in an old library that shared space with the village post office, so when I now go into an old post office, I am also struck with the scent.  The one that reminds me of bookish things.

Later, I came to adore new books and spent lots of time buying books in bookstores…until they started closing down.

Now we have Barnes & Noble in my neighborhood…and I enjoy spending time there.  They also have a coffee shop, so sometimes I just settle in to read.

 

barnes-noble-cropped-and-framedramed***

I want to start visiting the library again, as we have a lovely one not too far from my home.

What are your thoughts about bookish scents?

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HUMP DAY SPARKS: IMPULSE READING…

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Today I’m participating in Sam’s WWW Wednesdays Here’s how it works:

 

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next, and/or what are you eagerly awaiting?

***

Currently Reading:

I had a list of books to read next, making sure to finish some of the older ones that were still new enough to qualify for my reading challenge.

But I gave in to impulse and started reading Behind Her Eyes (e-book), by Sarah Pinborough, is “a dark, electrifying page-turner with a corker of an ending.” —Harlan Coben, #1 New York Times bestselling author

“An eerie thriller…Pinborough keeps us guessing about just who’s manipulating whom – until the ending reveals that we’ve been wholly complicit in this terrifying mind game.” —The New York Times Book Review…

 

 

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Sounds good, right?

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FINISHED:

Pretty Little World (e-book), by Melissa DePino, etc…(click title for my review).

 

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The Bad Things (e-book), by Mary-Jane Riley (click for my review).

 

 

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EAGERLY ANTICIPATING:

Earlier in the week, I discovered an upcoming release (June 6, 2017) from an author I really enjoy.  I immediately bookmarked it on Amazon.

You’ll Never Know, Dear (e-book), by Hallie Ephron, is an addictive novel of psychological suspense from the award-winning author of Night Night, Sleep Tight, about three generations of women haunted by a little girl’s disappearance, and the porcelain doll that may hold the key to the truth . . .

 

 

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Isn’t that cover creepy/good?

Blurb:  Seven-year-old Lissie Steger and her four-year-old sister Janey were playing with their porcelain dolls in the front yard when an adorable puppy scampered by. Eager to pet the pretty dog, Lissie chased after the pup as it ran down the street. When she returned to the yard, Janey’s precious doll was gone . . . and so was Janey.

Forty years after Janey went missing, Lissie—now a mother with a college-age daughter of her own—still blames herself for what happened. Every year on the anniversary of her sister’s disappearance, their mother, Miss Sorrel, places a classified ad in the local paper with a picture of the toy Janey had with her that day—a one-of-a-kind porcelain doll—offering a generous cash reward for its return. For years, there’s been no response. But this year, the doll came home.

It is the first clue in a decades-old mystery that is about to turn into something far more sinister—endangering Lissie and the lives of her mother and daughter as well. Someone knows the truth about what happened all those years ago, and is desperate to keep it hidden.

***

What does your reading week look like?

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HUMP DAY SPARKS: A DELIGHTFUL WEEK SO FAR…

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Today I’m participating in Sam’s WWW Wednesdays Here’s how it works:

 

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next, and/or what are you eagerly awaiting?

Currently Reading:

I am delighted with my current read, Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk, by Kathleen Rooney,  “Extraordinary…hilarious…Elegantly written, Rooney creates a glorious paean to a distant literary life and time—and an unabashed celebration of human connections that bridge past and future.”
Publishers Weekly (starred and boxed)

 

 

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JUST FINISHED:

I’ve finished two books so far this week:  The Red Car, by Marcy Dermansky (click title for review);

 

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And…The Dry, (click for review), by Jane Harper;

 

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EAGERLY ANTICIPATING THESE READS:

(I downloaded these books today, and hope to read them soon).

Behind Her Eyes, by Sarah Pinborough

 

behind-her-eyes

In Behind Her Eyes, Sarah Pinborough has written a novel that takes the modern day love triangle and not only turns it on its head, but completely reinvents it in a way that will leave readers reeling.

Right Behind You, by Lisa Gardner

 

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Lisa Gardner’s next thriller following her runaway New York Times bestseller Find Her takes her wildly popular brand of suspense to new heights.

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What does your week look like so far?

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MONDAY SPARKS: MUSING ABOUT BOOKS….

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It’s Monday, and time to muse along with The Purple Booker.  Check out these topics:

 

Musing Mondays is a weekly meme that asks you to choose one of the following prompts to answer:

I’m currently reading…
Up next I think I’ll read…
I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
I can’t wait to get a copy of…
I wish I could read ___, but…
I blogged about ____ this past week…

THIS WEEKS RANDOM QUESTION: Are there any books you are really eagerly waiting for in 2017?

My current read is The Dry, by Jane Harper, and it is an engaging murder mystery set in drought-ridden Australia.

 

the-dry

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After getting a note demanding his presence, Federal Agent Aaron Falk arrives in his hometown for the first time in decades to attend the funeral of his best friend, Luke. Twenty years ago when Falk was accused of murder, Luke was his alibi. Falk and his father fled under a cloud of suspicion, saved from prosecution only because of Luke’s steadfast claim that the boys had been together at the time of the crime. But now more than one person knows they didn’t tell the truth back then, and Luke is dead.  Amid the worst drought in a century, Falk and the local detective question what really happened to Luke. As Falk reluctantly investigates to see if there’s more to Luke’s death than there seems to be, long-buried mysteries resurface, as do the lies that have haunted them. And Falk will find that small towns have always hidden big secrets.

***

I love books with secrets!  Has anyone read this one?

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Tomorrow, January 31st, I have several books that I want to download.  Here are two of them.

Right Behind You, by Lisa Gardner

 

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Eight years ago, Sharlah May Nash’s older brother beat their drunken father to death with a baseball bat in order to save both of their lives. Now thirteen years old, Sharlah has finally moved on. About to be adopted by retired FBI profiler Pierce Quincy and his partner, Rainie Conner, Sharlah loves one thing best about her new family: They are all experts on monsters.

Is he a killer?

Then the call comes in. A double murder at a local gas station, followed by reports of an armed suspect shooting his way through the wilds of Oregon. As Quincy and Rainie race to assist, they are forced to confront mounting evidence: The shooter may very well be Sharlah’s older brother, Telly Ray Nash, and it appears his killing spree has only just begun.

All she knows for sure: He’s back.

As the clock winds down on a massive hunt for Telly, Quincy and Rainie must answer two critical questions: Why after eight years has this young man started killing again? And what does this mean for Sharlah? Once upon a time, Sharlah’s big brother saved her life. Now, she has two questions of her own: Is her brother a hero or a killer? And how much will it cost her new family before they learn the final, shattering truth? Because as Sharlah knows all too well, the biggest danger is the one standing right behind you.

***

And then there is another with the word “behind” in it:

Behind Her Eyes, by Sarah Pinborough

 

behind-her-eyes***

Louise is a single mom, a secretary, stuck in a modern-day rut. On a rare night out, she meets a man in a bar and sparks fly. Though he leaves after they kiss, she’s thrilled she finally connected with someone.

When Louise arrives at work on Monday, she meets her new boss, David. The man from the bar. The very married man from the bar…who says the kiss was a terrible mistake, but who still can’t keep his eyes off Louise.

And then Louise bumps into Adele, who’s new to town and in need of a friend. But she also just happens to be married to David. And if you think you know where this story is going, think again, because Behind Her Eyes is like no other book you’ve read before.

***

There are many books I’m looking forward to this year….more about those books on another day.

What are you musing about?

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HUMP DAY SPARKS: LET’S TAKE A LOOK AT MY READING….

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Today I’m participating in Sam’s WWW Wednesdays Here’s how it works:

 

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next, and/or what are you eagerly awaiting?

***

Currently Reading:

The Marriage Lie, by Kimberly Belle, is  a “domestic thriller [that] will keep you reading into the wee hours of the night.” —Redbook

 

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Iris and Will have been married for seven years, and life is as close to perfect as it can be. But on the morning Will flies out for a business trip to Florida, Iris’s happy world comes to an abrupt halt: another plane headed for Seattle has crashed into a field, killing everyone on board and, according to the airline, Will was one of the passengers.

Grief stricken and confused, Iris is convinced it all must be a huge misunderstanding. Why did Will lie about where he was going? And what else has he lied about? As Iris sets off on a desperate quest to uncover what her husband was keeping from her, the answers she finds shock her to her very core.

***

JUST FINISHED:

Sweet Lake, by Christine Nolfi (click title for my review), is a review book provided by the author.

 

sweet-lake

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EAGERLY ANTICIPATING:

A Piece of the World, by Christina Baker Kline (author of Orphan Train), is a graceful, moving and powerful demonstration of what can happen when a fearless literary imagination combines with an inexhaustible curiosity about the past and the human heart: a feat of time travel, a bravura improvisation on the theme of art history, a wonderful story that seems to have been waiting, all this time, for Christina Baker Kline to come along and tell it.”

 

 

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From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the smash bestseller Orphan Train, a stunning and atmospheric novel of friendship, passion, and art, inspired by Andrew Wyeth’s mysterious and iconic painting Christina’s World.

“Later he told me that he’d been afraid to show me the painting. He thought I wouldn’t like the way he portrayed me: dragging myself across the field, fingers clutching dirt, my legs twisted behind. The arid moonscape of wheatgrass and timothy. That dilapidated house in the distance, looming up like a secret that won’t stay hidden.”

To Christina Olson, the entire world was her family’s remote farm in the small coastal town of Cushing, Maine. Born in the home her family had lived in for generations, and increasingly incapacitated by illness, Christina seemed destined for a small life. Instead, for more than twenty years, she was host and inspiration for the artist Andrew Wyeth, and became the subject of one of the best known American paintings of the twentieth century.

As she did in her beloved smash bestseller Orphan Train, Christina Baker Kline interweaves fact and fiction in a powerful novel that illuminates a little-known part of America’s history. Bringing into focus the flesh-and-blood woman behind the portrait, she vividly imagines the life of a woman with a complicated relationship to her family and her past, and a special bond with one of our greatest modern artists.

Told in evocative and lucid prose, A Piece of the World is a story about the burdens and blessings of family history, and how artist and muse can come together to forge a new and timeless legacy.

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I love the sound of this one….and adding it to my shelves will be wonderfully delightful.

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TUESDAY SPARKS: “LILLIAN BOXFISH TAKES A WALK”

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Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a new download:  Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk, by Kathleen Rooney.   “Extraordinary…hilarious…Elegantly written, Rooney creates a glorious paean to a distant literary life and time—and an unabashed celebration of human connections that bridge past and future.
Publishers Weekly (starred and boxed)

 

 

 

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Intro:  (The Road of Anthracite)

There once was a girl named Phoebe Snow.  She wore only white and held tight to a violet corsage, an emblem of modesty.  She was not retiring, though, and her life spun out as a series of journeys through mountain tunnels carved from poetry.  I never saw her doing anything besides boarding, riding, or disembarking a train, immaculate always, captivating conductors, enchanting other passengers.

No, there wasn’t.  She was just an advertisement:  the poster girl for the Delaware, Lackawanna, and Western Railroad.  Her unsoilable Antarctic-colored clothes were proof that the line’s anthracite-powered locomotives were clean-burning, truly—unlike their sooty and outfit-despoiling competitors:

     Her laundry bill for fluff and frill

     Miss Phoebe finds is nearly nil.

     It’s always light, though gowns of white,

     Are worn on Road of Anthracite.

***

Teaser:  When the book came out five months later, under the title I desired, it was a smash, selling out its print run within the first thirty days and hurrying through four subsequent printings.  The reading public, at least some of them, wanted a break from the Depression, and found repose in my pose, world-weary but still cheery. (p. 52).

***

Synopsis:  “In my reckless and undiscouraged youth,” Lillian Boxfish writes, “I worked in a walnut-paneled office thirteen floors above West Thirty-Fifth Street…”

She took 1930s New York by storm, working her way up writing copy for R.H. Macy’s to become the highest paid advertising woman in the country. It was a job that, she says, “in some ways saved my life, and in other ways ruined it.”

Now it’s the last night of 1984 and Lillian, 85 years old but just as sharp and savvy as ever, is on her way to a party. It’s chilly enough out for her mink coat and Manhattan is grittier now—her son keeps warning her about a subway vigilante on the prowl—but the quick-tongued poetess has never been one to scare easily. On a walk that takes her over 10 miles around the city, she meets bartenders, bodega clerks, security guards, criminals, children, parents, and parents-to-be, while reviewing a life of excitement and adversity, passion and heartbreak, illuminating all the ways New York has changed—and has not.

A love letter to city life in all its guts and grandeur, Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk by Kathleen Rooney paints a portrait of a remarkable woman across the canvas of a changing America: from the Jazz Age to the onset of the AIDS epidemic; the Great Depression to the birth of hip-hop.

Lillian figures she might as well take her time. For now, after all, the night is still young.

***

I like the sound of this quirky character.  What do you think?

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TUESDAY SPARKS: “THE VANISHING YEAR”

Books & fairytales - TUESDAY EXCERPTS

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s “spark” comes from a recent download:  The Vanishing Year, by Kate Moretti.  The Vanishing Year is a stunner. A perfectly compulsive read that’s impossible to put down.” –Mary Kubica

“A chilling, powerful tale of nerve-shattering suspense.” –Heather Gudenkauf

 

 

 

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Intro:  April 2014, New York City

Lately, I’ve been dreaming about my mother.  Not Evelyn, the only mother I’ve ever known, the woman who raised me and loved me and taught me to swim in the fresh water of Lake Chabot, bake a sticky sweet pecan pie, fly-fish.  I’ve thought about Evelyn plenty in the five years since she died—I’d venture to say every day.

My dreams lately are filled with the mother I’ve never met.  I imagine her at sixteen years, leaving me in the care of the neonatal nurses.  Did she kiss my forehead?  Study her baby’s small wrinkled fingers?  Or did she just scurry out, as fast as she could, hugging the wall, ducking the shadows to avoid detection until she burst through the doors, into the night air, where she could breathe again?

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Teaser:  The Saturday after Henry proposed, I had fled to the shop at six a.m., breathless and heady, in the clothes I’d worn the day before, my hair matted and bed-tousled, smelling of Henry’s cologne and the warm, soft, slight musk, of sex. (51%).

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Synopsis:  Zoe Whittaker is living a charmed life. She is the beautiful young wife to handsome, charming Wall Street tycoon Henry Whittaker. She is a member of Manhattan’s social elite. She is on the board of one of the city’s most prestigious philanthropic organizations. She has a perfect Tribeca penthouse in the city and a gorgeous lake house in the country. The finest wine, the most up-to-date fashion, and the most luxurious vacations are all at her fingertips.

What no one knows is that five years ago, Zoe’s life was in danger. Back then, Zoe wasn’t Zoe at all. Now her secrets are coming back to haunt her.

As the past and present collide, Zoe must decide who she can trust before she—whoever she is—vanishes completely.

A “dark, twisty, edge-of-your-seat suspense” (Karen Robards), The Vanishing Year combines the classic sophistication of Ruth Rendell and A.S.A. Harrison with the thoroughly modern flair of Jessica Knoll. Told from the point-of-view of a heroine who is as relatable as she is enigmatic, The Vanishing Year is an unforgettable new novel by a rising star of the genre.

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I love the sound of this one already!  What do you think?  Let’s share our reading.

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MONDAY SPARKS: WHAT ARE YOU MUSING ABOUT?

snow-sparks-logot-romantic-restaurants-2011

It’s Monday, and time to muse along with The Purple Booker.  Check out these topics:

 

I’m currently reading…
Up next I think I’ll read…
I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
I can’t wait to get a copy of…
I wish I could read ___, but…
I blogged about ____ this past week…

 

THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION: Did you get any good books for the holidays?

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The past week has been one of reading review books…and older books that had been languishing on my shelves for a while.  Currently I’m reading one that I bought a year ago:

Last Night at the Viper Room, by Gavin Edwards, the life and tragic death of acclaimed actor River Phoenix—a teen idol on the fast track to Hollywood royalty who died of a drug overdose in front of West Hollywood’s storied club, the Viper Room, at the age of 23.

 

 

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I recall watching several of his movies, along with my teenage offspring, one of whom was born almost exactly one year after River Phoenix.

I loved the movie Running on Empty, with Christine Lahti, Judd Hirsch, and River Phoenix.  The story of a family living off the grid after a horrific 1960s event that changed their lives.

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As for Christmas books, I didn’t get any….but I got something even better, for me:  an Amazon gift card!  Book buying begins after January 1, as I don’t want to add more “unread” books to my shelves until my new Read the Books You Buy Challenge starts on January 1.

Yes, fudging a little.

What are you reading or dreaming about reading?

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