Thursday, September 28, 2017

#MMBBR #Highlight#FirstLine #TheNearnessofYou by #DorothyGarlock @HachetteUS @AmazonPub #GrandCentralPublishing

Hooper's Crossing, New York, 1952. The post-war boom seems a million miles away . . . especially for a sheltered librarian who longs for the adventure and excitement of the big city.
New York City. The hustle and bustle. The people and the excitement. It's all Lily Denton dreams about. But ever since her mother died, her overprotective father won't ease up on her. So she spends her days working at the library and her nights hoping life doesn't pass her by . . . until the Fall Festival. As tourists fill the streets, the crisp autumn air sneaks in-as does the thrill of a far more dangerous kind.

Some men have a gift for avoiding trouble. Professional photographer Boone Tatum isn't one of them. In fact, that penchant for trouble is exactly what landed Boone in this small town in the middle of nowhere in the first place. Yet the moment he meets beautiful Lily Denton and snaps her photograph, everything changes. Suddenly leaving is the furthest thing from Boone's mind-or his heart.

But danger has slipped silently into this sleepy town, marking Lily as its own. And Lily and Boone's dream of a life together is thrown into peril-unless Lily finds the courage to stand up for herself and a man she only just met . . . and can't live without.

#FirstLine ~ Sarah Denton lifted a damp blanket from the wicker basket at her feet and draped it across the clothesline, careful to smooth away any wrinkles before clipping it in place with wooden pins.

Dorothy GarlockABOUT THE AUTHOR:  National bestselling and award-winning author of thirty-five romances that often feature the exciting backdrop of the Old West, Dorothy Garlock is one of America's-and the world's-favorite novelists. Her books, all enthusiastically reviewed, now total more than eight million copies in print with translations in 15 languages. She lives in Clear Lake, Iowa.


#MMBBR #Review #PugAndPig #TrickorTreat by @SueLGallion @wanart

Pug and Pig are back for a heartwarming Halloween adventure in this adorable picture book that’s perfect for pet lovers of all ages.

Halloween night has come to Pug and Pig’s house, and the darling duo is sporting matching costumes. The costumes are cozy. They glow in the dark. And they have masks! There’s only one problem—Pug hates wearing his. So he decides to rip it up and stay home. But Halloween just isn’t any fun for Pig without Pug! Can Pug find a way to be a good friend and get back into the Halloween spirit?

I love both pug and pig. They are the best. They are adorable. They are friends. They work through problems together and make the reader smile. This story is sheer delight because they love each other so much and find a way to enjoy Halloween together. The characters, story and illustrations melt my heart and I cannot wait to read this book to my class for Halloween. I know the kids are going to love it as much as I do. I am excited to share Pug and Pig with them.  


Sue Lowell Gallion is the author of Pug Meets Pig and Pug & Pig Trick-or-Treat (Simon & Schuster/Beach Lane Books). She has two grown-up kids, one grandson, and a black lab mix named Tucker, who all provide writing inspiration. As a printer's daughter, she has a life-long love of type, paper, and the aroma of ink. She lives in Kansas City, KS. Visit Sue at, follow @SueLGallion on Twitter, and check out her kids' book recommendations at Goodreads.

Check out the Halloween Party Kit HERE
Be sure to download the fun activity kit, complete with masks, cupcake toppers, a coloring sheet, and more! (The link also takes you to a Common Core-aligned discussion guide.)

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

#MMBBR #Review #FirstLine #TheBlackbirdSeason by @KateMoretti1 ‏@AtriaBooks

“Exceptional…a deliciously sinister glimpse into the duplicity of small-town lives and the ease with which people turn on each other when tragedy comes calling. Moretti's tale of jealousy and obsession is nothing less than dark magic. Witchery indeed." —Kirkus Reviews, starred review

Known for novels featuring “great pacing and true surprises” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review) and “nerve-shattering suspense” (Heather Gudenkauf, New York Time bestselling author), New York Times bestselling author Kate Moretti’s latest is the story of a scandal-torn Pennsylvania town and the aftermath of a troubled girl gone missing.

“Where did they come from? Why did they fall? The question would be asked a thousand times…

Until, of course, more important question arose, at which time everyone promptly forgot that a thousand birds fell on the town of Mount Oanoke at all.”

In a quiet Pennsylvania town, a thousand dead starlings fall onto a high school baseball field, unleashing a horrifying and unexpected chain of events that will rock the close-knit community.

Beloved baseball coach and teacher Nate Winters and his wife, Alecia, are well respected throughout town. That is, until one of the many reporters investigating the bizarre bird phenomenon catches Nate embracing a wayward student, Lucia Hamm, in front of a sleazy motel. Lucia soon buoys the scandal by claiming that she and Nate are engaged in an affair, throwing the town into an uproar…and leaving Alecia to wonder if her husband has a second life.

And when Lucia suddenly disappears, the police only to have one suspect: Nate.

Nate’s coworker and sole supporter, Bridget Harris, Lucia’s creative writing teacher, is determined to prove his innocence. She has Lucia’s class journal, and while some of the entries appear particularly damning to Nate’s case, others just don’t add up. Bridget knows the key to Nate’s exoneration and the truth of Lucia’s disappearance lie within the walls of the school and in the pages of that journal.

Told from the alternating points of view of Alecia, Nate, Lucia, and Bridget, The Blackbird Season is a haunting, psychologically nuanced suspense, filled with Kate Moretti’s signature “chillingly satisfying” (Publishers Weekly) twists and turns.

#FirstLine ~ The rain came in sheets, like a wall, forming wide rivulets down the windshield.

I finished this book a while ago and I am still thinking about it.  There was something haunting within those pages that stayed with me, which I think is a sign of a good book.  I loved that the story took a deeper look into the lives of those in a small town and how it really functions was things go bad.  I loved it because it was multi-faceted and deep.  A brilliant and unnerving read, that keep me fully engaged from start to finish.  

Kate MorettiKate Moretti lives in Pennsylvania with her husband, two kids, and a dog. She’s worked in the pharmaceutical industry for ten years as a scientist, and has been an avid fiction reader her entire life.

She enjoys traveling and cooking, although with two kids, a day job, and writing, she doesn’t get to do those things as much as she’d like.

Her lifelong dream is to buy an old house with a secret passageway.

#MMBBR #Review #FirstLine #TheCopenhagenAffair @AmazonPub #LakeUnionPublishing

Set in the capital city of the world’s happiest country, a comedy of manners about depression, the pressures of marriage, and the possibility of falling in love again, from the bestselling author of A House for Happy Mothers.
Sanya was always the perfect wife, but after a breakdown at her office, it’s her husband Harry’s turn to step up. His proposal? A temporary move to Copenhagen, Denmark’s capital city. He needs to be there to close a business deal and figures the change of scenery will do her good. Soon Sanya goes from hiding under her duvet to hiding in plain sight—a dark-skinned Indian American in a city of blondes.
Within Copenhagen’s glamorous high society, one man stands out—not only because of his intriguing scar but because he sees Sanya in a way Harry hasn’t for years. Anders Ravn owns the company Harry wants to acquire, and soon Sanya begins to fall for him. As allegations of white-collar crime arise, she learns of Harry’s infidelity, and having an affair with Anders seems ever more tempting. Surrounded by old money, smoked fish on dark breads, and way too many bicycles, Sanya slowly moves from breakdown to breakthrough, but where will she end up—and with whom?

#FirstRead ~ It's a common mistake to assume that emotional baggage will disappear if one changes geographies.

Brilliant from the setting to the character to the story in its entirety...flawlessly flows fro start to finish and entrances the reader with the original story.  The dialogue rings so very true and resonates with the reader with the of time, place and circumstance that are easy to relate to.  A must read and a book perfect for book clubs.

Amulya MalladiAmulya is the bestselling author of seven novels, including her latest The Copenhagen Affair, which will be published in September 2017. Her books have been translated into several languages, including Dutch, German, Spanish, Danish, Romanian, Serbian, and Tamil. She has a bachelor’s degree in engineering and a master’s degree in journalism. When she’s not writing, Amulya works as a marketing executive for a global medical device company. After living in Denmark for 14 years, Amulya moved to California in 2016 and lives in Orange County with her husband and two sons.

#MMBBR #Highlight #WhatSheAte by #LauraShapiro @VikingBooks @penguinrandom ‏

A beloved culinary historian’s short takes on six famous women through the lens of food

Six Remarkable Women and the Food That Tells Their Stories

Recommended Summer Reading
by ELLE, Bon App├ętit, and Eater.

“A unique and delectable work that sheds new light on the lives of women, food, and men. .”—Kirkus Reviews

“…six crisply written, ardently researched, and entertainingly revelatory portraits of very different women with complicated relationships with eating and cooking…. A bounteous and elegant feast for hungry minds.”BookList, Starred Review
“Establishes Laura Shapiro as the founder of a delectable new literary genre: the culinary biography.”—Megan Marshall, Pulitzer-prize winning biographer

“The idea that eating habits reveal aspects of character is ever-intriguing, and it’s presented here with charm and insight.”—Mimi Sheraton, former restaurant critic for the New York Times and author of 1000 Foods to Eat Before You Die
“Laura Shapiro has done it again! She’s given us a fascinating and wonderfully entertaining history of six women of the last two centuries you might never have thought of as foodies, yet here they are, distinguished by how differently they dealt with the overwhelming importance of food in their lives.”—Marion Nestle, author of Soda Politics

Food stories can be as intimate and revealing as stories of love, work, or coming-of-age. Yet most biographers pay little attention to food, as if these great and notable figures never daydreamed about what they wanted to have for dinner or worried about what to serve their guests. Once we consider how somebody relates to food, we find a host of different and provocative ways to understand them. Everyone eats, and food touches on every aspect of our lives—social and cultural, personal and political.

This summer, Viking will publish WHAT SHE ATE: Six Remarkable Women and the Food That Tells Their Stories (Viking; On-sale: July 25, 2017; $27.00; ISBN: 9780525427643) by James Beard Award-winning writer Laura Shapiro, a unique account of the lives of six women from a perspective often ignored by biographers. Each woman in this entertaining group portrait was famous in her time, but until now, no one has explored their lives from the view of the kitchen and the table.

Laura Shapiro examines a lively and surprising array of women and how the theme that unites them is a powerful relationship with food:

  • Dorothy Wordsworth, whose food story transforms our understanding of the life she led with her poet brother
  • Rosa Lewis, an Edwardian-era Cockney caterer who cooked her way up the social ladder and would fit right in on Downton Abbey
  • Eleanor Roosevelt, the First Lady notorious for serving the worst food in White House history
  • Eva Braun, Hitler’s mistress who challenges our warm associations with food, family, and table, and whose last meal was famously a cyanide capsule
  • Barbara Pym, whose witty novels upend a host of stereotypes about postwar British cuisine
  • Helen Gurley Brown, the longstanding editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan, whose commitment to ‘having it all’ meant having almost nothing to eat except a supersized portion of diet Jell-O

Accompanied by black and white photos, WHAT SHE ATE is a unique biography of women who continue to make their mark on present society. 

Laura Shapiro has written on every food topic from champagne to Jell-O for The New York TimesThe New YorkerThe AtlanticSlateGourmet, and many other publications. She is the author of three classic books of culinary history. Her awards include a James Beard Journalism Award and one from the National Women’s Political Caucus. She has been a fellow at the Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers at the New York Public Library, where she also co-curated the widely acclaimed exhibition Lunch Hour NYC.

“If you find the subject of food to be both vexing and transfixing, you’ll love . . . What She Ate.” Elle
Fascinating. Moira Hodgson, Wall Street Journal
How lucky for us readers that Shapiro has been listening so perceptively for decades to the language of food.” Maureen Corrigan, NPR Fresh Air

 “mouthwatering” (Eater.comshort takes on six famous women through the lens of food and cooking, probing how their attitudes toward food can offer surprising new insights into their lives, and our own.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

#MMBBR #FRC2017 #Review #FirstLine @BookSparks #EmmaInTheNight @wendy_walker


by Wendy Walker

Course Title: Forensic Science
Department: Thriller
Description: One night three years ago, the Tanner sisters disappeared: fifteen-year-old Cass and seventeen-year-old Emma. Three years later, Cass returns, without her sister Emma. Her story is one of kidnapping and betrayal, of a mysterious island where the two were held. But to forensic psychiatrist Dr. Abby Winter, something doesn’t add up. Looking deep within this dysfunctional family, Dr. Winter uncovers a life where boundaries were violated and a narcissistic parent held sway. And where one sister’s return might just be the beginning of the crime.


Wendy Walker is the author of All is Not Forgotten, the blockbuster thriller for fans of The Girl on the Train and Luckiest Girl Alive — with film rights already snapped up by Reese Witherspoon.
Wendy Walker is a former commercial litigator and investment banker who now works at home in Connecticut writing and raising her children. She is the author of the novels Four Wives and Social Lives, and is the editor of Chicken Soup for the Soul: Power Moms, Chicken Soup for the Soul: Thanks Mom, and Chicken Soup for the Soul: Thanks Dad.

#FirstLine ~ We believe what we want to believe.  

This book was an intense, brilliant and thrilling read.  I was completely engaged and stayed up way past my bedtime and then bought it on Audible the next morning, so I could continue to listen throughout the day.  It was one of those reads that is both character driven and story drive.  You are left off kilter in the best possible way.  I never really knew what was going to happen next, which was awesome.  I feel like Walker is a force to be reckoned with because she writes realistic characters and stories that grab onto the reader, hang onto them throughout the read and then the story and characters stay with the reader long after they finish the book.  She is one of the best and this book is one of my favorites in a long time.

#MMBBR #Highlight #FirstLine #OddChildOut by @GillyMacmillan @WmMorrowBooks

From New York Times Bestselling Author of WHAT SHE KNEW
"A hugely satisfying and thrilling read. Highly recommended!" -Shari LaPena, New York Times bestselling author of The Couple Next Door
"Literary suspense at its finest.”—Mary Kubica, New York Times bestselling author of Pretty Baby
How well do you know the people you love…?
Best friends Noah Sadler and Abdi Mahad have always been inseparable.  But when Noah is found floating unconscious in Bristol's Feeder Canal, Abdi can't--or won't--tell anyone what happened.
Just back from a mandatory leave following his last case, Detective Jim Clemo is now assigned to look into this unfortunate accident.  But tragedy strikes and what looked like the simple case of a prank gone wrong soon ignites into a public battle.  Noah is British.  Abdi is a Somali refugee.   And social tensions have been rising rapidly in Bristol.  Against this background of fear and fury two families fight for their sons and for the truth.  Neither of them know how far they will have to go, what demons they will have to face, what pain they will have to suffer.
Because the truth hurts.

Gilly Macmillan#FirstLine ~ A black ribbon of water cuts through the city of Bristol, under a cold midnight sky.

Gilly Macmillan grew up in Swindon, Wiltshire, England, and also lived in Northern California in her late teens. She worked at The Burlington Magazine and the Hayward Gallery before starting a family. Since then she’s worked as a part-time photography teacher and is a full-time mom.


Saturday, September 23, 2017

#MMBBR #Review #ImTheOneWhoGotAway by @AndreaJarrell ‏@BookSparks @shewritespress ‏@GoSparkPoint

As featured in the New York Times “Modern Love” column * a Redbook Magazine must-read * Rumpus, Hello Giggles, Bustle, and Southern Living magazine Fall book pick

Fugitives from a man as alluring as he is violent, Andrea Jarrell and her mother develop a powerful, unusual bond. Once grown, Jarrell thinks she’s put that chapter of her life behind her―until a woman she knows is murdered, and she suddenly sees that it’s her mother’s choices she’s been trying to escape all along. Without preaching or prescribing, I’m the One Who Got Away is a life-affirming story of having the courage to become both safe enough and vulnerable enough to love and be loved.

#FirstLine ~ Susannah was murdered just before Christmas but I didn't find out until after New Year's. 

This memoir is one not to be missed.  It was painful and powerful, honest ans raw.  It was hard to out down because Jarrell pulls the reader into the book, making them witness to the story.  This entrancement is done with beautiful prose and a pace that allows the reader to get lost in the pages.  A must read.

Andrea JarrellAndrea Jarrell’s work has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, and many other popular and literary publications. She earned her BA in literature at Scripps College and her MFA in creative writing and literature at Bennington College. A Los Angeles native, she currently lives in suburban Washington, D.C.


#MMBBR #Highlight #ToBeWhereYouAre by #JanKaron #GPPutnamsSons #AMitfordNovel

Quick Take: Featuring three generations of the Kavanagh family, TO BE WHERE YOU ARE is a heartfelt new novel with all of the favorite Mitford characters on hand. Fans will be delighted to spend time with the funny and utterly human Father Tim Kavanagh and his beloved wife Cynthia, newlyweds Dooley and Lace, and many more cherished characters. Millions of Karon fans will be thrilled that it’s life as usual in Mitford: A beloved town character lands a front-page obituary, but who was it, exactly, who died? And what about the former mayor, born the year Lindbergh landed in Paris, who’s still running for office? All this, of course, is just a feather in the wind compared to Museeditor J.C. Hogan’s desperate attempts to find a cure for his marital woes. Will it be high-def TV or his pork chop marinate? Twenty minutes from Mitford at Meadowgate Farm, newlyweds Dooley and Lace Kavanagh face a crisis that devastates their bank account and impacts their family vet practice. But there is still a lot to celebrate, as their adopted son, Jack, looks forward to the most important day of his life—with great cooking, country music, and lots of people who love him. Happily, it will also be a day when the terrible rift in Dooley’s biological family begins to heal because of a game—let’s just call it a miracle—that breaks all the rules. By turns comical and compassionate, TO BE WHERE YOU ARE blends the down-home charm of rural life with the stark realities of a changing world. In Mitford, as in real life, it’s all about the journey and thoughtful choices made along the way. And, as always, Jan Karon gently illuminates those struggles along with the untold blessings that come from forging ahead while keeping the faith.  Karon’s Mitford remains as familiar and comforting as an old hymn or a cherished friendship and TO BE WHERE YOU ARE is a testament to its enduring appeal. 

#FirstLine ~ It was the first day of October, and all things considered, Mitford was pretty quiet.  

 Jan Karon
About the author:
Jan Karon is the #1 New York Times-bestselling author of twenty-five books, including fourteen Mitford novels, a popular cookbook, and several books for children.  She lives near Mr. Jefferson’s Monticello, a World Heritage site in central Virginia.


Friday, September 22, 2017

#MMBBR #Review #NationalGeographic #RoundUp @NGKidsBooks

Ultimate Space Atlas (ages 8-12) — Attention Space Lovers! Blast into space to explore our solar system and beyond. This out-of-this-world atlas takes readers through maps of the solar system, the Milky Way, and deep space, giving them a close look at and locations of planets, supernovas, and other universes. Sky maps will help kids spot these objects in the night sky and maps of planets and our solar system give the kind of incredible detail that National Geographic is known for. It's the perfect book for space fans and budding astronauts and a great pick for World Space Week (October 4-10, 2017).


I am so excited to work through this atlas with my kiddos. What makes this atlas so cool is that it is a bit different than other atlases. You will find the maps, but there is more...lots more.  There is information on constellations, solar system and and information on atmosphere.  This book is filled with pictures, charts and stats. I am always looking for ways to keep the learning going over the fall months and into the school year to supplement what they learn at school. This book is going to be a HUGE hit! It is a super big book and has bright and colorful photos. I cannot get over how jam packed with facts, maps and other tidbits this book is. You will get to explore so much. This book also includes a detailed glossary and index. I love that the facts are written in a way that is easy to understand. Adults and kids alike will get lost looking at the pictures and learning so much cool and interesting information. So awesome!!! 5 HUGE stars

Chomp! (ages 7-10) -- National Geographic Explorer and snake wrangler Dr. Brady Barr has been bitten by a lot of creatures over the years. So this book is born from first hand – er, tooth – experience of getting close to some of the biggest biters in the animal kingdom.  It turns out that there's a lot more to biting than meets the eye. Physical features and the how (and when and why) an animal bites reveals much about the animal itself. Chomp! highlights an array of awesome creatures with a diversity of chomp styles – from shredders and slicers to grippers and gulpers. Then it shows how tooth type, bite force, jaw shape, and food source all come to together to make each an incredible member of the animal bite force!


This book is one of the BEST I have seen! It is awesome how it is laid out!!! It is like a vision sensation! There is so much to look at and read! I am sure that you could read this over and over and over and learn something new. Here is a fun tidbit: This soft-bodied squid has an unreal 1,100-pound bite. Learn about this and so many more awesome and interesting facts in this book! It is jam packed with things that I find fun, intriguing and oh so fascinating! My kids are going to love this book so much too.

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What Would Happen?: Serious Answers to Silly Questions (ages 8-12) -- Technology, physics, biology, engineering and even history all play a role when What Would Happen? poses some silly questions and answers them with thoroughly researched scenarios from experts in their fields.  What if you saw the world through the eyes of a dog? What if Earth suddenly stopped rotating? What if you never aged? What if you could teleport anywhere you wanted? What if you were raised by wolves? What if Neanderthals never went extinct? This out-of-the-box book cultivates a better understanding of the world as it is — and what it could be (zombie apocalypse, anyone?).  


This book is FANTASTIC. I could not stop reading it and both my boys thought is was super cool too! Did you know that if mosquitoes went instinct it would greatly affect the food chain?!?!!! So interesting right! In this book you will read clear and distinct answers to so many silly questions you have always wanted to know. This book has all the things that I love about National Geographic...the amazing photos, great tidbits and facts, as well as the well written table of content and index. This book will make you want to hit the books this fall and seek out cool answers to all your burning questions. 5 stars 

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#MMBBR #Review #BearHockey by #JessicaBoyd

Bear Hockey by [Boyd, Jessica]

Every year, right before hibernation, all the bears in the forest gather for a rousing game of Bear Hockey! Whether you're a big bear, a small bear, a short bear or a tall bear, everyone can play - and you never know who will score the winning pinecone!

This book is a delight, so both the story and the pictures.  It is one of those feel good books that children will want to read over and over again.  My son plays hockey so I adore all books about hockey.  Both my son's loved this book too.  The loved all the characters and the sheer joy of the game with 4 simple rules.  A huge hit and one I cannot wait to share with my classes at the Y.


Thursday, September 21, 2017

#MMBBR #Review #FirstLine #TheSummerThatMadeUs by @RCarrWriter @HarlequinBooks @MIRAEditors ‏

The brand-new novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Robyn Carr that Kirkus calls "a blissful beach read." The Summer That Made Us is an unforgettable story about a family learning to accept the past, to forgive and to love each other again.

That was then… 

For the Hempsteads, summers were idyllic. The lake was a magical place, a haven where they were happy and carefree. All of their problems drifted away as the days passed in sun-dappled contentment. Until the summer that changed everything.

This is now…

After an accident turned the lake house into a site of tragedy and grief, it was closed up. None of the Hempstead women speak of what happened, and relationships between them are uneasy at best to hurtful at worst. But in the face of new challenges, one woman is determined to draw her family together again, and the only way that can happen is to return to the lake and face the truth.

Robyn Carr
Robyn Carr has crafted another beautifully woven story about the complexities of family dynamics and the value of strong female relationships.

Robyn Carr is a RITA® Award-winning, #1 New York Times bestselling author of almost fifty novels, including the critically acclaimed Virgin River series. Her highly anticipated new series, Thunder Point, will be released March 2013. Robyn and her husband live in Las Vegas, Nevada. You can visit Robyn Carr's website at

#FirstLine ~ Charlene Berkey was devastated. 

This  book is sheer brilliance.  I adored the setting and the characters, both main and secondary, were well fleshed out, real and believable.  There was a richness to the story that is true to Carr and what we know and love about her writing.  I thought the story was touching and hard to out down. I could see being made into a movie because it would translate so well to the big screen.  I adored this book and highly recommend it!

Robyn Carr is a RITA® Award-winning, #1 New York Times bestselling author of almost fifty novels, including the critically acclaimed Virgin River series. Her highly anticipated new series, Thunder Point, will be released March 2013. Robyn and her husband live in Las Vegas, Nevada. You can visit Robyn Carr's website at

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