Fall 2015 Book Reviews

This is the perfect time of year to cozy up on the couch and catch up on your reading. I’ve read a lot of good books lately so I’m sharing my thoughts on them with you today!

fall 2015 book review

The Vacationers by Emma Straub (1/5 Stars)
Honestly, I couldn’t really get into this book. I stopped and started it several times and in the end I didn’t even finish it. There was so much hype around this book so my expectations might have been too high, but I really couldn’t even tell you what the official story line was here. A messed up family goes on vacation together…annnd 3/4 of the way through the book nothing had happened. Ain’t nobody got time for that.

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes (5/5)
LOVED this book. Actually I want to reread it again now that I’m thinking about it. This book has had a lot of hype surrounding it too but for good reason! A small town girl loses her job and goes to work as a caretaker to a local, young quadriplegic. He is super depressed when they meet due to his situation (obvs) and she tries a lot of different things to try to snap him out of it. This is a MUST read.

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins (4/5)
Another book that has gotten a ton of hype this year and it was pretty good! A lady rides the same train every day, watches a particular house that she passes and makes up stories about the couple that lives there. One day, something happens to one of the people in the house and she inserts herself into the investigation. I would say if you liked Gone Girl, but you thought it was a little much you would really like this book!

Baby Proof by Emily Giffin (4/5)
Whoops! Took a picture of the wrong book. I almost gave this book 5 stars – I really liked it! I always forget how much I like Emily’s books. This one is about a married couple who has been on the same page about how many kids they want to have (hint: It’s none) until one of them changes their mind.

Winter Stroll by Elin Hilderbrand (4/5)
I love Christmas themed books this time of year! This is actually a sequel to Winter Street – which is also great, and you should read that first because it definitely builds off of the drama from the first book. These books are about a family-run inn on Nantucket Island during the Christmas holiday with family drama abounding. Great, quick reads!

The Good Girl by Mary Kubica (3/5)
I didn’t technically read this book, I listened to it on audio, so that may have changed my opinion on it slightly. It was really hard to keep up with the shifting past and present of the story. Other than that, it was pretty good! The Good Girl is about a girl who gets kidnapped one night but her life with her captor is not what you would expect. It’s definitely worth a read!

Have you read any of these books? What have you guys been reading lately? Let me know in the comments!

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Guysss I read four books this month! In case you didn’t graduate from elementary school – that’s a book a week! Can you tell that I’m super impressed with myself? Because I am. It was really hard for me to leisurely read after seven years of college and I really thought I would never learn to love it again. So suffice it to say I am thrilled to be back in the game!

The four books I read this month were kind of all over the place genre-wise (and it seems super weird that none of them were written by Liane Moriarty) but here are my thoughts on each of them…

PicMonkey book Collage

Save the Date by Mary Kay Andrews (3/5 Stars)
I’ve proclaimed my love for MKA several times and Save the Date was pretty good. Not great, but pretty good and worth a read if you are a MKA fan. It’s about a divorcee/florist/wedding planner in Savannah who lands the wedding of a lifetime when – in typical MKA fashion – everything starts to go wrong. Oh, and she falls in love :) I love MKA’s strong, yet vulnerable and relateable female characters. (You can find my favorite book I’ve read so far of her’s in this post).

Grey by E L James (5/5 Stars)
Read it. Loved it. Sue me. Judge me. Do whatever you want with me.

The Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan (5/5 Stars)
This was definitely my favorite book of the month! The Royal We is a fiction loosely based on The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge (AKA Will and Kate)’s early relationship. The main differences are that the main character, Bex, is A) American and B) a twin but other than that it hits a lot of the major relationship marks. Obviously, they fill in the details with fiction for us. If you love Will and Kate (raises hand) or love British literature (raises both hands) this book is for you!

Anxious for Nothing: God’s Cure for the Cares of Your Soul by John McArther (4/5 Stars)
My sweet friend Brenda sent me this book after I commented on her post about it how it sounded like something I would find useful. Next thing I new, it was in my mail box – what a doll! I have struggled with anxiety for as long as I can remember and try to do everything I can to manage it without medication (not that I judge people who chose that for themselves). If you are interested in a biblical perspective or biblical encouragement when it comes to anxiety, I HIGHLY recommend this book. Thanks again, Brenda!

You Probably Don’t Know & Spring Book Review

For Helene’s “You Probably Don’t Know” link up today I initially thought I’d share a few lesser known facts about myself and call it a day. Then I quickly realized there is not much about myself I didn’t just talk about in this post a month ago on my birthday sooo go check that out if you want the random facts.

So instead I give you this one random fact. Are you ready for it? I’m a book nerd. If you are a regular around here, that is not news to you (whoops) but if you are coming from the link-up, it might be! Whatever. Either way, I’ve done A LOT of reading over the past six weeks (average of one a week!!) so I thought I’d share my thoughts on what I’ve read so far!

spring book reviews

The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty (4/5 Stars)
This was my second Liane Moriarty book ever, and it did not disappoint! This story revolves around a letter written by one of the characters husband’s years ago and I felt the way I always do when I read Moriarty’s books…LET US READ THE FREAKING LETTER ALREADY! What can I say, I am not a person who likes to be kept out of the loop. I often read the end of a book very early on so I know how it ends. But I digress. This book is a definite must read if you liked Big Little Lies or…

What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty (5/5 Stars)
…this one! Wow. I LOVED this book. It was my favorite I’ve read so far this year without a doubt. The main character wakes up after bumping her head and remembers nothing from the last 10 years. Including the birth of her children and the demise of her marriage and many of her other relationships. I would say this is a MUST read.

Spring Fever by Mary Kay Andrews (4/5 Stars)
I hate that I always forget how much I like Mary Kay Andrews. I want to read them allll. This is probably my second (new) favorite I’ve read lately! The main character is trying to start her life over after getting divorced but the problem is…she still works for her ex-husband’s struggling business. If you are a fan a MKA don’t miss this one!

Ladies’ Night by Mary Kay Andrews (3/5 Stars)
I liked this book a lot, just not as much as the other MKA book. The main character is a blogger (heyyy) who has an ugly break-up with her cheating husband and has to start her life (and blog) over from scratch. She is forced into court-ordered group therapy where she meets some real characters (pun intended). Ths book was good, but felt verrrry long.

What The Lady Wants by Renee Rosen (3/5 Stars)
It took me for.ev.er.  to finish this book. Three stars was probably a overly generous rating. It was just ok, at best. This book is loosely based on the life of Marshall Field who was from Chicago and is one of the main reasons the “Magnificent Mile” exists. The main thing it focuses on is the relationship he has with his long-term mistress. If you are into Chicago history you may like this, if not, probably chose another book from this list :)

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J. K. Rowling (5/5 Stars)
I’m in the middle of reading the series for the 7th? 8th? time through and it just gets better and better every time! I’ll be reading this series over and over for the rest of my life, surely.

What are you guys reading? There’s always room on the “must read” list!

Helene in Between
Also linking up with Annie, Natalie, Joey and Amanda

Most Anticipated Summer 2015 Beach Reads

2015 beach reads college

My girls beach trip is coming up quick which means lots of book reading for this girl! Does anyone else do their best book reading on vacation? I average 4-6 total books on a beach vacation if I had to guess. Anyways, I’ve been collecting books for a few weeks and wanted to share some of the new releases I am most excited for with you guys! Click the blue links below to be taken to the Amazon description of each book. Let me know if you plan on adding any to your list!

Beach Town by Mary Kay Andrews | The Rumor by Elin Hilderbrand
The Guest Cottage by Nancy Thayer | The Rocks by Peter Nichols
The Last Good Paradise by Tatjana Soli | Three Amazing Things About You by Jill Mansell
Paris for One by Jojo Moyes |  A Vintage Wedding by Katie Fforde



Currently – February 2015

I can’t believe it’s already time for another Currently link up with Jenna and Anne! I’ve loved meeting the sweet girls involved in this link up.

Currently Feb 2015 Collage

Actually, I can’t believe it’s February 2015 in general. WHERE DOES THE TIME GO? You’d think being cooped up in the house would make winter move super slow but between work, boys basketball season starting for my cheerleaders, and half marathon training to say it’s flying by is an understatement.

ANTICIPATING // The Grammy Awards this Sunday! I love all awards shows and can’t wait to see the performances this weekend. Taylor isn’t performing (booo) but her and Ed Sheeran are up for several awards and I’ll be rooting for them!

PINNING // Colored interior doors. The grey one pictured is by Sarah at Life on Virginia Street. I can not get enough of this look lately so I’m definitely adding this to our list of house projects to complete ASAP. You can see more of my pins here.

EATING // I made a batch of these Healthier Chocolate Muffins and they are delicious as ever. Such a great way to use old bananas and to satisfy your sweet tooth without ruining your healthy eating.

READING // Ladies’ Night by Mary Kay Andrews. I found this book on clearance at Barnes & Nobel a few weeks ago and picked it up. I always forget how much I love Mary Kay Andrews. This book is about a lifestyle blogger (!!) going through a nasty divorce and it really is a great read! Nothing really deep but that’s just the way I like my books :)

LOVING // This guy! Last week was his birthday so we have all quite literally been loving on him all week. The birthday celebration seems to never stop when you are married AND have a blended family. It was such a great week and I am so lucky I get to call this man my husband! He has the best heart.

What are you all anticipating, pinning, eating, reading and loving this month?