Book Review: Mine @Court_Writes @Netgalley @GalleryBooks #Revenge #Infidelity #Unfaithful

Thank you to Netgalley and Gallery Books for a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review!

The author penned a letter to readers on Goodreads and I would like to copy that and put right here for you to read….

Dear Reader,

Before you begin reading this story, I should tell you… this is about every wife’s worst nightmare.
You think it can never happen to you.
It can.
You think you’re impervious to it because you do your best to keep your husband happy.
You’re not.
Trust me, I know.
The title of this story, MINE, has a double-meaning.
Ethan is Tessa’s, so from her point of view, MINE is self-explanatory.
But also… this story… is mine.
At least, parts of it.
My husband was unfaithful. It was a crazy circumstance, a perfect storm of irony and tragedy. It gutted me and brought my world down around me in bits and pieces.
When something like this happens to you, your mind plays tricks on you and turns you into someone you aren’t. I can’t tell you how often I fantasized about terrible things after I found out about the affair— things I would never truly act upon.
Then, one day, I decided to write this story. To unleash the darkness that dwelled in my heart, the things I would never actually do, in a cathartic way to channel my anger.
I’ll let you wonder and decide where reality ends and my dark fantasies begin in this story.

After reading Mine let me tell you what I will never do…and that is to cross Courtney Cole *insert wow face here*. I hope writing this novel was therapeutic for her!

The story is about Tessa, who discovers her husband of 20 years has been having an affair with a young bombshell.  She takes the opportunity when her husband is out of town to trap the mistress at her house.  How?  She sends her a text from her husband’s iPad he left open at home (where she discovered nude pictures and messages).  The mistress comes in, finds notes “he” left her, and ends up handcuffing herself to his bed, just waiting for “him…”

The book is told through the perspective of Tessa, the wife, and Lindsey, the mistress.  I loved how the story was told in present time with Tessa and Lindsey in the same room with going back to the recent past to tie in to what Lindsey was telling Tessa.  At first I felt bad for Tessa, then bad for Lindsey, then really bad for Tessa, and nothing for Lindsey.

I spent most of this book thinking that Tessa is going to end up in jail, if not prison.  She goes a little off the wall.  Tessa is very intense.  Then, the book takes an odd turn.  Suddenly Lindsey is free from being handcuffed to the bed and when you think bloodshed would occur, it doesn’t.  It almost becomes too surreal and it loses the oomph it had in the beginning.  We went from crazy intense to all of a sudden we’ve worked through being the wife and the other woman in a matter of mere hours??  It just seemed unrealistic for what was happening at the beginning.

This was an OK read, very fast paced.  I read this book rather quickly and it’s very easy to follow.  I think any woman faced with finding her husband in an affair would want to do what Tessa did.  I just don’t think I would ever be as gracious as Tessa is in the end.  You’ll have to read this one and be the judge for yourself.

 

Details

Title: Mine

Author:  Courtney Cole

Publisher: Gallery Books

Release Date: May 28, 2019

Find it here on Goodreads and Amazon

Book Review: The Perfect Girlfriend @Netgalley @Goodreads @KJHAuthor @HarlequinBooks #ThePerfectGirlfriend #4stars

I have a few people to thank for my copies of The Perfect Girlfriend…Netgally, Goodreads, and Harlequin Books!  I didn’t realize I had this on Netgalley so I tried to win it on Goodreads…and won.  Whoops!  However, it did provide for a fun buddy read with my co-worker!  I shared the love!  Here’s my honest review in exchange for the free copies!

If you were to look up the definition of a crazy psycho ex-girlfriend a picture of Juliette would be what you would find!  WOAH.  Just when you think she couldn’t be more of a stalker, there she goes, doing something else batshat crazy!

She adores her ex-boyfriend.  She will do ANYTHING to make him hers again.  The ironic thing is that Juliette thinks she is completely normal and is doing nothing wrong.  Put it this way…Nate, the ex-boyfriend, is a pilot so when they break up she decides to become a flight attendant for the same company he flies for.

She keeps track of him through his work schedule.  She somehow has an extra key to his house and freely roams about when he’s flying.  She also manages to get a spying app on his phone so she can see what he is always doing!!!

I won’t say too much more about the book because I don’t want to give anything away, but I think I read this book with my jaw open the entire time.  It was absolutely crazy!  Since I was doing this as a buddy read every day the two of us would be, “CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT?!?!”

I have to give a lot of credit to Karen Hamilton for what her imagination conjured up…although I have to wonder if she was once a crazy ex-girlfriend herself, haha, just kidding!!  I would like to note she is happily married with children (yes, I looked it up) so we can all rest easy!

Juliette is everything a devastated ex-girlfriend is; jealous, envious, and revengeful.  The things she does will leave you speechless.

Here’s where it gets tricky…rating.  I love a solid ending.  The Perfect Girlfriend doesn’t have it.  I was left a little miffed with how it ended.  On the other side, I know people (one of my good friends included) who would LOVE how it ends.  I don’t want to say how it ends, but just know if you read it you’ll understand.  Would I say not to read it because of the ending?  No, what Juliette does is well worth a read because it’s unimaginable.  I think I’m just miffed because what I think should have happened to Juliette didn’t.  Looking at it from my friend’s perspective, I get it.  It was still a very well written suspenseful, thrilling novel.  Well, I guess that settles it then.  4 stars.  You will just have to read this one and then come back so we can discuss that ending!

 

Details

Title: The Perfect Girlfriend

Author:  Karen Hamilton

Publisher: Harlequin Books

Release Date: March 26, 2019

Find it here on Goodreads and Amazon

May Wrap Up

10!!!!!

That is the amount of books I read during the MONTH of May!!!  Don’t ask me how that happened, but I’ll take it!  Here are my stats…

4: Ebooks

6: Physical Books

3,395 pages

I have fallen behind, so behind, on all my reviews of what I’ve read so expect my blog to be jammin’ with some content this month!  Thankfully I have the time off where I can play catch up!!  Here’s a collage of what I read…

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What did you read in May?  Have you read any of these or are any on your TBR???  Drop me a line and let me know!

Book Review: The Mother-In-Law @SallyHepworth @MacMillanUSA @StMartinsPress #TheMotherInLaw #Netgalley

Thank you to Netgalley and MacMillian USA for my advance copy of this book.  I am so terribly sorry my reviewed has been delayed, but I’m here with it now!

I just want to note that my husband was reading a magazine where The Mother-In-Law is featured as a book to read this summer…he made sure to let me know about this book because I had to go out and get it to read it…I let him know I already read it and he was right, I did love it!

Lucy meets Ollie, falls in love, and hopes to gain a mother since her own mother died when she was young.  Lucy gets everything except a mother…from the get go Diana, Ollie’s mother, does not like Lucy and makes no qualms about it.

They have a strained relationship.  When Lucy births her first child, Diana puts priority in helping a refugee instead of being there for her family…so you get the idea of the type of person Diana is.  Yes, I loved hating her as I read this book.

A weird thing happens though…toward the end of the book I absolutely love and respect the relationship that Diana and Lucy have.  Is it a good one?  No.  It is one that is oddly filled with trust and some respect.  Yes.

Overall this story tells a tale of a mother who has all the means in the world, but refuses to help her own children.  She has a charity where she works with refugees from other countries and that is where her passion and assistance lay.  This starts to cause a rut between her and her children and well…you just need to read it.

The ending.  Thank you, thank you, thank you for creating an ending where we see a little into the future with what happens with everyone.  I will tell you, you may think you know who killed who (yes, someone dies), but you will not have pegged who did it.  Or why they did it.

This is a wonderful 4 star read.  It’s a page turning mystery that you won’t be able to put down until you know who did it.  Plus, the strained relationship is a train wreck you can’t help but keep watching.  Pick this book up, you’ll be glad you did!

 

Details

Title: The Mother-In-Law

Author:  Sally Hepworth

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Release Date: April 23, 2019

Find it here on Goodreads and Amazon

Back At The Library #hendersonlibraries #friendsofthelibrary #bibliophile

Well, today was the day…I walked back in to my local library, paid my embarrassingly high fine, and walked out WITHOUT a book for myself!  The restraint is REAL today guys!

Canvas

Because my fine was so high I opted to get this special edition tote bag because, well, I stayed up way too late last night finishing up Dark Places by Gillian Flynn.  This bag is totally appropriate.  Plus, I ended up checking out 9 books (5 for my daughter and 4 for my son).  Do you think I was going to lug those books around in my arms?  Psh!  Now, they have a place to stay when they’re at home so we don’t lose any…

I bet you’re wondering how I walked out with no book in my possession…well, wait until you see the stack of books I own that I want to get through this summer.  The real reason I finally went down was to start my OverDrive account!  I already have 4 books on hold once I got home with tips from my local librarian.  Do you use any ebook service through your local library??  Tell me all about it, I’m all ears!  I cannot wait until my first hold comes out and I can really test this out!

Book Review: Tell Me Goodnight

(*Disclaimer: I did receive a free advanced reader copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.  Thank you Kelsey for the copy!)

Here’s the synopsis of Tell Me Goodnight which is out TODAY here.  A widowed father and his 3 young daughters find a way to make it through life…with the help of a newly hired babysitter who comes into their lives at the right time.  You can read more about the summary of the book on Amazon or Goodreads, usually I would give more detail, however, I am here to tell you what this book is truly, sincerely about.

Every line in this book is damn near quotable.  Every.  Line.  The magic felt in this book was unreal and tears sprang to my eyes numerous times throughout this novel.  This book deals heavily with loss and grief, but we also see a hurting man go through the healing process.  Sometimes we find friends in unlikely places and situations and this certainly rings true for Jon.  Sometimes we need that friend to kick our butt into gear and get us out of a funk and that is exactly what happens.  I have never cheered more for a couple than I have while reading this book…

TMGquote2

This sweet quote above is spoken by Jon (the widowed father) to his girls every night before they go to bed.  We eventually find out where it came from and the reason why it is said, is so sweet.  Maybe even as sweet as the love that slowly blooms in this read (Kelsey SLAYS the slow burn in this one).

TMGquote3

When we think all hope is lost and a dream is about to given up, magic happens.  Sometimes we can’t see the forest through the trees and that’s what happened to Jon.  Characters from past novels of Kelsey are seen in this book, but don’t worry.  If you haven’t read Daisies & Devin or The Life We Wanted you won’t miss anything.  If you have, you will be SO PLEASED with the cameo appearances!

I have never written a review that lacks in a summary, but this book was just so moving.  I hope I have done this book justice and I have let you know just how freaking amazing it is.  It was a very emotional and healing read.  Words cannot express the flow of words that traveled on paper like a beating heart looking for its soulmate.  If you are a fan of romances this is a must read.  If you are struggling with grief and heartache, pick up this book.  Let the words speak to you, because they will.  Yes, there is a happy ending and I understand there is one because it’s a work of fiction, but that doesn’t mean that the words within this book cannot help heal you as well.

5 stars.  This book blew away all my expectations.  If you have read it, let’s chat.  If you haven’t, get it STAT.

Blog Tour: The Scent Keeper

ScentKeeper

 

What an interesting read.  The first thing I want to say is that if you are part of a book club, this is a MUST READ.  I promise you there is SO much to talk about throughout the book.  My thoughts?  I am very conflicted…

I could not get into this book until Part 2.  The entire first part of this book talks about scented paper and living on a deserted, desolate island where this little girl and her father forage for food.  Mermaids leave surprises in boxes every so often for supplies, but it all centered around a machine that made scents.  They left the paper in bottles and eventually the smells started to fade and it sent the father into a nose dive depression.   I just could not get into this book about scents.  I ended up speed reading most of this book as I really was having a hard time grasping the concept of it.  Toward the end of part 2 and for all of part 3 I did slow the pace of my reading down and really try to understand it.

We get past the scents and eventually the daughter, Emmeline (pronounced like on-the-line…don’t do what myself or her school teacher do and call her Emmelene haha), makes it to civilization and learns a whole new world (complete with a love interest).  Here is where my interest peaked and where she started to learn who she was and sought to seek out where she came from (remember, she was only raised by Dad and had no idea what her last name was or who her mother was).

I also enjoyed how the book ended.  I usually am only a fan of concrete endings, however, I know where Emmeline is going to end up and I really like how she leaves things off…the author did a good job.  For this book, it was the perfect ending.

People may wonder why I even bothered to continue to read this book if I was not enjoying it at first.  Here’s the thing.  Just because I personally do not like something, does not mean that someone else out there won’t.  Despite the fact that I was not into it, the author did a fantastic job at describing the surroundings and I was able to imagine such beautiful scenery.  The writing in this book was top notch, I just didn’t care for the content (at the beginning).  I also feel like this book needed that content at the beginning to create the book that it is.  Bauermeister is very talented, that is very obvious within her writing.

For this reason, I am not rating this book.  What I will do when I most my review to Goodreads and Netgalley, I’m not too sure, but I will figure something out.  This is a stop on The Scent Keeper blog tour and below please find more information about the author and the book.  Included is a sample of the first chapter so you can judge for yourself.  Again, this book turned in to an amazing read and I am happy I read it.  There is SO much to discuss about this book.  If you’ve read it, let’s chat!!

This book is released TOMORROW, May 21, 2019, so look for it at the links below or at your local bookstore!

Scent Keeper - Author Image_credit to Susan Doupé

About the Author:
Erica Bauermeister is the author of the bestselling novel The School of Essential Ingredients, Joy for Beginners, and The Lost Art of Mixing. She is also the co-author of the non-fiction works, 500 Great Books by Women: A Reader’s Guide and Let’s Hear It For the Girls: 375 Great Books for Readers 2-14. She has a PhD in literature from the University of Washington, and has taught there and at Antioch University. She is a founding member of the Seattle7Writers and currently lives in Port Townsend, Washington.
About the Book:
Erica Bauermeister, the national bestselling author of The School of Essential Ingredients, presents a moving and evocative coming-of-age novel about childhood stories, families lost and found, and how a fragrance conjures memories capable of shaping the course of our lives. 
Emmeline lives an enchanted childhood on a remote island with her father, who teaches her about the natural world through her senses. What he won’t explain are the mysterious scents stored in the drawers that line the walls of their cabin, or the origin of the machine that creates them.  As Emmeline grows, however, so too does her curiosity, until one day the unforeseen happens, and Emmeline is vaulted out into the real world–a place of love, betrayal, ambition, and revenge. To understand her past, Emmeline must unlock the clues to her identity, a quest that challenges the limits of her heart and imagination.
Lyrical and immersive, The Scent Keeper explores the provocative beauty of scent, the way it can reveal hidden truths, lead us to the person we seek, and even help us find our way back home.

Chapter One Excerpt…

THE BEGINNING

Back before there was time, I lived with my father on an island, tucked away in an endless archipelago that reached up out of the cold salt water, hungry for air. Growing up in the midst of the rain and moss and ancient thick-barked trees, it was easy to forget that the vast majority of our island was underwater—descending down two, three, five hundred bone-chilling feet. Forever really, for you could never hold your breath long enough to get to the bottom.

Those islands were a place to run away, although I didn’t understand that at the time. I had nothing to run from and every reason to stay. My father was everything. I’ve heard people say that someone is their “whole world,” their eyes filled with stars. But my father was my world, in a way so literal it can still grab my thoughts, pick them up, and toss them around like driftwood in a storm.

Our cabin was set in a clearing at the center of the island. We were not the first to live there—those islands have a long history of runaways. Almost a century ago there were French fur trappers, with accents that lilted and danced. Loggers with mountainous shoulders, and fishermen who chased silver-backed salmon. Later came the draft dodgers, hiding from war. Hippies, dodging rules. The islands took them all in—the storms and the long, dark winters spat most out again. The beauty there was raw; it could kill as easily as it could astonish.

Our cabin had been built by the truest of runaways. He set up in a place where no one could find him and built his home from trees he felled himself. He spent forty years on the island, clearing space for a garden and planting an orchard. One autumn, however, he simply disappeared. Drowned, it was said. After that the cabin was empty for years until we arrived and found the apple trees, opened the door. Raised the population of the island to two.

I don’t remember arriving on the island myself; I was too young. I only remember living there. I remember the paths that wandered through those watchful trees, the odor of the dirt beneath our feet, as dark and complicated as fairy tales. I remember our one-room cabin, the big chair by the woodstove, and our collection of stories and science books. I remember the smell of wood smoke and pine pitch in my father’s beard as he read to me at night, and the ghostly aroma of the runaway’s pipe tobacco, an olfactory reminder that had sunk into the walls and never quite disappeared. I remember the way the rain seemed to talk to the roof as I fell asleep, and how the fire would snap and tell it to be quiet.

Most of all, I remember the drawers.

My father had begun building them when we moved into the cabin, and when he was done they lined our walls from floor to ceiling. The drawers were small things, their polished wooden fronts no bigger than my child-sized hands. They surrounded us like the forest and islands outside our door.

Each drawer contained a single small bottle, and inside each bottle was a piece of paper, rolled around itself like a secret. The glass stoppers of the bottles were sealed with different colored waxes—red in the top rows, green for those below. My father almost never opened the bottles.

“We need to keep them safe,” he said.

But I could hear the papers whispering inside the drawers.

Come find me.

“Please?” I’d ask, again and again.

Finally, he agreed. He took out a leather book filled with numbers and carefully added one to the list. Then he turned to the wall of drawers, pondering his choice.

“Up there,” I said, pointing up high to where the red-wax bottles lived. Stories always begin at the top of a page.

My father had built a ladder that slid along the wall, and I watched him climb it almost to the ceiling, reaching into a drawer and drawing out its bottle. When he was back on the ground, he carefully broke the seal. I could hear glass scritching against glass as he pulled out the stopper, then the rustle of the paper as he unrolled it into a plain, white square. He leaned in close, inhaling, then wrote another number in the book.

I meant to stay still, but I leaned forward, too. My father looked up and smiled, holding out the paper.

“Here,” he said. “Breathe in, but not too much. Let the smell introduce itself.”

I did as he said. I kept my chest tight and my breath shallow. I could feel the tendrils of a fragrance tickling the inside of my nose, slipping into the curls of my black hair. I could smell campfires made from a wood I didn’t recognize; dirt more parched than any I had ever known; moisture, ready to burst from clouds in a sky I’d never seen. It smelled like waiting.

“Now, breathe in deeply,” my father said.

I inhaled, and fell into the fragrance like Alice down the rabbit hole.

 

– – –

 

Later, after the bottle had been stoppered and sealed and put back in its drawer, I turned to my father. I could still smell the last of the fragrance lingering in the air.

“Tell me its story,” I asked him. “Please.”

“All right, little lark,” he said. He sat in the big chair and I nestled in next to him. The fire crackled in the woodstove; the world outside was still.

“Once upon a time, Emmeline . . .” he began, and his voice rolled around the rhyme of it as if the words were made of chocolate.

Once upon a time, Emmeline, there was a beautiful queen who was trapped in a great white castle. None of the big, bold knights could save her. “Bring me a smell that will break the walls,” she asked a brave young boy named Jack . . .

I listened, while the scents found their hiding places in the cracks in the floorboards, and the words of the story, and the rest of my life.