Pre-Ordering Books

When and where do you decide to pre-order books?  I am a bargain hunter and I really hate spending a lot of money.  There are a few exceptions to the rule and occasionally I will splurge on a new book.  Usually I will use the library, eBay, or used book stores for my reads, but every now and then I’ll get that crisp new book.


I recently had a bad experience with Amazon and a pre-order.  I had pre-ordered The Nanny by Gilly MacMillan.  It was slated to be released in June; however, the release was pushed back to September.  I had it on pre-order and had locked in a steal of a price.  The date was never changed on the order I had and so the day after the original release I get an e-mail saying it was cancelled.  What?  So to customer service I go and the rep was trying to tell me it was from a 3rd party vendor (and she linked me to a page where it was available, very odd) and they can’t honor the price and all this other nonsense.  Lesson learned, I will screen shot my future pre-orders from Amazon.  I escalated the issue and ended up getting a credit of the difference in the prices (I was just irritated as to why they created a whole new listing, it was a mess) and then decided…I’ll pre-order a different book.


Don’t worry, I have the order on screen shot, haha.  I have been DYING for the next winter in paradise installment from Elin Hilderbrand so instead of pre-ordering The Nanny again, I went with What Happens In Paradise.  A co-worker introduced me to this series and she’s retiring so I’m carrying the torch with our reading circle and will buy this one for immediate consumption when it is finally released.  Haha.  This is one of those books I can’t wait for.  I can wait for The Nanny, no big deal, but not this one!


So what determines how you pre-order a book, if you ever pre-order.  Favorite author?  Reviews?  For me, we were left at such a cliffhanger…I honestly think I think about this book DAILY.  I know a lot of your order books often and I’m just curious as to what makes you pre-order a book and when you wait.  Let’s discuss!!


Book Review: Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine @GailHoneyman @PenguinBooks @PenguinUKBooks #4.5stars #CharacterGrowth #AcceptingDifferences

I was lucky enough to snatch a copy of this at Goodwill.  It has been sitting on my shelf for way too long…a colleague reached out to me and asked if I had read this book as she just had and was dying to talk about it.  Thankfully I had it on hand and immediately started it…and then spent all day reading because I could not get enough.

So here I am, special education teacher, assuming Eleanor is on the spectrum.  She has poor social skills, set routines, and does not understand life’s nuances.  Her co-workers mock her and make fun of her and she really isn’t all that aware as she is that socially inept.  We do gather that she has survived a house fire (albeit with scars on her face) when she was a little girl and has a dysfunctional mother who berates her constantly.

Meet Raymond.  He is a new employee at her office and they start to form a bond after they witness an elderly man have a medical episode and assist him.  Raymond is an absolute doll and helps Eleanor become more social.  I wish Eleanor would have eyes for him; however, she has a crush on a musician she saw play once and is convinced he’s the one.

I did not expect so much character growth!  Eleanor grew up with a LOT stacked against her.  After the fire she was placed in protective custody and bounced from foster home to foster home.  No one nurtured her.  No one cared.  When Eleanor has a rough time accepting her fate with her musician it is Raymond who comes to the rescue because he cares.  What a friend.  Eleanor even calls him her friend!  Eleanor in the beginning of this book and at the end are two different people.  I am so proud of her with how much she has allowed herself to grow!  Eleanor has overcome a LOT in her short 30 years time including abuse, trauma, and betrayal.  Truly remarkable writing by Honeyman!

This is a must read 4.5 star read.  I would have loved a small epilogue because, well, I can’t say, it will ruin the progression of the book if I do.  This book took me by surprise and made me feel so emotional.  Raymond took the time to treat Eleanor like a human being, which is something we all should aspire to do with every human we meet.  There is no need for her office co-workers to treat her in the manner they do.  I am glad Raymond was there to step up and be a friend.  If you haven’t read this, don’t put it off any longer.  Read this now!  Have you read this one?  What did you think?  Let’s talk about it!


Title: Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine

Author: Gail Honeyman

Genre(s): Contemporary, Fiction, Humor

Publisher: Penguin Books

Release Date: June 5, 2018

Find it here on Goodreads and Amazon

Book Review: A Summer Affair @elinhilderbrand @littlebrown @HachetteUS #Adultery #Summer #Love #Life #ElinHilderbrand

I love Elin Hilderbrand.  I have made it my goal to read ALL of her books.  So far, 3 down…23 more to go!  Sometimes you fall in love with an author and you just go with it.  For me, my first taste of Elin was The Perfect Couple and now here I am…loving the love affairs and hanging on to every word!

Adultery is the major theme in this book.  Claire is a married stay at home mother to 4 children who feels trapped.  She gave up her work as a glass blower when she fainted from the heat and went in to pre-term labor with her last child.  She feels guilty that she could have killed her child and feels like her husband is just another child.  Can I get an amen from my fellow mothers out there?  Have we not had times when we felt overwhelmed and underappreciated?!  I digress…

Enter Lockhart.  A married man of a woman that used to be in Claire’s social circle until she drove home from a night out, got into a car wreck due to her intoxication, and was forever changed.  When Lock asks Claire to chair a gala her guilt from not forcing his wife to take a cab weighs heavy and she obliges.  After all, she is the one that knows the latest and biggest rock star on the planet as they used to date.

Both Claire and Lockhart are lonely.  So guess what happens.  I mean, it IS the title of the book.  The book does span over a year’s time, but is heavily focused on the big summer gala.  I do feel for Claire and I think as she works through the affair, she works through her life and ironically, grows as a wife and mother.  I also love the relationship she has with her sister-in-law, a no nonsense, secret keeper, who is there anytime she is needed (even with her own struggles).

So the never do wrong, always abide by the rules Claire, goes on quite the escapade in A Summer Affair.  That is what makes this book a little more exciting.  By the end I felt that every man wants Claire and what a life to live, ha.  I was a little miffed at how it ended, but I guess if it ended another way the book would probably have been another 100 pages at least.  Either way, again, her sister-in-law is the best friend we all want.

4 star read.  It’s Elin guys, you know I love her!  She has a writing style that always peaks my interest.  If adultery is not your thing, don’t read Elin, hahaha.  My favorite part about this book is that it’s a romance without being cheesy.  If you’re up for a tale of what Claire does and if she gets caught in the act or not, read away!  I cannot wait for my next Elin book!!


Title: A Summer Affair

Author: Elin Hilderbrand

Genre(s): Literary Fiction, Chick Lit, Romance

Publisher: Little, Brown and Company

Release Date: July 1, 2008

Find it here on Goodreads and Amazon

A Book Journey #TheGuestBook #ReadTheGuestBook #SarahBlake @flatironbooks @kenewts

As I was reading The Guest Book by Sarah Blake I came across an Instagram post from my cousin and realized she would probably LOVE this book.  The only problem is she lives in Boston, 2,730 miles away from me.  Rather than leave this advance reader copy in a Little Free Library, I decided I’d ship it off to Boston!  *cue Dropkick Murphys music now*


Then the idea hit me.  Why not create a mini guest book of sorts within the book itself?




I asked her to add my name and my grandmother’s name next to our locations, that makes it more guestbooky.  I left my Instagram (IG) handle in the book so hopefully I will be tagged in all the places this work of historical fiction has been read!  Maybe it will be a flop and maybe it will be a semi-hit with at least a few posts on IG as to where it ends up being read.  Maybe I’ll be sending more books across the country to friends once I’m done reading them and my local reading circle has finished them.  This is probably something I’ll definitely do with any physical advance reader copy books I get as you cannot resell them.  I would hate for them to go to waste just collecting dust on my shelf!


What do you think of this idea?  Hey…maybe I’ll end up sending YOU a book!

Dollar Tree June Haul @DollarTree #CheapReads #OneDollaHolla #DollarBooks #Bibliophile #Reader

If you love to read and have a Dollar Tree near you, do yourself a favor and walk in and see what books they have.  Sometimes I strike out and other times I can’t help myself and buy a bunch!  Here is what I bought this month…


I managed to find TWO books for my Dad for Father’s Day (bottom two pictured)…although he’ll get them when he’s back stateside from his job…don’t worry, he won’t ever see this post I promise!  The other 4 I couldn’t resist!

Have you read any of these books?  Do you go to your local Dollar Tree and find some great reads?  Tell me what you’ve found before!  I love finding great deals on brand new books!!

Book Review: The Ring On The Sill #VacationlandBooks #JodyClark #Trilogy #Maine

My Maine trilogy reads come to an end.  Now I’m sad…I have no more Josh to live vicariously through and my time in York Beach has come to an end with The Ring On The Sill.  Ugh.  Do you ever just wish that books would go on forever?  This is how I feel with this trilogy…

Jody Clark decides to span this book across two summers.  Doug is still the womanizer he is.  Pete starts to grow tired of his job and his marriage is starting to become strained.  Josh…is Josh, still the hopeless romantic looking for the one.

Hang on a second.  Doug ends up, not single??  Pete and his marriage…no, no, no.  Josh finds someone?!?!  WHAT?!?!?!  The Ring On The Sill gives us some closure on the crazy summers which really truly happens when we grow up, get married, have families, and have bustling careers.  This book culminates their lives as they reach different points.

Here is where I am going to say DAMN YOU JODY!!!!  The story leaves us hanging with an open ending.  %##@@&@*@%@  By now you all know I love my stories wrapped up with little bows (but I am starting to mature in my reading and accept open ended endings more) and The Ring On The Sill just smacks us with an open ending.  The only reason I actually end up LIKING the end is because Clark acknowledges the open ending and tells us, the reader, to have it end how we would like to…and I darn well did!

I struggled with a rating for this book.  I felt like a 5 would not be fair to Between Hello And Goodbye, but a 4 isn’t quite right either.  Ultimately, I’m going with a 4 with the premise that if you have read the other two books, this is a must read.  This is not a book I would recommend as a standalone because you wouldn’t be able to truly appreciate it and understand a lot, this really takes a lot from the first two books and ties everything together.  Plus, you would not appreciate the ending and where everyone ends up!

This trilogy really hit me hard emotionally.  It was unexpected and now a part of me is sad that it’s over, but happy because these books came into my life.  Because of these books I gained a new appreciation for the Maine authors and picked up some new books at the good ol’ Whispering Sands in York Beach, Maine (along with my new favorite pair of sweatpants EVER).  Well, my mom did for a Christmas present for me, haha.  Do yourself a favor and when you’re in your favorite vacation spot, pick up a book from a local author.  I am so, so, so glad I did with Jody Clark (thankfully I still have 2 more books to read by him…Jody, you better be writing another book as I write this).  I’m going to leave you with the best possible words he could have ended this trilogy with and if this does not make you want to read this trilogy alone, then you’re not a human with feelings…

As a matter of fact, life will probably NEVER turn out the way you plan it, but I promise you this, it’ll ALWAYS turn out the way it’s supposed to.


Title: The Ring On The Sill

Author: Jody Clark

Genre(s): Literary Fiction

Publisher: Vacationland Books (go here to get yourself an autographed copy)

Release Date: April 7, 2019

Find it here on Goodreads and Amazon

Thursday Quotables: June 13th #bookquotes @elinhilderbrand #ASummerAffair #MomLife

Welcome to Thursday Quotables.  Books Kat Likes has joined in on the weekly fun and came up with this great description of what this is…

This feature is the place to highlight a great quote, line, or passage discovered during your reading each week. Whether it’s something funny, startling, gut-wrenching, or just really beautifully written, Thursday Quotables is where my favorite lines will be, and you’re invited to join in! Created by Lisa, over at Bookshelf Fantasies.

You should join in too!  Leave the link to your Thursday Quotable post below and I will make sure to check it out!!  Or just leave a comment with a quote from a book that has struck you!

Today I have a picture of my quote!


This is how I feel about my babies…I love them and they are amazing souls.  I would love to take credit and say, yeah, I did that, but I know they were born wonderful.  The quote was taken from…


I love Elin Hilderbrand.  It is my goal to read every single one of her books!  From this point forward I will be on her every pre-order list!  Any fellow Elin fans out there???

Book Review: Into The Water @PaulaHWrites #IntoTheWater #Thriller #PsychologicalThriller #PaulaHawkins #Mystery #4stars @PenguinBooks @PenguinUKBooks @riverheadbooks

Thank you to my work colleague for lending me this book!  I hate saying this now as I don’t want you all to be jealous of the great reads I get passed through the work place!  I just want to highlight my FAVORITE part of this book as I referred back to it A LOT.  I wish many books had this and I do know that not every edition of this book has this page…


There were a lot of people to remember in this book.  Each chapter was from a different viewpoint of a character.  Each chapter I flipped back to that page above so I kept everything straight.  Game.  Changer.

The reader’s digest summary is that Nel Abbott is discovered dead in the drowning pool.  It is believed she killed herself, but the family is not quite buying it.  She has been writing all about the drowning pool and the women that have died in those waters.  The locals do NOT want her writing anything.  They kept warning her to stop.  Nel’s daughter’s best friend happens to be one of the victims, but Nel just can’t keep her nose out of what is going on.

This story was suspenseful and had me thinking something different each chapter.  I thought there was some crazy secret love affair going on with how 2 sets of characters were acting and turns out…nope…but there were multiple love affairs in the book.  I just completely made one up in my head, haha.  People do crazy things when they’re in love.  People do crazy things to protect their family.  What happens in this book is a wild, fun ride.  Again, it was super easy to follow thanks to the cheat sheet in the beginning.  This would be a difficult story to follow without it!

This is my first book by Hawkins and I am excited to read more from her!  The characters were unique and I disliked quite a few, but that the book that much more interesting!

This is a solid 4 star read.  It is a suspenseful, mind racing thriller that will have you wanting more and more until all your questions are answered.  And yes, all your questions will be answered!!  The ending was unexpected yet great!  Have you read Hawkins work before?  Am I crazy for being so late onto her fan train???


Title: Into The Water

Author: Paula Hawkins

Publisher: Riverhead Books

Release Date: May 2, 2017

Find it here on Goodreads and Amazon

Book Review: The First Mistake @realsandiejones #TheFirstMistake #ARC #BookReview #4.5stars #BookBlog @panmacmillan @StMartinsPress @MinotaurBooks

I love getting book mail. As you may have seen awhile ago I received an advance copy of this book, The First Mistake, in the mail. Thank you St. Martin’s Press and Minotaur Books for the opportunity to read this before it hits the shelves tomorrow.

This took me a few chapters to get into. Once I got into it, there was no putting this book down! It reminded me of the country song that goes like this…”Still you wonder who’s cheatin’ who and who’s bein’ true and who don’t even care anymore. Makes you wonder who’s doin’ right to someone tonight and who’s car is parked next door…” or something close to that.

The premise is Alice is (re)married to Nathan. Her first husband tragically died in a skiing accident. She has her best friend Beth by her side…although, they have an odd relationship and not one I would say meets the criteria of “best” friends…but, to each their own! Alice owns her own design company and they are getting ready to take on a HUGE new project. Alice starts to suspect that Nathan may be cheating on her and starts to vent to Beth…the irony is Beth always makes sure that when she comes around, Nathan isn’t there…hmmmmmmm. Let me tell you now, this story is NOTHING what you think it will be! You go on a wild ride.

The story is told in 3 parts; present day Alice, past day Beth, and then back to present day with Alice & Beth. How Sandie Jones ties this one all together was brilliant. I never saw it coming. I just held my breath the entire time while reading the book when one revelation was revealed after the other. I must have gasped out loud at least 5 times!

Personally, Sandie Jones outdid herself in her second novel. There. I said it. I would like to kind of go off track and leave you with one of my favorite quotes from the book (my other favorite is within the featured image)…

“These people’s lives are fake,” says Alice, picking up the offending item. Sophia looks at it as if it’s a baby that her mother is about to throw into a road. “They’re not lives you can aspire to because they’re not real, and I think it’s putting you kids under an awful lot of pressure to be a certain way and look a certain way.”


This is a 4.5 star read. It grips you and won’t let go until you reach the end. The only reason I did not give it a 5 star read was BECAUSE of the end. I love my endings tied up nicely and this one…well…it ties it up and I can ASSUME what happens because of the careful word choice in the epilogue; however, we are not 100% certain and for that, it’s a 4.5 star read. Let me tell you if I ever meet Sandie the first question I’m asking is…well, I can’t tell you, it will give the book away. Shoo! Go get this book STAT and then come back and LET’S CHAT ABOUT THAT ENDING!!!!!!!!!


Title: The First Mistake

Author: Sandie Jones

Publisher: Minotaur Books

Release Date: June 11, 2019

Find it here on Goodreads and Amazon

Sunday Funday: Barnes & Noble Summer Reading For Kids @BNBuzz #Summer #KidsReading #FreeBook

If you have a child that is in grades 1-6 this post is for you!  Share this with anyone who my have a child in these grades, it’s a fun summer activity for the kids to do!  It’s simple…here is what to do straight from the Barnes & Noble website (and YES, the links WORK)!


1. Read any eight books this summer and record them in your Summer Reading Journal (download here in either English or Español). Tell us which part of the book is your favorite, and why.

2. Bring your completed journal to a Barnes & Noble store between August 1st and August 31st, 2019. Click here to find a Store.

3. Choose your FREE reading adventure from the book list featured in the journal.


That’s it!  Just follow the directions above (originally found here).  I have 2 little ones so I will be printing out the journal for them and going on some library runs this summer!  Will you be partaking in this activity with your kids??