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Mr Darcy Broke My Heart

This was the second of the Pride and Prejudice spin offs, I was really hoping that it would leave off where Jane Austen Ruined My Life ended. Unfortunately it didn't, but fortunately it was a good story. Claire has gone to a Pride and Prejudice conference in England in place of her pregnant sister. She's supposed to present the paper that her sister has written, but she's not so sure that she believes all the Mr Darcy stuff. She figures that he's not really all that great. Then she meets James and regardless of her boyfriend Neil, she kind of pictures him as her own personal Darcy. She knows that she should tell him about Neil, but it's just a summer fling, right?But when her past comes to meet her future, she learns more about herself than she would have ever thought possible. And she learns how to move forward to meet her future. I really enjoyed this book, I liked the ending of this one, it seemed to really fit Claire!

Chocolate Never Faileth

Okay, I know this is a cookbook. This is one of the books that I got for Christmas. It's awesome, I was reading through it the other day. It has every chocolate recipe you could ever want (and probably more!) Things from Chocolate Waffles, Mousse, Pudding, Cakes and Brownies, Cookies to things that you would never eat like Lip gloss and chocolate smelling play dough. It also has tons of chocolate trivia, stories people have written to Annette Lyon about chocolate and cute quotes. I really do have to recommend this one. I can't wait to try some recipes out of it!

Jane Austen Ruined My Life

I told you I was going to read a couple more Jane Austen Spin-Offs and here is the first. Emma is a college professor, who happened to walk in on her college professor husband and her teaching assistant on their dining room table in a "compromising position." She divorced him right away, of course, but this leaves her hating Jane Austen. You see, she feels that Jane Austen had promised her that as soon as she got married she would have tons of happiness to follow her for the rest of her life. Little did she know! She had been getting letters from a little old lady who lives in England promising to show her Jane Austen's letters, but there are certain conditions. One of those being that she must never tell any one else about them. One problem, Emma's career was ruined by her teacher's assistant and she can't see any other way to get her good name back, then by publishing the Jane Austen letters. This was a fun book, I enjoyed it, except I really didn…

Romantic Vignettes

This was a collection of 3 of Marcia Lynn McClure's short stories that she started out writing for friends and family. The Unobtainable One is kind of your typical nanny falls in love with Lord of the Manor story. I enjoyed the characters in this one Annette Jordan as the nanny with the sweet young Drea as her little charge falls in love with Lord Gareth Barrett, but there's also the lovely next door neighbor Dianna who has already decided that Gareth will be hers and she will go to any length to make it so. This was a fun light hearted story. I enjoyed it! The General's Ambition is the story of Renee, she's 17 when her father, a physician dies and he tells her on his deathbed that she's to marry Roque Montan, who she's secretly idolized since she was a child, to keep her from going into the Orphan's Asylum. Little do they know when they got married that his father has been scheming to get to Renee for quite a while. I found this story to be a little d…

Right Click

This book is a couple of years old, I actually read it when it came out, but I forgot. I remembered when I started reading it that I had already read it, but it was a cute one and worth reading again. Sarah is having a hard time getting over her ex-fiancée Kyle. He left her 6 weeks before they were supposed to get married because his ex-girlfriend was pregnant with his baby. She's just bought a house, partly using his money, and her little sister Ruth is trying to get her to sign up for an online dating service Mormons2marry.com. She doesn't want to sign up for a dating service, yuck! So she tries to blunder her way along on her own. Little does she know that she hasn't forgiven Kyle yet and she won't be able to let someone new into her heart until she does. This was a fun read, I enjoyed it, even the second time!

The Windswept Flame

This book is the sequel to yesterday's book, Weathered too Young. This story is about Tom Evans, he's got Amelia Perkins chasing after him, but she's not his type. Then Cedar Dale moves back into town, her hearts been broken. Her dad and fiancée were killed defending her honor 2 years before and she hasn't been able to get over it yet. That changes as soon as she sees Tommy Evans again. She had chased after him as a child, but she never believed that he wouldn't already be married. She literally bumped into her in town and within a week, her mother had lied to Lucas Pratt and told him that Tom Evans had asked to court Cedar. This was a fun, light-hearted romance. I really enjoy these kind of romances!

Weathered too Young

This is another one of those books from the library with the hearts on the side. I enjoyed this story, it was sweet and clean and romancy. I know that's not a word, but I'm going to use it anyway! Lark is a young girl trying to find her way in the world. She's an orphan and is out west trying to find a job so that she can have shelter for the winter. She's tried everywhere in town, but no one seems to need one more person to help them for the winter. Then she hears about two bachelor's whose housekeeper has just died. That sounds about perfect to Lark, she knows how to cook and clean! Then she meets them, Slater is grumpy and doesn't think that his younger brother Tom should have hired such a young girl to do their work. As soon as she's made dinner, though, he decides that it won't be so bad to have a young girl around who knows how to cook better than a couple of "old" bachelors.

Pollyanna Grows Up

I had to read the sequel to Pollyanna after I read the first book last week. I was not disappointed. This was a fun book about what happened after Pollyanna's accident and being made well again at the sanitarium. Pollyanna is asked to live in Boston with Mrs Carew to bring some sunshine into her life and as her Aunt Polly Chilton is going to be in Germany with her new husband Dr Chilton it works out very nicely. But things are different in Boston. No one seems to want to get to know anyone else or even look at them. There are strange new stores and even a strange thing called a park. And of course there are new friends like Jerry, Jamie and Sadie to look after. It's fun to see some of these things through Pollyanna's cheerful eyes!

A Darcy Christmas

I've been enjoying reading the Pride and Prejudice spinoffs lately. I have a couple more that I hope to be able to read next week, I guess I'll have to see how much I get done with both kids home all week next week! This book is kind of a compilation of 3 different stories by 3 different authors. The first one is Mr Darcy's Christmas Carol. Mr Darcy is basically Scrooge in A Christmas Carol. His father comes to see him and tell him to mend his ways. He tells him of the 3 Ghosts that will visit him. The second story is Christmas Present, which kind of details the first Christmas of Jane and Elizabeth post marriage. They both have their first children. Jane a boy and Elizabeth a girl. The last story is A Darcy Christmas that talks about multiple Christmases of the Darcy family from Pre-marriage to their first child being married. I enjoyed the first 2 stories in this the most. I wasn't sure that the last story was true to Jane Austen's style. That's s…

Every Graceful Fancy

I wasn't sure that I wanted to read this newest and last volume of the Dickens Inn series, because I didn't like the last one as well, but I figured that it was the last one. I don't like to leave things undone. I'm glad that I read this one. The story doesn't just focus on Chas and Jackson and their problems, which I thought was just as well, because their problems were getting monotonous! This story is mostly about Kate, she's unwed and expecting her first child, but not for the reasons her mother thinks. Her mother makes her a reservation at the Dickens Inn as a place for her to finish her pregnancy and have her baby where her mother doesn't have to deal with any of the embarrassment of having her friends all know that Kate is having a baby. Kate and Chas become great friends, almost like sisters. Of course, there has to be a love interest for Kate and that's where Mick comes in, but you'll have to read that for yourselves! I enjoyed this…

Ramona the Pest

Has anyone not seen the awesome movie made from these books and released recently??? If you haven't you really should, our girls LOVED it. They've watched it 4 or 5 times already and keep wanting to watch it. Even my husband liked it, it really wasn't like it was a kid's movie. These books are classics. I read them when I was a kid, my oldest daughter loved them and I just finished reading this one to our 4 year-old. She enjoyed finding out just what Ramona would do. In this book Ramona has just started Kindergarten, she loves her teacher Miss Binney and all is right with her world. But of course, things don't stay right for long. Ramona is always doing something to get her into trouble. She doesn't mean to be bad, she's just learning her place in the world. Her older sister Beezus and all the older kids on her street call her a pest, though she isn't sure why. From getting her rain boots stuck in the mud, to pulling Susan's boinging curls…

Beneath the Honeysuckle Vine

This book is set during and right after the Civil War in a little town in Alabama. A lot of the people in this little town started out sympathetic to the Union, but by the end of the war had kind of changed which side they were on. Vivianna is a young girl at the start of the war in love with Caleb. On the day that Caleb and his brother Justin leave for the war they both kiss Vivianna goodbye, but Justin's kiss holds way more passion. Vivi and Justin exchange heartfelt letters throughout his time away and her passion and love for him grows, but when the war ends with no more word from Justin, she's afraid that he will never come back from the war just like her own brothers. This was not one of my favorites by Marcia Lynn McClure, it seemed that the plot didn't move very fast, I kept wanting to skip ahead and get to the good part.

Daydreams

Kay, so I'm ready to let you in on my weakness! I LOVE Marcia Lynn McClure books. They usually have the hearts on the side when you check them out from the library and my husband always makes fun of me. These are clean romances, there's never anything in them other than just kissing, no swearing and nothing that you have to be embarrassed about reading. This one was about Saylor, she's an 18 year-old candy striper who dreams of one day falling in love with her boss, who she doesn't even know yet, because her boss is her grandfather. Then she meets the new patient at the rehabilitation center, Bo Booker, and he's all she can daydream about. This was a really fun book, with some really funny parts. I read it in just a couple of hours, it was a nice diversion!

Pollyanna

I really don't have any idea what's been going on with this week, but this is the first chance I've had to sit down and talk about this book. Who didn't love the Disney movie Pollyanna as a kid. I stumbled across this book in the children's section of the library last week, while I was helping my daughter pick some books. This book was a best seller in it's time. I can't believe I'd never thought to look for it before now! This book is a lot like the movie, I was so thrilled! The book is about the perpetually happy girl Pollyanna, who is glad about everything. Her parent's have both died and she's sent to live with her Aunt Polly, who is not used to having children around. Her life is turned upside down when Pollyanna comes to live with her. I loved this book, it was great!

The Stone Traveler

Tag and his mom are on their own, his dad and younger brother left them a few years ago. Tag is trying to make it through his teenage years without a father's guiding influence and with a name like Tag, what are you going to do but paint some graffiti. This got him noticed by a gang called Prime, who desperately want him to join them, but he refuses even when they try to beat up his cousin Ethan. His mom decides to get him away from the gang problems by sending him to stay with his grandpa in a backwoods cabin and that's when the fun starts. He meets some men and ends up stealing this stone from them, this stone lights up when he's holding it and sends him back to the Book of Mormon lands, the time of Samuel the Lamanite. This was a really fun book, I enjoyed reading how the author portrays this time period in the Book of Mormon.

Mrs Miracle

Last week I read Call Me Mrs Miracle and then I realized that it was a sequel, so I got this book from the library to read. Seth is a widowed father, he's recently gotten his twin 6 year-olds back from his in-laws, who had been raising them since their mother died. Seth is having a hard time. His children are not behaving and they've gone through multiple housekeepers in the short time they've been living with him. Just when he's reached the end of his rope, he's given a miracle. Mrs Miracle shows up on his doorstep just in time to save another one of his dinners. She brings into his life order and maybe a woman to date. Reba has never forgiven her sister for ruining her wedding 4 years earlier. Now it's Christmas and both Seth and Reba need to move on. Can they trust each other enough to do that together? I enjoyed this book, but I thought Call Me Mrs Miracle had a better story line.

It All Started With Autumn Jones

Nick Baxter signed up for a class that he knew he would have to agree with and go along with pretty much everything the professor said, at least that's what all the internet review said. He was perfectly willing to do so, even though he didn't believe how the professor does. You see, Nick is a returned missionary, and the professor is very liberal. All of this changes when Autumn Jones, a returned missionary herself is willing to stand up for what she believes in, in a very large room of people unwilling to say anything at all. Pretty soon Nick and Autumn are working together to come up with things to say that will help their professor and fellow classmates see things in the Lord's way, regardless of what their grades will be because of it. This was a very sweet book. I really enjoyed it!

My Gift to You

Trish appears to have everything anyone could ever want, a great family, nice house, and cars, but inside she's just struggling. She's given a special gift at the first of the book, by her sister-in-law who is dying from cancer. It was the gift of love. She has tried hard to give that gift to her husband, daughter, and others for the past year, but no one seems to notice or care, they all still think she's the "old" Trish, the one who is hardened by her past. Now it's Christmas time, her daughter won't talk to her, and her husband's moving out, how can Trish make herself and those around her realize that she's changed?? I had a hard time getting into this story, but when I was able to, about halfway through the book I really loved the rest. This is a powerful story about loving ourselves and letting those around us change.

Call Me Mrs Miracle

Jake Finlay has ordered 500 of what he believes will be the hottest toy for the Christmas season to sell in the toy department of Finlay's, the only problem is that his father, owner of Finlay's doesn't believe the toy will sell that many because, it's expensive and the economy is down. Enter Emily Merkle, but H R has spelled her name wrong on her name tag, it says Emily Miracle. She believes they can sell all 500 of those expensive toys in the 2 weeks before Thanksgiving, but it just might take a "Miracle" for it to happen. Along the way, Jake will meet Holly Larsen and her nephew, Gabe, who's living with her while his father is deployed. It will take a "Miracle" for everything to work for her to buy him the toy that he wants for Christmas. This was a super cute romance. It was completely clean and without any nasty language. This book is what all books should be. I highly recommend it, now if I only had the Hallmark Chanel so that I cou…

City Limits/Idle Playgrounds

This is the 3rd book in the Rhea Jensen series, I actually read City Limits this time, it replaces Idle Playgrounds in the new series. Rhea and her best friend Kay (Katherine) are on the roof of a building reporting on a "jumper" who's supposedly trying to commit suicide in downtown Salt Lake City. But something about the whole situation doesn't seem to add up to either of them, and they can't put their finger on why. So when they discover that the jumper wasn't really who he told police he was they decide to figure out who he really was and why he was up there saying that he was someone else. When some thugs show up trying to warn Rhea off of a case that she hasn't even been offered yet, she decides that she needs to find out why. And she'd better find out fast, before the bad guys try to take her, Kay, her boyfriend Ty, or her missionary Andy out. This was really a fun book. I enjoyed the rewrite, I thought that it made Rhea seem a little mor…

Mr Darcy, Vampyre

Pride and Prejudice is one of my all time favorite books, I've read lots of spin offs, this was one I happened to find on the library's website last week. It starts off on Elizabeth and Jane's wedding day, they have a double wedding, of course. They are both eager and ready to start their new lives as married women away from their very annoying mother. As soon as the weddings are over, they've had a meal at Elizabeth's and Jane's house, and they've cut the cake, Darcy is ready to leave. They had planned to tour the lake district on their wedding tour, but at the last minute Darcy decides to take Elizabeth to France. Thus starting Elizabeth's adventures to France and Italy. But Darcy seems to be acting strangely, he doesn't seem to be the man Elizabeth married and she's not sure why. None of her letters to Jane are being answered, but she determines that that's because they have been traveling all over and none have caught up with them …

Murder by Design

This book is the sequel to Murder by the Book, it would be smart to read these books in order. This is the second book about Kennedy Killingsworth. Her last adventure had her finding the killer Foster Scoggins, uncle to her "friend" Luke Scoggins. In her new adventure she must discover who stole the wood from Miss George Ann Simmons' decrepit old barn. Miss George Ann can't just ask nicely, she must mention that she knew Kennedy's grandmother, which in southern custom makes Kennedy duty-bound to help Miss George Ann in anyway she can. That doesn't stop her from inviting Miss Eugenia to help her look into things, Miss Eugenia does have a way with solving cases. And then there's the artist JD that gets killed mysteriously right after Kennedy and Miss Eugenia visit him asking about the wood. This was a fun book. I really like the mysterious side. You have to figure out who did what, who killed JD, who was buying his terrible paintings, who framed Slo…

Before My Heart Stops

Between reading this book and the Relief Society lesson in our ward yesterday, I'm pretty sure that Heavenly Father is trying to tell me in a very subtle way that I need to be more grateful for the blessings in my life. I'm sure he's right. So we are going to play the Gratitude Game for a bit and see how grateful we can be for all of life's little problems. I'm sure there's a silver lining in there somewhere! Anyway, I really enjoyed the book by Paul Cardall, if you live in Utah, you've probably heard his story. He was born with a heart that wasn't all there and it never functioned well, and by the time he was 36, it was time for a new heart. This is his story, he was on the transplant list for over a year. He never once in this book complains about his heart, he talks about all the ways he's been blessed. It was a beautiful book and well worth reading!

Beautiful Darkness

This is the sequel to Beautiful Creatures which I liked. It's the continuation of what happens to Ethan and Lena after she was supposed to be claimed on her 16th birthday, but wasn't. Now she's supposed to be claimed on her 17th birthday, but she feels as though she's killed her uncle that raised her as his own, and she just can't escape the guilt. She keeps feeling worse and worse and her eyes start to change to completely golden, a dark creature. Of course, she can't live with that because all of her relatives who are light will die. She still has a while until her 17th birthday when she will have to be claimed one way or the other, or does she?? I enjoyed this book. It was an engaging story, you want to know what happens to Ethan, Lena, Riddley and Link. I still have the same complaint that I seem to have a lot. Don't use swear words, come up with some other words to use people! This could have been worse that way, I just have a particular offence …

Backlash

This is another book about Traci Hunter Abramson's Saint Squad navy SEALS. I've really enjoyed reading this series, this one was kind of fun, because the first little bit was a different view of the end of the last book. I thought that was cool. Kel was shot at the end of the last book, the first thing we read about in this book, is his wife Marilyn getting the news at their home. I can't imagine how military wives feel when they see the obviously military guys getting out of their car to tell them that their husband isn't coming home. But for Marilyn they're only telling her that he's injured and in the hospital. Kel and Marilyn must learn to share, neither of them is very good at telling the other how they feel, and they're both keeping secrets. Will this pull their marriage apart, or will they be able to overcome it? You'll have to read this one to find out. I highly recommend reading these in order though, because the story may not make sen…

1022 Evergreen Place

I read one of Debbie Macomber books earlier in the year, I really liked it so I thought that I would try another one, unfortunately, this wasn't the one that I thought I was getting. It is the latest one in the Cedar Cove series, I probably should read them in order if I'm going to, but I'm not sure that I want to read any of the others. The story line was fine, but there was far too much talk of sex for my liking. I did like that there wasn't much swearing or blaspheme.

The Legend of Shannonderry

This book starts out with Dierdre Beddows and her husband, Dierdre is about to have a baby when her husband hears rumors of her unfaithfulness to him. The shock of these rumors causes her to go into early labor, she has the baby that she names Gwyneth, and then she dies. Gwyneth grows up never really feeling love from her father, she thinks it's just because she's a girl and not the son that her father would have liked to have had instead. She loves horses and when a stranger from Ireland comes to try to buy her favorite horse and also bring her a letter from her Irish grandma she decides to go to Ireland instead of marrying the man that her father decrees that she should marry. I really liked this book, it was full of mystery and intrigue and I liked how spirited Gwyneth was!

Cold As Ice

Abigail is a loving sister who has been trying to get her parents and her brother Derek to have a family type relationship again after 5 long years. They've finally convinced their parents to come to Derek's apartment for dinner, they have everything planned perfectly, but of course, nothing ever is perfect! Derek's terribly rude landlord, Karen, comes and blows everything by convincing his parents that all Derek is after is money for his mountain of bills that he's not been paying. His parents leave mad, and Abigail is uncertain of his motives as well. When Karen is killed within a very short period of time, things don't look good for Derek, especially considering his Jeep is seen there by someone and he found Karen but didn't tell anyone. This book is a wild ride as Abigail tries to prove to the police, herself, and her parents that there is no way Derek would ever kill anyone.

How to Train Your Dragon

I thought that maybe I would read these books because the movie was so good. Usually the books are better than the movie, but this book was not. I'm not sure where the story for the movie came from, but it was way better than the story in the book. The book has basically the same characters as the movie, Hiccup, Stoic, and the other boy characters are all there, there really aren't any girls mentioned in the book. Maybe that's because it's supposed to be written by Hiccup. He and the other boys around his age are in training. They are supposed to steal a dragon from Dragon mountain and train it to do the things they ask. Things such as fishing. I didn't love this book, but it was pretty cool how it looked like it was Hiccup's notebook.

Wuthering Heights

I love books like Pride and Prejudice, that's one of my very favorite books EVER. So, I was way excited when I found this book at Powell's on our Portland trip last month. I was finally able to read it this week. The first chapter was really slow for me, but after that I had a hard time wanting to stop reading. I've been wondering if you're actually supposed to like Catherine and Heathcliff or not, although I did like Catherine's daughter, Cathy. I really didn't like either of them and normally you are supposed to like the main characters. Anyway, this story is told from a third party view, so you don't really know what either Catherine or Heathcliff are thinking or feeling. Catherine and Heathcliff grow up together as playmates, Catherine loves Heathcliff, but never tells them. Their lives are not cosmically aligned and Catherine marries Mr Linton while Heathcliff is away. Of course, Heathcliff hates Linton and has to get back at him by marrying h…

Promise Me

I'm not sure this was my favorite book of Richard Paul Evans, like it says on the commercial, but it was a pretty good one. I enjoyed it, I actually read the whole thing yesterday. His books are kind of a smaller size than normal books, and there's always extra pages between the chapters, so that makes reading them easy and quick! This book is about Beth and her family, her husband Mark and daughter, Charlotte. Charlotte is sick and no one knows why, at first they think it's just the flu, but it goes on and on and never gets better. Beth works at the dry cleaners and she finds a note to her husband from another woman in his clothes pocket, so she does what any sane woman would do, she kicks him out. But, she needs help with Charlotte, especially while she's sick and Beth has to keep working at the dry cleaner. She invites Mark back, but little do they know that he's sick too. He dies from cancer within just a few months. A few months later she meets the ha…

Finding Mercie

This book opens with Hector Lopez finding a little girl in a parking lot. She's bleeding and she's moaning and crying. She's not conscious and he runs her to a clinic to be looked at by a doctor. Hector is an older man with a 17 year old son named Raul, Hector has been cautioned by his doctor not to over exert himself, but we don't know why. The police come to visit him to get his side of the story, but since he's Hispanic, and they feel that he's lying to them about something he soon becomes the prime suspect in the little girl's injuries. One of the policemen has a very irrational prejudice against Hispanic people. I liked this book, it was kind of a mystery, trying to figure out what happened to the little girl, who she is, where her family is, and what Hector is lying about.

Lipstick Wars

This was such a great book. It reminds me that I still haven't watched President Monson's talk from women's conference about judging each other. This book has the same message, you never know what's going on in another woman's life, so you shouldn't be judging what you can see on the outside. The book starts off with Eden being driven home by the police. What did she do? She chased her young son, Hayden, who was naked down the road wearing only a towel. Why? Well....Hayden in an escape artist. Her husband Josh was supposed to be watching him while Eden was getting herself ready for church. Too funny! Of course, her awful neighbor called the police on them, again! So the police have to turn the matter over to social services. This is the 3rd time the neighbor has called the police because Hayden has escaped. Then there's Cath, Eden thinks she's perfect and put together, but we soon find out oh so differently! I really enjoyed this book. I pro…

The Seventeen Second Miracle

Jason Wright is one of my very favorite authors. His characters seem so real, you feel as though you know them, and I always care enough about them that I cry in the end. This was one of those kinds of books. 17 seconds can change a life, that was the lesson that Cole's dad, Rex taught him as a child. So you need to take those 17 seconds and do good things for people. Cole has a class that he invites the local high school principal to choose students for. He never knows why the students are there, the students don't either for that matter. This particular year there are three, wheel chair bound Travis, Kendra and Miles. Miles and Kendra are dating. I loved the lessons that these three teenagers learn in 17 second spurts. Such a great book!

Abraham Enigma

I really enjoyed this book, I read it in about a day, because I didn't want to put it down, I do have a small caution though, it's a sequel so make sure to read The Moroni Code first. David and April are newlyweds just starting on their honeymoon when David is called by his boss to go to Egypt for a new job assignment. Little does he know that both of their lives will be in danger almost as soon as their plane touches down in the hot, hot land of Egypt. This book is full of double agents and betrayals by those who are supposed to be the most trusted of friends. I really enjoyed it!

Pieces of Paris

I had a really hard time getting into this book, I've usually enjoyed G G Vandagriff's books, but for some reason this one was harder. This is the story of Annalisse and Dennis, they seem to be happily married, but Annalisse has a secret. This secret is consuming her, she knows she should have told Dennis about her past when she married him, but she didn't and it's 4 years later. They have a son, Jordan, and a daughter on the way. Annalisse is having flashbacks that make her act differently than she normally would, will her secret break apart her marriage or will Dennis and Annalisse be able to draw closer together? I'm not sure whether I really recommend this book or not. It seemed really disjointed with Annalisse's flashbacks and Dennis's lawyer experiences, I did like the story, it just seemed really hard to get into.

Anastasia's Secret

This is the second book about the Romanov family I have read in the last month. I enjoyed this book. It starts when Anastasia is 13. It describes what happened to the family when she was younger, and then imprisoned and ultimately murdered. The author weaved a love story into for Anastasia, which I thought was sweet, there probably was someone that she cared about. What 13 year-old girl doesn't have a crush on somebody?? I was kind of amazed at the things that happened to this family. They were basically imprisoned in their own home with all of their comforts, running water, warm water at one point, electricity, and even leaving the house taken away from them by soldiers and people that would have them killed. So sad, Anastasia was only 17 years old when her family was killed.

Dead on Arrival

This was the second Shandra Covington mystery. I enjoyed reading this one again as well. It starts as Shandra is hard at work finishing her article. She looks up and there is a small man who says that his wife is trying to kill him. He discloses that his wife is dead, and also that he himself is dead as well. It is kind of a crazy beginning for a wild ride that takes Shandra all over the Salt Lake valley before finally ending at Memory Grove with a surprise twist! This was a fun book! I would like to read any other Shandra Covington books!

House of Secrets

So after reading the new Shandra Covington mystery a couple of weeks ago, I had to go back and reread the older ones. I did remember reading this book once I started and I enjoyed it just as much this time. Shandra is a reporter with the Deseret News. Her dad left their family when she was 7 and her mom died when she was 10. As the story begins her Grandma, Gam, who raised her has just died and left her the house that she raised Shandra's mother in. The house has been completely empty for 20 years, so Shandra is surprised to see that the house was exactly the same way she remembered her Gam living. Well, except for the dead body in her bedroom upstairs. This book is a wild ride! I loved all the twists and turns the plot took. I would definitely recommend reading the books in order!

Safe Haven

This is another book by Nicholas Sparks. I usually like his stories, even if I don't love the words he always chooses. This one was a really good story, but again he could have chosen better words. This story is about Katie, she has moved to a small town in North Carolina. Katie has a secret. She is always looking over her shoulder, afraid that her past is going to catch up with her. This is an abuse story. I enjoyed it, but it's not for everyone.

Reluctant Soldier, Reluctant Saint

This was a fun, easy read. I read the whole book yesterday after I finished the newest Tennis Shoes book! This is a story about James, it opens as he's emigrating from Ireland to America. He is robbed of everything he'd worked so hard to bring with him from Ireland by some boys, and tries to find a job in New York City. Unfortunately no one will hire him, he's seen as another uneducated Irishman, when just the opposite is true. He's very educated and his favorite thing to do is to read. Since he can't find work, he's essentially forced to join the army just so he can eat. He soon finds out that the army will be headed west to Utah to put down a supposed rebellion. I really enjoyed the way this book was written. It was kind of fun to see the point of view of the army instead of just the Mormon settlers point of view on this one!

Sorcerers and Seers

I finally finished this book! It took me a whole week, I'm not sure why, but there may be 3 reasons. I really haven't had as much time to read lately, I'm really unsure of why! This book was about 500 pages, and the endnotes after each chapter were way long. I kind of like reading endnotes but 6, 7, 8 pages of endnotes seems a little excessive to me. The last few chapters I was skipping them. This is the 11th book in the Tennis Shoes series that started forever ago, I remember reading them as they were new when I was in high school, but it's been about 5 years since the last one came out. I found that a disadvantage. Who has time to go back and read the first 10 before reading this one, not me! I did enjoy the story line, but I was saddened that it ended with the words "To be continued..." I really hope that we don't have to wait another 5 years to find out what happens to Jim and Harry Hawkins and their families!

Tranquil Light

This is another Dickens Inn novel by Anita Stansfield. I find that I am getting really tired of the problems that Chas and Jackson have. It seems as though they are exactly the same from novel to novel. I guess they haven't been exactly the same but pretty close. This novel finds Jackson's ex love interest dying. The death hits him pretty hard and he retreats into his shell (yet again.) Chas is uncertain whether she will get her husband back or not. At the same time she's trying to deal with a large group of ladies at the Inn and all the problems that they brought with them. I'm not sure I would recommend this one, maybe for die hard fans of Anita Stansfield.

The Red Pyramid

This book is by the author of the Percy Jackson series, it was just as good as the Percy Jackson books, in fact, my 9 year-old daughter has been begging me to finish this book since I started reading it on Friday, she thinks it's her turn! This is a new series about Carter and Sadie Kane. Their mom had died several years before the opening of this story, leaving Carter and their dad alone, and Sadie living with her grandparents in England. Sadie's dad was able to visit with her just 2 times a year, and it was Christmas Eve, his visitation day as this story opens. He takes them to a museum and blows himself and the Rosetta stone up. The kids are terrified, left alone with the police accusing them of blowing up a very old artifact. Their Uncle Amos that neither of them remembered meeting shows up to take them to Brooklyn, but he quickly disappears and the kids learn the truth about themselves from his library, but will they ever see him or their father again. This was a …

The Silence of God

I wasn't sure about this book.  It's historical fiction about Russia in the 1900's.  The book is about a real family, the Lindlofs.  They are a wealthy family who happened to be the first and only Latter-Day Saint family in Russia.  The book starts off with a prayer of dedication of the country, in this prayer the Tsar Nicholas was blessed, and in that first little bit of the book, I knew exactly what was going to happen in the end.  Of course, I didn't know the twists and turns the book was going to take in getting to that point, but the Tsar Nicholas was the father of Anastasia, and of course, their whole family was murdered, such a sad story, but I digress.  I did enjoy this book, it was sad, but it was good.  The Lindlofs lived in a very tumultuous time in Russian history, the government was over run by the Bolsheviks, it would have been a very scary and unsettled time for anyone living in the country, but much worse for anyone that believed in God.  The Bolsheviks…

Luck of the Draw

Yesterday was another super busy day, I meant to talk about this book, but I simply didn't have time!  This book was written by Rachael Renee Anderson, I really loved her first book, Divinely Designed, so I was way excited to read this book, and I wasn't disappointed, it was great!  Brighton is in college at BYU-Idaho, he and his roommates have a tradition that they each take turns for.  They have to ask out a girl of the other roommates choosing, and if they get turned down they lose and have to do the other's laundry, but if they complete the bet they have their laundry done.  Well, Brighton has to ask out 3 roommates and date them each twice without the other girls finding out.  Of course he thinks it's going to be a piece of cake, but then he meets them!  There's Kathrine, Dani, and Sandy.  Dani is a bit of an issue, because he had knocked her down on the way to class, plus she has her own other issues with Brighton.  I enjoyed this book, it was a way fun read!…

Defensive Tactics

This is the first book for Steve Westover, but I definitely hope that he writes more!  This was a fun book.  It's about Paul and Emily, they both work for the FBI, their sort of friend Jimmy is down on his luck and shows up creating all sorts of trouble for their budding relationship.  Emily is working on a special case that she can't tell anyone about with her jerk of a boss, but when that is compromised she must talk to someone she can trust.  Paul and Jimmy both help her to figure out which way she needs to go with the case.  This was a page turner, and I really loved Emily, she was such a great character, funny, happy, spunky!  This one was definitely worth reading!

A Time to Die

This book is the 3rd book of the Shandra Covington mystery series.  I know that I read and enjoyed these books when they came out a few years ago, but I had a hard time remembering what had happened in the books.  This book pretty well figures that everyone has just read the other two books and knows what happened in them, so there are some parts where you are trying to figure things out.  I enjoyed the story line though.  Shandra is a reporter with the Deseret News and her best friend, Bobby, has just been shot in her apartment.  He's in the hospital in critical condition and his fiancée, Brooklyn throws a huge fit about Shandra seeing him.  Shandra is not sure what to do, she feels horrible about Bobby getting shot, and feels it's her fault that it happened.  And then, they start finding the bodies.  Shandra must figure out who the killer is and stop him before she is killed herself.  I enjoyed this book, I think maybe I need to go back and re-read the first 2 books to have …

Glee/Powells

I LOVE the show Glee, so when I saw this at Powell's in Portland I had to buy it.  I liked the story line, but again, writers need to use more imaginative words than swear words.  I've read and heard worse, of course, it was tame that way, but it really bugs me.  Last weekend we went to Oregon on a family trip, they have this great bookstore called Powell's.  It was HUGE!  There are so many books, it's just like a library.  They have new books, and used books.  You can sell them your books, you can sit in the store and read for however long you want, and then put the book you were reading on a re-shelving cart and leave!  It was great. I took a few pictures, but they don't really do it justice.  These are two of the seven or eight large rooms that make up Powell's!  Of course, I had to buy some new books, which I hope to be able to read and talk about in the next couple of weeks!



Sorry about the crazy pictures on this page, I really don't like the new editor…