Throwback Thursday: Christmas In Cornwall by Marcia Willett – November 30th

Throwback Thursday is a weekly meme created by Renee @ It’s Book Talk. This meme is an awesome way to share old favorites that were published over a year ago or even books that you’re finally reading after much time has passed. I have plenty of those to share! If you have your own Throwback Thursday recommendation feel free to jump on board, and you’re welcome to use Renee’s pic as well. Please link back to her@It’s Book Talk.

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This Week’s Pick:

Christmas in Cornwall

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Blurb:

“We’re all pilgrims,’ he said thoughtfully. “One way or another, aren’t we? Always searching for something.”

Twelfth night – time to put away the Christmas angel. A new year dawns, and everything seems to be falling into place for Dossie. Her son Clem and his adorable five-year-old son Jakey have moved to Cornwall to be closer to her. She runs her own successful catering business. All she needs now is some better luck in her romantic life.

Complementing Dossie’s rather unconventional family set-up is the wonderfully eccentric Janna: a warm-hearted, generous woman who looks after the quirky nuns of the local convent – and little Jakey. With humour, kindness and the support of friendship, they form a tight bond.

But the Sisters’ life as they know it is thrown into doubt when an avaricious property developer starts prowling around their beautiful, historic home. Will this close-knit unit who so depend on each other still be together next Christmas? And what will they have learnt about the true meaning of family, and about having somewhere you really belong? Find out in Marcia Willett’s touching and timeless holiday tale, Christmas in Cornwall.

My Thoughts:

I’m so excited to read Christmas books this season because there are so many I didn’t get to read last year. It seems like Christmas comes so fast and it’s gone before you know it, so I’m starting now to get as many reads as possible. This is one of them that I’ve had my eye on for some time and I plan to read it over the holidays this year. I was instantly attracted to the blurb and cover and went ahead and ordered it. I hope to finally get to it soon!

You can find this on Goodreads and Amazon

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books (October 30, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1250003709
  • ISBN-13: 978-1250003706

Continue reading “Throwback Thursday: Christmas In Cornwall by Marcia Willett – November 30th”

Music Monday: National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation Intro

-Music Monday-

This meme was created by Drew @ The Tattooed Book Geek. You pick a song that you really like and share it on Monday. I’m having so much fun with this meme and look forward to sharing a new song every Monday!

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This Week’s Pick

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation Intro

Christmas pretty much starts for my family on Thanksgiving day and because this is my favorite time of year, from now until Christmas, I’ll be sharing some of my favorite Christmas songs.

This song comes from the National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation Movie. It’s the intro song “Christmas Vacation”. I love this movie so much and we usually watch it a handful of times throughout the Christmas season.


This song is sung by Mavis Staples

“Christmas Vacation”

It’s that time, Christmas time is here
Everybody knows, there’s not a better time of year
Hear that sleigh, Santa’s on his way
Hip, hip hooray, for Christmas vacationGotta a ton of stuff to celebrate
(Jing-a-ling-a-ling-a-ling-ling)
Now it’s getting closer, I can’t wait
(Jang-a-lang-a-lang-a-lang-lang)
Gonna make this holiday as perfect as can be
Just wait and see this Christmas vacation

This old house, sure is looking good
Got ourselves the finest snowman in the neighborhood
Ain’t it fun, always on the run
That’s how it’s done on Christmas vacation

Let’s all deck the halls and light the lights
(Jing-a-ling-a-ling-a-ling-ling)
Get a toasty fire burning bright
(Jang-a-lang-a-lang-a-lang-lang)
Give St. Nick the warmest welcome that he’s ever had
We’re so glad it Christmas vacation

And when the nights are peaceful and serene
We can cuddle up and do our Christmas dreaming

Jing-a-ling-a-ling-a-ling-ling
Jang-a-lang-a-lang-a-lang-lang

Christmas vacation
Christmas vacation

We’re so glad it’s Christmas vacation

Peace and joy and love are everywhere
(Jing-a-ling-a-ling-a-ling-ling)
You can feel the magic in the air
(Jang-a-lang-a-lang-a-lang-lang)
Let the spirit of the season carry us away
Hip, hip, hooray for Christmas Vacation

Fa, la, la, la, la and ho, ho, ho
Jingle, jangle, jingle as we go
Let the spirit of the season

Continue reading “Music Monday: National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation Intro”

Shabby Sunday: Return to Oz by Joan D. Vinge 1985

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Shabby Sunday Meme

I have a lot of old vintage books and one of my plans when I first started blogging was to do a post every week or so that shared one of my cherished vintage books. Then I thought that maybe there might be other book bloggers out there that have some vintage books, heirlooms, or maybe some old books from childhood that they might want to share. I decided to start a weekly meme titled ‘Shabby Sunday’ for those who would like to participate and share some of their old vintage books. Do you have some shabby books you’d like to share? Please feel free to participate. Feel free to use the picture I’ve provided if you’d like to. If you decide to do this meme, please consider linking back to me so that I can see the book you’re sharing.


Today’s shabby share is:

Return to Oz

by Joan D. Vinge

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Blurb: Dorothy returns to Oz during a storm only to find that the magical kingdom has been conquered by the evil Nome King and Mombi the Witch, and she sets out with the Scarecrow, Tin Man, Cowardly Lion, and other new friends to find the rightful ruler.

I chose this book for today’s Shabby Sunday because I enjoyed this movie as a child and I love the novelization. My copy is the original from 1985 and is in very rough shape with a worn cover and heavy wear to the pages. 

My Thoughts:

After Dorothy’s original return from Oz, Aunt Em and Uncle Henry tell her that Oz was never real, but Dorothy finds a key from Oz and realizes that it simply isn’t true. A wicked storm returns her to Oz, but she finds that it’s nothing like it was when she left.

I read this many years ago after watching the movie featuring Fairuza Balk. The book is way better than the movie, in my opinion, because it really gets into the characters and their feelings. It covers the entire story of the movie, but also has added extras from the original screenplay that weren’t in the movie.

The writing is simple and this is a quick, easy read that’s even suitable for upper elementary readers. Although I remember the movie being a little scary, the book isn’t as bad and I wouldn’t hesitate to read it out loud to my younger kids. There are also photographs from the movie which make it even more enjoyable. Even though I would prefer Baum’s original Oz books over this one, it’s still one that I’ll keep on my shelf for the nostalgia. This gets a 3.5-star rating from me.

 


 

Get this on Amazon or add it to Goodreads

  • Mass Market Paperback: 214 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; Media Tie-In edition (May 12, 1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 034532207X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345322074

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Continue reading “Shabby Sunday: Return to Oz by Joan D. Vinge 1985”

Wednesday’s Breakfast and a Book – Gluten Free Blueberry Pancakes – The Wife Between Us

Good day everyone! I have this awesome recipe to share with you today that is new and I just cooked it for the first time this morning. There’s also a new book to share. I hope you enjoy!

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A few months ago I had to revert to a gluten-free diet once again which is not easy in my opinion. Once you get used to using wheat in everything, it becomes hard to not have those food items anymore. Well, I found this flour at Costco a few days ago and thought I’d give it a shot!

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I used the recipe that’s right on the back of the bag which is also on their website with tons of other recipes. Here’s the original recipe.

Perfect Blueberry Pancakes

Note: This recipe must be made with blueberries to turn out right. For regular pancakes we recommend our Waffle & Pancake Mix.

Ingredients

1-1/4 cups Namaste Perfect Flour Blend
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp granulated sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1-1/4 cups milk, any kind
2 eggs
2 tbsp melted butter
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

Directions

  1. Combine dry ingredients in medium bowl. Whisk together the liquid ingredients in large bowl.
  2. Add dry to liquid, combine well. Preheat griddle or pan to medium heat. Pour batter by 1/3 cupfuls onto sprayed griddle. As with all pancake batter, batter may thicken as it sits. Add more liquid as necessary. Sprinkle with blueberries.
  3. Cook until bubbles appear and bottom is golden brown. Flip and cook a minute or two longer.

-I ended up doubling the recipe. Here’s what I did.- 

I added all the dry ingredients to a bowl and whisked it together. Then, I added all the wet ingredients and spices into my Vitamix and mixed it on low until incorporated. I used almond milk. I then added in the wet with the dry and whisked it up.

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Cook on low heat a few minutes each side. We ended up with some weird shapes because the batter was so thick, even with added almond milk!

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Once I flipped them, I realized it wasn’t going to be a big deal. They were cooking beautifully.

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These were surprisingly good! My kids even loved them! We also had some all natural sausage links from Costco with the pancakes. It was a delicious breakfast.

Continue reading “Wednesday’s Breakfast and a Book – Gluten Free Blueberry Pancakes – The Wife Between Us”

Meet The Reader Series with Mrs. N (N.N. Light)

Hello everyone!

I have a new reader to share with you today. Mrs. N is a friend from Goodreads and a blogging friend that I’ve gotten to know this year.

I’m sorry that I’ve been a little behind on posting this series lately, but my schedule hasn’t been going as planned. I hope you enjoy!

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I’m always looking for friends on Goodreads that have similar tastes. I like learning about new books and discussing them with others, so I decided to experiment with a new idea and thought it would be neat to find readers that I’m friends with on Goodreads and share them with you. Maybe they might be someone you’d like to add too. As I find readers with an interest, I’ll introduce them.


 

Meet the Reader Series

Today’s Featured Reader:

Mrs. N

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Q: Did you enjoy reading as a child? If so, what were some of your favorite books?

A: I loved reading as a child. It started when my parents read to me. Their own love of reading got me excited to read. Every Saturday, I’d go with my mum to the library and we’d spend most of the day reading, discovering new books and checking out as many books as we could carry out to the car. As I grew older, books taught me about life, love, kindness and great adventures.

I have so many books I loved as a child, it’s hard for me to choose. I’ll do a random variety: Encyclopedia Brown Mysteries by Donald Sobol, The Chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis, The Shoe series (Ballet Shoes, Theatre Shoes, Dancing Shoes) by Noel Streatfeild, Anything by Roald Dahl and Dr. Seuss.

 

Q: What are some of your favorite books this year or last?

A: I have the extreme pleasure to read books for a living and as such, get to read some incredible books. To garner the status of favorite book of the year, the story, characters and setting have to be so incredible that I cry when it’s over. Three books this year (so far) have that coveted status. They are:

Only a Hero Will Do (The Heart of a Hero Book 1) by Alanna Lucas

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The Life and Times of Ichabod Brooks by Charles E. Yallowitz

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Rule #1 Don’t Be #2 by Daniel Milstein

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All captured my heart in their own way and I highly recommend them.

Q: What are your favorite book genres?

A: Ugh! I really hate this question. I’m a voracious reader and my tastes vary from children’s books to mystery to romance to nonfiction to even erotic romance. My library consists of a lot of romance (all sub-genres), fantasy, mystery, suspense, biographies, sports and motivational books. If I could only choose one genre to read for the rest of my life, I guess I’d choose paranormal romance. I’m a huge romantic at heart and love a happy ending, especially with a little magic thrown in.

Q: Who are some of your favorite authors?

A: Mary Higgins Clark, Jude Deveraux, Jacquie Biggar, Erin R Bedford, Ruth A. Casie, Kelley Armstrong… the list could go on and on.

Q: How many books are on your TBR shelf?

A: Currently? According to Goodreads, it’s 257 but there are so many I need to add that it’s more like 300. I told you I like to read.

Q: What’s an emotional book, or one you won’t forget that you’ve read this year or last?

A: I’d have to say the one book I’ve read this year that’s had the most impact on me personally is Rule #1 Don’t Be #2 by Daniel Milstein (above). It inspired me to continue going after my lofty dreams, no matter what others may think. It gave me the emotional kick in the arse I needed.

Q: Is there a book you really didn’t enjoy this year or last?

A: There have been many and honestly, they’ve all been recommended to me by fellow readers and bestseller lists. I won’t name the one book I read that was so horrible I threw it out the window this Summer. Lol!

Q: What are you reading now?

A: I have sixteen books I’m reading right now, according to Goodreads. Some are for pleasure, like Tangled Up in Tinsel by Candis Terry, and others are for business, like Bedtime Stories for Grown-Ups by Andrew Joyce.

Q: They say to never judge a book by its cover, but just how important is the book cover to you?

A: Covers are just as important as the story itself, in my opinion. I’ve been known to pick up quite a few books I normally wouldn’t read because I loved the cover. The cover has to grab the reader, entice them to take a second look and capture the whole story in one frame. It’s hard to get it right but when it does, it’s pure magic.

Q: Do you have a blog? If so, what is the name? 

A: Yes, I have a blog. It’s called POTL Blog: All Things Books, Reading and Publishing and has been around since 2012. I started out with one follower and have grown to a social media reach over forty-five million.

Q: Have you written anything? If not, have you ever thought about writing your own book?

A: Yes, I’m one-half (MR N is the other half) of the award-winning N. N. Light. We’re a husband-wife writing team and we’re about to publish our fifth book. It’s a daily inspirational book called, N.N. Light’s Book of Daily Inspiration and it will be released November 21, 2017. Our other books are romance, paranormal romance, young adult and love poetry.

Q: Which do you enjoy more, ebooks or physical books? How about audiobooks?

A: I used to be a physical book snob but I see the value in e-books and audiobooks. I need e-books for reviewing but for personal use, I much prefer physical books. It’s all in the touch and smell, especially old books. You can’t get that from an e-reader. I don’t listen to audiobooks but I did when I was a manager at a bookstore because my commute was over an hour each way.

Q: Where do the majority of your books come from? (Library, bookstore)

A: My local library is too far away so most of the books I read I get from Amazon or used bookstores. I’m also on Netgalley so I get a lot of ARCs to read from publishers before publication. I swear, I’m a kid in a candy store while perusing Amazon or Netgalley.

 

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Continue reading “Meet The Reader Series with Mrs. N (N.N. Light)”

The Bloggers Bookshelf – Mischenko from Read Rant Rock & Roll @J_Mischenko

I was lucky enough to participate in Claire’s Bloggers Bookshelf! It was such an enjoyable experience. You can read about it below and also check out her blog Brizzlelassbooks. Thanks, Claire! 💜💕

BrizzleLass Books

Hi Guys, welcome back to The Bookshelf. Each week I feature an author or book blogger and talk about their bookshelf with them. It’s a light-hearted, book focused, Q&A.

This week I have another of my favourite bloggers stopping by, Mischenko from Read Rant Rock & Roll. Mischenko runs a lovely blog with some regular posts such as her Wednesday Breakfast and a Book and Shabby Sunday, both of which are favourites of mine.  She’s sent some fab photo’s for inclusion with this post so I hope you all enjoy (and that I’ve put them in the right places!)

Here is her bookshelf…

What was the first book you remember having on your bookshelf?
I had this record player that would play small records and someone in my family purchased a Hansel & Gretel book and record for me. It was always my favorite and I listened to it…

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Music Monday: Seether “Driven Under”

-Music Monday-

This meme was created by Drew @ The Tattooed Book Geek. You pick a song that you really like and share it on Monday. I’m having so much fun with this meme and look forward to sharing a new song every Monday!

musicmonday

This Week’s Pick

Seether

“Driven Under”

 

LYRICS
Do you think I’m faking
When I’m lying next to you?
Do you think that I am blind
Nothing left for me to lose?
Must be something on your mind
Something lost and left behind
Do you know I’m faking now?
Do you know I’m faking
When I’m lying next to you?
Do you know that I am blind to everything you ever do?
Must be something on your mind
Something lost for me to find
Do you know I’m faking
Then she told me she had a gun
It sounded like she’d used It once before on him
Then she told me she had a gun
It sounded like she’d used It once before, oh man
I guess you know I’m faking
When I tell you I love you
I guess you know that I am blind
To everything you say and do
Must be something on my mind
There’s nothing left for me to hide
Do you know I’m faking
Then she told me she had a gun
It sounded like she’d used It once before on him
Then she told me she had a gun
It sounded like she’d used It once before, oh man
We have to succumb to the feelings we can never face
I need you, I breathe you,
I can’t go through this all again
We have to succumb to
The feelings we can never face I need you
I breathe you, I can’t go through this
Then she told me she had a gun
It sounded like she’d used It once before
Then she told me she had a gun
It sounded like she’d used It once before on him
Then she told me she had a gun
It sounded like she’d used It once before, oh man
Then she told me she had a gun
She says she wants to use It on me now
Songwriters: Shaun Welgemoed / Dale Stewart

 This is from the album:

Fragile

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Thanks for checking out Music Monday!

 

Blog Tour: Watching Glass Shatter by James J. Cudney – Book Review & Author Interview

I had the pleasure of reading James J. Cudney’s debut novel Watching Glass Shatter last week and what a treat it was! You can read my review of the book below and also check out my interview with this incredible author. You’ll learn more about James J. Cudney as a reader and writer as we discuss the book and also his plans for the future.

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I’ve come to know James through our blog communications and he quickly became an inspiration to me. I follow his blog @ thisismytruthnow and enjoy every post I read from his book reviews to the 365-day challenges. He’s a wonderful writer and I was so excited to learn that he was publishing his first novel. It seems to have happened so quickly and I’m ecstatic to be part of the blog tour! I hope you’ll enjoy reading this post about his new book.

Watching Glass Shatter

by James J. Cudney

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Blurb: The wealthy Glass family lost its patriarch, Benjamin Glass, sooner than expected. Benjamin’s widow, Olivia, and her 5 sons each react to his death in their own way while preparing for the reading of his will. Olivia receives a very unexpected confession from her late husband about one of their sons that could shatter the whole family.

Prior to revealing the secret to her children, Olivia must figure out which boy Ben refers to in the confession he left her in his will. While the family attorney searches for the mysterious Rowena Hector whom Ben says holds the answers, Olivia asks her sons to each spend a week with her as she isn’t ready to let go of the past. When Olivia visits her sons, she quickly learns that each one has been keeping his own secret from her. Olivia never expected her remaining years would be so complex and life-altering, but she will not rest until her family is reunited after Ben’s untimely death.

We all need family. We all want to fit in. We’re all a mix of quirky personalities. Will Olivia be able to fix them or will the whole family implode? What will she do when she discovers the son behind Ben’s secret? Check out this ensemble cast where each family member’s perspective is center stage, discovering along the way who might feel the biggest impact from all the secrets. Welcome to being an honorary member of the Glass family.

My Review:

Watching Glass Shatter by James J. Cudney is one of the best books I’ve read in 2017. It’s a debut novel about a family with secrets. These secrets have the potential to tear the family apart.

The matriarch of the family is Olivia. Her husband Ben, the patriarch, has just died unexpectedly and she is left with their five grown sons, their families, and her sister Diane. She’s also left with a secret from Ben regarding one of their sons. Olivia decides to take some time to spend which each of the boys and in doing so, she discovers that each and every one of them has their own little secrets they’ve been hiding.

I was sucked into this story as soon as I started reading it. A worry that I had was that with all the characters in the book, I would get confused and lost because each of the sons have their own family members as well, but not once did I have an issue with it. The characters are so well detailed and described. After reading about each one, I felt that I knew this family and they all felt so realistic to me. I think overall my favorite character was Diane, but as the story moved on, it became Olivia. In the beginning, I almost couldn’t stand Olivia, but she begins to change. As she discovers so many new things about her sons and their spouses, she starts to realize that she’s too much of a control freak and needs to let people make their own decisions. I loved this transformation, although it may not have been complete, she becomes more understanding, more kind, and less judgmental which I admired. The boys…where can I start? Each one is unique in their own way. I loved all of them, but my favorite son was Ethan. I had issues with Zach and a certain situation between him, Teddy and his wife, but it came together in the end which was unexpected. I couldn’t wait to find out whether the Glass family would heal or simply fall apart. I was literally astonished by this book because it has many twists and turns. You just won’t know unless you read it from beginning to end.

I enjoyed the writing and the plot was unique to me. I thought the book was put together perfectly. Readers know that it takes more than just a good writer to offer a great book and everyone has their own opinions on this. Some say they need to be captivated and that the characters need good development. Others say they really want to ‘think’ or be taken on an adventure, but a good book to me is one that makes you feel, and this book did that for me. I had a myriad of emotions. I laughed, cried, jumped for joy, and got angry at times throughout the book. It’s truly heart-wrenching at times! I can’t remember the last time I was this emotionally involved with characters. It’s definitely been a while!

As far as the end, I liked it, but I expected something different. I wasn’t sure if I was happy with Olivia’s choices, or Rowena’s choice for that matter, but it turned out that I was pleased with it.

Overall, I enjoyed this book and I’d recommend this book to anyone. What a ride. I can’t wait for the next book! Every star for Watching Glass Shatter!

5 Sterne

 


You can find this book on Amazon and Goodreads

  • Paperback: 296 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (October 24, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1978233434
  • ISBN-13: 978-1978233430

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Continue reading “Blog Tour: Watching Glass Shatter by James J. Cudney – Book Review & Author Interview”

Flower Friday: November 16th – Maple

I learned about Flower Friday from Lorilin@Bugbugbooks last month and have been having a lot of fun sharing some flower pics every Friday.

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I’m going to totally cheat today and share a picture of one of our maple trees. It’s not a flower, but maples have to be my favorite trees in the fall and they actually remind me of flowers as they first begin to turn.

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Continue reading “Flower Friday: November 16th – Maple”