Slim by Design by Brian Wansink Out September 23rd

I found the ideas in this book fascinating.  Instead of advice on counting calories and fat grams this book looks at how our environment and social expectations can impact our food choices and our weight.  His ideas are back up with studies he has done in his lab as well as field research and I was intrigued to say the least.  I am not sure if simply following the principals in this book would cause you to loose your unwanted weight, but I think many of his ideas are worth considering and implementing if and when you can.  Not all of the chapters in this book were applicable to me, I generally don’t work in an office setting so that chapter didn’t apply to me but I thought the information in it was good.  There is no quick easy simple way to loose weight, but may-be some of these ideas can give you a nudge.

Sister Golden Hair by Darcey Steinke October 14th

When Jesse and her family end up in Bent Tree she thinks at first that it will be just another of their stops since their father became a defrocked minister, but Bent Tree ends up becoming Jesse’s back drop as she navigates the world and grows up.  Her brother Phillip adjusts easier because he is younger and her depressed and moody mother has shifts from a 5 to a 1 on Jesse’s scale of what kind of day she is having and what kind of mood she is in.  It is the other people who inhabit Jesse’s world that really make her who she is though.  There is Sandy the young single mom with the hot boyfriend who Jesse idolizes until she she’s more than what is on the surface, there is kind older Mrs. Smith and her friend Jill who lives up the street and becomes her best friend for a time until she isn’t there.  Watching Jesse learn to navigate the adult world along with her friends each of which brings something special of their own to the mosaic that is Jesse is heartwarming and sweet and as one would expect full of bumps along the way.

The Hawley Book Of the Dead Chrysler Szarlan September 23rd

I loved the way this story weaves the past and the future together so well.  Reve returns to Massachusetts following the suspicious death of her husband Jeremy.  She settles into a home on family land and tries to start over with her three daughters but life keeps getting in her way.  If she wants to understand her future she must understand her past as so begins her journey into her family history and the secrets it holds.  The story flows well and it kept me guessing and eagerly turning pages.



Broken Monsters by Lauren Beukes Out September 16th

liked this one, the characters were multi dimensional and the story was tightly woven and fast paced, but this book is not for the faint of heart, it is a murder investigation for Detroit detective Gabriella Versado that leads her into much more than she bargained for and her daughter Layla is doing investigating of her own which may lead her astray.   TK knows something bad is happening on the streets and he does his best to keep his fellow homeless and down and out family safe, but will any of them be able to do enough?

The Witch with No Name Kim Harrison September 9th

I have been highly anticipating this book and yet not wanting to read it.  I am sure I am not alone.  I am waiting on pins and needles to see how it ends, but I also don’t want to read the final chapter because I am not ready to say good bye to Rachel and her merry band of pals.  I am sure many of you feel the same way.  I was lucky enough to get an advanced copy except that it was missing the last chapter, well played Harper, very good way to make sure no one leaks the ending.  I also don’t want to say much about specifics because  I don’t want to spoil it for anyone.  I felt lots of important issues were addressed and that once again Rachel learns a lot about herself and her world.  Fans of the series will not be disappointed overall, but lets be honest we all have things we are hoping for in this book and I have no idea if you will get those parts you are hoping for.  I will be sorry to see the series end, but from  the part I read I think Kim Harrison has done her characters proud to the last.

No Weddings by Kat Bastion and Stone Bastion Sept 8th

I really liked this book. I have to admit at the start I wasn’t sure what to think of Cade, but as the pages turned and I learned more about him I liked him more and more. Hannah is spunky and fun and smart and she keeps Cade in his place, something his sisters try to do but don’t do as well. I like the characters and the plot in this one a fun read, looking forward to more of the series.



Love & leftovers A Novel In Verse by Sarah Tregay Out Now

Marcie’s life seems to be falling apart when her summer vacation up north seems to be extended indefinetly in the wake of her parent’s break up.  She survives by making a friend in her new town and keeping in touch with her best pal back home Kate.  She does her best to keep in touch with boyfriend Linus as well, but long distance relationships are hard and Marcie has no idea when or if she will be back and the longer she’s gone the more remote the idea of going home becomes, but suddenly she is returned to her old life, but with more questions than answers.  Suddenly she must fit back in with her friends and figure out where she stands with Linus and the new friends she left behind.  The characters resonated with me and I found the plot had some unexpected moments, but the neatest thing about this one for me was that it was all written as verse. 

To all the Boys I’ve loved Before by Jenny Han Out Now

When Laura Jean’s older sister goes to college in Scotland and the love letters she has written over the years to various boys start turning up in their mailboxes she isn’t sure what to do especially about the the one she wrote to the boy next door Josh who just became her sisters ex.  Life gets a bit complicated for Laura Jean as her past comes back to her and she must navigate being the big sister and helping their father keep their home life going smoothly.  Then one of her letter recipients offers her a challenge, but when it leads to more than what she agreed to can she decide what she wants and write the letter that really matters?  Charming, funny and sweet.  A great YA read.

Zac & Mia by A.J. Betts Out Now

My first thought after reading this was “If you liked The Fault In Our Stars you will like this.”  And while the stories are somewhat similar and they both leave you with a hopeful feeling that is about where the stories end, and to be fair Zac and Mia are very different from Hannah and Gus, their circumstances are lives are their own, yet like Green’s characters they take on life in their own ways despite their illness.



Liar, Temptress, Soilder, Spy Karen Abbott September 2nd

First of all I want to say this is a non-fiction book about four women who played important parts in the Civil War.  I read much more fiction than non-fiction, but this one looked good and I enjoyed it so I thought I would mention it in case anyone else wanted to check it out.  As I mentioned the book chronicles the lives and activities of four women over the course of the Civil War.  Belle Boyd is a well known Rebel spy from Virginia.  She spends time in prison, ends up being banished from the north as part of her sentence and eventually marries and spends time in Europe before returning to the south after the war.  Rose Greenlow was a widow who was the head of a confederate spy ring, she was eventually punished for her crimes including serving time in jail as Belle had, but in Rose’s case her youngest daughter shared her cell.  Eventually she was forced to leave her beloved country.  Elizabeth Van Lew was a southern women with northern roots whose family had respect within the community and she used her connections to provide food and necessary items to union prisoners held in her town and eventually she hid union soilders in a secret room and helped them leave the area.  The fourth woman was Emma Edmondson who impersonated a male officer for years even becoming part of an elite spy group, then a post master before she went AWOL and joined a group providing nursing care to wounded soilders.  The book has photos of the women, some of the places that are mentioned and sometimes of letters or other important documents.  I found the stories of these women fascinating both for the risks they took and for their passion and devotion to their cause.