Friday, June 27, 2014

Discussion: Eleanor & Park

I adored this book.  It captured the adolescent awkwardness so well and I feel like how teens in the 80s existed was pretty spot on too.  But, I'm not on expert on that. ;P For a YA 'love' story, I was a big fan.

1. Eleanor says she and Park are too young for true love. Do you believe that? Do you think Eleanor believes that?

I think Eleanor doesn't think that anything good can happen to her and does anything necessary to protect herself.

2. How do Eleanor and Park's parents shape their outlook on relationships and the future?

3. Why does Park's mother change her mind about Eleanor?

4. How is Park's relationship with his mother different from his relationship with his father? Who sees Park more clearly, his father or his mother?

5. Why is Park embarrassed by Eleanor? Is his embarrassment a betrayal?

6. Steve says that he's Park's friend—is he a true friend? Are Steve and Tina good guys or bad guys in the story? Do you think Eleanor and Tina could ever be friends?

I think if they had started off differently, Eleanor and Tina could be friends.  I think when Tina realized what Eleanor's life was like, not unsimiliar to her own situation, I'd guess that she turned into a semi-decent person.  Steve and Tina both had kind of a good heart, in the sense that they recognized a shitty situation and would help, but they are teenagers. ;P  I also feel like the people you grow up with, will always be your friends regardless of time, distance or fights, you just connect in a special way. 

7. Is Eleanor's mother a good mother? Why does she stay with Richie?

8. How would Eleanor and Park's relationship be different in 2013? How would cell phones, digital music, and Internet access change their situation?

9. What is the importance of music in Park's life? And how is it different for Eleanor?

10. Was Eleanor right to run away? Should she have left her brothers and sister behind? Was there more she could have done to help them?

In her position, I don't think there was going to be a 100 percent perfect ending and she knew that.  She couldn't risk taking the younger kids because the chances of getting caught or brought back would make things so much worse, but she knew that Richie wouldn't put up too much of a fuss if she just left and she knew her mom would accept it and probably be relieved but Eleanor was a teenage girl with no options.  I feel like the way it ended meant that mom got the guys to leave with the kids, but she was probably on her way to the next train wreck of a guy. 

What did you think of the book? Have you read any other books by Rainbow Rowell? Thanks for participating!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Return to Sullivan's Island

There is always one book that one of your favorite author's writes and you're like, SAY WHAT? And you only stick with it because you know the other stuff you've read is soo good.  This is one of those instances.  This is also one of those instances when the follow up to a favorite book just fails.  I picked this book up at our used book sale because we all know I can't let a 'series' go, they must be finished! So I HAD to follow up Sullivan's Island with this.  Ugh.  Just Ugh..

Same characters, same family as Sullivan's Island which was SO good.  This time? Yuck.  Point of view changed far too much and was just jarring.  Beth was stupid.  It was just ugh. I was super disappointed.  But that didn't mean I didn't stay up late to finish, which was partly because I didn't want to lug a hardcover book on vacation with me, but still, major disappointment! These characters could have had such better resolutions, and frankly I'd have loved more insight into the Susan/Simon angle!


It was impossible to remember how gorgeous the Lowcountry was. It never changed and everyone depended on that.

Newly graduated from college, Beth Hayes has worlds to conquer. But her grand ambitions are put on hold when she's elected by the family elders to house-sit the Island Gamble�ghosts and all.
But there is much about life and her family's past that Beth doesn't understand. And her plans to rest and rejuvenate�to bask in memory and the magic of white clapboards and shimmering blue waters�begin dangerously unraveling when she falls in love.
Still, everything here happens for a reason�and disappointment, betrayal, even tragedy are more easily handled when surrounded by beloved family and loyal friends.

What sequel/follow up book disappointed you? Do you keep reading a series even when it starts to annoy you or can you easily walk away from the story lines?

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Currently: June

Reading: Return to Sullivan's Island when writing this but probably something else, when you are reading this! ;)  Most likely, The Burgess Boys, The Hunger Games or something else..

Loving: not working

Thinking:  about what to make for dinner.  Not having a/c and not going to the store while preparing for a vacation makes for interesting meals when you don't want to put on the oven and then it decides to storm!

Frustrated:  by people who bring their sick child to family functions.  If a doctor gives you an antibiotic, it's not allergies FOR THE MILLIONTH TIME.  And perhaps if your doctor says that, you may want to get a new one.  I think they suck.  My kid caught your kid's allergies, AGAIN.

Feeling: eager for the scale to move down.  I'm working out and trying to be super mindful of what I eat and it's not budging and it's making me mad.  I'm sore, I'm doing it, I'm drenched in sweat but I do not lose.  I feel like it should be melting away but nope, most likely when I weigh myself again I will have gained weight, again. 

Anticipating:  camping with all the cousins.  The beach, smores, reading, hopefully some relaxing.

Watching:  Rizzoli & Isles, Pretty Little Liars and a new fave, Farmhouse Rules which is a cooking show.  I just finished catching up on Revenge and Pretty Liars (in time for it to start again ha)

Sad: my kid has been sick and the weather has sucked so that our first two weeks of break have included far more TV and staying in the house than normal

Working:  on nothing.  I should soon be working on cleaning out or guest room/office because it became a dumping ground this school year

Grateful:  for my family

Listening: The Highway on XM radio.  I've really been enjoying anything Luke Bryan, Eric Church and I love Bottoms Up by Brantley Gilbert.

Wishing: for central air.  SOme day.  And a wraparound porch.  And a hot tub.

What are you currently reading, anticipating, and grateful for?

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

July's Group Read is...

On the Island by Tracey Garvis-Graves!

Description: When thirty-year-old English teacher Anna Emerson is offered a job tutoring T.J. Callahan at his family's summer rental in the Maldives, she accepts without hesitation; a working vacation on a tropical island trumps the library any day.

T.J. Callahan has no desire to leave town, not that anyone asked him. He's almost seventeen and if having cancer wasn't bad enough, now he has to spend his first summer in remission with his family - and a stack of overdue assignments -- instead of his friends.

Anna and T.J. are en route to join T.J.'s family in the Maldives when the pilot of their seaplane suffers a fatal heart attack and crash-lands in the Indian Ocean. Adrift in shark-infested waters, their life jackets keep them afloat until they make it to the shore of an uninhabited island. Now Anna and T.J. just want to survive and they must work together to obtain water, food, fire, and shelter.

Their basic needs might be met but as the days turn to weeks, and then months, the castaways encounter plenty of other obstacles, including violent tropical storms, the many dangers lurking in the sea, and the possibility that T.J.'s cancer could return. As T.J. celebrates yet another birthday on the island, Anna begins to wonder if the biggest challenge of all might be living with a boy who is gradually becoming a man.

I have to admit this description kinda makes my stomach crawl.  But, I've heard nothing but good reports so, here's to hoping it's a goody!

Who is joining us? I will post discussion questions on July 25th!

Monday, June 23, 2014

11 Things

What is the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?

During the school year, I check to see if I have any messages/emails for work and then I immediately go to the bathroom and shower.  In the summer, I listen to see if I am up before my child and then I laze in bed and check social media or read my book for awhile until she wakes up or I need to get up to make coffee!

What do you eat for breakfast?
It depends.  I don't like eating right when I wake up so sometimes I'd grab stuff for work like a yogurt or granola bar.  Otherwise I eat anything from eggs, pancakes or waffles.

What’s your go-to weeknight meal?
When we have nothing else planned we tend to go with spaghetti and a salad.  Because we always have those ingredients!

Do you do any kind of journaling or memory keeping?
Just this blog now.  I used to have a private online one, which I technically still do, I just don't update it and I haven't written in a real journal since high school?

How do you fix your coffee, or do you prefer tea (or neither)? 
Coffee I will either drink black or I will put in caramel maccihiato creamer. Yum.

What’s the last good book you read?
I've read a lot of good books lately, South of Broad by Pat Conroy, Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell and Before She Woke by Hillary Jordan to name a few!

If you had a day all to yourself with no schedule, how would you spend it?
Sleep in, go out for breakfast and enjoy a lot of coffee! Head to the farmer's market and look around, go to Target, visit the library, make guacamole and eat that with chips for lunch, read in my hammock, go on a boat ride and grill out for dinner.

What are three things on your life list? 
Visit a beach in a different country with my husband again, get a new house, visit Washington D.C.

When you really need to relax or de-stress, where do you go and what do you do?
Lay on the hammock alone, drink a glass of wine or 2, or bitch to my friend!

What’s on your nightstand?
A book I finished awhile ago that I need to donate, the book I'm currently reading, my lamp, water bottle,and phone.

What’s the last thing you do before you go to sleep?
Go to the bathroom, if I need to set my alarm I do that and then I go to bed.  Some nights I read, and some nights I just go right to bed.

What are some things on your life list?

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Sullivan's Island

My mom and grandma were two of the biggest influences in my life when it came to reading when I was younger.  My grandma was ALWAYS reading.  She'd go into her bedroom shortly after dinner  with a book and the tv and my grandpa would retire to the living room with his newspapers and his television.  Speaking of, my dad and grandpa were two of the biggest influences on my life when it came to reading the newspaper, which we have delivered to our house Thursday-Sunday. My mom always had a pile of books and magazines by her various chairs throughout the house and by her bedside table.

It's not surprising that my first foray into 'adult' books would follow in my models footsteps.  I was reading Nora Roberts in junior high.  Which on another tangent reminds me of an article I read about Judy Blume the other day and she said that teens/children are their own best censors.  If they don't understand something / are uncomfortable they skip over it.  If they have questions, they ask.  Did I ever ask my mom about a Nora Roberts sex scene? Nope.  Just like I never asked my grandma about the sex scenes in her romance books when I checked those out.  Did it help make me realize my mother and grandma were women too who just may have feelings? Yup.  Helps make you realizes you're normal.

So where am I going? Basically, I read a lot of 'beach reads' 'chick lit' 'basic smut' for the first 20ish years of my life.  Now it's hard to me to read many of those books but books SET on beaches, near beaches or with strong/hilarious female leads... they still get me.

Dorothea Benton Frank has become one of my favorite 'beach read/women character writers' around.  She has depth, she has history, she's hysterical and there is a bit of sex/romance.  But it's good.  Sometimes a tad unbelievable but just one of those writers who I love reading and staying up late to finish because I need the story to close!

Description: Set in the steamy, stormy landscape of South Carolina, Sullivan's Island tells the unforgettable story of one woman's courageous journey toward truth.

Born and raised on idyllic Sullivan's Island, Susan Hayes navigated through her turbulent childhood with humor, spunk, and characteristic Southern sass. But years later, she is a conflicted woman with an unfaithful husband, a sometimes resentful teenage daughter, and a heart that aches with painful, poignant memories. And as Susan faces her uncertain future, she realizes that she must go back to her past. To the beachfront house where her sister welcomes her with open arms. To the only place she can truly call home.

The lead character Susan is hilarious. I love her.  I also like that this book jumps back and forth from 1963 to the present (1999).  Which, if you like Sarah Jio, you'd probably adore this book too.  I liked that in the 1963 version we hear about the Civil Rights issues and how the beach was back then.  I also enjoy how Susan deals with her husband cheating on her.  She's a classy (minus a momentarily lapse with a toothbrush and pee) and strong and has a good sense of humor.

She does attempt to go on a date and OH MY LAWD, that 'sex' scene is HILARIOUS!!!! And I snorted because seriously that would happen to me on a date, I just know it! 

This book is just soo much and I was really rooting for Susan to reconnect with her lost first love, Simon, and to figure out the mystery of her daddy dying in a marsh in 1963.  I'm actually starting a follow up that is written about these characters but focuses more on Susan's daughter as soon as I'm done writing this. 

Who influenced what you read as a young adult? What are your favorite 'types' of books? Have you been to Sullivan's Island? Charleston? (SO many local references in her books! and Pat Conroy's!)

Wednesday, June 18, 2014


I  got Hypocrisy by D.M. Annechino to review and it pulled me straight out of a reading rut!  I think this may be the first 2014 book that I read in less than 24 hours!

Description: Dr. Lauren Crawford is a brilliant research scientist who discovers a revolutionary treatment for cancer that not only extends life, but much improves the quality of life for terminal cancer patients. The treatment, in some instances, can even cure certain cancers. On the evening before Dr. Crawford holds a press conference to announce that the FDA has given preliminary approval of her new cancer treatment, somebody follows her to her car and puts three bullets in her head. Was it a planned murder with a motive, a mugging gone badly, or merely a random act of violence? Two New York City homicide detectives, Amaris Dupree and T.J. Brown, are assigned to the investigation. The detectives evaluate the circumstances surrounding Dr. Crawford's death, and follow a trail of clues that exposes a sequence of startling facts. One by one, the detectives carefully examine each suspect and piece together a puzzle with unimaginable implications. As the investigation gets more intense, and the detectives get closer to solving the murder mystery, someone threatens Dupree's life. The detectives now realize that Dr. Crawford's murder was much more than a homicide. And if they don't arrest the murderer soon, Dupree might be the next victim.

I was immediately hooked into the plot.  The book opens with the murder and the detectives get right on the case.  I read a lot of this genre so sometimes I get a little more critical about how some of them are written.  I noticed that I wasn't rolling my eyes at typical thriller writing crap so that made me happy! I enjoyed the characters of Dupree and TJ and felt drawn to them and wanted to know more.  I thought the premise of the book - murdering a scientist about ready to cure cancer - was awesome.  I mean, how can there NOT be a cure for cancer? It's a great topic to delve into and brings up interesting questions.

In the back of the book the author posed some questions and I thought that I would answer them here on my blog..

Did you find the book engaging--did it make you want to turn pages?
Absolutely! I opened it during nap time on a Saturday, read through the night, woke up early on Sunday and finished it while the child watched cartoons on Sunday morning.

Were Dupree and TJ fully developed?
I think so, but there were points that were just a tad unrealistic.  The whole let's get drunk and release our life stories to each other were a bit much.  I also didn't like that it seemed that Dupree was super smart and the boss and TJ was painted dumb at times that would really make me question how he could be a detective.  But, I think they grew and you did get to know more about them as the story progressed. 

Who was your favorite character?
Brenda or Leona! ;) Brenda is the superwoman behind the desk at the police station and Leona is Dr. Crawford's mother.

What do you think of the plot? Was the story plausible, original?
I enjoyed it and I believe so.  However, the amount of dirty hands involved in the process and the lack of talking about it seemed a bit far fetched.  Maybe too many characters.

Did any plot twists surprise you?
Not really.  I think everything that happened was at least hinted too that nothing was a shocker.

If you are interested in thrillers/detective books this is for you!

What was the last book you read in 24 hours or less?

I was given this book by iRead Book Tours for review and all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Monday, June 16, 2014

July's Group Read Suggestions

It's that time again to suggest a book for July! Something steamy, beachy, romantic? What's your thought on what we should read together in July?

What we've read...

Eleanor & Park
Jane Eyre
The Rent Collector
Labor Day
Orphan Train
The Death of Bees
Liberating Paris
Life Sentences
Looking for Me
Ladder of Years
Where'd You Go Bernadette?
Beach Music
The Dinner
The End of Your Life Book Club
Still Alice 
The Song Remains the Same
Those Who Save Us
We Are All Welcome Here
Gone Girl
Prisoner of Tehran
The Wednesday Sisters
Looking for Alaska
Cutting for Stone
One Summer
The Year of Fog
Winter Garden
The Violets of March
State of Wonder
The Invisible Bridge
The Postmistress
The Scent of Rain and Lightning
Still Missing
The Sandalwood Tree
Major Pettigrew's Last Stand
Something Borrowed
The Blue Orchard
Sammy's Hill
In the Woods
Shanghai Girls
The Weight of Water
Water for Elephants
The Color Purple
The One That I Want
The Secret Garden
House Rules
American Wife
Firefly Lane
The Reader
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
The Awakening
Pride & Prejudice
I See You Everywhere

Hope you can join us! I will use to pick a winner on Friday, June 20th!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Looking Forward

I'm a follower.  Thanks, Lisa for the idea! ;)

Here are some things I am looking forward to...

This weekend - We are busy non-stop! Friday night we are hosting a retirement party for my mother-in-law.  She retired this week after 42 years of teaching! And all in the same grade in the same school district! Pretty amazing.  Not something I aspire to do, but sometime I respect.  That's impressive!  She has a master's degree and over 30 extra credits she took over the years not to mention all the professional development and stuff she's done over the years.  Saturday will probably be spent recovering in the morning and cleaning up.  My parents are taking my child home from the party so we will have a child free morning that will hopefully be enjoyed and we won't be too hung over from the previous night! Then we will either get our camper out then or wait on that until Sunday.  Saturday night we have a graduation open house of one of my husband's cousins but it is just down the road so that is nice! Sunday - We have my baby cousin's graduation open house and it is a bit of a drive.  We are hoping to get there a little earlier to take my dad out for a bloody mary for father's day! Not sure what we will do with the rest of our day when we get home but camping preparations are a for sure!

This month - Our annual family camping trip! We are planning on 8 days which will be our longest camping trip ever.  As a child my husband used to go all 7 days (which has now turned into 10 for some people) but in college we'd always go up for a 4 day weekend and then with Isla we did a 4 day weekend and then last year we did a 6 night trip and this year here we go on 8! It should be a blast. His mom is the oldest of 10  at some point in the week all will be there.  And most of his 29 other first cousins will be there for some part of the week as well.  And there are now, 12, I think great-grandchildren and I think 10 of them should be making an appearance at some point, so it's a lot of fun.  A lot of work, but a lot of fun! Plenty of time to read, enjoy the sun, catch up with family, campfires, and lots of childhood memories that get reminisced every year!

This year - I'm excited to b attending a good family friend's wedding this year in Louisville.  It may be just me attending with my parents or my husband might come too, but I'm excited to watch him get married and explore the area.  It's still up in the air but my fingers are crossed it will be happening.  Otherwise, I am just going to be equally as excited to go tailgating with my dad again this fall to watch my Buckeyes!

What is on your looking forward list?

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Three Year Old's Library Finds

We hit up the library for the first time over summer break because the weather this week hasn't been stellar.  Monday we did get to play outside a lot and swim in the pool but it wasn't 'hot' and the pool was not refreshing it was just a tad chilly for those of us not three years old!  Tuesday, we hit up our other book place, Barnes & Noble because I seem to collect their gift cards and I needed a copy of The Burgess Boys for our Books & Bars meeting later this month. 

Both the library and Barnes & Noble are our fave spots in the summer.  Books (both of us), train (her), and a/c (both of us). 

It's still hard for Isla to pick out her own library books because of the distraction of the train and all the other toys and things to look at, so I tend to pick most of her books or get yes or no's from her as I show her stuff.

Yesterday at Barnes & Noble we read almost all of the Elmo books they had there (gag me) and when it was time to go I did tell her she could pick out one book but NOT Elmo so of course she picked a Curious George book "monkey book mama'.  I am so not a fan of commercialized books but when my sweetie was SO good at sharing and listening I just have to reward her, especially after overhearing a conversation between a grandma and mom and the two little girls with them.  Oh lord.  I feel for those kids and I'm so glad my baby has me and I'm glad that I know as an adult how not to talk to children.  Eessh. Poor babies.  I hope Isla grows up to realize how lucky she is because I know I know as an adult how lucky I was as a child.

Today I did most of the picking...

Underwater Counting was picked because she is obsessed with counting lately and it looked cute.
Fancy Nancy because I love the vocabulary used.
The Pigeon Wants a Puppy because 1) The Pigeon is HILARIOUS and 2) the kid loves puppies .. (also if you don't think the pigeon books or the elephant and piggy books are hilarious, you're reading them wrong and you need me to read them to you stat)
Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site because I've debated buying it a bunch
Ten Little Caterpillars because she loves counting and caterpillars
Pigs Make Me Sneeze because Mo Willems is awesome.  Seriously, if you have young kids you should be checking out Mo books! The only one I'm not a fan of so far is Knufflebunny.
This excites me for many more library trips over the summer.  Hopefully we will make it to story time and move and groves as our schedule allows!
What did you last get from the library?

Monday, June 9, 2014

South of Broad

I read Beach Music by Pat Conroy last year and I wanted to check out another one of his stories when I had more time, aka the summer.  It did not disappoint.  It's over 400 pages so make sure you have time set aside because you will not want to walk away from the story.  I stayed up late, drug it in the car, and spent whatever previous free moments I had soaking it up. 

Description:  Against the sumptuous backdrop of Charleston, South Carolina, South of Broad gathers a unique cast of sinners and saints. Leopold Bloom King, our narrator, is the son of an amiable, loving father who teaches science at the local high school. His mother, an ex-nun, is the high school principal and a well-known Joyce scholar. After Leo's older brother commits suicide at the age of thirteen, the family struggles with the shattering effects of his death, and Leo, lonely and isolated, searches for something to sustain him. Eventually, he finds his answer when he becomes part of a tightly knit group of high school seniors that includes friends Sheba and Trevor Poe, glamorous twins with an alcoholic mother and a prison-escapee father; hardscrabble mountain runaways Niles and Starla Whitehead; socialite Molly Huger and her boyfriend, Chadworth Rutledge X; and an ever-widening circle whose liaisons will ripple across two decades-from 1960s counterculture through the dawn of the AIDS crisis in the 1980s.

The ties among them endure for years, surviving marriages happy and troubled, unrequited loves and unspoken longings, hard-won successes and devastating breakdowns, and Charleston's dark legacy of racism and class divisions. But the final test of friendship that brings them to San Francisco is something no one is prepared for. South of Broad is Pat Conroy at his finest; a long-awaited work from a great American writer whose passion for life and language knows no bounds.

Leo is the narrator and I felt so badly for his childhood.  His mother was just not a loving type of mother.  We enter his life in the summer before his senior year and he just then finds out that his mother used to be a nun.  That is kind of a shocker when apparently other people in his life knew about it but didn't share it with him.  However, Leo's world was rocked after his beloved older brother killed himself, when he was 10.  Leo's adolescence and his parents lives were markedly different than he beginning years of his life.

I will say that just basing off of reading one of his other books, he does have a way with dysfunctional families in his stories, however his own upbringing was dysfunctional from what I understand.  Sometimes the conversational language between people was a tad unbelievable
but overall the story is good.  He is windy, but not so bad that you can't skim a paragraph or two and forgive the first chapter of the book.  I almost put it down but I took a deep breath and gave it a shot. ;)

Conroy just as a way with tragedy and dysfunction that no matter the amount of words that surround it I will keep reading.  That and I love books set in the south and Charleston is a beautiful setting with a history to dig up rich characters.

What author/s are you planning on reading this summer?

Friday, June 6, 2014

5 on Friday

1.       It’s my last day of work of the school year! This was my most trying year yet.  Beginning with going full-time for the first time as a parent and then meeting all the families.  Let’s just say you wouldn’t even believe my school year if I told you.  It was that ‘interesting,’ to be PC and still employable we will leave it at that.

2.       So excited for what the summer has in hold!  8 day camping trip, James Taylor in concert, multiple family parties, one-on-one time with my little lady, pool time, boating, my best-friend from childhood will be home for a visit, camping on Lake Huron once if not twice, an anniversary trip to Traverse City area and reading in my hammock.  It shall be good.

3.       I feel the stress lifting.  No work, no classes.  Just me, a three year old and summer.  It sounds so glorious!!!!!!

4.       I’m reading South of Broad by Pat Conroy and I am so glad I will have more free time to finish it up this weekend.  A little wordy (he always is) but a great story with quirky characters.

5.       DID I MENTION I AM DONE WITH WORK???????????????????????

Happy Weekend! What are your plans?

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

All the Summer Girls

A little over a month ago I had a few extra minutes and I popped into the library to browse and ended up walking out with two books, All the Summer Girls by Meg Donohue and South of Broad by Pat Conroy.  I needed something light so I started with All the Summer Girls and basically read it all last Sunday.

A great piece of literature it s not, but a quick read out in the sun on a summer/spring day, it will do.

Description: In Philadelphia, good girl Kate is dumped by her fiance the day she learns she is pregnant with his child. In New York City, beautiful stay-at-home mom Vanessa is obsessively searching the Internet for news of an old flame. And in San Francisco, Dani, the aspiring writer who can't seem to put down a book--or a cocktail--long enough to open her laptop, has just been fired... again.

In an effort to regroup, Kate, Vanessa, and Dani retreat to the New Jersey beach town where they once spent their summers. Emboldened by the seductive cadences of the shore, the women being to realize how much their lives, and friendships, have been shaped by the choices they made one fateful night on the beach eight years earlier--and the secrets that only now threaten to surface.

I never felt a pull towards any of the characters.  They all seemed to be huge into self-pity. I more wanted to know what happened the night Colin died and why everyone blamed themselves.  They were basically all spoiled selfish people but the mystery of Colin was intriguing.

The writing confused me at times too.  Different chapters were narrated by the different girls, but sometimes it seemed like it changed from first person to third person and it just was kinda blah.

Also, so Kate is pregnant.  She is at the beach, at a bar with friends who are picking up guys.  A guy picks her up.  A guy who is 7 years younger than her and doesn't mind that she's 'not into' the party scene.  Then she finally tells him she's pregnant and he never appears in the book again.  What was the point of this plot line? 1) Not believable that this dude who is like 22 right out of college would want to try HARD to hook up with an older chick who doesn't seem that into  it.  2)If by some chance he is madly weirdly in love with her, he should make another entrance in the book after that revelation and declare his love or tell her good luck in life or something. 

I guess I just felt that the ending shouldn't have been the ending.  It needed more closure/wrapping up of storylines.

A line that I resonated with, "I used to be fearless."

Oh so true.  Sometimes I miss the girl I used to be.  Life and circumstances have beaten away at the fearless girl I used to be and sometimes I miss her and don't know how to get her or even just pieces of her back.

Definite beach read.

What was your last beach read?

Monday, June 2, 2014

June's Group Read

May was definitely a flop for posting as well.  The end of the school year and parenting got the best of me.  I did hit some good good books so that was positive, but my life balance not so good.

Since I was a little crazy I never did write a suggestion post for June and since we didn't do one for May I made an executive decision.  Lisa had suggested Eleanor & Park for May and it was the only suggestion and I got that book for my birthday.  So, winner winner, chicken dinner!

Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell will be our book.

Description: Two misfits.
One extraordinary love.

Eleanor... Red hair, wrong clothes. Standing behind him until he turns his head. Lying beside him until he wakes up. Making everyone else seem drabber and flatter and never good enough...Eleanor.

Park... He knows she'll love a song before he plays it for her. He laughs at her jokes before she ever gets to the punch line. There's a place on his chest, just below his throat, that makes her want to keep promises...Park.

Set over the course of one school year, this is the story of two star-crossed sixteen-year-olds—smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, but brave and desperate enough to try.

Hope you will join us!