Tuesday Potpourri

TUESDAY POTPOURRI: “NOT A SOUND”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is an e-ARC from NetGalley Not a Sound, by Heather Gudenkauf, in which a shocking discovery and chilling secrets converge.

 

 

 

Intro:  (Prologue)

I find her sitting all by herself in the emergency waiting room, her lovely features distorted from the swelling and bruising.  Only a few patients remain, unusual for a Friday night and a full moon.  Sitting across from her, an elderly woman coughs wetly into a handkerchief while her husband, arms folded across his chest and head tilted back, snores gently.  Another man with no discernible ailment stares blankly up at the television mounted on the wall.  Canned laughter fills the room.

***

Teaser:  I frown and flip back through the pages.  Despite the comprehensive paperwork, I can’t seem to find the report that outlines the biopsy results.  I’m sure it’s simply misplaced and I jot a reminder on a sticky note and affix it to the front of the file and then scan and upload the files I do have (45%).

***

Synopsis:  When a tragic accident leaves nurse Amelia Winn deaf, she spirals into a depression that ultimately causes her to lose everything that matters—her job, her husband, David, and her stepdaughter, Nora. Now, two years later and with the help of her hearing dog, Stitch, she is finally getting back on her feet. But when she discovers the body of a fellow nurse in the dense bush by the river, deep in the woods near her cabin, she is plunged into a disturbing mystery that could shatter the carefully reconstructed pieces of her life all over again.

As clues begin to surface, Amelia finds herself swept into an investigation that hits all too close to home. But how much is she willing to risk in order to uncover the truth and bring a killer to justice?

***

What do you think?  Would you keep reading?  This book will be released on 5/30/17.

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Tuesday Potpourri

TUESDAY POTPOURRI: “MUST LOVE DOGS: NEW LEASH ON LIFE”

Books & fairytales - TUESDAY EXCERPTS

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, First Chapter/Intros, hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by Books & a Beat.

My pick today is Claire Cook’s Must Love Dogs:  New Leash on Life (e-book, Book II).

 

 

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Intro:  My brother Michael was staying with me until his marriage got back on track.

“Don’t you molly coddle him, Sarah,” my father said.  “Just give him three squares a day and make sure he has a starched white shirt to wear to the office.”

“If he so much as looks at a beer bottle, hide his cell phone,” my sister Carol said.  “Do not, under any circumstances, let him drunk dial Phoebe.  She was a witch with a capital B when he married her, and she’ll be a witch with a capital B when we find her replacement.”

***

Teaser:  Michael chugged the rest of his coffee and put his mug down with a thunk.  “Okay,” he said.  “The three of you are going to have to lure Phoebe outside, and then I’ll take it from there.”

***

Synopsis:  First the bestselling novel.Then the romantic comedy movie starring Diane Lane and John Cusack. Now Claire Cook’s most enduring characters are back in Must Love Dogs: New Leash on Life , Book 2 of the hilarious and heartwarming Must Love Dogs series.
“If you haven’t read a Claire Cook book yet, start with this one. You don’t need to have read the first book, but why not grab that one, too, and read it? Her books are like potato chips – you can’t have just one!”-Pamela Kramer, National Book Reviewer, Examiner
Life after divorce for Sarah Hurlihy used to consist of juggling her job as a preschool teacher with the demands of her interfering family. But after a rocky start, Sarah and John Anderson have shared six months of dating bliss. Now their relationship is basically on hold because Sarah’s brother Michael and his dog are staying with her. And John’s new puppy Horatio hates Sarah. With a passion.

***

I loved the first book…and the movie.  Now I am ready to have some more fun with the characters…and the dogs.  What do you think?

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Tuesday Potpourri

TUESDAY POTPOURRI: EXCERPTING “BLOOD DEFENSE”

Books & fairytales - TUESDAY EXCERPTS

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, from Tuesday/First Chapter/Intros, hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by Books & a Beat.

Today’s feature is a book I hope to start reading soon:   Blood Defense, by Marcia Clark, first in a new series from bestselling author and famed O. J. Simpson trial prosecutor Marcia Clark, a “terrific writer and storyteller” (James Patterson).

 

 

 

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Intro:  (Prologue)

LA NOW!.COM

BREAKING NEWS:  Actress Chloe Monahan and Roommate Found Stabbed to Death.

Actress Chloe Monahan, a regular in the hit drama series Dark Corners, and her roommate, Paige Avner, were found stabbed to death in their Laurel Canyon apartment.  Officials say they have no suspects at this time.  We’ll post updates as more information is available.

THE BIZ.COM

Cops say Comeback Kid Actress Chloe Monahan and Roommate Killed by Burglar.

Reporters for The Biz have learned that Chloe Monahan’s apartment was burglarized just two months before she and her roommate were murdered.  Police Chief West Sanders says they are looking into the possibility that the burglar came back for another run and killed the girls when they unexpectedly came home….

***

Teaser:  After a single, irritated glance at the camera crew, the judge quickly pulled a file off the top of a depressingly big stack.  “Case of People v. Pearson.  Counsel, state your appearances for the record.”

Greta was right.  He really did want us out of there.  “Samantha Brinkman for the defendant.” (p. 70).

***

Synopsis:  Samantha Brinkman, an ambitious, hard-charging Los Angeles criminal defense attorney, is struggling to make a name for herself and to drag her fledgling practice into the big leagues. Sam lands a high-profile double-murder case in which one of the victims is a beloved TV star—and the defendant is a decorated veteran LAPD detective. It promises to be exactly the kind of media sensation that would establish her as a heavy hitter in the world of criminal law.

Though Sam has doubts about his innocence, she and her two associates (her closest childhood friend and a brilliant ex-con) take the case. Notorious for living by her own rules—and fearlessly breaking everyone else’s—Samantha pulls out all the stops in her quest to uncover evidence that will clear the detective. But when a shocking secret at the core of the case shatters her personal world, Sam realizes that not only has her client been playing her, he might be one of the most dangerous sociopaths she’s ever encountered.

***

What do you think?  Does this one grab you?  Make you want to keep reading?

***

Tuesday Potpourri

TUESDAY POTPOURRI: EXCERPTING “THE CHILDREN”

hummel bookish-LOGO

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, from Tuesday/First Chapter/Intros, hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by Books & a Beat.

Today’s feature is a book I hope to start reading soon:  The Children (e-book), by Ann Leary – a NetGalley ARC that will be released on 5/24.

 

 

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Intro:  One August morning in 1956, Whit Whitman sat down to a breakfast of soft-boiled eggs and toast with his grandmother Trudy.  They dined outdoors on the wide front porch of Lakeside Cottage.  Whit’s father had an early golf game that morning.  His mother and sister had gone for a sail on the lake.  Although he was only eight at the time, Whit would always remember what he and his grandmother talked about during their breakfast.  First, Trudy had described her displeasure at finding the family cat on her bed when she awoke.  She had thought it was her sweater and was alarmed when it sprang from her hands.  They they had discussed the weather.

“Isn’t it cold for August?” Trudy asked.

“Not really,” said Whit.  He wanted to go sailing and was bitter about being left behind to look after his grandmother.

“Won’t you and your father want to plant bulbs this afternoon?  Or is it too soon for bulbs?  Didn’t we just plant the tomatoes?”

Whit answered in a dull monotone.  It was a bit soon for the bulbs.  The tomatoes had been planted in May.

***

Teaser:  I was supposed to write a listicle for BuzzFeed.  They wanted a few for the twelve-to sixteen-year-old female consumer, so I took my laptop down to the kitchen and wrote “23 Beauty Hacks for Hot Summer Days.” (57%).

***

Synopsis:  From New York Times bestselling author Ann Leary comes the captivating story of a wealthy, but unconventional New England family, told from the perspective of a reclusive 29-year-old who has a secret (and famous) life on the Internet.

Charlotte Maynard rarely leaves her mother’s home, the sprawling Connecticut lake house that belonged to her late stepfather, Whit Whitman, and the generations of Whitmans before him. While Charlotte and her sister, Sally, grew up at “Lakeside,” their stepbrothers, Spin and Perry, were welcomed as weekend guests. Now the grown boys own the estate, which Joan occupies by their grace—and a provision in the family trust. When Spin, the youngest and favorite of all the children, brings his fiancé home for the summer, the entire family is intrigued. The beautiful and accomplished Laurel Atwood breathes new life into this often comically rarefied world. But as the wedding draws near, and flaws surface in the family’s polite veneer, an array of simmering resentments and unfortunate truths is exposed.

With remarkable wit and insight, Ann Leary pulls back the curtain on one blended family, as they are forced to grapple with the assets and liabilities – both material and psychological – left behind by their wonderfully flawed patriarch.

***

What do you think?  Is this a book you would keep reading?  I have loved two other books by the author, so I’m eager to immerse myself in this one.

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Tuesday Potpourri

TUESDAY POTPOURRI: EXCERPTING “THE EXCELLENT LOMBARDS”

hummel bookish-LOGO

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, from Tuesday/First Chapter/Intros, hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by Books & a Beat.

Today’s feature is a book I hope to start reading soon:  The Excellent Lombards, by Jane Hamilton, the internationally bestselling author of The Book of Ruth and A Map of the World, a heartfelt coming-of-age story that Karen Joy Fowler calls “a timeless classic…a book you will read and reread.”

 

 

 

 

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Intro: (The Story Always Starts Here)

We were making hay.  Everyone who was there still remembers it, how the sky was its usual high immense self, and as we went along a wash of clouds moved in, the ceiling suddenly quite low.  There was the usual sweet smell of hay drying, the swallows swooping and scolding, and the oil and dust of the baler, a bitter black fragrance.  It had been windy and hot when we started but the heat stilled, dirty and wet; or that was us at least, chaff stuck in our mouths, chaff in our bloodshot eyes, chaff like sequins on our clothes, our flesh.  My father wore what were originally his dark-blue coveralls, the material over his back bleached by the sun to a pinkish white, the fabric drenched and glued to his skin….

***

Teaser:  A bare lightbulb hung from the ceiling over the staircase, the film of dust on the stairs thick, because May Hill did not use this way for coming and going, of course not, because she’d then have to walk through Dolly’s kitchen.  So it was dusty, and up at the top there was not another door, but a wooden gate. (p. 71).

***

Synopsis:  Mary Frances “Frankie” Lombard is fiercely in love with her family’s sprawling apple orchard and the tangled web of family members who inhabit it. Content to spend her days planning capers with her brother William, competing with her brainy cousin Amanda, and expertly tending the orchard with her father, Frankie desires nothing more than for the rhythm of life to continue undisturbed. But she cannot help being haunted by the historical fact that some family members end up staying on the farm and others must leave. Change is inevitable, and threats of urbanization, disinheritance, and college applications shake the foundation of Frankie’s roots. As Frankie is forced to shed her childhood fantasies and face the possibility of losing the idyllic future she had envisioned for her family, she must decide whether loving something means clinging tightly or letting go.

***

I love this author, and have thoroughly enjoyed her previous books.  What do you think?  Would you keep reading?

***

Tuesday Potpourri

TUESDAY POTPOURRI: EXCERPTING “SOMEWHERE OUT THERE”

hummel bookish-LOGO

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, from Tuesday/First Chapter/Intros, hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by Jenn, at Books and a Beat.

Today’s spotlight is shining on one of my newer downloads:  Somewhere Out There, by Amy Hatvany.

 

 

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Intro:   (Jennifer)

I wouldn’t have done it if I hadn’t been desperate.

I knew what the stakes were.  I knew I might get caught.  But it was well past midnight and both my babies were hungry and crying—Brooke, who had just turned four, and Natalie, only six months.  A siren sound emanated from Natalie’s tiny lungs, and Brooke’s choppy, hiccuping sobs felt like sandpaper being rubbed against the tips of my nerves.

***

Teaser:  (Jennifer)

Five days after getting out of jail, after seeing my mother, I was almost out of money.  She had given me just over two hundred dollars, but the cost of the motel room alone took more than half of that, and I spent most of the rest on food and a few pairs of much-needed clean underwear and socks. (33%).

***

Synopsis:  Natalie Clark knew never to ask her sensitive adoptive mother questions about her past. She doesn’t even know her birth mother’s name—only that the young woman signed parental rights over to the state when Natalie was a baby. Now Natalie’s own daughter must complete a family tree project for school, and Natalie is determined to unearth the truth about her roots.

Brooke Walker doesn’t have a family. At least, that’s what she tells herself after being separated from her mother and her little sister at age four. Having grown up in a state facility and countless foster homes, Brooke survives the only way she knows how, by relying on herself. So when she discovers she’s pregnant, Brooke faces a heart-wrenching decision: give up her baby or raise the child completely on her own. Scared and confused, she feels lost until a surprise encounter gives her hope for the future.

How do our early experiences—the subtle and the traumatic—define us as adults? How do we build relationships when we’ve been deprived of real connection? Critically acclaimed author Amy Hatvany considers controversial and complicated questions about childhood through the lens of her finely crafted characters in this astute novel about mending wounds by diving into the truth of what first tore us apart.

***

What do you think?  Does this one pull you in, compelling you to keep reading?

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first paragraphs, TEASER TUESDAYS

TUESDAY POTPOURRI: EXCERPTING “IF YOU LIVED HERE, YOU’D BE HOME NOW”

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Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, from Tuesday/First Chapter/Intros, hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by Jenn, at Books and a Beat.

Today’s featured book is one I grabbed from 2015’s shelves on Pippa, my Kindle:  If You Lived Here, You’d Be Home Now, by Claire LaZebnik, a novel about a young single mother trying to move out of her family’s shadow.

 

 

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Intro:  The heat wave that had tortured us for most of September finally broke and Tuesday morning was cool and overcast, so I volunteered to take Eleanor Roosevelt around the block.  My mother thanked me a little too enthusiastically, effectively conveying the message that her expectations of me were so low that she was bowled over by a simple offer to walk the dog.

I was trying to get Eleanor Roosevelt’s leash on, dodging her happy dancing legs and scolding her to hold still, when my cell phone rang.  I dropped the leash so I could get the phone out of my jeans pocket.  Eleanor Roosevelt stopped wiggling and looked at me, confused.  This wasn’t how the game went.

***

Teaser:  “I went to college for this?” I said to Melanie after twenty minutes of fairly frantic burger-wrapping and hot-dog distributing.

She raised her eyebrows.  “You only went to college for a year.” (p. 57)

***

Blurb:  Rickie left home a long time ago-so how is it that at the age of twenty-five, she’s living with her parents again, and sleeping in the bedroom of her childhood home?

At least one thing has changed since high school: She now has a very sweet but frequently challenging son named Noah, who attends the same tony private LA school she herself attended. Rickie fit in fine when she was a student, but now her age and tattoos make her stand out from all the blond Stepford moms, who are desperate to know why someone so young-and so unmarried-has a kid in first grade.

Already on the defensive, Rickie goes into full mother-tigress mode when her small and unathletic son tells her that the gym teacher is out to get him. She storms the principal’s office, only to discover that Andrew Fulton, the coach, is no dumb jock. As her friendship with Andrew develops, Rickie finds herself questioning her assumptions-about motherhood, being a grown-up, and falling in love.

***

What do you think?  I found this one “hidden” on Pippa…should I keep reading?  Would you?

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