This week (and last) have brought a mix of new library books, recent downloads, and NetGalley and Vine Review reads.  (Above:  The New Neighbors, by Simon Lelic, purchased on April 10).

I like the feeling of making some progress toward acquiring books that I didn’t buy, while also enjoying the bliss of a new release book “whispering” toward Pippa, my Kindle.

So far I have borrowed five books from the library’s Overdrive System…and read four of them.  I just received A Nantucket Wedding, by Nancy Thayer.

Wedding bells are ringing, a family is reunited, and new love is blooming—for better or worse—in this captivating novel from the New York Times bestselling author of The Island House and Secrets in Summer.


This weekend, I plan to start reading some of my new and older downloads…and also spend some time with my granddaughter Fiona.  We have tentative plans for dinner and movie watching.   I love her new look (below); her hair is growing out, and it looks good on her, IMO.  I am even getting used to all the piercings.  LOL.  My daughter has a lot of tattoos, so these girls are definitely expressing themselves.


Here is my daughter, some of her tattoos showing, with David, on their honeymoon trip to Europe.



She has changed a lot since the days when she was a pre-teen.  Here is a shot of her in the townhouse, Circa 1980s.  Those were the days of flipped hair and jeans tucked into socks.  Back then, she was already preparing for her hair styling career.  (Note:  on the left, see my desk with a landline style that one doesn’t see anymore.  Nor do we usually see landlines).


I still have a few landlines, though: Below, the Minnie Mouse phone is on display in my office.


This designer pay phone (which works!) was one I purchased while living in that townhouse.   I also have a Winnie the Pooh designer phone that is resting on a shelf above my office nook…for the day I might want to bring him down.


So now you know some of my secrets…I love designer phones; I enjoy photos from the past; and I am also in the moment with my family and love showing them off a bit.

What are you sharing today?




Good morning!  Welcome to another Sunday Potpourri, a post that focuses on life’s little tidbits, obsessions, etc.

Today I’ve been thinking about bookish things…and also about a change in venue I’m bringing next weekend:  I’ll be posting my Weekly Updates on my An Interior Journey blog.

Yes, it is time for a change.  So far, I’ve featured my updates on Serendipity, Rainy Days and Mondays, and Curl up and Read.  A long time ago, I hosted the event on An Interior Journey.

The only blogs that are not featured are this one and Snow Sparks.  Primarily because they have not been the traditional book blogs.  But that seems to be changing.  So who knows what could happen next?


Now for the bookish things.  Lately I’ve noticed that I get lots of e-mails from Goodreads, offering “deals,” and it is annoying, since in many cases, I already have the books.

But then I realized that there is no category for “already have the book.”  There is “want to read,” “currently reading,” “read,” etc.

And even the categories listed above are confusing, since you might have read the Kindle version of a book, but if your search leads you to the book, and it lands on one of the other versions, it will not show that you’ve read it.

I don’t want to complain, since I can’t offer a solution.  I do know that I stopped participating in the Goodreads Challenge because, if I accidentally clicked that I read a book and it was the wrong version…and then I changed it…the stats would be wrong.

So…I do love Goodreads for telling me what I’ve read (once I click on the correct version), and this has saved me from duplicate book buys.

I need to change my iPhone settings somehow, as I can’t get to the Goodreads page from my phone.  Which means that I can’t find the answers when I’m out and about…at Barnes & Noble, for example.


Any thoughts? Am I obsessively focusing on the wrong things?  Are there ways to manage the Goodreads shelves?



It’s time to talk about obsessions…again.  My Tuesday Book Release Day is one of them. (Above) you’ll notice more of them:  fairytale images, books, quirky things, and my trusty little clock.

So far I’ve only downloaded two newly released books, and one was actually released a week ago.

A Bella Flora Christmas (e-book, novella), by Wendy Wax, was released last week, and is a tempting little novella to keep us satisfied until the next new book in May.

Then…Fragments of the Lost, by Megan Miranda, released today.  I loved this author’s previous books…so I am eager to curl up with this book.  I love the cover, too.

From the New York Times bestselling author of All the Missing Girls and The Perfect Stranger comes a suspenseful psychological mystery about one girl’s search to uncover the truth behind her ex-boyfriend’s death. Perfect for fans of We Were Liars and 13 Reasons Why.


Here’s one coming next Tuesday…I can’t wait!  I may have to pre-order it, just so I won’t forget to download it.  As if.

Little Broken Things, by Nicole Baart

“If you liked Big Little Lies, you’ll want to crack open this new novel by Nicole Baart.” —Southern Living

An engrossing and suspenseful novel for fans of Liane Moriarty and Amy Hatvany about an affluent suburban family whose carefully constructed facade starts to come apart with the unexpected arrival of an endangered young girl.


Today I am reading Poison, by Galt Niederhoffer…a NetGalley ARC to be released next Tuesday.  Chop, chop!

With life-or-death stakes and irreversible consequences, Poison is a chilling and irresistible reminder that the closest bond designed to protect and provide for each other and for children can change in a minute.


So…quite a week, right?  Yesterday I had lunch with my old friend/colleague…and we saw Murder on the Orient Express.  I may have to see it again when it comes to Amazon Prime…or Netflix, as I was so full of lunch and my drinks that I nodded off a couple of times.  LOL.


So…now what?  This afternoon, I’ll be watching for the newsletter e-mail with all the releases (in my genre) for today.  It’s like waiting for a Christmas present.

What are you waiting for?  What are you reading?



Good morning!  It is Sunday, and time to reflect on some of life’s little tidbits…or obsessions.

One of the new books I downloaded this week was The Identicals, by Elin Hilderbrand.  I had no business buying her newest book when I haven’t yet read last season’s Here’s to Us.  And I will get to that one…but something about this year’s offering got to me.  Guess what it was that grabbed me?  The names of the main characters.


Identical twin sisters who couldn’t look more alike…or live more differently.

Harper Frost is laid-back, easygoing. She doesn’t care what anyone thinks of her. She likes a beer and a shot and wouldn’t be caught dead wearing anything fashionable. She’s inherited her father’s rundown house on Martha’s Vineyard, but she can’t hold down a job, and her latest romantic disaster has the entire island talking.

Two beautiful islands only eleven miles apart.

Tabitha Frost is dignified, refined. She prefers a fine wine and has inherited the impeccable taste of her mother, the iconic fashion designer Eleanor Roxie-Frost. She’s also inherited her mother’s questionable parenting skills–Tabitha’s teenage daughter, Ainsley, is in full rebellion mode–and a flailing fashion boutique on Nantucket in desperate need of a cash infusion.

One unforgettable summer that will change their lives forever.

After more than a decade apart, Harper and Tabitha switch islands–and lives–to save what’s left of their splintered family. But the twins quickly discover that the secrets, lies, and gossip they thought they’d outrun can travel between islands just as easily as they can. Will Harper and Tabitha be able to bury the hatchet and end their sibling rivalry once and for all? Before the last beach picnic of the season, there will be enough old resentments, new loves, and cases of mistaken identity to make this the most talked-about summer that Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket have experienced in ages.


The name “Frost” resonates with me.  Before my name was “Snow,” it was Frost.  Yes, seriously. 

Lorraine (Rain) Frost became Laurel-Rain Snow, just for the heck of it.  And as a pen name. Sometimes I feel more like my literary/blogging version than the previous one, but I still like the sound of the name Frost.  LOL.

I am also a sucker for books set on Nantucket.  I’ve never been there IRL, although I did drive down the Cape a few years ago while doing business in Boston.  Sometimes I feel as though the East Coast is my true home.

But then I am also a true California girl.  Can we have more than one true soul?


What are you reflecting on this weekend?  Plans?  Adventures?  Obsessions?



Good morning!  It’s Tuesday, which means….Book Release Day!  How many years did it take for me to learn this fact?  I started noticing that my e-ARCs were all released on a Tuesday.  Then I signed up for a site that e-mails the new releases on each Tuesday.  Duh…I think I’ve got it now!

Today’s new release, and one which I pre-ordered, because I didn’t want to take the chance of FORGETTING about it:  The Child, by Fiona Barton.


As an old house is demolished in a gentrifying section of London, a workman discovers a tiny skeleton, buried for years. For journalist Kate Waters, it’s a story that deserves attention. She cobbles together a piece for her newspaper, but at a loss for answers, she can only pose a question: Who is the Building Site Baby?

As Kate investigates, she unearths connections to a crime that rocked the city decades earlier: A newborn baby was stolen from the maternity ward in a local hospital and was never found. Her heartbroken parents were left devastated by the loss.

But there is more to the story, and Kate is drawn—house by house—into the pasts of the people who once lived in this neighborhood that has given up its greatest mystery. And she soon finds herself the keeper of unexpected secrets that erupt in the lives of three women—and torn between what she can and cannot tell…


I loved her previous book, The Widow.  (Click title for my review).


Here’s another book released today, which I have not yet downloaded…Hmm.  How long before I do?  Best guess?

The Cafe by the Sea, by Jenny Colgan….



Years ago, Flora fled the quiet Scottish island where she grew up — and she hasn’t looked back. What would she have done on Mure? It’s a place where everyone has known her all her life, where no one will let her forget the past. In bright, bustling London, she can be anonymous, ambitious… and hopelessly in love with her boss.

But when fate brings Flora back to the island, she’s suddenly swept once more into life with her brothers — all strapping, loud, and seemingly incapable of basic housework — and her father. Yet even amid the chaos of their reunion, Flora discovers a passion for cooking — and find herself restoring dusty little pink-fronted shop on the harbour: a café by the sea.

But with the seasons changing, Flora must come to terms with past mistakes — and work out exactly where her future lies…


Her previous book, The Bookshop on the Corner, is calling to me, too.  Should I read this one first?  What do you think?



Nina Redmond is a librarian with a gift for finding the perfect book for her readers. But can she write her own happy-ever-after? In this valentine to readers, librarians, and book-lovers the world over, the New York Times-bestselling author of Little Beach Street Bakery returns with a funny, moving new novel for fans of Nina George’s The Little Paris Bookshop.


What a dilemma!  So many lovely books, and what’s even worse:  I already have many, many books on Pippa…and on my stacks that I really should read first.  Sigh.  Check out my stack of more recent “up next” books, which doesn’t even count all those on the shelves in my office.



Some older TBR print books below, in my office:



But adding books to my stacks and my Kindle is an obsession…which is what this blog is all about. 

Do you have obsessions about books?  Other things?




Welcome to my crazy, sometimes chaotic world!  I’m linking up to Bookishly Boisterous, for Bookish/Not So Bookish Thoughts.

I like to make changes…those who read my blogs know that about me.  But what happens when I am forced to change things abruptly, without having control over anything?

I was rereading some of my earlier posts, and found this one from 2010, when a broken pipe in the walls thoroughly disrupted my world, causing a Potpourri of Changes.


A broken pipe; drastic rearrangement of my objects to allow access; and then, finally, the day arrived.

That day was (July 15, 2010), which began at 6 a.m.  Which meant, of course, that I was awake at 3 a.m. so I could spend some quiet time on the computer before their arrival.  A good thing, since there was no more quiet until they finally departed at 4 p.m.

From the stomping around, the pounding, and then the VERY LOUD noise when they sawed through pipes—the vibrations of which knocked one of the clocks off my walls!—to the constant movement through my space…well, let’s just say none of this was conducive to reading.

Right Hand Clock Fell Down!

Nevertheless, I did make some progress on my book.  And I kept reminding myself that, once they were finished, I would have hot water again!  Yay!

So they finally finished that part; they tested everything; and voila, success!

I really enjoyed turning on the hot water to wash dishes, and then…the wonderful shower!  Let me tell you, cold water showers may not be so bad in the hot summer, but there’s nothing like hot water.

What I learned from all this…do not take anything for granted!  Every day, you just go along in your routines, expecting things to work, and then one day, you look outside, see water pooling up, and everything changes.

They’re not done yet, of course.  The plumbing is finished, but now someone comes today to start patching up the holes in the dry wall, which is a several-days process.  More interruptions, but less disruptive.  And I was able to put most of my stuff back.  Not in the areas where dry wall reconstruction will be happening, but my office now looks kind of normal.  Whatever normal looks like, of course.

I had to consider the possibility that maybe I have too much STUFF around.  And while I was playing around on the computer, I put a few things on Craigs List.  Things that I had forgotten that I even had, but which were “unearthed” by this movement of stuff from the various nooks and crannies.


That was more than six years ago, and I still recall how the disruption impacted my world.  Which tells you a little about me…and about how I really like order.  Unless I’m the one moving things around, changing things up.  Hmm.  Since then, however, I’ve done some purges and binned some collectibles.

Here we are at Thursday, and I’ve only finished two books so far.  I just started my third book, a review book from an author that I downloaded a while ago (September).  Not that long, actually, but I should have read it by now.

Commonwealth, by Ann Patchett (click for review)




Confess, by Colleen Hoover (click for review)





Hopefully I will be immersed in the review book by lunch time.

Then I must go check the mail, as my youngest son texted me, asking if I’d gotten the present they sent…and I realized I hadn’t checked the mail in the last two days.  Yikes!

Sometimes I wonder about my decision to have all my mail go to the post office, which requires driving a few miles to get it.  But I really hate the mailboxes outside our condos…and the postal delivery system is unreliable at best.

I long for the days when I had a house with a mail slot in the door.  Easy to get the mail!

Listen to me bitch and moan.  lol.  So many more challenging events can happen in a life, and we don’t even know how strong we can be…until we are in the midst of things.


What potpourri of changes can turn your world upside down?  How do you deal?




Good morning, and welcome to Thursday!  Above, note the little sketches, thanks to one of the little Facebook goodies that appear now and then.  The one on the left shows me, along with my four kids, in November 1979.  And on the right, me as a baby in my mother’s arms, circa…well, not telling!  lol

My hair in that 1979 photo makes me smile.  I remember loving that mop of wavy hair, Hippie style.  Even though the seventies were almost done.  Below, check out the picture without its “sketchiness.”




For years after this initial photo, we revisited the sculptured monument to reprise the family picture.  We had one snapped in 1984…and another in 1991.  We came to think of the sculpture at the local university as Our Place.

Not sure what led me down Memory Lane today, except it probably had something to do with the sketch.  The group that does these little vignettes for FB select the photos, and I’m always amazed at what they pick.

Before I discovered the sketch in my photo folder, I was looking for something else.  My bullet journal photo, since I did one for Bloggiesta.  Today I crossed some things off that list!




One of the things I crossed off:  I finished reading Cruel Beautiful World, by Caroline Leavitt (click for review)….





Another was getting my hands on a copy of Fractured, by Catherine McKenzie, from Amazon Vine:






Something not on my list, but which caught my eye:  I ordered a copy of Nicci French’s sixth novel in the Frieda Klein series, Saturday Requiem:




I’m getting it from a third-party seller in the UK, as it isn’t available here yet.  I’ve loved all of the books in this series:  Blue Monday, Tuesday’s Gone, Waiting for Wednesday, Thursday’s Children, and Friday on My Mind.


Currently, I’m reading All the Ugly and Wonderful Things, by Bryn Greenwood.





What else have I been doing?  Visiting new condo complexes and collecting paperwork….




I am undecided at this point, but I’m leaning toward staying put for a while.  I don’t think I’m ready to be lumped in with groups of seniors playing Bingo…lol.  Of course, they also have wine tasting.  So that might be fun!

What has your week been like?  What, if anything, are you obsessing about?



june 3 office 4

My little nook (above) is a familiar place, one that greets me every morning…and sometimes in the evenings.

Today I was searching for books to add to my already toppling stacks.  Well, the “stacks” on Pippa, my Kindle, are hardly toppling, as the books are resting quietly on the device or in the Cloud.

But…you get the idea.

Today was release day for one I’ve been ogling for a while.  The Kept Woman, by Karin Slaughter, is now on my Pippa!





Husbands and wives. Mothers and daughters. The past and the future.

Secrets bind them. And secrets can destroy them.

The author of Pretty Girls returns with an electrifying, emotionally complex thriller that plunges its fascinating protagonist into the darkest depths of a mystery that just might destroy him.


Then I hightailed it over to Amazon Vine, since I finished the last review book I got from them.  And there it was!  A book I planned to buy, but now…no need.  It is headed my way.  Fractured, by Catherine McKenzie, is one I’ve been eagerly awaiting.





Welcome, neighbor!

Julie Prentice and her family move across the country to the idyllic Mount Adams district of Cincinnati, hoping to evade the stalker who’s been terrorizing them ever since the publication of her bestselling novel, The Murder Game. Since Julie doesn’t know anyone in her new town, when she meets her neighbor John Dunbar, their instant connection brings measured hope for a new beginning. But she never imagines that a simple, benign conversation with him could set her life spinning so far off course.

We know where you live…

After a series of misunderstandings, Julie and her family become the target of increasingly unsettling harassment. Has Julie’s stalker found her, or are her neighbors out to get her, too? As tension in the neighborhood rises, new friends turn into enemies, and the results are deadly.


There are more books I’ve been lusting after…and they are bookmarked on Amazon.  But I should restrain myself…just a bit.  And wait.  For a day or two, at least.

What books are you eagerly anticipating?  Which ones are headed your way?



June 5 - in the nook

Good morning!  The weekend lies ahead, and I am caught up in several obsessions:  my current read, All the Missing Girls, by Megan Miranda (NetGalley); Netflix, and Orange Is the New Black; plus….more episodes of Revenge, Season III.





The weeks fly by…and then the weekends feel like a time to slow down, vegetate, and sleep late.  Of course, I never seem to sleep late, rising at my usual time, but starting the day slowly.  Maybe I’ll have coffee here, at the new set-up, now that the bench has arrived.



June 17 -weekend plans


I will certainly spend part of the day in my little office, with a cup of coffee and enjoying the sight of my fairytale figurines.  Note the two-sided stepmother/witch image on the right.



June 17 - coffee morning


Maybe I’ll set up my Netflix viewing here:



May 7 breakfast in bed with Netflix


Or…if the morning is cool, I could set up here:



may 24 another look at the patio


What possibilities are you pondering for the weekend ahead?  Enjoy!



June 5 Madeine Hatter & Coffee Cup



June 6 - new grocery bags from Vine


It has been a wonderful week shopping ever since I received the carry-all bags shown above.  They came from Amazon Vine, and I am always delighted when I receive unexpected gifts.

Today was another bountiful one, as I requested and will be receiving something else that I did not expect to see on the list there.  This comfy office chair.  My chair is old and does not have arm rests.  So I’m very excited.




office chair



Next, of course, I had to check out the books…and imagine my surprise again!  The Perfect Girl, by Gilly MacMillan, which I have been drooling over for months, is also on its way. 





Can we thank the Amazon Gift Gods now?  What wonderful tidbits are you enjoying today?