Monday, October 16, 2017

*Top Ten Tuesday* Yummy Foods in Books


Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Joood - Hooligan of Platypire reviews bossed me into doing this, so I guess this is a thing I do now. 

This weeks theme is yummy foods mentioned in books. Now this is a tough topic for me, not because I never read about yummy foods in books, because I absolutely do. I wanted to make an entire Thanksgiving dinner with all the fixings in June once because of reading about one in a book at that time. But I couldn't for the life of me tell you what book I was reading about that Thanksgiving dinner in. While I have an excellent memory for the written word, yummy sounding foods tend to be a rather minor element story wise, so they don't tend to stick with me as a connection to a particular book.

So bare with me while I attempt to cobble together a list of books with foods that made my mouth water.

1) Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling - This is one series that I know for sure always makes me hungry. In true Hufflepuff fashion, I want to go to Hogwarts simply for the feast. It always sounds so delicious when it's being described in the books.

2) My Life in France by Julia Child - If you can read THE Julia Child's memoir and not want to eat all the things, you have way more self-control than I do. I got my husband to buy me Mastering the Art of French Cooking because of this book. I haven't used it yet, but I own it.

3) Cooking for Picasso by Camille Aubray - This is another book that features French cuisine as it's set in the French Riviera. The descriptions of the food are absolutely divine.

4) If This Was a Movie by Ginna Moran - There is talk about a bakery in this book that sells amazing macarons that had me salivating. I've never had a macaron, but this book made me want to hop on over to France to pick some up (and I live close enough that a day trip just for macarons wouldn't be entirely unreasonable.)

5) The Winemakers by Jan Moran - Wine counts as food right? There was probably some talk about amazing sounding Italian meals somewhere in this book too, but mostly it made me want some wine.

6) The Art of Baking Blind by Sarah Vaughan - I want to learn how to make an amazing sponge cake because of this book. There were other delicious sounding baked goods discussed as well, but the sponge cake is what really stands out in my memory 2.5 years after reading the book.

7) Taste Test by L.B. Dunbar - One of these days I'm going to go hog-wild making cherry based baked goods all because of this book. I just gotta' find some good recipes for them.

8) Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl - Sure, my cravings from this book may be due in large part to the fact that I saw Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory before I ever read the book, but unless you hate candy, I'm pretty sure you'll have to agree with this choice.

9 & 10) I'm combining nine and ten because not only can I not remember specific book titles from these two authors, but also because they are both based in Louisiana so there's a fair amount of food overlap. In any case, Alexandrea Weis and Mary Theriot have me dying to visit Louisiana to eat all the things, but especially beignets. I end up almost drooling on my kindle just about every time I read any of their books.

So, I did it! I came up with 10 "books" with mouth watering food descriptions. I would advise not reading these books while hungry (it's pretty much like going to the grocery store on an empty stomach. It's just a bad idea).

What books have you read that made your mouth water? - Katie

*If you're stopping by from the linkup, please be sure to leave a link to your post so I can check out your list.*

Have you joined the 12 Books of Christmas Challenge yet? Find out more details and sign up here!

*MadLib Monday* Manhattan Beach by Jennifer Egan

When I was growing up, I loved Mad Libs. The excitement of sort of writing your own story really appealed to me. So I thought it would be fun to mesh that love with my love of books by turning blurbs into mad libs and letting you guys write your own book blurbs. 

For anyone that doesn't know how Mad Libs work, I will ask you for certain parts of speech or other specific things (i.e.: date, age, color, etc.) which you will write down. After you have completed your list, scroll down below the cover image to find the redacted blurb. Then read through it substituting your words where applicable. Try not to laugh. (Laughing is actually strongly encouraged, because this is supposed to be funny.)

Some brief definitions of the parts of speech.
Noun: Person, place, or thing.
Verb: Describes or indicates action.
Adverb: Modifies a verb, adjective, or other adverb expressing manner, place, time, or degree (gently, here, now, very).
Adjective: Names an attribute of a noun (pretty, blue, large)
Pronoun: A word that can function as a noun (I, we, they)
Preposition: a word that combines with a noun or pronoun to form a phrase that usually acts as an adverb, adjective, or noun (on, after, for)

And with that, here we go.

1: Number
2: Noun
3: Adjective
4: Verb ending in s
5: Plural noun
6: Verb
7: Adverb
8: Noun
9: City
10: Plural noun


Genre: Historical Fiction
Published: October 3, 2017
Pages: 448

Manhattan Beach opens in Brooklyn during the Great Depression. Anna Kerrigan, nearly (   1: Number   ) years old, accompanies her father to the house of a man who, she gleans, is crucial to the survival of her (   2: Noun   ) and her family. Anna observes the uniformed servants, the lavishing of toys on the children, and some (   3: Adjective   ) pact between her father and Dexter Styles.

Years later, her father has disappeared and the country is at war. Anna (   4: Verb ending in s   ) at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, where women are allowed to hold (   5: Plural noun   ) that had always belonged to men. She becomes the first female diver, the most dangerous and exclusive of occupations, repairing the ships that will help America (   6: Verb   ) the war. She is the sole provider for her mother, a farm girl who had a brief and glamorous career as a Ziegfield folly, and her lovely, (   7: Adverb   ) disabled sister. At a night club, she chances to meet Styles, the man she visited with her father before he vanished, and she begins to understand the complexity of her father’s (   8: Noun   ).

Mesmerizing, hauntingly beautiful, with the pace and atmosphere of a noir thriller and a wealth of detail about organized crime, the merchant marine and the clash of classes in (   9: City   ), Egan’s first historical novel is a masterpiece, a deft, startling, intimate exploration of a transformative moment in the (   10: Plural noun   ) of women and men, America, and the world.

Now that your fun is through, here is the real blurb for Manhattan Beach by Jennifer Egan.

Manhattan Beach opens in Brooklyn during the Great Depression. Anna Kerrigan, nearly twelve years old, accompanies her father to the house of a man who, she gleans, is crucial to the survival of her father and her family. Anna observes the uniformed servants, the lavishing of toys on the children, and some secret pact between her father and Dexter Styles.

Years later, her father has disappeared and the country is at war. Anna works at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, where women are allowed to hold jobs that had always belonged to men. She becomes the first female diver, the most dangerous and exclusive of occupations, repairing the ships that will help America win the war. She is the sole provider for her mother, a farm girl who had a brief and glamorous career as a Ziegfield folly, and her lovely, severely disabled sister. At a night club, she chances to meet Styles, the man she visited with her father before he vanished, and she begins to understand the complexity of her father’s life.

Mesmerizing, hauntingly beautiful, with the pace and atmosphere of a noir thriller and a wealth of detail about organized crime, the merchant marine and the clash of classes in New York, Egan’s first historical novel is a masterpiece, a deft, startling, intimate exploration of a transformative moment in the lives of women and men, America, and the world.

If you enjoyed this mad lib, please comment with your list below so that the rest of us can get a chuckle out of it as well. And be sure to share with your friends. - Katie 


Have you joined the 12 Books of Christmas Challenge yet? Find out more details and sign up here!

Saturday, October 14, 2017

*Stacking the Shelves* 14 October 2017


(Titles link to Amazon via Amazon Affiliate links)

Stacking The Shelves is a feature/weekly meme created by Tynga’s Reviews in which you share the books you are adding to your shelves, both physical and virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical stores or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!

Now, I already have a monthly post I do featuring the books I get in the mail (and it's a lot because I have a serious Goodreads First Reads giveaway addiction), and I'm going to try to start posting my monthly Read-A-Thon posts again too (even if none of the Platypires will be joining me), which will cover the books I receive through Netgalley. But I also go to my thrift store at least once a week, and often leave with a bag full of books. It's such a common occurrence that I'm known as The Book Lady to the frequent volunteers (and I suspect that they've started scheduling their $1 bag of books sales for Thursdays simply because that is the day I usually visit.) So my Stacking the Shelves posts are going to focus on my thrift store hauls, because this is my blog and I do what I want. 

On that note, here are the books I picked up this week.

Are You Afraid of the Dark by Sidney Sheldon - So the Nickelodeon tv show, Are You Afraid of the Dark was pretty much the best show ever when I was growing up, and even though this book is not related to that in any way other than the title, I just had to buy it (because of the title!) (25 cents)
How to Draw Monsters, Weirdos, and Aliens by Renzo Barto - My son has started to get a little bit interested in drawing, so when I find books about drawing at the thrift store, I typically buy them. ($1)
Skate Farm Vol 2 by Barzak - My daughter asked for this graphic novel and is super happy that she can read it in her head (she's 6, we're still working on the reading thing). I'm beginning to wonder if I should have so readily agreed to the purchase after flipping through it, though. 
Guinea Dog 3 by Patrick Jennings - My son asked for this book. It looks kind of silly, but it's at least age appropriate for sure. 
Would You Rather? Gross-Out by Justin Heimberg & David Gomberg - I bought this book with the intention of using it on my blog's Facebook page to boost interaction. We shall see if it works. 
The Handy Weather Answer Book by Walter A. Lyons, Ph.D. - I have a few books from this series. I figured I might as well add one more. 
Ricky Ricotta's Might Robot vs. the Mutant Mosquitoes from Mercury by Dav Pilkey - I have a few of these books, it's possible I have this book, but I couldn't remember for sure, so I got it just in case. 
Ricky Ricotta's Might Robot vs. the Mecha-Monkeys From Mars by Dav Pilkey - My son likes the Captain Underpants books by Mr. Pilkey, so these are definitely worth a shot as well. 
Ricky Ricotta's Might Robot vs. the Voodoo Vultures From Venus by Dav Pilkey - My computer constantly changes Dav to Das, and it's driving me a wee bit nuts. 
Ricky Ricotta's Mighty Robot by Dav Pilkey - It would be a shame to not own the first book in the series, right?
The Day the Mice Stood Still by Dr. Roach - This looks like a fun story for kids around my daughters age. 
I Survived the San Francisco Earthquake, 1906 by Lauren Tarshis - I want to believe that these are historically accurate where possible. They are offered by Scholastic, so that gives me some hope for that. 
I Survived the Destruction of Pompeii, AD 79 by Lauren Tarshis - I'm kind of interested in this one, even if it is targeted towards 4th graders. 
Abe Lincoln At Last by Mary Pope Osborne - This is a Magic Treehouse Book, and I have several of these for my kids, but I don't think this was one of them. It is now of course, but I'm pretty sure I didn't end up with a duplicate this time around. 
Tales from Shakespeare by Charles and Mary Lamb - As far as I can tell, this is story versions of Shakespeare's plays. That might make them a bit easier to read, maybe. 
On Liberty and Other Writings by J.S. Mill - This particular copy of the book was at one point in time housed on the campus of UCLA (it's stamped on the bottom). It also has lots of underlining and notes in the margins. 
Die Tribute von Panem by Suzanne Collins - Guess which book this is the German translation of. If you've read the book, it should be pretty clear. :) 
The Templars by Piers Paul Read - I've found the Templars mildly fascinating for years. I've become more interested in them recently since working on a fictional series that heavily references their legacy. 
A Dog's Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron - I've seen the movie, I may as well read the book as well, right?
The Haunted Land: Facing Europe's Ghosts After Communism by Tina Rosenberg - This is a Pulitzer Prize winning book and should also be educational. 
Biss Zur Mittagsstunde by Stephenie Meyer - This is the German version of New Moon. I've got half the set in German now! 
Life as I Blow It by Sarah Colonna - This book has a foreword written by Chelsea Handler, and I happen to enjoy Handler's comedy so I imagine this will appeal to me as well. 
The House of Dies Drear by Virginia Hamilton - I feel like I've heard the name of this book before, maybe seen it on some of those lists I love so much. In any case, I have a copy of it now. 
Revolutionary Road by Richard Yates - I'm a big fan of buying books that have been made into movies, so that I can get all snotty about how the book is sooooooo much better than the movie. 
Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers - Historical fiction set during the California gold rush it seems. Should be interesting. 
Wake Up America by Eric Bolling - I won an audiobook copy of this book through a Goodreads First Reads giveaway, but it never arrived. That makes me sad because I was supposed to be listening to it for a review that Bekah the Awesome of Platypire Reviews bought at an auction a while back. Now I can at least still follow through with the review. 

So that's all the books I picked up this week at my thrift store. This haul cost me a whopping $1.75 because the bags of books were a mere quarter a piece this week, but I had those first two books at different prices. 

What books have you added to your shelves this week? - Katie 

*If you're stopping by from the linkup, please be sure to leave a link to your review so I can visit and see your list too.*

Have you joined the 12 Books of Christmas Challenge yet? Find out more details and sign up here!

Friday, October 13, 2017

*Review* The Address by Fiona Davis


Genre: Historical Fiction
Published: August 1, 2017
Pages: 368


Fiona Davis, author of The Dollhouse, returns with a compelling novel about the thin lines between love and loss, success and ruin, passion and madness, all hidden behind the walls of The Dakota, New York City's most famous residence. 

After a failed apprenticeship, working her way up to head housekeeper of a posh London hotel is more than Sara Smythe ever thought she'd make of herself. But when a chance encounter with Theodore Camden, one of the architects of the grand New York apartment house The Dakota, leads to a job offer, her world is suddenly awash in possibility--no mean feat for a servant in 1884. The opportunity to move to America, where a person can rise above one's station. The opportunity to be the female manager of The Dakota, which promises to be the greatest apartment house in the world. And the opportunity to see more of Theo, who understands Sara like no one else . . . and is living in The Dakota with his wife and three young children. 

In 1985, Bailey Camden is desperate for new opportunities. Fresh out of rehab, the former party girl and interior designer is homeless, jobless, and penniless. Two generations ago, Bailey's grandfather was the ward of famed architect Theodore Camden. But the absence of a genetic connection means Bailey won't see a dime of the Camden family's substantial estate. Instead, her -cousin- Melinda--Camden's biological great-granddaughter--will inherit almost everything. So when Melinda offers to let Bailey oversee the renovation of her lavish Dakota apartment, Bailey jumps at the chance, despite her dislike of Melinda's vision. The renovation will take away all the character and history of the apartment Theodore Camden himself lived in . . . and died in, after suffering multiple stab wounds by a madwoman named Sara Smythe, a former Dakota employee who had previously spent seven months in an insane asylum on Blackwell's Island. 

One hundred years apart, Sara and Bailey are both tempted by and struggle against the golden excess of their respective ages--for Sara, the opulence of a world ruled by the Astors and Vanderbilts; for Bailey, the free-flowing drinks and cocaine in the nightclubs of New York City--and take refuge and solace in the Upper West Side's gilded fortress. But a building with a history as rich--and often tragic--as The Dakota's can't hold its secrets forever, and what Bailey discovers in its basement could turn everything she thought she knew about Theodore Camden--and the woman who killed him--on its head. 

With rich historical detail, nuanced characters, and gorgeous prose, Fiona Davis once again delivers a compulsively readable novel that peels back the layers of not only a famed institution, but the lives --and lies--of the beating hearts within.


I received a copy of this book through Penguin's First to Read program in exchange for an honest review. 

This story is told in alternating POVs from two different time periods, and at first, I had kind of a hard time remembering which woman's name applied to which time period. I shouldn't have had that problem as their stories, especially their beginnings were really quite different, but somehow it was difficult for me to keep them straight for the first few chapters. Maybe it's because I just didn't feel much of a connection with either of them at first, so I had no reason to bother trying to remember their names. Once a connection was established and I started wanting things to happen for the characters, keeping them straight was no longer a problem though. 

I really enjoyed the build up of both Sara and Bailey's lives at the Dakota, although I liked seeing things from Sara's POV just a little bit more (I like my historical fiction a bit more historical than the 80s). It was fascinating to me the way the apartment building was being run in the beginning, granted the idea of having servants at all is a bit fascinating for me. What I really liked though, was Sara and Theodore's relationship. Even though he was her boss and married, I was really kind of hoping that something would happen between them because they worked so well together getting The Dakota running (and obviously that would translate to working well together in a relationship, duh!) But I wanted him to do things honorably and divorce his wife even though that was basically unheard of in 1880s. 

When the excitement of the mystery started to escalate, I began to suspect that some things that had been believed to have been true in the 1880s may not have played out exactly as told. And I always get a little bit giddy when I figure things out before the author tells me them. There was definitely some giddiness while reading this book. 

Overall I give The Address 3.986 stars. - Katie 




Fiona Davis was born in Canada and raised in New Jersey, Utah, and Texas. She began her career in New York City as an actress, where she worked on Broadway, off-Broadway, and in regional theater. After ten years, she changed careers, working as an editor and writer, and her historical fiction debut, THE DOLLHOUSE, was published in 2016. She's a graduate of the College of William & Mary and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, and is based in New York City.

*Review* The Sacred Knights by Mary Ting


Genre: YA Paranormal Romance
Published: October 8, 2017
Pages: 212


The Chosen Knights think they’ve found all the clues, but the last one leads them to yet another destination. They astral travel back to the massive destruction of the Knights Templar and find a missing element. As they decipher the final puzzle piece, Cyrus continues to grow his army. 

A powerful volcano in Hawaii erupts, and inhabitants are forced to stay and fight the demons or flee. Many people once believed to be dead rise to help defeat Cyrus, and Venators arrive from Crossroads to help. Time is running out, and the Chosen Knights must decide to finish what they started or leave the battle to find the Snow Queen, who some believe is the only one who can defeat Cyrus.


I was hired to proofread this book. The only aspects of the story that I influenced were the spelling and grammar. If you feel that my connection with the book makes my review untrustworthy, so be it, but this is my honest review. 

I've been with this series since the prequel, and felt like I was waiting forever for the conclusion to the drama. If you have not started this series yet, you're in much better shape than I was, because I believe it's complete now. The major issues at least find their resolution in this book. I do recommend that you read the series in order. These books definitely can not adequately stand alone.

I felt like this book had more twists and turns than a switchback mountain road. Some of them I really probably should have seen coming, but they still caught me off guard pretty much every time. And even though I thought I had most of the pieces to this puzzle at the end of the previous book, I was wrong, so very wrong. There were several little, tiny pieces that played a big part in the outcome of this story, and without them, it definitely would not have been complete.

Overall it was an exciting adventure, an action packed race to the finish line to see who would succeed in their quest, Cyrus or The Chosen Knights. It had me hooked so I just had to keep flipping the figurative pages to find out what would happen next.

I give The Sacred Knights 4.985 stars. - Katie 



International Bestselling/Award Winning Author Mary Ting/M. Clarke resides in Southern California with her husband and two children. She enjoys oil painting and making jewelry. Writing her first novel, Crossroads Saga, happened by chance. It was a way to grieve the death of her beloved grandmother, and inspired by a dream she once had as a young girl. When she started reading new adult novels, she fell in love with the genre. It was the reason she had to write one-Something Great. She also toured with Magic Johnson Foundation to promote literacy and her children's chapter book-No Bullies Allowed.

Ways to keep in touch with the author:

Newsletter Updates: http://eepurl.com/YMyCn

Website: www.authormaryting.com
Instagram: http://instagram.com/authormaryting 
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/authormaryting
Twitter: @maryting
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/11283685-crossroads
Blog: http://www.marytingbooks.blogspot.com/

*Book Blogger Hop* 13 October 2017

We are on to a new week for the Book Blogger Hop hosted by the lovely folks over at Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. This weeks questions is:
Who is your favorite horror/suspense author and why? (submitted by Kitty @ Vicarious Bookworm)
Stephen King because as far as I'm concerned he's the king of horror (and I've had a hard time finding any other horror authors that deliver chills as consistently as King does for me).

What about you? I'd love to hear some suggestions of other horror/suspense authors that I should check out. - Katie

*If you're stopping by from the link up, please be sure to leave a link to your post so I can read your answer as well.*

Have you joined the 12 Books of Christmas Challenge yet? Find out more details and sign up here!

Thursday, October 12, 2017

*Review* Red Hot Reunion by Beth Hale


Genre: Romance
Published: July 18, 2017
Publisher: Kindle Worlds
Pages: 84


When their entire relationship is a lie, how can their love be real? 

Hope Mathison’s ten-year high school reunion is approaching, and she’s dying to show everyone she’s no longer the poor, overweight girl from the trailer park. She’s not only lost the weight that made her so self-conscious for years but even started her own successful business as a software developer. 

Hope’s plan to show her former bullies that she’s overcome the adversity of her home life and the hell they caused her for four long years has one little snag: she’s still single. Her best friend, Marion, has a solution though. Hope will attend a hot-fireman auction and buy herself a date for the reunion. But Hope never expected the hottest fireman at the auction to be Flynn Eaves, a former high school classmate. 

Surprisingly, Flynn not only agrees to pretend to be her boyfriend for the reunion, but asks for a favor in return—that she pretend to be his girlfriend for his cousin’s wedding. As they create a fake relationship to fool old classmates and family members, they discover a real attraction brewing, one he wants to pursue, but the insecurities of Hope’s past might just cost her the one thing she’s always wanted most: to be loved for who she is, even if, at heart, she’ll always be that overweight girl from the trailer park. 

But can she trust Flynn when their relationship was built on a lie? Or will the insecurities of her past tear them apart?


I was hired to proofread this book. The only aspects of the story that I influenced were the spelling and grammar. If you feel that my connection to the book makes my review untrustworthy, so be it, but this is my honest review. 

This book had a Romy and Michelle's High School Reunion feeling to it, which kind of made me want to watch that fabulous movie again. I think that just speaks to how relatable Hope is to the average woman though. I mean, unless you were one of the popular people in high school, it's probably pretty common to dread returning for high school reunions, even if you have turned your life around as Hope has. So I immediately felt a connection with Hope. 

This book was also a bit of a fluffy read. And there's nothing wrong with a fluffy book. Sometimes that's exactly what you need. Just an easy read without a whole lot of drama and conflict. The conflict in this story was largely driven by internal insecurities, with a little bit of high school style drama thrown in. And I'll admit that I definitely wanted to see the high school mean girls get their comeuppance. 

I enjoyed the way Hope and Flynn's relationship built up over time, almost like it was sneaking up on them. And their insecurities about the relationship were quite believable, especially considering how it started. If you're looking for a fun, light-hearted read, this book would definitely be a good choice. 

Overall I give Red Hot Reunion 4.253 stars. - Katie 




Beth Hale writes about what she knows: strong, Southern women and the men who love them. She twines believable characters, realistic circumstances, and heart-felt emotions together to create sassy, sexy contemporary romances. She draws inspiration from the every day life problems we all face, and expands them into vivid, interesting, hard-to-put-down stories.

She is the author of the Unexpected Emotion Series and the Magnolia Series.

**Unexpected Emotion: Love doesn't care if you're looking for it or not.**
These are stand alone books, but follow a trio of friends on their journey to unexpected love. They can be read out of order.

**Magnolia Series: Every town has a story to tell.**
The Magnolia Series are stand-alone books, each with its own set of characters. They are set in small Mississippi towns and showcase strong Southern women who face down their demons and fight for love.

You can visit Beth's website at: www.authorbethhale.com 

You can also email her at: beth@authorbethhale.com

She responds to all comments and emails personally, and loves hearing from readers.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

*Review* There is No F*cking Secret by Kelly Osbourne


Genre: Memoir
Published: April 25, 2017
Pages: 244


People ask Kelly Osbourne all the time: "What's your secret?" 

Kelly Osbourne may not always have been a typical role model, but no one can say that her perspective isn't hard won after spending three decades in the spotlight: from growing up completely exposed to the heavy metal scene--replete with crazy antics most readers have only begun to hear about--to spending her teenage years as the wild middle child of an even wilder Ozzy Osbourne, to the family's popular stint on their wacky eponymous reality show. Since then, Osbourne has forged her own path as a style icon and powerful woman in the media who isn't afraid to tell it like it is and be honest with her fans. But being the daughter of a music legend hasn't always been glamorous; growing up Osbourne is an experience that Kelly wouldn't trade, but there are battle scars, and she is finally now ready to embrace and reveal their origins.

Told as a series of letters to various people and places in her life, There Is No F*cking Secret gives readers an intimate look at the stories and influences that have shaped Osbourne's highly speculated-about life, for better or for worse. The stories will make readers' jaws drop, but ultimately, they will come away empowered to forge their own path to confidence, no matter how deranged and out of control it may be, and to learn the ultimate lesson: that there just is no f*cking secret.



I was both iffy and curious about reading this… I’d actually put a hold on it on overdrive but kept returning it because I couldn’t decide whether or not I actually wanted to read it. Spoiler alert: I totally read it. Which is why I’m writing this review. I know… pretty shocking.

Okay, so I was a sorta/kinda semi fan of hers when I was in high school. I’ve always been bad at watching television, but I did on purpose watch the Osbournes at least 10 times. Which is a whole lot for me, especially back in the days before Netflix. But there’s also drama she’s gotten herself involved with, and I wasn’t sure how or if she’d approach it. She does, btw.

This is told via letters that are written to important parts of her life, not just people. I thought that was pretty interesting. She gets into some detail about some pretty big topics like her drug addiction, family issues, her lyme disease and some controversial topics. I found most of what she had to say to be amusing, sometimes laugh out loud funny, so I did enjoy this. Although I did also mentally cringe at certain things.

The most important thing I took away from this was I totally said, “vagina” loudly in memory of Joan Rivers… and I wasn’t even a fan of the woman. But this book did show me a side of her that I could respect.

Out of everything in it, the thing I related to the most was the bit about her having lyme disease. Not that I have it, because I don’t. But I understand being in constant pain and nobody believing it’s valid. Even my 6 year old is a traitor, and recently said to me, “Your back always hurts. You were born with it. Deal with it.” Punk ass kid.

I still think she’s entitled and I disagree with her on many things, but mostly I found it refreshing to see how much she’s matured. Also, very important to note, I learned the difference between crack and coke while reading this… although I’ve already forgotten which is which. But for a brief moment of my life I knew which was the rich person drug and which was for poor people. And she totally has never touched the poor people drug.

3.2 and 1/5ths Platypires - Joood - Hooligan



Kelly Osbourne is a television personality, host, fashion designer, singer and actress. She first came to prominence while appearing on the Emmy Award-winning reality series The Osbournes with her family from 2002-2005. Since then, Osbourne co-hosted E!’s hit show Fashion Police and was frequently found on the red carpet as one of E!’s Fashion Correspondents. She has also appeared on Dancing with the Stars and guest-starred on various other television shows. A collection of M*A*C Cosmetics co-created with her mother, Sharon, debuted in 2014. She has also designed Stories…By Kelly Osbourne, her first ready-to-wear fashion line with sizes from 0-24. Osbourne was also recently a judge on Australia’s Got Talent and can be seen on the judging panel for Project Runway: Junior.

Monday, October 9, 2017

*Deja Revu* 9 October 2017

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Déjà Revu is a weekly review round-up that is open to all book review blogs.
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Original
Meme
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Contemporary
Fantasy
Romance
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Romance
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Contemporary
Dystopian/Post Apocalyptic
Paranormal
Romance
Suspense/Thriller
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Non-Fiction
Romance

#MadLibMonday - Cooking for Ghosts by Patricia V. Davis

When I was growing up, I loved Mad Libs. The excitement of sort of writing your own story really appealed to me. So I thought it would be fun to mesh that love with my love of books by turning blurbs into mad libs and letting you guys write your own book blurbs. 

For anyone that doesn't know how Mad Libs work, I will ask you for certain parts of speech or other specific things (i.e.: date, age, color, etc.) which you will write down. After you have completed your list, scroll down below the cover image to find the redacted blurb. Then read through it substituting your words where applicable. Try not to laugh. (Laughing is actually strongly encouraged, because this is supposed to be funny.)

Some brief definitions of the parts of speech.
Noun: Person, place, or thing.
Verb: Describes or indicates action.
Adverb: Modifies a verb, adjective, or other adverb expressing manner, place, time, or degree (gently, here, now, very).
Adjective: Names an attribute of a noun (pretty, blue, large)
Pronoun: A word that can function as a noun (I, we, they)
Preposition: a word that combines with a noun or pronoun to form a phrase that usually acts as an adverb, adjective, or noun (on, after, for)

And with that, here we go.

1: Plural noun
2: Adjective
3: Verb, past tense
4: Plural noun
5: City
6: Verb ending in s
7: Verb
8: Plural noun
9: Adjective
10: Plural noun


Genre: Mystery/Paranormal
Published: October 1, 2016
Pages: 360

Do (   1: Plural noun   ) broken long ago forever leave a (   2: Adjective   ) trace?

A Vegas cocktail waitress. An Indian herbalist. A British chemistry professor. An Italian-American widow. Four unique women with one thing in common: each is (   3: Verb, past tense   ) by a tragedy from her past.

Cynthia, Rohini, Jane, and Angela meet on a food blogging site and bond over (   4: Plural noun   ). They decide on impulse to open The Secret Spice, an elegant café on the magnificent ocean liner, the RMS Queen Mary, currently a floating hotel in (   5: City   ). Rich in history and tales of supernatural occurrences, the ship (   6: Verb ending in s   ) her own desperate secrets.

The women are surrounded by ghosts long before they (   7: Verb   ) aboard, but once they do, nothing is quite what it seems. Not the (   8: Plural noun   ) they meet, not their brooding chef’s (   9: Adjective   ) recipes, and not the Queen Mary herself. Yet the (   10: Plural noun   ) they encounter help them discover that there’s always a chance to live, as long as one is alive.

Nominated for the prestigious National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction, COOKING FOR GHOSTS is an unforgettable tale of love, redemption, and divine female power.

Now that your fun is through, here is the real blurb for Cooking for Ghosts by Patricia V. Davis.

Do hearts broken long ago forever leave a tangible trace?

A Vegas cocktail waitress. An Indian herbalist. A British chemistry professor. An Italian-American widow. Four unique women with one thing in common: each is haunted by a tragedy from her past.

Cynthia, Rohini, Jane, and Angela meet on a food blogging site and bond over recipes. They decide on impulse to open The Secret Spice, an elegant café on the magnificent ocean liner, the RMS Queen Mary, currently a floating hotel in Long Beach, California. Rich in history and tales of supernatural occurrences, the ship hides her own desperate secrets.

The women are surrounded by ghosts long before they step aboard, but once they do, nothing is quite what it seems. Not the people they meet, not their brooding chef’s mystic recipes, and not the Queen Mary herself. Yet the spirits they encounter help them discover that there’s always a chance to live, as long as one is alive.

Nominated for the prestigious National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction, COOKING FOR GHOSTS is an unforgettable tale of love, redemption, and divine female power.

If you enjoyed this mad lib, please leave a comment below with your list and be sure to share it with your friends! - Katie 

Sunday, October 8, 2017

*Review* Strike a Pose by Ginna Moran


Genre: YA Romance
Published: September 26, 2017
Pages: 300



Meeting celebrities is nothing new for seventeen-year-old Sage Meadows, whose father is a famous artist and whose mother is the CEO of Shine So Bright, a celebrity-backed non-profit organization. Though her parents discourage a famous lifestyle, Sage can’t help but dream of all the possibilities when she’s surrounded by the glitz and glamour of Hollywood.

An embarrassing incident involving high heels at a charity gala thrown by her mother sends Sage crashing into the arms of Cole Vettel, an up-and-coming singer and the son of a legendary musician. Dating Cole turns Sage’s sheltered life into a media frenzy, and a few negative comments from Cole’s fans push Sage to discover what she desires from the celebrity world.

Wanting more than fame by association, Sage goes against her parents’ wishes for a normal life and pursues a modeling career under a renowned designer she met at a celebrity party. But fame turns out to be more of a nightmare than dream. With the world suddenly following her every move and the tabloids determined to destroy her confidence, Sage must learn to withstand the heat of the spotlight before she gets burned.


I was hired to proofread this book. The only aspects of the story that I influenced were the spelling and grammar. If you feel that my connection to the book makes my review untrustworthy, so be it, but this is my honest review.

This is the second book in the Falling Into Fame series, but it can absolutely be read as a standalone. It features an almost entirely different set of characters than If This Was a Movie, although there are a few cameos from the first book, but knowing their story is not necessary for this one to make sense.

I think Cole Vettel is my new favorite book boyfriend, and I don't typically do the book boyfriend thing. But Cole is a quality kind of guy, the kind of guy you would want your teenage daughter to date. He's sweet, considerate, and he genuinely wants Sage's parents to like him, so he makes the effort to ensure they do. I don't think I could imagine a better book boyfriend than that, for my daughter, who is far too young for this book at the moment, but in six to eight years this is the kind of romance I'd want her to be reading.

While I'd be thrilled to have my daughter reading this story for the romance involved, there are other elements to the story that give me some reason to be concerned. You see, Sage's relationship will Cole leads to some rebelliousness in her and she starts lying to her parents about what she's doing. That's not the kind of behavior that I'd like to encourage in my children (although I'm not naive enough to believe that it's never going to happen). And even though I rarely felt the need to lie to my parents about my activities as a teenager (they were pretty easy-going and I was mostly responsible), I really related to Sage's perspective. Her parents basically pushed her into lying to them by being unreasonable about her relationship with Cole.

So apparently I am at that weird age where I still enjoy YA romance (because I really enjoyed this story), but I also can't help but thinking about the characters being my children rather than me, which makes the reading experience just a little bit different.

Overall I give Strike a Pose 4.872 stars. - Katie 



Ginna Moran is the author of an array of both paranormal and contemporary young adult novels including the Demon Within, Falling into Fame, and Spark of Life series. 

She started writing poetry as a teenager in a spiral notebook that she still has tucked away on her desk today. Her love of writing grew after she graduated high school and she completed her first unpublished manuscript at age eighteen.

When she realized her love of writing was her life’s passion, she studied literature at Mira Costa College in Northern San Diego. Besides writing young adult novels, she was senior editor, content manager, and image coordinator for Crescent House Publishing Inc. for four years.

Aside from Ginna’s professional life, she enjoys binge watching television shows, playing pretend with her daughter, and cuddling with her dogs. Some of her favorite things include chocolate, anything that glitters, cheesy jokes, and organizing her bookshelf.

Ginna is currently hard at work on her next novel.
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