Sunday, September 23, 2018

Sunday Post & Stacking the Shelves - 09/23/18

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba @ The Caffeinated Book Reviewer ~this meme was inspired in part by ~ In My Mailbox~ It's a chance to share News. A post to recap the past week, showcase books and things we have received and share news about what is coming up for the week on our blog.

Pretty normal week here. I'm still working on a non-reading/blogging project that's taking up almost all of my free time. The kids seem mostly over their colds--thank goodness!

THIS PAST WEEK:

Monday: Review of The Roses of Feldstone by Esther Hatch (4 Stars)
Tuesday: Top Ten Fall 2018 TBR List
Wednesday: Can't Wait for A Return of Devotion (Haven Manor, # 2) by Kristi Ann Hunter
Thursday: Review of Ten-Step Drawing: Flowers by Walter Foster Creative Team (3 Stars)

UPCOMING THIS WEEK:

Monday: Review of That Night by Amy Giles
Tuesday: Top Ten Tuesday? & 2018 Series Enders Reading Challenge - September Wrap Up
Wednesday: Can't Wait for Wednesday

Don’t forget to link up for the 2018 Series Enders Reading Challenge! You have until December 15th, 2018 to sing up. Each month there will be a giveaway for those participating with an end of the year giveaway too! Click on the picture below or the link above to find out more!

Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews.

This is the Day: Reclaim Your Dream. Ignite Your Passion. Live Your Purpose.

By: Tim Tebow with AJ Gregory

Publication: September 25th 2018 by Waterbrook Press

244 pages

Genre: Christian, Non-fiction

Source: Publisher via NetGalley (Thank you!!)

( Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository )

*Note: The above links to Amazon and Book Depository are affiliate links. Affiliate links support giveaways for Somewhere Only We Know readers.

Goodreads description--The New York Times best-selling sports star and media icon motivates readers to stop postponing dreams and start making them happen now because--this is the day.

Beyond Tim Tebow's exploits as a Heisman-winning football player, he is widely known and respected for his exemplary character and personal excellence, which have made him a role model for millions. When Tim interacts with the public, he often encounters people who feel "stuck"--unable to take action on matters ranging from daily life to pursuing lifelong dreams. In response, Tim often identifies a crippling fear or lack of courage, to which he advises: "now is the time to take some risks, to quiet the voices of defeat, to step forward and make a mark, because this is the day." In this inspiring, motivational book, readers will receive the advice and encouragement to daily move from "pause" to "play" in finding deeper meaning and success. Tim illustrates the book's themes with stories from his personal life that will delight all readers, including his an update on his dream pursuit of a baseball career

Becoming Brave: How to Think Big, Dream Wildly, and Live Fear-Free

By: Tracey Mitchell

Publication: September 4th 2018 by Thomas Nelson

240 pages

Genre: Non-fiction, Christian

Source: Publisher via NetGalley (Thank you!!)

( Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository )

*Note: The above links to Amazon and Book Depository are affiliate links. Affiliate links support giveaways for Somewhere Only We Know readers.

Goodreads description--A courageous life is not stumbled upon—it is cultivated.

A brave life is the result of choosing to be bold and fearless when everything in you wants to cower in defeat. Tracey Mitchell offers afresh, innovative approach to intentionally living a meaningful, courageous life. Each chapter contains insightful wisdom, real-life stories, and illustrations of how to transform fear and anxiety into confidence and courage and become truly brave.

“A modern-day field guide for the woman who wants to overcome.”

—Jan Greenwood, author of Women at War; Equip Pastor, Gateway Church

“Becoming Brave will light the pathway of ending the crippling stronghold of fear.”

—Julie A. Nolan, president, TCT network

“Becoming Brave is a challenge to entertain the impossible. . . . Get this book. You’ll never look at life the same way again.”

—Kathleen Cooke, cofounder of Cooke Pictures and The Influence Lab; author of Hope 4 Today

“Tracey’s wisdom is motivating and will add value to the lives of all who read this anointed book.”

—Deborah Smith Pegues, TV host; bestselling author, 30 Days to Taming Your Tongue

That's it for my shelves and recaps of my past and upcoming week. What did you add to your shelves this week? Any bookish news you want to talk about? Let me know!

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Ten-Step Drawing: Flowers - Review

Ten-Step Drawing: Flowers

By: Walter Foster Creative Team

Publication: August 7th 2018 by Walter Foster Publishing

128 pages

Genre: Non-fiction, Arts, Crafts

Source: Publisher via NetGalley (Thank you!!)

( Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository )

*Note: The above links to Amazon and Book Depository are affiliate links. Affiliate links support giveaways for Somewhere Only We Know readers.

Goodreads description--Featuring illustrated tutorials for drawing 75 different flowers, Ten-Step Drawing: Flowers breaks down each subject into 10 simple steps; moreover, all you need is a pen or pencil and a piece of paper!

Handy prompts help artists by encouraging artistic individuality, as well as helpful tips for drawing other subjects not featured in the book. Ten-Step Drawing: Flowers is sure to encourage even the most reluctant amateur artist to break out a pen and paper and doodle to their heart’s content! !

After my failed attempt at Ten-Step Drawing: Animals, I was afraid that Ten-Step Drawing: Flowers would follow the same path to DNF. But as it turns out, flowers are a little bit less complicated than animals--at least for me.

One thing I've learned over the years with my attempts to draw is that I don't respond well to starting off with circles and guidelines. I mean yes sometimes I use them, but not nearly so much as these books do. Perhaps, that might be one of the reasons why I'm not as skilled as I'd like to be. But once I get a circle down on my paper--no matter how lightly drawn--I can't seem to get passed that shape and transform it into something else. So in this way, these tutorials didn't serve me well.

I think for me it would have been better to focus on one flower or bloom and get it down quite well before doing groups of each particular flower. I suppose the groupings were to show the different possible positioning of each flower type, but I just needed more detail on one flower or petal even to get the general guidelines before moving into groupings.

I also mentioned this in my review on Ten-Step Drawing: Animals, but I didn't like that one step wasn't just one line. One step could actually be broken down quite extensively sometimes. So this felt like stretching the title a bit in my opinion. Perhaps I'm too literal.

I didn't enjoy Ten-Step Drawing: Flowers as much as I hoped I would but I did finish it feeling challenged. This to me is probably the perfect place to be. I don't want to finish a drawing tutorial book feeling like I can already do the art available without the help of the book such as I felt with Anywhere, Anytime Art: Colored Pencil, but I also don't want to feel as though I'll never be able to achieve any of the subject matter in my own art such as I felt with Ten-Step Drawing: Animals. That being said, Ten-Step Drawing: Flowers lands right in the middle with a 3 Star rating. Have you read Ten-Step Drawing: Flowers? What did you think? Let me know!

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Can't Wait for A Return of Devotion

Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Wishful Endings to spotlight and talk about the books we're excited about that we have yet to read. Generally they're books that have yet to be released as well. It's based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine. Find out more here.

A Return of Devotion (Haven Manor, # 2)

By: Kristi Ann Hunter

Expected Publication: February 5th 2019 by Bethany House Publishers

352 pages

Genre: Historical Fiction, Christian Fiction

( Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository )

*Note: The above links to Amazon and Book Depository are affiliate links. Affiliate links support giveaways for Somewhere Only We Know readers.

Goodreads description--Daphne Blakemoor was perfectly happy living in her own secluded world for twelve years. She had everything she needed—loved ones, a true home, and time to indulge her imagination. But when ownership of the estate where she works as a housekeeper passes on, and the new marquis has an undeniable connection to her past, everything she's come to rely upon is threatened.

William, Marquis of Chemsford's main goal in life is to be the exact opposite of his father. Starting a new life in the peace and quiet of the country sounds perfect until his housekeeper turns his life upside down.

They've spent their lives hiding from the past. Can they find the courage to face their deepest wounds and, perhaps, find a new path for the future together?

What are you guys waiting on this week? Let me know!

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Top Ten Fall 2018 TBR List

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. This week's topic is Top Ten Binge Worthy TV Shows.

  1. Mirage by Somaiya Duad - I've actually started this one, but it hasn't hooked me just yet. I've also not been in much of a reading mood lately so that doesn't help.
  2. Sadie by Courtney Summers - I'm late getting to this one, but I'm not really in the mood for a mystery right now unfortunately.
  3. Iron Gold by Pierce Brown - I cannot believe that I haven't read this yet. Truly it has only been because this series is so long that I haven't wanted to get bogged down. But I know it'll be so good once I start it.
  4. Strange Grace by Tessa Gratton
  5. The Becoming of Noah Shaw by Michelle Hodkin - I am like a year late getting to this book, but I've been putting it off because the Mara Dyer series ended a little rough for me.
  6. Damsel by Elana K Arnold - Ratings are coming in on this one and they're not very good so I'm not all that excited about it anymore.
  7. The Brave Art of Motherhood by Rachel Marie Martin - I'm actually 20% through this one so hopefully I'll mark it off the TBR list soon.
  8. Defiant Joy by Stasi Eldredge
  9. The Resolutions by Mia Garcia
  10. Bible Journaling Made Simple by Sandy Allnock

My TBR list is forever long and these are almost ALL review books. Which books are on your fall 2018 TBR list? Let me know!

Monday, September 17, 2018

The Roses of Feldstone - Review

The Roses of Feldstone

By: Esther Hatch

Publication: August 1st 2018 by Covenant Communications

224 pages

Genre: Historical Fiction

Source: Publisher via NetGalley (Thank you!!)

( Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository )

*Note: The above links to Amazon and Book Depository are affiliate links. Affiliate links support giveaways for Somewhere Only We Know readers.

Goodreads description--Standing before Feldstone Manor, site of so many happy memories, Rose Davenport feels nothing but dread. Her family’s annual visit to the stately home was once brightened by her friendship with the earl’s youngest son, William, but everything changed the day his elder brother was disinherited and William became heir to his father’s earldom. From that moment, William made it clear he has no interest in continuing an acquaintance with Rose. Heartbroken, she sets out to prove that she will simply not be ignored—or outdone—by the arrogant future lord of the manor. When his elder brother marries for love, William’s entire life changes in an instant. He does not have the same option to marry whom he chooses, and he must let go of the feelings he has harbored for his dear friend, Rose. He steels himself against her annual visits, determined to keep his feelings for her a secret. But when he makes the hasty promise to marry within six months, he never dreams that his actions will lead Rose to impulsively undertake the same challenge.

The Roses of Feldstone was such a pleasant surprise. I sometimes feel like I'm taking a risk when I check out a new (to me) author. But in this case, the risk was rewarded with such a great experience. I did not want to put this book down.

Before I discuss the characters and plot, I did briefly want to mention that I appreciated that the title of this book goes beyond the main character's name being Rose.

The description above pretty much tells you all you need to know--perhaps even tells you too much. An author has to walk a fine line when the reader has more information than the characters do. It can be really frustrating to read what feels obvious yet the characters aren't picking up the signs. In the case of The Roses of Feldstone, I felt that Esther Hatch just toed the line. Too much more or taken just one step further would have frustrated me. I think maybe this worked well because both Rose and William were in the dark about multiple things so it helped that it wasn't just one or the other missing out.

I immediately connected to Rose. Who hasn't been in a situation where they were forced to socialize with someone they have a huge crush on that isn't reciprocated? I certainly know that I have. She handles herself well given all of the circumstances. William was even easy to relate to because his feelings were pretty obvious to me even if Rose was oblivious.

About the 60% mark I started to feel like things were wrapping up too quickly, and I wasn't sure how the conflict would last through the remainder of the book, but Esther Hatch did a great job of carrying things out just right.

I even appreciated the small historical bit about the chimney sweep. This was included just perfectly in that it gave the story relevance and context while not overwhelming the story line.

The Roses of Feldstone was such a pleasant reading experience for me despite being fearful of a new author. I'll be on the lookout for more Esther Hatch in the future. I absolutely adored Rose and William's story. The Roses of Feldstone gets 4 Stars. Have you read The Roses of Feldstone? What did you think? Let me know!

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Sunday Post - 9/16/18

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba @ The Caffeinated Book Reviewer ~this meme was inspired in part by ~ In My Mailbox~ It's a chance to share News. A post to recap the past week, showcase books and things we have received and share news about what is coming up for the week on our blog.

This has felt like a long week. Little Girl only had school on Tuesday because Thursday was a "teacher in service" day. Thursday I took Little Girl to the park since there was no school. I was really hoping to tire her out so that she would nap good. But she hasn't napped good this entire week. Occasionally she'll go a day or two without napping, but never so many days in a row. I'm not ready to give naps up yet! Even though we didn't have a ton on our schedules this week every day felt like Friday to me. Saturday we traveled to my sister and brother-in-law's for my niece's 2nd birthday! Man time is just going by too quickly. She's an adorable little girl, and I wish we could see her more frequently. Being stuck in the car on the road more hours than we were out and playing was hard on all of us, so we're having a lazy day today (minus going to the grocery store this afternoon). I guess this week was the week of the 2 Star reviews. I didn't do that on purpose. Honestly, I haven't been reading much at all this month as I've been working on a project that's taking up all of my free time.

THIS PAST WEEK:

Monday: Review of The Opposite of Innocent by Sonya Sones (2 Stars)
Wednesday: Can't Wait for Kingdom of Ash (Throne of Glass, # 7) by Sarah J Maas
Thursday: Review of Anywhere, Anytime Art: Color by Cara Hanley (2 Stars)

UPCOMING THIS WEEK:

Monday: Review of The Roses of Feldstone by Esther Hatch
Tuesday: Top Ten Tuesday?
Wednesday: Can't Wait for Wednesday
Thursday: Review of Ten-Step Drawing: Flowers by Walter Foster Creative Team

Don’t forget to link up for the 2018 Series Enders Reading Challenge! You have until December 15th, 2018 to sing up. Each month there will be a giveaway for those participating with an end of the year giveaway too! Click on the picture below or the link above to find out more!

That's it for my shelves and recaps of my past and upcoming week. What did you add to your shelves this week? Any bookish news you want to talk about? Let me know!

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Anywhere, Anytime Art: Colored Pencil - Review

Anywhere, Anytime Art: Colored Pencil

By: Cara Hanley

Publication: May 1st 2018 by Walter Foster Publishing

128 pages

Genre: Non-fiction, Arts, Crafts

Source: Publisher via NetGalley (Thank you!!)

( Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository )

*Note: The above links to Amazon and Book Depository are affiliate links. Affiliate links support giveaways for Somewhere Only We Know readers.

Goodreads description--Anywhere, Anytime Art: Colored Pencil makes colored pencils approachable and accessible. The author’s contemporary art style takes a fresh approach to colored-pencil artwork, which can be dry and traditional-looking. Anywhere, Anytime Art: Colored Pencil presents colored-pencil drawing in a youthful way, focusing on urban and suburban scenes as well as subjects from daily life.

Learn basic drawing topics like tools, materials, drawing techniques, and color theory, and then dive into helpful tips, hacks, and techniques for creating art while out and about. Step-by-step projects covering a variety of subjects, from campers and cafes to cats and cityscapes, make drawing with colored pencils quick, easy, and fun for artists of all skill levels.

Learn to be spontaneous with your artwork, and expand your artistic horizons!

I really like colored pencils. I like the control and precision of being able to get color into a small space with the tip of the pencil. However, my least favorite thing about colored pencils is that they don't blend into each other. But I still enjoy this art medium and find myself pulling my colored pencils more frequently than almost anything else. So when I saw Anywhere, Anytime Art: Colored Pencil I was really looking forward to getting some tips and tricks that I didn't already have (because I'm seriously an amateur artist).

It didn't take me long before I began to question the credentials of the author of this book. I mean I hate to say that. My feelings toward this book strike up the saying that my mom used to say to me when I was a kid. "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all." But as a reviewer I need to give my thoughts on a book even if they are "negative." Perhaps the quality of the illustrations in this book is due to the author's "style". I mean she labels herself an illustrator and not a photo-realist. However, I really found myself thinking that I--even with my non-existent art training--could draw at least just as well as this author if not better in some instances. Others she definitely has me beat. Here, let me include a page from the section on drawing your pets to prove my point:

I mean seriously? How did this end up in a published book teaching art techniques? I'm sorry, but the illustration stands for itself. Like I said, I could do work that good. I mean maybe that's the point? To appeal to the amateur? Saying "hey, even you can do this?" But even if I don't yet want to review an art book that leaves me feeling like I could never achieve the results the book is trying to teach, I also really don't want to feel like I can already achieve what the book is trying to teach without even trying or learning something new. One of my biggest pet peeves was the lack of straight lines. I mean sometimes even seasoned and experienced artists just need to use a ruler. I continued reading simply because it was an easy and fast read.

As much as I hate to say all of this, Anywhere, Anytime Art: Colored Pencil was a real disappointment. For me, this book gets 2 Stars. Have you read Anywhere, Anytime Art: Colored Pencil? What did you think? Let me know!

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Can't Wait for Kingdom of Ash

Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Wishful Endings to spotlight and talk about the books we're excited about that we have yet to read. Generally they're books that have yet to be released as well. It's based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine. Find out more here.

Kingdom of Ash (Throne of Glass, # 7)

By: Sarah J Maas

Expected Publication: October 23rd 2018 by Bloomsbury YA

720 pages

Genre: Young Adult/New Adult, Fantasy

( Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository )

*Note: The above links to Amazon and Book Depository are affiliate links. Affiliate links support giveaways for Somewhere Only We Know readers.

Goodreads description--Years in the making, Sarah J. Maas’s #1 New York Times bestselling Throne of Glass series draws to an epic, unforgettable conclusion. Aelin Galathynius’s journey from slave to king’s assassin to the queen of a once-great kingdom reaches its heart-rending finale as war erupts across her world. . .

Aelin has risked everything to save her people―but at a tremendous cost. Locked within an iron coffin by the Queen of the Fae, Aelin must draw upon her fiery will as she endures months of torture. Aware that yielding to Maeve will doom those she loves keeps her from breaking, though her resolve begins to unravel with each passing day…

With Aelin captured, Aedion and Lysandra remain the last line of defense to protect Terrasen from utter destruction. Yet they soon realize that the many allies they’ve gathered to battle Erawan’s hordes might not be enough to save them. Scattered across the continent and racing against time, Chaol, Manon, and Dorian are forced to forge their own paths to meet their fates. Hanging in the balance is any hope of salvation―and a better world.

And across the sea, his companions unwavering beside him, Rowan hunts to find his captured wife and queen―before she is lost to him forever.

As the threads of fate weave together at last, all must fight, if they are to have a chance at a future. Some bonds will grow even deeper, while others will be severed forever in the explosive final chapter of the Throne of Glass series.

What are you guys waiting on this week? Let me know!

Monday, September 10, 2018

The Opposite of Innocent - Review

The Opposite of Innocent

By: Sonya Sones

Publication: September 4th 2018 by HarperTeen

272 pages

Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Verse

Source: Publisher via Edelweiss (Thank you!!)

( Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository )

*Note: The above links to Amazon and Book Depository are affiliate links. Affiliate links support giveaways for Somewhere Only We Know readers.

Goodreads description--Heartrending and chilling by turns, The Opposite of Innocent is Sonya Sones’s most gripping novel in verse yet—the story of a girl who finds herself trapped in an abusive relationship with a man twice her age.

Lily has been crushing on Luke, a friend of her parents’, ever since she can remember. He’s been away for two endless years, but he’s finally returning today. Lily was only twelve when he left. But now, at fourteen, she feels transformed. She can’t wait to see how Luke will react when he sees the new her. And when her mother tells her that Luke will be staying with them for a while, in the bedroom right next to hers, her heart nearly stops.

Having Luke back is better than Lily could have ever dreamed. His lingering looks set Lily on fire. Is she just imagining them? But then, when they’re alone, he kisses her. Then he kisses her again. At first, the secrecy and danger of their relationship thrills Lily. But soon Luke begins to expect, then demand much more than kissing. He won’t stop pressuring her to do things she doesn’t want to do. Lily wishes she had never flirted with Luke. She feels imprisoned in a situation that’s all her fault. How will she escape?

In this powerful tale of a terrifying leap into young adulthood, readers will accompany Lily on her harrowing journey from hopelessness to hope.

I literally just finished The Opposite of Innocent moments ago and I feel like a fish with my mouth gaping open...words wanting to spill out of my mouth and closing with none escaping.

I don't know what I was thinking when I read the description of this book and thought it sounded like one I needed to read... Because I did. Read the description. And it was totally accurate. But once I started reading this I just kept thinking "why did I want to read this?" The topic is so utterly uncomfortable. I literally feel sick to my stomach right now. I just don't know what I was thinking. Truthfully I thought about DNFing this multiple times. The subject content, Taylor, etc. The ONLY reason I kept reading was because of how quickly I was making progress. And that was only due to the book being written in prose.

I've always wanted to read a book written in poem form. I can't say any of these "poems" struck me as beautiful in content, structure, or anything else that poems usually make me feel. Yet they contributed to being easy and quick to read.

Speaking of quick... Everything happened quickly in this book. The inappropriate relationship, the abuse, the ending especially.

I was so frustrated with Lily. I mean my husband and I are 12 years apart in our ages. We met when I was 18 and he was turning 30 but didn't date until about 3 years later and got married about 2 years after that. And even though I was only 4 years older than Lily when my husband and I met, there is a huge difference in the maturity of a 14 year old and an 18 year old. I can talk all day about what she should have known, but what I was really frustrated with her for is how often she acted one way even though she felt a completely different way. Very early in the relationship she feels wrong about things but continues to move forward.

I was frustrated with her friends. Assuming they're also 14 years old, the sexual experience they talked about and had was just worrisome even if today's youth is regularly this experienced by this age--which just makes me so sad if that's true. But Lily tells them about being interested in an older guy. They're not supportive which is great, but they still know she's continuing her path. When her physical appearance started showing signs of depression, showing signs that something is really wrong with her, why didn't they go to someone for help? Step up friends.

Which brings me to me next point, so many people began to be able to see on the outside that Lily was going through something. They reached out to her. Yet no one can help if they don't know what's wrong and what the problem is.

I truly don't know how to rate this book. I read it quickly which usually falls into the good category, but everything about this book made me feel nauseated. While the subject isn't supposed to be appealing, I can't say I enjoyed the reading experience. This was my first novel written in prose, but that wasn't overly impressive either except for making the book short and fast. I didn't like any of the characters. The book literally ended. I felt like the last ten chapters were missing. It stopped in the middle of a thought almost. I just want my two days of reading back to put them into a different book...a much happier book. Ultimately, The Opposite of Innocent gets 2 Stars from me. Have you read The Opposite of Innocent? What did you think? Let me know!

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Sunday Post - 9/9/18

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba @ The Caffeinated Book Reviewer ~this meme was inspired in part by ~ In My Mailbox~ It's a chance to share News. A post to recap the past week, showcase books and things we have received and share news about what is coming up for the week on our blog.

Last Sunday resulted in some family drama. Ugh I'm so tired of this particular drama. I know some of you can relate. We spent Labor Day at home with the kids which wasn't at all what we originally planned to do. But it ended up being a very relaxing time for us which was needed. We ordered carryout pizza for dinner and were super lazy. Tuesday and Wednesday were normal days. Thursday Husband was off work to go an hour away to try out some new car seats in my car. That ended up taking less time than I expected. My number one choice didn't fit like I'd hoped so we went with number two. Unfortunately when we got home and got it out of the box the recline lever was broken. Doesn't that just seem typical? I honestly wasn't even surprised. I called customer service though, and they are sending a new car seat for replacement that should be here within two business days. Friday was also a typical day. Unfortunately, Baby Boy is cutting two teeth. One has broken the skin and the other still hasn't but you can tell it is coming soon. He's also STILL dealing with a cold, and he's going through a Wonder Week leap. SO that's resulted in a lot of whining, clinging, and general fussiness that I'm ready to be over. Sorry for the negative vibe to this week's recap. Sometimes that just happens, right?

THIS PAST WEEK:

Monday: No blog post - Labor Day (US)
Tuesday: Top Ten Binge Worthy TV Shows
Wednesday: Can't Wait for Serious Moonlight by Jenn Bennett
Thursday: Review of Meet the Sky by McCall Hoyle (3.5 Stars)

UPCOMING THIS WEEK:

Monday: Review of The Opposite of Innocent by Sonya Sones
Tuesday: Top Ten Tuesday?
Wednesday: Can't Wait for Wednesday
Thursday: Review of Anywhere, Anytime Art: Colored Pencil by Cara Hanley

Don’t forget to link up for the 2018 Series Enders Reading Challenge! You have until December 15th, 2018 to sing up. Each month there will be a giveaway for those participating with an end of the year giveaway too! Click on the picture below or the link above to find out more!

That's it for my shelves and recaps of my past and upcoming week. What did you add to your shelves this week? Any bookish news you want to talk about? Let me know!

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Meet the Sky - Review

Meet the Sky

By: McCall Hoyle

Publication: September 4th 2018 by Blink

256 pages

Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary

Source: Publisher via Edelweiss (Thank you!!)

( Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository )

*Note: The above links to Amazon and Book Depository are affiliate links. Affiliate links support giveaways for Somewhere Only We Know readers.

Goodreads description--From award-winning author McCall Hoyle comes a new young adult novel, Meet the Sky, a story of love, letting go, and the unstoppable power of nature.

It all started with the accident. The one that caused Sophie’s dad to walk out of her life. The one that left Sophie’s older sister, Meredith, barely able to walk at all.

With nothing but pain in her past, all Sophie wants is to plan for the future—keep the family business running, get accepted to veterinary school, and protect her mom and sister from another disaster. But when a hurricane forms off the coast of North Carolina’s Outer Banks and heads right toward their island, Sophie realizes nature is one thing she can’t control.

After she gets separated from her family during the evacuation, Sophie finds herself trapped on the island with the last person she’d have chosen—the reckless and wild Finn Sanders, who broke her heart freshman year. As they struggle to find safety, Sophie learns that Finn has suffered his own heartbreak; but instead of playing it safe, Finn’s become the kind of guy who goes surfing in the eye of the hurricane. He may be the perfect person to remind Sophie how to embrace life again, but only if their newfound friendship can survive the storm.

Praise for McCall Hoyle’s debut novel, The Thing with Feathers:

“Beautiful, touching, and bursting with hope.”

Pintip Dunn, award-winning and New York Times bestselling author

“Heartfelt and affecting. Hoyle tells a familiar story, but does so in a voice that is rarely heard, and that makes all the difference.”

Leah Thomas, William C. Morris Award finalist and author of Because You’ll Never Meet Me and Nowhere Near You

“The inspiring story of one girl’s struggle not to be defined by her illness, The Thing with Feathers soars as it explores what it means to live—and love—without fear.”

Kathryn Holmes, author of How It Feels to Fly

“A refreshing, quality debut—meaningfully woven and beautifully engaging, from the first page to the last.”

YA Books Central (5 stars)

The description of Meet the Sky is accurate, but the vibe it gave me was a good bit different than the book turned out to be. Sophie has really stepped up since the accident. Her dad's guilt caused him to turn to alcohol and eventually leave. Sophie's had to take on so much extra responsibility in order to keep the business and family together. Because of that she's really stopped taking any additional risks. And sometimes even dreaming of the future is a risk.

Finn has suffered his own traumatic events in life. But he's taken on a different perspective than Sophie. He wants to live each moment to the fullest...even if that means living a little dangerously. Finn's attitude frustrates Sophie even more because he can come off as careless and considering he stood her up for their freshman school dance, he's the last person she'd want to be stuck with in a hurricane.

I've been a little tired of hurricane stories after Katrina. Despite hurricanes occurring yearly and other areas being devastated by them, for some reason Hurricane Katrina stories dominated the market there for a while. I'm thankful we're likely past these stories. However, the hurricane stories that I've read haven't usually focused on a character riding out the storm so much as dealing with the aftermath. Living in Central Alabama, we've ridden out several hurricanes in my life. From Opal, Ivan, Katrina, Irma, and others. As far inland as we are, we don't usually get the brunt of the devastation even though it isn't unusual for these storms to still be quite large by the time they reach us. Regardless, I both liked and disliked this aspect. I liked it for it's uniqueness, but at the same time it felt unrealistic--even though many people are affected by these types of storms.

Favorite quotes:

-I never would have wished for this hurricane. I never would have wished for a flat tire or a horse to be caught in a fence and injured. But I can learn from these experiences.

-One minute the wind blows, knocking down buildings. The next minute it's drying puddles after the storm. One minute it's blowing families apart. The next it's blowing a handful of random people together, teaching them to work together and opening their eyes to new ways of thinking.

I read Meet the Sky quickly which is always a good thing in my book. I was invested in the characters, the lessons they learn, the struggles they had, and their relationships with one another. I initially thought to give Meet the Sky 4 Stars, but after a few day's reflection, I'm not sure that this will be a book that sticks with me and I remember much about after a few months. Ultimately, Meet the Sky gets 3.5 Stars. Have you read Meet the Sky? What did you think? Let me know!

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Can't Wait for Serious Moonlight

Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Wishful Endings to spotlight and talk about the books we're excited about that we have yet to read. Generally they're books that have yet to be released as well. It's based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine. Find out more here.

Serious Moonlight

By: Jenn Bennett

Expected Publication: April 16th 2019 by Simon Pulse

432 pages

Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary

( Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository )

*Note: The above links to Amazon and Book Depository are affiliate links. Affiliate links support giveaways for Somewhere Only We Know readers.

Goodreads description--After an awkward first encounter, Birdie and Daniel are forced to work together in a Seattle hotel where a famous author leads a mysterious and secluded life in this romantic contemporary novel from the author of Alex, Approximately.

Mystery-book aficionado Birdie Lindberg has an overactive imagination. Raised in isolation and homeschooled by strict grandparents, she’s cultivated a whimsical fantasy life in which she plays the heroic detective and every stranger is a suspect. But her solitary world expands when she takes a job the summer before college, working the graveyard shift at a historic Seattle hotel.

In her new job, Birdie hopes to blossom from introverted dreamer to brave pioneer, and gregarious Daniel Aoki volunteers to be her guide. The hotel’s charismatic young van driver shares the same nocturnal shift and patronizes the waterfront Moonlight Diner where she waits for the early morning ferry after work. Daniel also shares her appetite for intrigue, and he’s stumbled upon a real-life mystery: a famous reclusive writer—never before seen in public—might be secretly meeting someone at the hotel.

To uncover the writer’s puzzling identity, Birdie must come out of her shell…discovering that most confounding mystery of all may be her growing feelings for the elusive riddle that is Daniel.

What are you guys waiting on this week? Let me know!

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Top Ten Binge Worthy TV Shows

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. This week's topic is Top Ten Binge Worthy TV Shows.

  1. Dawson's Creek - The original binge worthy show. Seasons 1 and 2 were good, but oh how I love Seasons 3 and 4.
  2. Buffy the Vampire Slayer - I never watched Buffy when it was on, but Husband and I actually did binge watch it after we got married. We'd watch so many episodes in a day sometimes. Occasionally we'd spend an entire Saturday just watching one after the other.
  3. Gilmore Girls - Man, I think I've binged this entire series like 5 or 6 times. Once you start it you're hooked until the end of Season 7.
  4. One Tree Hill - This show isn't without faults, but I still enjoyed it enough to list it.
  5. Grey's Anatomy - Even though I mostly tried to focus on shows that are over, Grey's has enough prior seasons for you to binge. And believe me, you will. Especially the earlier ones.
  6. Heartland - This is actually a Canadian show. My mom got me started on it, and I didn't think I'd love a show that my mom also loved, but I really do.
  7. When Calls the Heart - Another one I wasn't sure I'd enjoy. But I adore Elizabeth and Jack and I think the actors/actresses make this show.
  8. Felicity - This one is short, and the last season got a bit weird, but overall I enjoyed the process.
  9. Downton Abbey - Absolutely love this one. We binged the first two seasons and then were caught up to watch weekly.
  10. Smallville - I think some people might doubt this one a little. I hated Lois at first. I was a Lana fan even knowing that Clark and Lois eventually end up together. But I absolutely LOVED the way the writers worked the Clark and Lois relationship.

I had such a hard time narrowing down my list to ten shows. Which TV shows do you recommend to binge watch? Let me know!

(Links go to IMDB.)

Sunday, September 2, 2018

Sunday Post - 9/2/18

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba @ The Caffeinated Book Reviewer ~this meme was inspired in part by ~ In My Mailbox~ It's a chance to share News. A post to recap the past week, showcase books and things we have received and share news about what is coming up for the week on our blog.

Sunday Baby Boy was worse with his cold. Monday I woke up feeling sick. Tuesday I had a hair appointment--just a trim but every little bit helps. Thursday was a whirlwind of a day. Took Little Girl to school. Came home and shot 10 Month pictures for Baby Boy. I can't believe he's in the double digit months now. He wont be my baby boy much longer (even though he'll always be my baby boy). He took a quick nap, and then he and I ran to the chiropractor. As soon as we left there we had to rush to get Little Girl from school and then back home to fix lunch. Thursday was also my sister's birthday. And tomorrow is Labor Day for the US so I will be hanging out with Husband's family. No new books this week. Oh also, I FINALLY added AdSense to my blog. Other than affiliate links, I've never done anything to monetize the blog. I'm on a trial run right now so don't jump down my throat if things are a bit wonky until I figure things out please or even decide if I want to keep it! Thanks!

THIS PAST WEEK:

Monday: Review of In Another Time by Caroline Leech (3.5 Stars)
Wednesday: Can't Wait for Only a Breath Apart by Katie McGarry
Friday: August 2018 EOM Wrap Up

UPCOMING THIS WEEK:

Monday: No blog post - Labor Day (US)
Tuesday: Top Ten Tuesday?
Wednesday: Can't Wait for Wednesday
Thursday: Review of Meet the Sky by McCall Hoyle

Don’t forget to link up for the 2018 Series Enders Reading Challenge! You have until December 15th, 2018 to sing up. Each month there will be a giveaway for those participating with an end of the year giveaway too! Click on the picture below or the link above to find out more!

That's it for my shelves and recaps of my past and upcoming week. What did you add to your shelves this week? Any bookish news you want to talk about? Let me know!

Friday, August 31, 2018

August 2018 EOM Wrap Up


I have read 10 books (children's books not listed below). *These qualify for the 2018 Series Enders Reading Challenge.
*The Beauty of Darkness (The Remnant Chronicles, # 3) by Mary E Pearson
*The Song of David (The Law of Moses, # 2) by Amy Harmon
The Complete Photo Guide to Hand Lettering and Calligraphy by Abbey Sy
Dance of Thieves (Dance of Thieves, # 1) by Mary E Pearson
The Opposite of Innocent by Sonya Sones
Healing Hearts by Sarah M Eden
Fame, Fate, and the First Kiss by Kasie West
The Roses of Feldstone by Esther Hatch
Anywhere, Anytime Art: Colored Pencil by Cara Hanley
Ten-Step Drawing: Flowers by Walter Foster Creative Team

I have DNF'd 2 books.
The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X R Pan
Ten-Step Drawing: Animals by Walter Foster Creative Team

I have reviewed 6 books. *These qualify for the 2018 Series Enders Reading Challenge.
All Your Perfects by Colleen Hoover
Let Me List the Ways by Sarah White
*Ruins (Partials, # 3) by Dan Wells
Say You'll Remember Me by Katie McGarry
The Complete Photo Guide to Hand Lettering and Calligraphy by Abbey Sy
In Another Time by Caroline Leech

Other Posts:
Sunday Post & Stacking the Shelves - 8/5/18
Sunday Post - 8/12/18
Sunday Post & Stacking the Shelves - 8/19/18
Sunday Post & Stacking the Shelves - 8/26/18
Top Ten Somewhere Only We Know Commentors
Top Ten Books to Help a Reading Slump
Can't Wait for Surviving Adam Meade by Shannon Klare
Can't Wait for Mirage (Mirage, # 1) by Somaiya Daud
Can't Wait for Fame, Fate, and the First Kiss by Kasie West
Courting Darkness (His Fair Assassin, # 4) by Robin LaFevers
2018 Series Enders Reading Challenge - August Wrap Up

Goals:
I'm 20 days ahead on my Bible-in-a-year plan.
I've read 59 out of 52 books.
I've read 5 out of 10-12 series enders.