Saturday, December 31, 2016

Last Sentences of 2016 (SPOILERS - READ AT YOUR OWN RISK)

[Last sentences of books read in 2016]


Just as first sentences hold their own magic, so do the last sentences of each story and book we read. The first sentence must draw you in and make you want to keep reading. The last sentence carries with it the final feeling a reader will have for the book. Was it satisfying? Did it leave something to be desired? More importantly, does that last sentence bear the weight of all that came before it? Ultimately, that's exactly what it is supposed to do. 

Some of these last sentences will mean nothing out of context, but some are major spoilers. Read at your own risk.

Do you ever come across a last sentence that stays with you for awhile?


Before the car turned down another street, a fox's tail slipped between a line of trees. ~ The Night Parade by Kathryn Tanquary


And they would live happily ever after. ~ The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald


Neely and I have a son. ~ Angels Burning by Tawni O'Dell


And that is all anybody needs to know. ~ What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan


She would have bathe in the moonlight falling so beautifully over Paris, and she would think of the girl who had so badly wnated to live, the girl who had simply wanted more, and she would thank her, then, for promises made and promises kept. ~ Moonlight Over Paris by Jennifer Robson


And that yes, Momma, the spirit always has a choice. My Sweet Vidalia by Deborah Mantella


Devi groaned and buried her hands in Neoeme's hair, pulling her closer and resolving never to go six weeks without Noeme ever again.Slaying Dragons by Sasha L. Miller


And I shouldn't have worried about her not recognising me, not at all, because we know each other at once. ~ The Girl in the Red Coat by Kate Hamer


And just as I let my eyes close, I realize that it's a Russian Olive outside, tapping at my window. ~ The Chosen One by Carol Lynch Williams


She had plenty of time to change and catch the half past ten train to Kew, and meet Mr. Stafford at the Lamb and Flag before their visit to the Orchid House. ~ Death Sits Down for Dinner by Tessa Arlen


It felt like he was never letting go. ~ North of Here by Laurel Saville


"And a future to plan." ~ Delia's Shadow by Jaime Lee Moyer


I am a cat, and I have one life left. ~ The Ninth Life by Clea Simon


It looked like the one. ~ The Decent Proposal by Kemper Donovan


I cannot rest from travel:
I will drink
Life to the less; all times I 
have enjoy'd
Greatly, have suffer'd
greatly, both with those
That loved me, and alone;
on shore and when
Thro' scudding drifts the
rainy Hyades
Vext the dim sea: I am
become a name. 
~ The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith


Neither said very much, but what they did not say spoke to a rare peacefulness, a trust so solid that even if they could not see each other, they both new the other was there. ~ All Stories Are Love Stories by Elizabeth Percer


And you saved us. ~ Terrible Virtue by Ellen Feldman


And this is what I have remembered of love. ~ The Lost Garden by Helen Humphreys


"Ajmal, my friend, let's go!" ~ When the Moon Is Low by Nadia Hashimi


I had a place to stand. ~ Seraphina by Rachel Hartman


He made room for me and we sat together the rest of that afternoon, not talking, but letting our hands walk over the keys and remember. ~ Shadow Scale by Rachel Hartman


Their names meant hope, and they had given hope to each other, and this was what brought them together, closed that gap between them, eliminated the social and class differences, made them sisters, mothers--made them equals. ~ A House for Happy Mothers by Amulya Malladi


Samantha smiles again and puts her arm around Nick as they walk.Redshirts: A Novel with Three Codas by John Scalzi


And they lived. ~ Charming by Elliott James


One after the other, the women went inside. ~ June by Miranda Beverly-Whittemore


The glasses clinked together as the key glittered in the candlelight, casting sharp reflections on the three faces. ~ The Shadow Revolution by Clay Giffith and Susan Griffith


"Wouldn't you like to know . . ." ~ Stone Guardian by Danielle Monsch


She will know that I am a mother. ~ Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward


"I certainly think I can guarantee that." ~ Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman


For keeps. ~ Under An Adirondack Sky by Karen Rock


In less than a whisper, he breathed it against my breast: "I surrender." The Hummingbird by Stephen P. Kiernan


If we are open to it, we can see that there is grace all around us, with or without God. ~ Grace Without God by Katherine Ozment


She puts her good hand in his, and they walk away from the town, together, toward the brightening horizon. ~ The Magician's Lie by Greer Macallister


For a minute, my finger hovers irrationally over the delete button, and then I click. ~ In a Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware


I told myself there were two of them now and they were holding hands, their eyes fixed on the road ahead. ~ The American Girl by Kate Horsley


He says get ready to have some fun, little girl, because it's  a big bright morning, and this is where the story begins. ~ The Fireman by Joe Hill



"That will work very well." ~ 'Til Death Do Us Part by Amanda Quick



And in a few months, someone else.The Sixth Idea by P.J. Tracy


"She knows how to keep a secret."The Ninja's Daughter by Susan Spann


"I love you, too, and I'm so very fortunate to have found you," she replied, before he lowered his lips to hers. ~ When I Found You by Kate James


"Take me out, Sam." ~ The Whiskey Sea by Ann Howard Creel


This is why we're all here.
Love
Anthony
~ Love Anthony by Lisa Genova


"Because neither could I." ~ Lost in Geeklandia by E.J. Russell


The only world that Logan wanted, anyway. ~ Blame It On the Cowboy by Delores Fossen


I can't imagine what the next ten years will bring, and for that I am immensely grateful. ~ Fractured by Catherine McKenzie


She just hoped she lived long enough to enjoy it. The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman


"No dreams tonight."Naked in Death by J.D. Robb


She dropped another curtesy to Ao Shun and followed Coppelia out of the room--back towards the Library.The Masked City by Genevieve Cogman


Taylor went after her.A Black Sail by Rich Zahradnik


He tucked his arm around her waist again, nudged her foreward, "Perfect timing." ~ Glory in Death by J.D. Robb


"I think we need to talk." Brownies and Broomsticks by Bailey Cates


But Fleurette's voice banished the criminals and lunatics from my mind, if only for one night.Lady Cop Makes Trouble by Amy Stewart


"Let's put our heads together and find Victoria West." ~ A Dark and Stormy Murder by Julia Buckley


"To Lily."  ~ The Madness of Mercury by Connie DiMarco


There was no doubt a rational explanation. ~ The Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum by Kristen Weiss


Behind them, for now, was Sean and the old green Chevy, and behind the Chevy was the lit diminishing city and beyond the city were the high summits, undiminished by distance, and beyond these the sun was falling into the west but they did not see it--nor the mountains nor the city but only the darkening sky ahead and the climbing moon and the road, and it was a road as straight and flat and bare as any they'd ever seen and it raced away before them over the plains, hiding nothing. ~ Descent by Tim Johnston


This time he did not have to make his voice go deep when he said it. ~ Lazaretto by Diane McKinney-Whetstone


And again, "Daniel." ~ The Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon


I wrote that he found it on the beach between Abbekås and the Mossbystrand the day we met each other in the November twilight, when he was out collecting stones and I was walking my dog. ~ The Unit by Ninni Holmqvist


Except  for her lone, grainy figure on the water's surface, dark in the face of the sun. Here Comes the Sun by Nicole Dennis-Benn



And for now that was all she was going to reveal.White Christmas by Rebecca York


"Welcome home, my Queen." Royal Enchantment by Lia Davis


My gargoyle was home to stay. ~ Curse of the Gargoyles by Rebecca Chastain


All along, it was you. ~ All Our Wrong Todays by Elan Mastai


All the while his chest continued to oscillate, to rise and fall independently of him, accepting and renouncing, as the atmosphere continued entering and leaving, the small volume of air that it was still able to hold. ~ The Story of a Brief Marriage by Anuk Arudpragasam


© 2016, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

First Sentences 2016

[First Sentences of books read in 2016]

It is said the first sentence in a book holds a certain magic. It sets the tone for what is to come and the best ones will grab you right away, compelling you to read more. This is my third year logging the first sentences of books I have read throughout the year. It is impossible for me to choose a favorite, although some are better than others. Do any of these in particular draw you in and make you want to read more?



From the backseat, Saki sent another desperate message on her phone. ~ The Night Parade by Kathryn Tanquary



The strange woman standing on Hope's main street was so ordinary it was almost scandalous. ~ The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald


The last time I was this close to Rudy Mayfield he was leaning across the seat of his dad's truck trying to grope my recently ripened breats. ~ Angels Burning by Tawni O'Dell


In the eyes of others, we're often not who we imagine ourselves to be. ~ What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan

Helena had heard, or perhaps she had rad somewhere, that people on the point of death were insensible to pain. ~ Moonlight Over Paris by Jennifer Robson


My momma believes all babies to be gifts from God, no matter what.My Sweet Vidalia by Deborah Mantella


Devi was almost certain she wasn't going to be reprimanded at this outpost. ~ Slaying Dragons by Sasha L. Miller


I dream about Carmel often.The Girl in the Red Coat by Kate Hamer


"If I was going to kill the Prophet," I say, not even keeping my voice low, "I'd do it in Africa." ~ The Chosen One by Carol Lynch Williams


A wet and miserable late-autumn day had turned into a bitterly cold winter night as the sun sank unseen below a horizon obscured by a bhank of thick gray clouds. ~ Death Sits Down for Dinner by Tessa Arlen


As Miranda moved through the house, putting away a load of laundry, picking up the glass her mother left in the living room the previous night, straightening the magazines on the coffee table, removing a few dead flowers fro ma vase, she found herself glancing out of each window, her view of him coming and going, her perspective on him a bit different from each vantage point. ~ North of Here by Laurel Saville


The locomotive engine belched billowing clouds of steam, a black-iron dragon chained to the tracks. ~ Delia's Shadow by Jaime Lee Moyer


At first, they were shadows. ~ The Ninth Life by Clea Simon


Before gray hair, or crow's-feet, or achy backs and fickle knees, there is one sign of aging that makes appearance early enough to bewilder its young(ish) victims instead of alarming them, as it should. ~ The Decent Proposal by Kemper Donovan


The buzz in the street was like the humming of flies.  ~ The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith


On the morning of February 14, exactly seven hours, fifty-two minutes, and thirteen seconds before the earth's two largest tectonic plates released decades' worth of strain under a busy suburb just outside San Francisco; exactly eight hours, eight minutes, and fifty-three seconds before the energy dislodged from the seismic shifting triggered an even more catastrophic displacement farther north along the San Andreas Fault; exactly eight hours, nine minutes, and twelve seconds before all gas, power, water, cell, and satellite communications were severed from San Francisco and its environs; exactly eight hours and twenty-two minutes before thousands of tiny sparks and larger ignitions got out from under the valiant efforts of a drought-plagued understaffed fire department and prematurely exhausted volunteers; and exactly ten hours and eleven minutes before the real danger to the old precariously built packed-like-sardines city--fire--proved its indomitable hunger, Max Fleurent was on the phone with his mother.  ~ All Stories Are Love Stories by Elizabeth Percer


Once, on a train going God knows where, to give still another speech, I awakened in the middle of the night nauseated.  ~ Terrible Virtue by Ellen Feldman


What can I say about love? ~ The Lost Garden by Helen Humphreys


Though I love to see my children resting soundly, in the quiet of their slumber my uneasy mind retraces our journey.  ~ When the Moon Is Low by Nadia Hashimi


I remember being born. ~ Seraphina by Rachel Hartman


I returned to myself. ~ Shadow Scale by Rachel Hartman

Rock-a-bye baby in the tree top, when the wind blows, the cradle will rock . . . 
The nursery rhyme played itself in her head over and over again as she tried to fall asleep. ~ Opening of A House for Happy Mothers. ~ A House for Happy Mothers by Amulya Malladi


From the top of the large boulder he sat on, Ensign Tom Davis looked across the expanse of the cave toward Captain Lucius Abernathy, Science Officer Q'eeng and Chief Engineer Paul West perched on a second, larger boulder and thought, Well, this sucks. ~ Redshirts: A Novel with Three Codas by John Scalzi


There's a reason that we refer to being in love as being enchanted. ~ Charming by Elliott James


Houses don't always dream.  ~ June by Miranda Beverly-Whittemore


A bold moon hung over the dark London cityscape. ~ The Shadow Revolution by Clay Giffith and Susan Griffith


Jack Miller aimed his shotgun at the monster's grey-skinned head and pulled the trigger.Stone Guardian by Danielle Monsch


China's turned on herself. ~ Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward


The night before he went to London, Richard Mayhew was not enjoying himself.Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman


Rebecca Day shrugged on her raincoat and eyed the rain tapping against the Koffee Kat's storefront window.Under An Adirondack Sky by Karen Rock


Deborah Birch is a seasoned hospice nurse whose daily work requires courage and compassion. ~ The Hummingbird by Stephen P. Kiernan


One night five years ago, I heard a strange noise outside the window of our brick row house near Boston. ~ Grace Without God by Katherine Ozment


Tonight, I will do the impossible. ~ The Magician's Lie by Greer Macallister


I am running. ~ In a Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware


You ever have one of those Magic 8-Balls as a kid? The American Girl by Kate Horsley


Harper Greyson had seen lots of people burn on TV, everyone had, but the first person she saw burn for real was in the playground behind the school. ~ The Fireman by Joe Hill


"I've got to get rid of her, Birch." ~ 'Til Death Do Us Part by Amanda Quick


Confine a dozen scientists and engineers to a seemingly endless desert of hard-packed sand with no recreational diversions and inevitably, they will design and build a golf course.The Sixth Idea by P.J. Tracy


Knocking echoed through the silent house.The Ninja's Daughter by Susan Spann


"The pilot's bringing the plane back?" When I Found You by Kate James


She opened her eyes to blackness.The Whiskey Sea by Ann Howard Creel


It's Columbus Day weekend, and they lucked out with gorgeous weather, an Indian-summer day in October. ~ Love Anthony by Lisa Genova


The hotel ballroom doors whooshed closed behind Charlie Forrester, muffling the sound of wedding guests hooting at the groomsmen dancing to "Too Sexy for My Shirt." ~ Lost in Geeklandia by E.J. Russell


Logan McCord hated two things: clowns and liars. ~ Blame It On the Cowboy by Delores Fossen


I'm still not certain what it was that made me begin my daily morning vigil at the front windows. ~ Fractured by Catherine McKenzie


Irene passed the mop across the stone floor in smooth, careful strokes, idly admiring the gleam of wet flagstones in the lantern light. ~ The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman


She woke in the dark. ~ Naked in Death by J.D. Robb


The London air was full of smog and filth. ~ The Masked City by Genevieve Cogman


The NYPD Harbor Launch Patrolman Crane thudded over the waves toward the Brooklyn docks. ~ A Black Sail by Rich Zahradnik


The dead were her business. ~ Glory in Death by J.D. Robb


This was a grand adventure, I told myself. Brownies and Broomsticks by Bailey Cates



I handed the newspaper back to Mrs. Headison. ~ Lady Cop Makes Trouble by Amy Stewart


I was immersed in The Lost Child, one of my favorite Camilla Graham novels, when an unlikely phone call changed my life. ~ A Dark and Stormy Murder by Julia Buckley


There are those among us who prey, who hunt under the guise of trust. ~ The Madness of Mercury by Connie DiMarco


Friendship can be a minefield. ~ The Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum by Kristen Weiss


Her name was Caitlin, she was eighteen, and her own heart would sometimes wake her--flying away in the dream-race where finish lines grew farther away not nearer, where knees turned to taffy, or feet to stones. ~ Descent by Tim Johnston


The dimly lit room smelled of sage and mine and boiled cotton. ~ Lazaretto by Diane McKinney-Whetstone


Carl Sagan said that if you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe. ~ The Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon


It was more comfortable than I could have imagine. ~ The Unit by Ninni Holmqvist


The long hours Margot works at the hotel are never documented. ~ Here Comes the Sun by Nicole Dennis-Benn


Amelia Parsons was too upset to see the car speeding toward her through the swirling snow. ~ White Christmas by Rebecca York


There it is.  ~ Royal Enchantment by Lia Davis


"How's Oliver doing, Mika?" Curse of the Gargoyles by Rebecca Chastain


So, the thing is, I come from the world we were supposed to have. ~ All Our Wrong Todays by Elan Mastai


Most children have two whole legs and two whole arms but this little six-year-old that Dinesh was carrying had already lost one leg, the right one from the lower thigh down, and was now about to lose his right arm. ~ A Story of a Brief Marriage by Anuk Arudpragasam


© 2016, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

Books Read in 2016

Books Read in 2016 by Month

January
Tanquary, Kathryn - The Night Parade (2016) - Fantasy (Middle Grade)
Bivald, Katarina - The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend (2016) - Fiction
O'Dell, Tawni - Angels Burning (2016) - Crime Fiction
Macmillan, Gilly - What She Knew (2015) - Crime Fiction
Robson, Jennifer - Moonlight Over Paris (2016) - Fiction (Historical)
Mantella, Deborah - My Sweet Vidalia (2015) - Fiction (Historical)
Miller, Sasha L. - Slaying Dragons (2015) - Fantasy (Romance)

February
Hamer, Kate - The Girl in the Red Coat (2016) - Fiction
Williams, Carol Lynch - The Chosen One (2009) - Fiction (YA)
Arlen, Tessa - Death Sits Down for Dinner (2016) - Crime Fiction (Historical)
Saville, Laurel - North of Here (2016) - Fiction
Moyer, Jaime Lee - Delia's Shadow (2013) - Crime Fiction (Paranormal)

March
Simon, Clea - The Ninth Life (2016) - Crime Fiction
Donovan, Kemper - The Decent Proposal (2016) - Fiction
Galbraith, Robert - The Cuckoo's Calling (2013) - Crime Fiction

April
Percer, Elizabeth - All Stories Are Love Stories (2016) - Fiction
Feldman, Ellen - Terrible Virtue (2016) - Fiction (Historical)
Humphreys, Helen - The Lost Garden (2003) - Fiction (Historical)
Hashimi, Nadia - When the Moon Is Low (2015) - Fiction
Hartman, Rachel - Seraphina (2012) - Fantasy (YA)

May
Hartman, Rachel - Shadow Scale (2015) - Fantasy (YA)
Malladi, Amulya - A House for Happy Mothers (2016) - Fiction
Scalzi, John - Redshirts: A Novel with Three Codas (2012) - Science Fiction
James, Elliott - Charming (2013) - Fantasy (Urban)
Beverly-Whitemore, Miranda - June (2016) - Fiction (Historical)
Griffith, Clay & Susan Griffith - The Shadow Revolution (Crown & Key #1) (2015) - Fantasy (Steampunk)
Monsch, Danielle - Stone Guardian (2013) - Fantasy (Urban)
Ward, Jesmyn - Salvage the Bones (2010) - Fiction

June
Gaiman, Neil - Neverwhere (1997) - Fantasy (Urban)
Rock, Karen - Under An Adirondack Sky (2016) - Romance (Contemporary)
Kiernan, Stephen P. - The Hummingbird (2016) - Fiction (Historical)
Ozment, Katherine - Grace Without God: The Search for Meaning, Purpose, and Belonging in a Secular Age (2016) - Nonfiction

July
Macallister, Greer - The Magician's Lie (2015) - Fiction (Historical)
Ware, Ruth -  In a Dark, Dark Wood (2015) - Crime Fiction (Thriller)
Horsley, Kate -  The American Girl (2016) - Crime Fiction (Thriller)
Hill, Joe -  The Fireman (2016) - Horror
Quick, Amanda -  'Til Death Do Us Part (2016) - Romantic Suspense (Historical)

August
Tracy, P.J. -  The Sixth Idea (2016) - Crime Fiction
James, Kate -  When I Found You (2016) - Romance (Contemporary)
Spann, Susan -  The Ninja's Daughter (2016) - Crime Fiction (Historical)
Creel, Ann Howard -  The Whiskey Sea (2016) - Fiction (Historical)
Genova, Lisa -  Love Anthony (2012) - Fiction
Russell, E.J. -  Lost in Geeklandia (2015) - Romance (Contemporary)

September
Fossen, Delores -  Blame It On the Cowboy (2016) - Romance (Cowboy)
McKenzie, Catherine - Fractured (2016) - Fiction (Thriller)
Cogman, Genevieve -  The Invisible Library (2015) - Fantasy
Robb, J.D. - Naked in Death (1995) - Crime Fiction
Cogman, Genevieve - The Masked City (2016) - Fantasy

October
Zahradnik, Rich - A Black Sail (2016) - Crime Fiction (Historical)
Robb, J.D. - Glory in Death (1995) - Crime Fiction
Cates, Bailey - Brownies and Broomsticks (2016) - Crime Fiction (Cozy) - Crime Fiction (Cozy)
Stewart, Amy - Lady Cop Makes Trouble (2016) - Crime Fiction (Historical)
Buckley, Julia - A Dark and Stormy Murder (2016) - Crime Fiction (Cozy)
Di Marco, Connie - The Madness of Mercury (2016) - Crime Fiction (Cozy)

November
Weiss, Kirsten - The Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum (2016) - Crime Fiction (Cozy/Paranormal)
Johnston, Tim - Descent (2016) - Crime Fiction (Thriller)
McKinney-Whetstone, Diane - Lazaretto (2016) - Fiction (Historical)
Yoon, Nicola - The Sun Is Also a Star (2016) - Fiction (YA Contemporary)

December
Holmqvist, Ninni - The Unit (2009) - Fiction (Dystopian)
Dennis-Benn, Nicole - Here Comes the Sun (2016) - Fiction
York, Rebecca - White Christmas (2016) - Romance (Paranormal)
Davis, Lia - Royal Enchantment (2016) - Romance (Fantasy)
Chastain, Rebecca - Curse of the Gargoyles (Gargoyle Guardian Chronicles #2) (2016) - Fantasy
Mastai, Elan - All the Wrong Todays (2017) - Science Fiction (review pending)
Arudpragasam, Anuk - The Story of a Brief Marriage (2016) - Fiction  (review pending)


© 2016, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Merry Christmas!


From my family to yours: 
Wishing you all a very Happy Christmas!

Safe travels for those traveling. 




 © 2016, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Mini Bookish Thoughts: Curse of the Gargoyles (Rebecca Chastain), White Christmas (Rebecca York), & Royal Enchantment (Lia Davis)

[Help me decide what to read next year! I am looking for your book recommendations: Vote here!]

I read all three of my TBR List poll for the month of December. Yay me! It helped that they were short, which seems to be my ideal book length at the moment. As you can see, I enjoyed two of the three, at least. If you haven't already (or even if you have), I hope you will take time to add your recommendation of a book you think I should read in 2017. So far the choices are sounding really good.

Anyway, onto my bookish thoughts:


"How's Oliver doing, Mika?" ~ Opening of Curse of the Gargoyles


Curse of the Gargoyles (Gargoyle Guardian Chronicles #2) by Rebecca Chastain
Mind Your Muse Books, 2016
Fantasy; 145 pgs
Source: E-copy provided by the author

Gargoyle healer, Mika Stillwater, is asked by a team from the local elite Federal Pentagon Defense to help with a sensitive situation. A gargoyle is trapped inside a magical contraption that is sucking the life and magic out of him. Efforts to save him turn even more deadly as the city, the world and all of magic is threatened as the contraption goes out of control. It doesn't take long for Curse of the Gargoyles to take off in this tense, action-packed novella of magic and mayhem. It was good to see Mika again, a character I enjoyed meeting in Magic of the Gargoyles last year. She yet again proves what a valuable asset she is to not only helping save gargoyles, but also the world. I love how down to earth Mika is and I just love Oliver, her gargoyle companion. Author Rebecca Chastain's Terra Haven is a must visit place if you enjoy urban fantasy. It is full of elemental magic, a resourceful and thoughtful heroine, and a cast of other magic-filled characters, including the gargoyles, you just don't want to miss. (I purchased the third book and am anxious to read it!)

To learn more about author Rebecca Chastain and her work, please visit the author's website. You can also find her on FacebookTwitterGoodreads

*

Amelia Parsons was too upset to see the car speeding toward her through the swirling snow. ~ Opening of White Christmas


White Christmas by Rebecca York
Light Street Press, 2016
Romance (Paranormal); 86 pgs
Source: E-copy provided by the publisher via NetGalley

A car accident, a hunky FBI agent, Santa's workshop and a plot to ruin Christmas make this novella sound like the perfect Holiday read. While entertaining to some degree, I was ultimately disappointed in this one. It just didn't do it for me. There wasn't much in the way of character development and  the world building left something to be desired. The romance between the hero and heroine happened a little too quickly--but then, it's not like there was much time given the length of the book and the story itself. 

To learn more about Rebecca York (aka Ruth Glick) and her work, please visit the author's website or visit her on Twitter or Facebook.

*

There it is.  ~ Opening of Royal Enchantment


Royal Enchantment by Lia Davis
After Glows, 2016
Romance (Fantasy); 122 pgs
Source: E-copy provided by the publisher via NetGalley

Real estate agent, Ava Green, is having a bad day. Just as she's about to explore her latest acquisition, a Victorian house, she finds out her partner has left her high and dry--and then his wife calls to give her even worse news. Finding a skeleton key that unlocks an unusually placed door in the house, Ava takes a chance and opens it. What she finds on the other side is not at all what she expected. Lush forest and a rather irresistible elf, one who says he is the King of Morna and she is just who he has been waiting for.

I thoroughly enjoyed this novella which took me into the middle of a war between the dark and the light elves. It doesn't take long to find out how Ava is tied to the elven world and just how significant her part will be in ending the war. King Finn Sylcan and Ava share an instant attraction, although she is much more reluctant to admit it initially. Ava has a level head and is a quick learner. I really liked both her and Finn. Although I wouldn't have minded a longer book, I enjoyed my time in Edra. I had hoped this was part of a series, but it appears it is just one of many novellas by various authors featuring a skeleton key.

To learn more about Lia Davis and her work, please visit the author's website or visit her on Twitter or Facebook.


© 2016, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Bookish Thoughts: Here Comes the Sun by Nicole Dennis-Benn (Audio)

The long hours Margot works at the hotel are never documented. ~ Opening of Here Comes the Sun


Here Comes the Sun by Nicole Dennis-Benn, narrated by Bahni Turpin
Liveright, 2016 (Highbridge, 2016)
Fiction; 352 pgs (11hrs,42min)
Source: I purchased both print and audio versions of this book.

Goodreads Summary: 
Capturing the distinct rhythms of Jamaican life and dialect, Nicole Dennis- Benn pens a tender hymn to a world hidden among pristine beaches and the wide expanse of turquoise seas. At an opulent resort in Montego Bay, Margot hustles to send her younger sister, Thandi, to school. Taught as a girl to trade her sexuality for survival, Margot is ruthlessly determined to shield Thandi from the same fate. When plans for a new hotel threaten their village, Margot sees not only an opportunity for her own financial independence but also perhaps a chance to admit a shocking secret: her forbidden love for another woman. As they face the impending destruction of their community, each woman—fighting to balance the burdens she shoulders with the freedom she craves—must confront long-hidden scars. From a much-heralded new writer, Here Comes the Sun offers a dramatic glimpse into a vibrant, passionate world most outsiders see simply as paradise.
I am not sure what to say about this novel. It has left me feeling a bit raw.  Bhani Turpin's narration was brilliant. I am really glad I chose to listen to the audio version despite my also having a print copy. The writing is beautiful, but the subject matter is rather dark . . . and uncomfortable. I work in a field that in recent years has put a lot of focus on human trafficking, particularly of under age youth. The subject matter is not new to me, and so I imagine some of what was covered in this book was less shocking to me than it might to be other readers. Or perhaps not. The reader really gets a look at the darker side behind the scenes, so to speak, of Jamaica and its tourist scene.

Let me just say there are no perfect characters in this book. They are deeply flawed. They are shaped by their experiences, have lived hard and difficult lives, and the choices they make are not always the best ones--not for themselves or for others. Sometimes their intentions are meant well; sometimes decisions are made out of desperation.

Margot was a victim of a fate she was unable to escape. She uses what she has learned to her advantage, stepping on toes as she goes. While some might call her a strong woman, I felt she was lost and her strength rather fragile. Margot's lover, Verdene, comes the closest to breaking down the wall around Margot's heart. After years off abuse as a child, trafficked by someone who was supposed to protect her, Margot does not love easily. I can see why Margot makes the choices she makes, in part to raise herself and her sister out of the poverty they grew up in and out of the life she's been living, and yet many of those choices made my heart hurt. Frankly, my heart hurt a lot as I listened to Here Comes the Sun.

Thandi is also lost, on a path she would rather not be on, one her mother and sister have chosen for her. She is struggling to find her own identity. She bleaches her skin to make her skin lighter--having most of her life been told that black is ugly. On scholarship to a prestigious high school, she longs to fit in, but never quite does. She takes comfort in her art and in her friendship with a local boy, much to her family's consternation. I really liked Thandi, and, like those who loved her, I wanted most to see her succeed.

This book made me feel some very strong emotions from sadness to anger: from colorism to racism, homophobia, misogyny, sexual abuse, human trafficking, classism and poverty. Dennis-Benn lays it all out there in a very real and raw way. Alfonso is the picture of white privilege who did not hesitate to use it or his wealth to get his way. Verdene only wants to love and be loved and yet she is met with prejudice and was ostracized. Thandi hated the color of her own skin, growing up in a home and culture where black is considered less than--and even ugly. I have such mixed feelings about Margot and everything she went through and did . . . I could go on and on. This isn't a book I will soon forget. Here Comes the Sun will not appeal to everyone, but it is a deeply moving book that will break your heart over and over again. It was impossible not to get swept up in the stories of the characters, both major and minor, and lost in the rhythm of the narration and writing.


To learn more about Nicole Dennis-Benn and her work, please visit the author's website or visit her on Twitter.

To learn more about Bhani Turpin visit  her on Twitter.


© 2016, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Where Is Your Bookmark? (& Top Ten Books I Want For Christmas)

Help me decide what to read next year! I am looking for your book recommendations: Vote here!


This will be my first year participating in Sheila of Book Journey's annual First Book of the Year 2017 event. On the 1st of the year, I will be posting a photo of the book that will be starting off my year. I haven't settled on a book yet--so many choices! Will you be joining it? I hope so!

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I just started reading All Our Wrong Todays by Elan Masstai, which is about a man from an alternate future who travels through time, ripping the very fabric of the universe and changing the future's course, falls in love, and must decide if he wants to fix the mistake and return to the Utopian world he came from or stay in the crazy world we call home today. (For a much more complete synopsis, the cover below is linked to the book's Goodreads page.)




Every Tuesday Diane from Bibliophile By the Sea First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros, where participants share the first paragraph (or a few) of a book they are reading or thinking about reading soon. It is also where I share my first impressions about the book I am sharing.

So, the thing is, I come from the world we were supposed to have. That means nothing to you, obviously, because you live here, in the crappy world we do have. But it never should've turned out like this. And it's all my fault--well, me and to a lesser extent my father and, yeah, I guess a little bit Penelope.

Every Tuesday, Ambrosia from The Purple Booker hosts Teaser Teaser at which participants grab their current read, open to a random page, and share two or more sentences from that page while avoiding any spoilers.


Teaser from page 28 of All Our Wrong Todays:
I remember, as a kid, when I first understood that only half of every tree is visible, that the roots in the soil are equal to the branches in the sky, that a whole other half is underground. It took me a lot longer, well into adulthood, to realize people are like that too.

What do you think? Would you keep reading?  

I really like the premise of this novel and am looking forward to reading it. From the little I've read so far, the novel seems to be written in a narrative memoir form. The opening is very conversational, I think. It got me curious about what our narrator means about being the reason the world turned out the way it did. What could Tom have possibly done?

I chose the teaser and random, but I rather like it.

What are you reading at the moment?  Is it anything you would recommend?


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Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the lovely ladies at Broke and Bookish.

This week's  Top Ten Tuesday Ten Books I Wouldn't Mind Santa Leaving Under My Tree. All ten of these books are on my wishlist, some for longer than others. I would love to unwrap any of these on Christmas Day! What are the chances though? Someday . . .


1. Love and Freindship: And Other Youthful Writings (Penguin Classics) by Jane Austen, Christine Alexander ~ Jane Austen, folks. 'Nuff said. (Anyone else do a double take on the spelling of the title just to be sure it wasn't wrong?)
Goodreads Summary: 
Jane Austen's earliest writing dates from when she was just eleven years, and already shows the hallmarks of her mature work: wit, acute insight into human folly, and a preoccupation with manners, morals and money. But it is also a product of the eighteenth century in which she grew up - dark, grotesque, often surprisingly bawdy, and a far cry from the polished, sparkling novels of manners for which she became famous. Drunken heroines, babies who bite off their mother's fingers, and a letter-writer who has murdered her whole family all feature in these very funny pieces. This edition includes all of Austen's juvenilia, including her 'History of England' - written by 'a partial, prejudiced, and ignorant Historian' - and the novella 'Lady Susan', in which the anti-heroine schemes and cheats her way through high society. Taken together, they offer a fascinating - and often surprising - insight into the early Austen.


2. Ink and Bone (The Great Library, #1) by Rachel Caine ~ I enjoyed the author's Weather Warden series and think this will be even better. I mean, the Great Library!
From Goodreads: 
Ruthless and supremely powerful, the Great Library is now a presence in every major city, governing the flow of knowledge to the masses. Alchemy allows the Library to deliver the content of the greatest works of history instantly—but the personal ownership of books is expressly forbidden. 
Jess Brightwell believes in the value of the Library, but the majority of his knowledge comes from illegal books obtained by his family, who are involved in the thriving black market. Jess has been sent to be his family’s spy, but his loyalties are tested in the final months of his training to enter the Library’s service. 
When his friend inadvertently commits heresy by creating a device that could change the world, Jess discovers that those who control the Great Library believe that knowledge is more valuable than any human life—and soon both heretics and books will burn…


3. Sorcerer to the Crown (Sorcerer Royal #1) by Zen Cho ~ I can't remember when I first heard about this book, but I have had it on my radar every since. I can't resist a novel with magic in it, and this one sounds really good.
Goodreads Summary: 
At his wit’s end, Zacharias Wythe, freed slave, eminently proficient magician, and Sorcerer Royal of the Unnatural Philosophers—one of the most respected organizations throughout all of Britain—ventures to the border of Fairyland to discover why England’s magical stocks are drying up.

But when his adventure brings him in contact with a most unusual comrade, a woman with immense power and an unfathomable gift, he sets on a path which will alter the nature of sorcery in all of Britain—and the world at large…


4. Truthwitch (The Witchlands, #1) by Susan Dennard ~ I was drooling over this book when it first came out and it's a miracle I haven't yet run out and bought it myself. This books has my name written all over it.
Goodreads Summary:
In a continent on the edge of war, two witches hold its fate in their hands.

Young witches Safiya and Iseult have a habit of finding trouble. After clashing with a powerful Guildmaster and his ruthless Bloodwitch bodyguard, the friends are forced to flee their home.

Safi must avoid capture at all costs as she's a rare Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lies. Many would kill for her magic, so Safi must keep it hidden - lest she be used in the struggle between empires. And Iseult's true powers are hidden even from herself.

In a chance encounter at Court, Safi meets Prince Merik and makes him a reluctant ally. However, his help may not slow down the Bloodwitch now hot on the girls' heels. All Safi and Iseult want is their freedom, but danger lies ahead. With war coming, treaties breaking and a magical contagion sweeping the land, the friends will have to fight emperors and mercenaries alike. For some will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.


5. The Mother by Yvvette Edwards ~ Although a difficult topic to read about--a parent's worse fear--I sometimes find myself running to books like this--or running away. This one intrigues me and I am anxious to read it.
Goodreads Summary:
The unimaginable has happened to Marcia Williams. Her bright and beautiful sixteen-year-old son Ryan has been brutally murdered. Consumed by grief and rage, she must bridle her dark feelings and endure something no mother should ever have to experience: she must go to court for the trial of the killer—another teenage boy—accused of taking her son’s life. 
How could her son be dead? Ryan should have been safe—he wasn’t the kind of boy to find himself on the wrong end of a knife carried by a dangerous young man like Tyson Manley. But as the trial proceeds, Marcia finds her beliefs and assumptions challenged as she learns more about Ryan’s death and Tyson’s life, including his dysfunctional family. She also discovers troubling truths about her own. As the strain of Ryan’s death tests their marriage, Lloydie, her husband, pulls further away, hiding behind a wall of secrets that masks his grief, while Marcia draws closer to her sister, who is becoming her prime confidant. 
One person seems to hold the answers—and the hope—Marcia needs: Tyson's scared young girlfriend, Sweetie. But as this anguished mother has learned, nothing in life is certain. Not any more.  


7. Jane Steele by Lynday Faye ~ If it isn't obvious from the description why this one appeals to me, well, let me tell you that Jane Eyre is one of my favorite all-time novels.
From Goodreads:

Reader, I murdered him. 
A Gothic retelling of Jane Eyre. 
Like the heroine of the novel she adores, Jane Steele suffers cruelly at the hands of her aunt and schoolmaster. And like Jane Eyre, they call her wicked - but in her case, she fears the accusation is true. When she flees, she leaves behind the corpses of her tormentors. 
A fugitive navigating London's underbelly, Jane rights wrongs on behalf of the have-nots whilst avoiding the noose. Until an advertisement catches her eye. Her aunt has died and the new master at Highgate House, Mr Thornfield, seeks a governess. Anxious to know if she is Highgate's true heir, Jane takes the position and is soon caught up in the household's strange spell. When she falls in love with the mysterious Charles Thornfield, she faces a terrible dilemma: can she possess him - body, soul and secrets - and what if he discovers her murderous past?


7. Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End by Atul Gawande ~ This book comes highly recommended by many of you. I have never shied away from the topic of growing old (even though I don't like revealing my age) or dying. They are facts of life. As I watch my mother grow older and remembering all my father went through, I can't help but want to read this book.
Goodreads Summary:  
In Being Mortal, bestselling author Atul Gawande tackles the hardest challenge of his profession: how medicine can not only improve life but also the process of its ending.

Medicine has triumphed in modern times, transforming birth, injury, and infectious disease from harrowing to manageable. But in the inevitable condition of aging and death, the goals of medicine seem too frequently to run counter to the interest of the human spirit. Nursing homes, preoccupied with safety, pin patients into railed beds and wheelchairs. Hospitals isolate the dying, checking for vital signs long after the goals of cure have become moot. Doctors, committed to extending life, continue to carry out devastating procedures that in the end extend suffering.

Gawande, a practicing surgeon, addresses his profession’s ultimate limitation, arguing that quality of life is the desired goal for patients and families. Gawande offers examples of freer, more socially fulfilling models for assisting the infirm and dependent elderly, and he explores the varieties of hospice care to demonstrate that a person's last weeks or months may be rich and dignified.


8. The Little White Horse by Elizabeth Goudge ~ Ever since seeing the movie this book was based on, I have wanted to read the book. What a nice treat it would be to receive this one in my stocking?
Goodreads Synopsis: 
When orphaned young Maria Merryweather arrives at Moonacre Manor, she feels as if she’s entered Paradise. Her new guardian, her uncle Sir Benjamin, is kind and funny; the Manor itself feels like home right away; and every person and animal she meets is like an old friend. But there is something incredibly sad beneath all of this beauty and comfort—a tragedy that happened years ago, shadowing Moonacre Manor and the town around it—and Maria is determined to learn about it, change it, and give her own life story a happy ending. But what can one solitary girl do?

A new-fashioned story that is as wonderful as the best fairy tales.


9. Planetfall by Emma Newman ~ This is the first in a science fiction series that called to me from the first time I heard about it. I enjoy reading science fiction, but don't read enough of it.
From Goodreads:

Renata Ghali believed in Lee Suh-Mi’s vision of a world far beyond Earth, calling to humanity. A planet promising to reveal the truth about our place in the cosmos, untainted by overpopulation, pollution, and war. Ren believed in that vision enough to give up everything to follow Suh-Mi into the unknown.

More than twenty-two years have passed since Ren and the rest of the faithful braved the starry abyss and established a colony at the base of an enigmatic alien structure where Suh-Mi has since resided, alone. All that time, Ren has worked hard as the colony's 3-D printer engineer, creating the tools necessary for human survival in an alien environment, and harboring a devastating secret.

Ren continues to perpetuate the lie forming the foundation of the colony for the good of her fellow colonists, despite the personal cost. Then a stranger appears, far too young to have been part of the first planetfall, a man who bears a remarkable resemblance to Suh-Mi.

The truth Ren has concealed since planetfall can no longer be hidden. And its revelation might tear the colony apart…


10. Moriarty: Anna Kronberg Bundle by Annelie Wendeberg ~ I love stories about women masquerading as men in order to do something relegated only to men. Add in Sherlock Holmes and I'm sold.
Goodreads Summary: 
Europe, late 19th century. Antibiotics have yet to be invented, and germs take a death toll that lets the number of murders appear negligible. But when a cholera victim is found floating in one of London's drinking water supplies, Dr Anton Kronberg - England's best bacteriologist - is called upon to investigate. He crosses paths with Sherlock Holmes. The detective immediately discovers Kronberg's secret - a woman masquerading as a man in order to practice medicine - a criminal deed that could land her in prison for years to come. The two highly analytical minds provoke and annoy each other at once. Eventually, they must team up to unravel a spiderweb of murder, espionage, and bioterrorism that spreads across continents. Compiles the first three books in the Kronberg Thriller Series: The Devil's Grin, The Fall, & The Journey

Have you read any of these books? Would you recommend them? What books would you like to find under the tree this year?


© 2016, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Bookish Thoughts: The Unit by Ninni Holmqvist

It was more comfortable than I could have imagined. ~ Opening of The Unit



The Unit by Ninni Holmqvist, translated by Marlaine Delargy
Other Press, 2009
Fiction; 268 pgs
Source: Postal Mail Group (Borrowed)

As Holmqvist describes it in her novel, The Unit, it started as a debate by a new political party that wasn't taken too seriously. Overtime, however, the idea grew, taking on new forms and growing in popularity. Soon, it became a way of life. Men over sixty and women over fifty who were single, childless, and without jobs valued by society as contributing to the greater good are now considered dispensable and forced to give their bodies up for science. Sequestered in one location, they seemingly live out their final years in comfort--their every need met. There is a beautiful garden right out of a Monet painting, walkways, and shops, restaurants, and a theater. It's an indoor heaven, of sorts. Or so they want you to believe. Their every move and word is monitored. The dispensable people's purpose now is to take part in various psychological and scientific studies--and donate organs as needed. 

Set in a Dystopian Sweden, The Unit asks the question what, if any, is the value of life? Who decides? Dorrit Weger has just turned 50, and reluctantly settles into life on the unit. As the novel progresses, she reflects on her life and what has led her to her this place. Growing up, she was taught to be self-reliant and to go after her dreams. She chose to write, and lived sparsely but comfortably with her beloved dog Jock. It was easy to identify with Dorrit and understand why she made the life choices she did. How was she to know the political winds would change so drastically over the course of her lifetime, earning her the label of a dispensable person? It is not something she agrees with, but has little choice other than to accept it.

Holmqvist does a great job of capturing the range of emotions and thoughts Dorrit goes through over the course of the novel. She is angry and sad, resigned, and scared. There are also moments of happiness and hope. We see the connections Dorrit makes with her friends who are in the same situations, and we go through the grief process as we have to say goodbye when they make their "final donations." The people who run the unit try to make the process as humane as possible, and yet, there is nothing humane about it. It's disturbing how easily accepted all of this is. And yet, is it all that surprising? I thought it was very telling when Dorrit is told she can know the person who is receiving organs, but the person receiving them is not told anything about the donor. Do this to save an important person's life! But obviously the donor isn't important enough to be recognized. It's a form of manipulation, to make it easier for those dispensables who have to give up their lives. There's something terribly wrong with that, as if the situation wasn't terrible enough as it was.

The Unit is more of a quiet book without any big plot twists or major climatic moments. However, it is very thought provoking. Dorrit's story is a compelling one that was hard to put down. I wanted so much for life to be different for the people deemed dispensable. I had never heard of this book before it arrived in the mail as one of my postal mail book group reads. I am glad it came my way.



© 2016, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Sunday Post: What I've Been Up To

Help me decide what to read next year! I am looking for your book recommendations: Vote here!

We are just a week away from Christmas and two from the New Year. I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season!

What I Am Reading: After finishing The Unit by Ninni, I dove into my TBR List poll winner, White Christmas by Rebecca York and followed it up with Royal Enchantment by Lia Davis. I am now reading Curse of the Gargoyles by Rebecca Chastain and hope to finish it soon. I seem to be on a fantasy run an the moment.

What I Am Listening To: I finished Nicole Dennis-Benn's Here Comes the Sun. What a heartbreaking novel! I hope to have my review written and posted this coming week. We'll see how well I succeed with that.

What I Am Watching: I think in just a week's time I have seen The Little Rascals Save the Day several times over. It's Mouse's new favorite movie. The actress who plays Mrs. Crabtree, the teacher, looks a lot like Mouse's Kindergarten teacher.

I saw the mid-season finale of The Walking Dead and thought it was good. I was long ago ready for Negan to be taken out and that hasn't changed. It is good to see Rick coming back into himself again.

We went to see Rogue One: A Star Wars Story this weekend--was it ever good! I loved how it flowed right into Star Wars: A New Hope.

On Sunday we will be going to see the ballet, The Nutcracker, with your Girl Scouts troop. The girls will get a chance to meet and talk with the performers after the show. Mouse is looking forward to it.

What's Going On Off the Blog: This past weekend, Mouse and I attended a Girl Scout Daisy/Brownie Tea Party, and had a lovely time. There was hardly any time to sit down and eat the snacks laid out with all the activities that were planned. The two hours flew by. At one point Mouse turned and told me, "I thought this would be more relaxing." She had fun though. Two other girls from our troop were there (among about 250 people), and you could tell the girls were having a blast.

My husband and I were both able to attend the award assembly for Kindergarten at Mouse's school this past week. Mouse earned awards for being on honor roll and perfect attendance. She's most excited about the free pizza coupon that came with her certificates, of course. Her dad and I are very proud of her.

At work, we are doing the Twelve Days of Christmas, where each day there is a different theme or activity going on. Staff are bringing in treats for everyone, there are word games and puzzles. It's helped bring the holiday spirit to the office. It will continue into next week. My boss took all of us supervisors out to breakfast to celebrate the holidays one day this past week, which was nice.

What I Am Feeling: Mouse is beginning to question the existence of Santa Claus, and I have mixed feelings about it. I am not ready for her to lose her innocence and the sense of magic that comes with believing.  Maybe it's time to tell her the truth. I don't know. She's asked me a few times in the last couple weeks if Santa is real. She says she believes he is, but made a comment off to the side the other night that it might be her dad. My initial thought was, "Why not your mom? I'm the one who kept track of what you asked for and bought all your gifts!" Haha. I didn't say that, of course, and it really is a joint effort.

When she asked me if I believed in him, if he was real, I asked her what she thought. When she told me she did believe in him, I told her I did too. Even now, I believe--maybe not in the myth of the jolly man delivering presents, but rather the spirit of him, the hope he brings, that idea of treating others with kindness, and the spirit of giving from the heart. I hope that in our conversations I am able to convey that to her. If not now, then in future discussions. With the wisdom of a five year old, my daughter told me last night that Santa Claus is about caring. I like that.

What I Am Thinking About: The upcoming holidays. My mom is driving into town this week and my in-laws will be coming for the weekend of Christmas Eve/Christmas Day. With my husband's and my work schedules, it is easier for everyone to come to us. My mom will be staying a few weeks, helping care for Mouse while she's out of school. I think I have everything I need. Still am not sure what's on the menu, but that is more my husband's domain than mine.

What I Am Planning and Looking Forward to: Mouse's school is having their Christmas program on Monday, and I am looking forward to seeing how that turns out. I hear the auditorium fills up fast, so hopefully I can find a good seat. Our Girl Scout Troop is having its first investiture meeting (award ceremony) and we'll do a little gift exchange to celebrate the upcoming holidays along with a pizza party. It should be fun.  I will also be taking my team out for lunch one day this coming week for the holidays. They selected a local Italian restaurant we've enjoyed visiting before.

Are you ready for the holidays?


TThis Past Week In Reading Mews:

Tell me about what you have been up to! What are you reading, listening to and watching? How was your week? Do you have anything planned for this coming week?


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Every Friday Coffee Addicted Writer from Coffee Addicted Writer poses a question which participants respond on their own blogs within the week (Friday through Thursday). They then share their links at the main site and visit other participants blogs.

What is your favorite holiday beverage to drink while you're reading?
Peppermint Hot Chocolate with whipped cream. Or French Vanilla Hot Cocoa, which is hard to find in stores around here.  I generally just drink water when I am reading though, regardless of the season or time of year. I do like a little eggnog (no alcohol) around Christmas time, but I generally am fine stopping after one glass.

What about you? Do you have a favorite holiday beverage?
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I hope you all have a great week! Happy Reading!




The Sunday Post is hosted by the wonderful Kimba, the Caffeinated Book Reviewer, and gives us all a chance to recap our week, talk about what we are reading, share any new books that have come our way, and whatever else we want to talk about. 


© 2016, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.