Friday, November 01, 2019

Weekly Mews: Book Crazy / October Wrap-Up / Vote For My November Read!

I am linking up to the Sunday Post hosted by Kim of Caffeinated Book Reviewer, where participants 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. I am also linking The Sunday Salon hosted by Deb Nance of Readerbuzz where participants discuss what they are reading and other bookish topics. I am linking up to Nicole of Feed Your Addiction's Monthly Wrap-Up Post, where any book bloggers who write monthly wrap-up posts can link up and visit other bloggers to see what they have been reading.   I am linking to Stacking the Shelves hosted by Team Tynga's Reviews and Marlene of Reading Reality a meme in which participants share what new books came their way recently. 


New to the Shelves:

I kind of went crazy when I received an invitation from Amazon to spend $45 on e-books and earn $30 in e-book credits. I put to use an Amazon gift card I had been saving for a rainy day, and so it worked out perfectly--no money out of my pocket! Several of these are early books in series I have the second, third or fourth book in already, and others have been on my wish list awhile now. One I got for my husband.


An Easy Death (Gunnie Rose #1) by Charlaine Harris
White Chrysanthemum by Mary Lynn Bracht
The Spectral City (Spectral City #1) by Leanna Renee Hieber
Spectacle (#1) by Jodie Lynn Zdrok

Mouse loves a good yard sale, and so when a friend of ours held one this past weekend, we thought it would be a great time for a visit. Wouldn't you know it, Mouse and I both gravitated mostly toward the books. We ended up bringing home two for each of us.


The Painted Drum by Louise Erdrich


What I Am Reading: I am in the middle of Jenn McKinlay's The Christmas Keeper, set in North Carolina. I imagine I will be finishing it this weekend. I am not yet sure what I will be reading next, but I had better choose quick!

What I Am Watching: We have jumped on the Masked Singer bandwagon, and watched the first season and just started the current season. Mouse has especially gotten into it. I finished season 14 of Supernatural and now have several months to wait until the final season comes out on Netflix (it's airing now on network television). A coworker and I were talking about television shows recently, and it put me in the mood to re-watch The Vampire Diaries. I stopped watching the show before it officially ended, but decided to start from the beginning instead of trying to figure out where I had left off.

Earlier this month, we went to see a local theater's production of The Addams Family Musical. One of the singers/dancers who had performed with Mouse and my husband this past summer was in it, and we joined up with a handful of our dance studio friends to show our support. It was a great show, and we all had a good time. This past weekend we went into Hollywood to the Pantages Theatre to see the musical Anastasia, which we all enjoyed. It's such a beautiful theater and the cast did an awesome job. It's similar in story line to the animated movie that came out years ago--only with a few added songs and a different villain.


Off the Blog: October is a bit of a blur; it went by so fast. We were very busy all month. School. Work. Dance. Girl Scouts (we made wind chimes out of twigs, strings and little metal pieces found around the house--they turned out really well). Mouse spent the entire month counting down to Halloween, one of her favorite holidays. She certainly got to celebrate all week long! With the dance studio's Halloween party, her class party, trick-or-treating around our neighborhood, and her school's Fall Festival (which was technically in November--just this Friday), we had our fill of Halloween.

With the Santa Ana winds came fire and the city and county firefighters and other first responders have been working extra hard to put out fires here in the city and and in neighboring communities, help with evacuations and doing what they can to keep damage and loss of life to a minimal.  Other parts of the state have been engulfed in flames as well.  We are all so grateful for the first responders, especially the firefighters, and also the volunteers who have been working on the Frontline and behind the scenes.

 My little cuddle kitty. Sometimes, at least.

Several of our trick-or-treaters complimented us on our cute cat.
Nina may not be very affectionate, but she's also not shy. 

 Mouse's decorated pumpkin for the school pumpkin pageant
Is it a bat? No! It's a cat!

Mouse and her dad's carved pumpkin
(thank goodness for stencils)


Here is what I finished reading in October:
  • Murder Can Mess Up Your Masterpiece (Haunted Craft Fair, #1) by Rose Pressey (Paranormal Cozy Mystery)
  • Silverlicious by Victoria Kann (Children's)
  • Pumpkin Soup by Helen Cooper (Children's)
  • Madeline by Ludwig Bemelmans (Children's)
  • Possum Magic by Mem Fox & Julie Vivas (Children's)
  • A Chair For My Mother by Vera B. Williams (Children's)
  • Henry's Freedom Box: A True Story from the Underground Railroad by Ellen Levine & Kadir Nelson (Children's)
  • Ivy + Bean and the Ghost That Had to Go (#2) by Annie Barrows & Sophie Blackall (Children's)
  • Me With You by Kristy Dempsey & Christopher Denise (Children's)
  • Wild Hunger (Heirs of the Chicagoland Vampires, #1)) by Chloe Neill (Urban Fantasy)
  • Death Overdue (Haunted Library, #1) by Allison Brook (Paranormal Cozy Mystery)
  • Read and Gone (Haunted Library, #2) by Allison Brook (Paranormal Cozy Mystery)
  • Amelia Bedelia Tries Her Luck by Herman Parish & Lynn Avril (Children's)
  • Ivy + Bean Break the Fossil Record (#3) by Annie Barrows & Sophie Blackall (Children's)
  • I Am Amelia Earhart by Brad Meltzer (Children's)
  • Buried in the Stacks (Haunted Library, #3) by Allison Brook (Paranormal Cozy Mystery)
  • Wicked Hour (Heirs of the Chicagoland Vampires, #2) by Chloe Neill (Urban Fantasy)
  • Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler (Children's)
  • Coming Home For Christmas (Haven Point, #10) by RaeAnne Thayne (Holiday Romance)
  • One Wish by Jodi Thomas (Historical Holiday Romance)
I may not have been around the blogging community much this past month, but I did manage to get in a bit more reading than I usually do. I enjoyed all of my reading again in October--I seem to be on a roll. If I had to pick a favorite, however, I definitely would go with RaeAnne Thayne's Coming Home For Christmas. I just love RaeAnne's books, and this one really touched my heart.

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


Thank you for helping me decide what book from my TBR collection I should read next:

My TBR List is a meme hosted by the awesome Michelle at Because Reading. It’s a fun way to choose a book from your TBR pile to read. The 1st Saturday of every month, I will list 3 books I am considering reading and take a poll as to which you think I should read. I will read the winner that month, and my review will follow (unfortunately, not likely in the same month, but eventually--that's all I can promise). 




I have been in the mood for a good historical fiction novel, and these three particularly caught my eye on my TBR shelf. They all feature stand out female characters, which in and of itself appeals to me.  Gaynor's book because I love all things Hazel Gaynor--and lighthouses! Although I do not read much in the way of Old West fiction, the idea of a book focusing on an all female gang is too good to pass up. Then of course, Lawhon's novel appeals to me especially because I recently say the musical Anastasia on stage, and have always had a particular interest in that period in history.


I Was Anastasia by Ariel Lawhon
Russia, July 17, 1918 Under direct orders from Vladimir Lenin, Bolshevik secret police force Anastasia Romanov, along with the entire imperial family, into a damp basement in Siberia where they face a merciless firing squad. None survive. At least that is what the executioners have always claimed.

Germany, February 17, 1920 A young woman bearing an uncanny resemblance to Anastasia Romanov is pulled shivering and senseless from a canal in Berlin. Refusing to explain her presence in the freezing water, she is taken to the hospital where an examination reveals that her body is riddled with countless, horrific scars. When she finally does speak, this frightened, mysterious woman claims to be the Russian Grand Duchess Anastasia.

Her detractors, convinced that the young woman is only after the immense Romanov fortune, insist on calling her by a different name: Anna Anderson.

As rumors begin to circulate through European society that the youngest Romanov daughter has survived the massacre, old enemies and new threats are awakened.  [Goodreads Summary]

The Lighthouse Keeper's Daughter by Hazel Gaynor
“They call me a heroine, but I am not deserving of such accolades. I am just an ordinary young woman who did her duty.”

1838: Northumberland, England. Longstone Lighthouse on the Farne Islands has been Grace Darling’s home for all of her twenty-two years. When she and her father rescue shipwreck survivors in a furious storm, Grace becomes celebrated throughout England, the subject of poems, ballads, and plays. But far more precious than her unsought fame is the friendship that develops between Grace and a visiting artist. Just as George Emmerson captures Grace with his brushes, she in turn captures his heart.

1938: Newport, Rhode Island. Nineteen-years-old and pregnant, Matilda Emmerson has been sent away from Ireland in disgrace. She is to stay with Harriet, a reclusive relative and assistant lighthouse keeper, until her baby is born. A discarded, half-finished portrait opens a window into Matilda’s family history. As a deadly hurricane approaches, two women, living a century apart, will be linked forever by their instinctive acts of courage and love. [Goodreads Summary]

Heresy by Melissa Lenhardt
They were the first and only all-female gang in the American West. Though the newspapers refuse to give them credit, their exploits don't go unnoticed. Now, they've got a rival male gang on their trail and an old score to settle.

Margaret Parker and Hattie LaCour never intended to turn outlaw.

After being run off their ranch by a greedy cattleman, their family is left destitute. As women alone they have few choices: marriage, lying on their backs for money, or holding a gun. For Margaret and Hattie the choice is simple. With their small makeshift family, the gang pulls off a series of heists across the West.

Though the newspapers refuse to give the female gang credit, their exploits don't go unnoticed. Pinkertons are on their trail, a rival male gang is determined to destroy them, and secrets among the group threaten to tear them apart. Now, Margaret and Hattie must find a way to protect their family, finish one last job, and avoid the hangman's noose. [Goodreads Summary]




Thank you for voting! I hope you all have a wonderful week! Happy Reading!


© 2019, 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.

46 comments:

  1. A busy October! You should be set for November with all of your new books and credits!

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    1. Jenclair - Hopefully I will have time to read this month. ;-) Thank you for stopping by!

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  2. You did put that gift card to good use! All those ebooks should keep you busy for a while.

    I love that you and Mouse shop the same way!

    I bet the rest of the year is busy for you too.

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    1. Kathy - I'd been saving the gift card for something else, but I couldn't resist the deal. Yes, the rest of the year will be quite busy--it only gets worse from here. Haha. It's an exciting time though. I'll appreciate it more once it's behind us. Thank you for visiting!

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  3. Ooh, you got Spectacle! I really want to read that one. It sounds excellent. Mouse’s cat pumpkins are adorable.

    Aj @ Read All The Things!

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    1. AJ - I am really looking forward to reading Spectacle. I just love that cover too. Thank you for stopping by!

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  4. Hi Wendy, that is a great deal on Amazon and perfect since you had the gift card. Glad you guys found some books at the yard sale too, enjoy them!
    It sounds like you had a nice time watching the theater performances and fun with all the Halloween activities. The pumpkins are cute too!
    And the cats :)
    October flew right on by. I read 5 books an that's alot for me, I tend to read 2 or 3 monthly. And I dressed up as a Grady twin for Halloween which was fun, it's been a few years since I last dressed up.
    Enjoy your next read, I love good historical fiction.

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    1. Naida - Having the gift card handy made it easier to take advantage of the deal. :-) We will be seeing one of Mouse's friends perform in Frozen 2 in another two weeks. That should be fun as well.

      It sounds like you had a good October in reading. I am not sure how I managed to read as much as I did. I am not sure I can repeat it any time soon.

      I loved your Halloween costume! Mouse was Haunted Beauty this year.

      Thank you for visiting!

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  5. OH NO! I don't know which book to pick I love Anastacia retellings and the centuries apart ladies sounds awesome too! OMG! This was hard! but I picked one :) I wont tell you until I see the winner!

    I love the pumpkin so cute!

    Have a great week, Wendy! Happy Reading!

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    1. Michelle - Thank you for voting! I had a hard time settling on which three to choose. I am eager to read all of them though. I hope you have a great week too. Thank you for stopping by!

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  6. wow. what a book haul. hope you enjoy them all
    sherry @ fundinmental

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  7. I had to vote for the all-female outlaw gang in Heresy. It just sounds like fun. :)

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    1. Lark - That does sound good, doesn't it? :-) Thank you for voting and stopping by!

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  8. Oh wow! What a fun book haul! I hope Mouse had a good time trick or treating and I love the cat pumpkin. Those stencils are amazing! I don't think you can go wrong with any of the books you've picked but I went with the Hazel Gaynor because I liked it just a bit better then Anastasia though there are some seriously heartbreaking parts to it.

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    1. Katherine - Thank you! I am looking forward to reading them. Mouse had a great time trick-or-treating. I think she wishes she could do it more often. Haha. I am glad to hear Tornado had a nice Halloween too. Thank you for voting! And thank you for visiting!

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  9. What a busy time you have had lately! October is always a busy time here, too, and it looks like you have been just-so there. Halloween is such an imaginative holiday. It's fun to see all the creative things you and Mouse did.

    Look at the books you got from Amazon! And the yard sale. Wow!

    I hope November is just as magical.

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    1. Deb - We really enjoy Halloween. I'm definitely more into the holiday because I have a child, but I know lots of adults without kids who get into the day too. THank you for visiting!

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  10. That is an impressive ebook haul! Hope you enjoy all the books!!

    I've got a soft spot for the youngest Romanov so I voted for I was Anastasia!

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    1. Eustacia - Thank you! I hope they will all turn out to be winners. Thank you for voting and stopping by!

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  11. You did do well with your giftcard:)). I can endorse Doing Time and An Easy Death, both of which I loved. The pumpkin is very impressive - never mind about stencils, it's cutting the wretched thing that is such hard work! I hope you have a wonderful November - I voted for Heresey as I thought the premise was marvellous:).

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    1. Sarah - Thank you! I am glad you enjoyed both Doing Time and An Easy Death. They may have been on my wish list because of you in the first place. :-) Yes, cutting it can be a real challenge. I left that to my husband. LOL I hope you have a great November too. Thank you for voting and visiting!

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  12. Ooh nice book haul! And yes the fires out there sound terrible! Hope you and everyone around you stay safe and as unaffected as possible.

    Beautiful cat pics too! :)

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    1. Greg - Thank you! Yes, the fires have been so awful this season. They predict they will only get worse with the climate change. Thank you for stopping by!

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  13. Your cat pumpkin is adorable. Enjoy your new books. My weekly update

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    1. Sarah - Thank you! We are all about cats in our house it would seem. :-) Thank you for visiting!

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  14. What a great haul, i recognise some fabulous titles, enjoy!

    Wishing you a great reading week, and stay safe!

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    1. Shelleyrae - Thank you! I hope you have a great week too--and stay safe as well. Thank you for stopping by!

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  15. You've got a very nice book haul there, Wendy! Hope you enjoy all the books and that you've a good week!

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    1. Melody - Thank you! I hope I will too. Now to make time to read them . . . I hope you have a great week as well. Thank you for visiting!

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  16. We were just at the Pantages for Jesus Christ Superstar but we missed Anastasia. I am sure your daughter loved it.

    How do you read so many books with all you do? Lots of waiting around at dance? I wait around a lot but I get distracted lately.

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    1. Ti - I saw on Facebook you went to see Jesus Christ Superstar. It's a great show. I've seen it a couple times on stage. Anastasia was good. Mouse loved it.

      October was an exceptional month for me in reading. I read double what I normally do in any given month. I think this time around a lot of it had to do with my reading choices and the fact that I chose reading over doing much anything else. I sometimes am able to get a lot of reading in done during Mouse's dance classes and rehearsals. But it depends on who I run into and if there is some prop to work on or if someone needs help. This past Saturday I was looking forward to spending time in my book, but instead ended up supervising the day's Booster fundraiser (the kids painting wooden nutcrackers). I'm still not sure how that happened. I think it will get easier to slip away to read when Mouse is older . . . Haha

      I hope you have a great week, Ti.

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  17. Your kitties are so cute!
    Quite a few people are getting ebook credit deals at the moment and I'm so jealous! lol. I hope you enjoy your books.

    I rewatched up to S5 of the vampire diaries last year and I enjoyed it but needed a break before finishing the show... Which I still haven't done but will before I need to start back at S1 again! lol Good luck with the rewatch!

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    1. Nicci - Thank you! I love my kitties. <3

      I will likely need a break after awhile in watching Vampire Diaries too. There's more teenage angst in this first season than I remember. I am enjoying it though. We'll see how far I get.

      Thanks for visiting!

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  18. All those great books! You did well with your book shopping. Have a great week!

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    1. Yvonne - Thank you! I am eager to read them. When is the big question. Haha. I hope you have a great week too!

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  19. How could I vote for anything other than The Lighthouse Keeper's Daughter when Northumberland is only but a short drive away and I grew up with stories of Grace Darling.

    What a wonderful haul of books new to your 'shelf' ... my eyes went straight to the novel by Charlaine Harris before darting quickly to the cover featuring the black cat.

    Loving everything about this cat inspired post from your cuddle kitty to those pumpkins.

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    1. Felicity - Thank you for voting! Now I want to read The Lighthouse Keeper's Daughter even more!

      I have heard such good things about Harris's new series. I hope I will enjoy it.

      We can't resist kitties in our house. :-)

      Thank you for visiting!

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  20. How nice to get more for your gift card purchase! That would not hard to do! Love your kitties. My daughter recently had to say goodbye to one of theirs and it was hard. We love The Masked Singer too. I've been catching up on some sit-coms that I never started (Young Sheldon, I Know!), Last Man Standing and Perfect Harmony. Have a great November.

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  21. It looks like you accomplished a lot last month. I love all of the cat pictures:). What a wonderful deal/invitation from Amazon! You got so many great looking books! Happy Reading :)

    Lindy@ A Bookish Escape

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