Friday, July 27, 2012

Book Club Friday!

Hey y'all,

I am back from a quick few days in Wilmington! I will update you tomorrow on my adventures but since last week I have read a whopping 4 books and thought I would share with the great Heather's link-up! It was a nice relaxing vacation and right now I am enjoying watching the Olympic Opening Ceremonies(and tweeting away).

So without further ado, since last week I have read....
4/5 stars
Goodreads description: Twenty years ago, when they were teenagers, Holly and Nicola were the outsiders at summer camp. Holly was the plump one, a dreamer who longed to be an artist. Nicola was the shy, plain one who wanted nothing more than to be beautiful. Their cabin nemesis was Lexi. Rich, spoiled, evil Lexi. One night, Holly and Nicola team up to pull one, daring act of vengeance. But they never dream that this one act will have repercussions that will reach into the future, even twenty years later. And they never realize the secret pain that Lexi holds very close, and how their need for revenge costs Lexi a great deal. 
Today, Holly is a successful gallery owner, who has put her own artistic dreams on hold. She struggles with her weight and for approval from her constantly-criticizing boyfriend. Nicola, is an almost-famous actress who believes that one little plastic surgery fix is just what she needs to put her over the edge into fame. And Lexi…Lexi is down on her luck and totally broke. 
Holly will do anything to be thin. Lexi will do anything to be rich. And Nicola will do anything to be pretty. Thin, Rich, Pretty is the story of three women who believe that happiness is the next dress size down, the next dollar figure up, or the next appreciative glance from a stranger. But mostly it’s the story of how three women save each other, and show each other the path to true contentment. Told with Beth Harbison’s knack for thirty and fortysomething nostalgia, and heartwarming humor, Thin, Rich, Pretty will strike a chord with any woman who has ever got on the scale, looked in the mirror, or the bank, and said, “if only…” 


I loved the mix of past experiences and current struggles in this novel which reminds us that even though we think "what if" and "if only" we all have amazing things that make us unique and "us" that we should embrace and celebrate.
4/5 stars
Goodreads description: As far as Gemma is concerned, her days of dating are over. In fact, it’s her job to cater other peoples’ dates, and that’s just fine by her. At thirty-seven, she has her own business, working as a private chef, and her life feels full and secure. She’s got six steady clients that keep her hands full. 
There’s Lex, the fussy but fabulous department store owner who loves Oysters Rockefeller and 1950s comfort food; Willa, who needs to lose weight under doctor’s orders but still believes butter makes everything better; a colorful family who may or may not be part of the Russian mob; an ├╝berwealthy Georgetown family; the picture-perfect Van Houghtens, whose matriarch is “allergic to everything”; and finally, a man she calls “Mr. Tuesday,” whom she has never met but who she is strangely drawn to. 

For Gemma, cooking is predictable. Recipes are certain. Use good ingredients, follow the directions, and you are assured success. Life, on the other hand, is full of variables. So when Gemma’s takes an unexpected turn on a road she always thought was straight and narrow, she must face her past and move on in ways she never would have imagined. Because sometimes in life, all you need is a little hope, a lot of courage, and---oh yes---butter.


I loved the thought of a personal chef story since I love cooking/food. The main character is hysterical as she relates to everyone's struggles of finding love, balancing career and money and the demands of an employer.
3.5/5 stars
Goodreads description: In 1897 England, 16-year-old Finley Jayne is convinced she's a freak. No normal Victorian girl has a darker side that makes her capable of knocking out a full-grown man with one punch. Only Griffin King sees the magical darkness inside her that says she's special . . . that she's one of "them."
I was very surprised that I enjoyed this teen novel. I am not that big of a science fiction fan but love the time period of London/England in the Victorian era and some paranormal. The main character Finley is struggling with finding a balance between good and evil within herself as well as finding other individuals that have special abilities as well as herself. I can't wait to see where the series continues.
4/5 stars
Goodreads description:  In "New York Times" bestselling author Hester Browne's delightful new novel, a fading English finishing school is about to get a twenty-first-century makeover. Out with white gloves and flower arranging, in with managing mortgagesand do-it-yourself manicures Behind this remarkable transformation is business-savvy Betsy Phillimore, with her own unique connection to London's esteemed Phillimore Academy for Young Ladies....
Twenty-seven years ago, an infant turned up on the Academy's doorstep, with a note tacked to her blanket by an elegant golden brooch -- "Please take care of my baby. I want her to grow up to be a proper lady." Loved by Lady Frances Phillimore and her kindhearted staff, Betsy grew up aspiring to be an Academy girl. But when Franny and her husband, Lord Phillimore, advise Betsy to instead hone her considerable math skills at college, she brokenheartedly leaves behind the only family she's known.
Now, on the sad occasion of Lady Frances's memorial service, Betsy comes back to find the school in disrepair, the enrollment down, and Lord P. desperate to save his legacy. Enter Betsy, the numbers genius, and her business plan -- to replace dusty protocol with the essentials girls need today: "cell phone etiquette, eating sushi properly, handling credit cards, choosing the perfect little black dress, negotiating a pre-nup, " and other lessons in independent living.
But Betsy may have bitten off more than she can chew. Can she win over the school's snobby headmistress and its handsome but risk-averse treasurer? Returning to London also means facing her own unfinished business, as she crosses paths with her sexy girlhood crush...and blowing the dust off clues to a lifelong mystery: who were her parents, and why did they abandon her? If knowledge is power, Betsy is on the brink of truly becoming her own woman, and embracing the one thing she's wanted all along: a place to call home.
A bittersweet journey of laughter and tears, "The Finishing Touches" will have you gleefully turning pages through dinner with elbows on the table -- bad manners, perhaps, but excusable for one utterly irresistible read.
I LOVED THIS BOOK! I love Hester Browne's other book The Little Lady Agency and this book of British finishing schools, a girl finding her family and realizing that your family are a part of you but do not completely define you was great.



I can't wait to hear what y'all have been reading! Don't forget to sign up for my school supply swap to get a great office/school supply package!

Peace and Blessings,
jDl

6 comments:

  1. I've read a few Beth Haribson books, another neither of those two. And I've heard great things about The Girl in the Steel Corset. Looks like you got some great reading done.

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  2. I think you may just be the Beth Harbison guru! :) Is she your favorite author?

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  3. Oh my... you read quite a few! Love the title "when in doubt, add butter" that's my motto! haha not really :p

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  4. Whoa girl, you are a fast reader!! What good reviews, lady!

    Keep Shining,
    Meghan

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  5. What a fast reader you must be and also a great one! I've never heard of any of these books so you must be the girl in the know! Love the link up and book reviews--keep em coming!

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  6. I loved Finishing Touches too!

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Thanks for the sweet note!