Review: Miss Dreamsville by Amy Hill Hearth

Miss Dreamsville and The Collier County Women's Literary Society by Amy Hill Hearth

Expected Publication: October 2, 2012
Format: NetGalley
Publisher: Atria Books
Rating: 4/5


Eighty-year-old Dora, the narrator of a story that began a half century earlier, is bonding with an unlikely set of friends, including Jackie Hart, a restless middle-aged wife and mother from Boston, who gets into all sorts of trouble when her family moves to a small, sleepy town in Collier County, Florida, circa 1962.

With humor and insight the novel chronicles the awkward North-South cultural divide as Jackie, this hapless but charming "Yankee," looks for some excitement in her life by accepting an opportunity to host a local radio show where she creates a mysterious, late-night persona, "Miss Dreamsville," and by launching a reading group—the Collier County Women’s Literary Society—thus sending the conservative and racially segregated town into uproar. The only townspeople who venture to join are regarded as outsiders at best—a young gay man, a divorced woman, a poet, and a young black woman who dreams of going to college.

My Thoughts
Where do I begin? This book was a real joyful read. As a southern girl I can love and appreciate Southern fiction. As someone who's obsessed with all things 60's it just made this even better for me. I think it was very true to the times. This book was a mixture of fun and serious.

The cast of characters are a crazy and an offbeat bunch which makes the story. The way this group of outcast came together and became in a way a family is touching. They not only learned from each other but also learned more about themselves. Their little literary group taught them more than just books, but in a way how to be more fearless in their own lives and with their futures. To take risks and to discovery that there was more to life than just their little small town.

I can't wait for the next book by Amy Hill Hearth. This book is a fun and fabulous read!


Review: The Vinyl Princessby Yvonne Prinz

The Vinyl Princess by Yvonne Prinz

Published: December 4, 2009
Format: Hardcover [Bought]
Publisher: HaperTeen
Rating: 5/5

Summer is here, and 16-year-old Allie, a self-professed music geek, is exactly where she wants to be: working full-time at Berkeley's ultra-cool Bob and Bob Records. There, Allie can spend her days bantering with the street people, talking the talk with the staff, shepherding the uncool bridge-and-tunnel shoppers, all the while blissfully surrounded by music, music, music. It's the perfect setup for her to develop her secret identity as The Vinyl Princess, author of both a brand-new zine and blog. From the safety of her favourite place on earth, Allie is poised to have it all: love, music and blogging.

My Thoughts
I picked this up a couple of months ago on Amazon and it was a one of my best finds. If there's anything I love more than books its music. So to combine the two makes me very happy. Allie is a just a girl trying to make her way through her teen years. Dealing with issues all teens go through we can all understand Allie. Yvonne Prinz makes Allie a girl I want to be. The description of Allie's record collection alone makes me so jealous. Allie is a strong independent teen and understands who she is and what she wants. The cast of characters from the neighborhood and record store are a delight. What I loved was the way music plays a upfront role in the book. It's almost the star. I found myself looking up some the songs and artists mentioned in the book. All in all if you love music and want a great read pick this up.


Review: Leaves by Michael Baron

Leaves by Michael Baron
Expected publication: September 25, 2012
Format: NetGalley
Publisher: The Story Plant
Rating: 4/5

Welcome to Oldham, CT, a small town rich in Colonial heritage while being utterly contemporary. Situated along the Connecticut River Valley, Oldham bursts with color every fall, as the leaves on its trees evolve into an unmatched palette of scarlet, orange, purple, yellow, and bronze. For more than three decades, the Gold family has been a central part of Oldham in the fall, its Sugar Maple Inn a destination for leaf-peepers" from all over the country, and its annual Halloween party a stirring way to punctuate the town’s most active month.
But this year, more than just the leaves are changing. With the death of their parents, the Gold siblings, Maria, Maxwell, Deborah, Corrina, and Tyler, have decided to sell the Sugar Maple Inn, and this year’s Halloween party will be the last. As October begins, the Golds contend with the finality that faces them, and the implications it has for a family that has always been so close. For some, it means embracing new challenges and new love. For others, it means taking on unimagined roles. And for others, it means considering the inconceivable. Complicating it all is a series of hauntings" that touch each of the Gold siblings, a series of benign interventions that will remain a mystery until October draws to a close.

My Thoughts
I was really excited to read this book. After reading this I felt really connected to the Gold family. Their closeness and troubles can resonate with many of us. Although there is a large cast of characters in the book you never lose track or get confused by it at all. To me that's a sign of a great writer. Each and everyone has a story of their own. Their stories intertwine and flow so seamlessly. The way the author describes the setting and characters makes me feel like I'm right there in Oldham.

There's one quote that stayed with me way after I finished the book.
"You may think you don't need each other anymore, but this love will prove important again. More than you could possibly know."
This quote not only sums up the book but life itself. Never take for granted anything or anyone because you never know what life has in store for you.

I was glad to find out this book is one of a series to focus on the Gold family. I can't wait to continue to see what each sibling and their families have in store for them. Leaves not only symbolizes and reflects the changing of seasons but the changes in their lives as well. This book wasn't the end of the Gold family but merely the beginning of things to come.


Weekend Reads

This weekend I'll be diving into two books. I'll be finishing up...
Leaves by Michael Baron
Expected publication: September 25, 2012
Format: NetGalley

I recently received...
A Working Theory of Love by Scott Hutchins
Expected Publication October 2, 2012
Format: ARC from Goodreads

I'm REALLY looking forward to reading this. I've heard great things about this book so I can't wait to see if it lives up to the hype.
Hope everyone has a great weekend!


Mini Review: How I Came to Sparkle Again by Kayla McLaren

How I Came to Sparkle Again by Kayla McLaren
Expected publication: October 2, 2012
Publisher:St. Martin's Press
Format: ARC won via Goodreads
Rating 3/5

Jill Anthony spent her young adulthood in the ski town of Sparkle, Colorado. But more than a decade has passed since she left when, only weeks after a very late miscarriage, she finds her husband in bed with another woman, she flees Austin, Texas for the town she knows: Sparkle.
Lisa Carlucci wakes up one morning after another night of meaningless sex, looks in the mirror and realizes that she no longer wants to treat her body like a Holiday Inn. She’s going to hold out for love. The only problem is, love might come in the form of her ski bum best friend, who lives next door with his ski bum friends in a trailer known as "the Kennel."
Cassie Jones, at age ten, has lost her mother to cancer and no longer believes in anything anymore. She knows her father is desperately worried about her, and she constantly looks for messages from her deceased mother through the heart-shaped rocks they once collected in the streams and hills of Sparkle.
Three people at the crossroads of heartbreak and healing. Three lives that will be changed one winter in Sparkle. One tender, funny, tear-jerking novel you won’t soon forget.

My Thoughts
I really enjoyed this read. I loved the relationships in the books and how the author handled telling three stories in one. The writing was smooth as she transferred from one person to the next.
I like the inspirational feel to it without being too preachy like some other novels I read. I was rooting the characters and I love when an author can make me do that. While some parts of the story kind of dragged for my liking over all its an enjoyable. Not to mention I'm a sucker for anything about Christmas or winter related. So if you want a good quick read this book's for you.


IMM [In My Mailbox]

Today I thought I would share some of the stuff I got in my mail [inbox] so far this week. I saw this on the great blog thestorysiren and thought it would be fun to join in.
So here's a few of the things I got this week [so far] thanks to Netgalley.



How Lucky You Are by Kristyn Kusek Lewis was released Sept. 4, 2012
Leaves by Michael Baron will be released on Sept. 25, 2012
A Christmas Hope by Joseph Pittman will be released on Sept. 25, 2012
Ever by Jessa Russo will be released on Oct. 1, 2012
Invisible by Carla Buckley will be released on Dec 11, 2012

Can't wait to dive into this books. I've currently started reading Leaves and it seems like a great read.
So lots of reviews to come.


What's coming up...

Sorry for the missing posts been real busy this weekend. Later today I will post all the goodies I got in my mailbox [inbox] over the weekend. I'm so excited to get to reading all the great things I received!


The First One

Today is the start of new things to come. This is my first time as a book blogger. I LOVE books so much I thought why not just write about them. I'm hoping to spread my love for books to as many people as possible. I'm open to all genres of books. I love to state my opinions and welcome others to do the same. Please be patient as I figure my way around the blogosphere.
With this blog I'm hoping to review books...old and new. So any sugguestions of great books are totally welcomed and encouraged.

Currently Reading...