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Top Ten Tuesday: Summer Readin'



Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and The Bookish.

Can you believe that summer is on its way? I can’t. I’m not a huge fan of summer- I don’t do well with the high temperatures. But the best way to beat the heat is to hang out by an air conditioner with a good book. And that’s what I plan to do in the following months. Here are a few of the books I’m hoping to get lost in while escaping the soaring temperatures.





10: The Inheritance by Louisa May Alcott
Been meaning to read this one forever. Perhaps that will finally happen this summer.



9: Becoming Jane Eyre by Shelia Kohler
I got this book at our library’s annual book sale a few years ago, but it has sat on my shelf unread. One of my goals this year is to read more books that I’ve had copies of for a while yet haven’t read and this is one that I am looking forward to.



8: Servant’s Hall by Margaret Powell
I also got this book at our library’s book sale last year. I’d like to get to it this summer.



7: Grace Livingston Hill Collection No. 4 by Grace Livingston Hill
Another book that I got at the same sale. It’s hard to pass up paperbacks for $1 (toward the end of the sale they ask you to put as many books as you can into grocery store bags and charge you $1 per bag)! I recently read one of Grace Livingston Hill’s novels for the first time and I liked it. This book includes four novels, one of which was written by Grace’s aunt Isabella Alden.


6:Winter by Marissa Meyer
Last year I read the first three books in The Lunar Chronicles right in a row. Then I lost my momentum and never finished Winter. Maybe I can get to it this summer.




5: Lilies in Moonlight by Allison Pitman
This book looks like fun!



4: Waves of Mercy by Lynn Austin
The other day I noticed that our library got this one in. I also noticed it has quite the waiting list. I’d like to read it when it’s available.



3: The White Feather Murders by Rachel McMillan
It’s hard to believe that this is the last book in the Herringford and Watts Mysteries. Looking forward to seeing what chaos Merinda and Jem find themselves in this time!



2: The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle
I recently downloaded the entire Sherlock Holmes collection and so far I’ve read A Study in Scarlet and The Sign of Four and have liked them. Next up is the first collection of short stories about the infamous detective, and I’m looking forward to reading them soon.



1: Mansfield Park by Jane Austen
This will be my last Austen novel! It’s kind of sad to think about that. But I am looking forward to reading another fabulous classic.

What books are piling up on your TBR this summer?


-Miranda Atchley

Lately 5.9.2017




Hello, readers and friends! It’s hard to believe we are in the fifth month of the year. Time flies. Today I’m popping in with another “lately” post to talk about what I’ve writing and reading lately. Enjoy!

Reading

My reading has been pretty good lately. I finished two books on the first day of the month and have since finished two more. This is pretty unusual for me. Four books in one month used to be my average. But it isn’t all about numbers and I don’t want to brag. The first book I finished this month was Once Upon A Summertime. Swept Away has been my favorite so far. You can read my review for it here. I’ve read the first two Sherlock Holmes mysteries, which were good. Currently I’m reading a biography about C.S. Lewis, and Lady Susan by Jane Austen.

Writing

I’ve still been working on the third book in The Abi Hensley Series. Some days I can think of a lot to write and then other days I can only come up with a few sentences. That’s simply the way it goes when you’re writing a book. I’m doing some fun things in this book that make me excited and I’m so looking forward to seeing how they turn out. And of course I can’t wait for you all to read it when it’s finished. :)

So that’s my life lately. Hope you all are doing well! Until next time…

Review: Swept Away by Vanessa Riley




by Vanessa Riley

Upon his death in 1818, the Duke of Charming’s daughter, Charlotte, becomes duchess. Charlotte is a strong willed young woman who knows exactly what she wants. She’s tired of a man telling her what to do, and she looks forward to ruling over her own life. When she and her friend Mercy, better known as Miss Goodmom, go to a cobbler, Charlotte spots the perfect pair of slippers to wear with her gown to her coming out ball. Yet the salesman assures her that the slippers are not for sale. Edwin Cinder, owner of the Ella shoe store, notices Charlotte as she and Mercy are leaving and immediately falls in love, yet he is unwilling to let the special shoes go. When the two attend the same ball, tragedy strikes. Edwin came to Charlotte’s rescue once before. Will he be willing to let her do the same for him?

I loved this book. It was just a fun and whimsical take on the classic Cinderella story. I like that the roles were reversed, and the regency setting was delightful. The writing is nicely paced and charming. There are plenty of twists and turns to keep one guessing and references to the original story are subtly and perfectly woven in. The characters felt real and relatable. It’s a lovely novel.

All in all, Swept Away is a charming spin on Cinderella that any fan of Jane Austen and fairytales will enjoy.

I give this book 5 out of 5 stars.


Review: Once Upon A Summertime by Melody Carlson


by Melody Carlson

Anna Gordon hates her job. She’s always wanted to manage a hotel, but the Value Lodge isn’t what she had always dreamed of, with its less than clean appearance and shabby employees. She tries to remind herself to be thankful for the job, especially seeing as her grandmother reminds her that some people aren’t lucky enough to have found jobs after college. Even so, Anna finds herself at the end of her rope at the Value Lodge. When she runs into her friend Marley who is in town from New York City, the two begin to catch up. Seeing how unhappy Anna is, Marley tells her friend about a new boutique hotel that is opening in the Big Apple. With high hopes, Anna sends in her resume, and just in time, too. After losing her job at the Value Lodge, Anna heads to New York City in the hopes that she will be hired at the Rothsberg. Despite the fact that she doesn’t get the job she had hoped for, Anna is happy to be managing housekeeping in the beautiful hotel. And she finds herself falling for the man who got the job she applied for. Anna grew up with Sean O’Neil, and as the two become reacquainted, the sparks fly. Yet policies set in place by the hotel’s uptight owners may put an end to their dreams.

In the beginning, this book reminded me a lot of Melody Carlson’s Dear Daphne series. Only the plot is reversed. Instead of leaving the hustle and bustle of NYC to live in the small she grew up in like Daphne did, Anna is tired of the small town of Springville and longs for a different life in New York. While Anna and Daphne almost have similar personalities, this book is different enough from the Dear Daphne series to make it feel like a whole other world. Contemporary romance isn’t my favorite genre. I read it from time to time, but it certainly it isn’t a genre I love. I’m a longtime fan of Melody Carlson’s, and when I saw the Kindle edition of this book for a pretty low price, I decided to download it. It was a nice lighthearted read. Anna was a little bit uptight to me, but she was mostly a likeable character. Sean was a good balance for her. What I like is that it wasn’t solely focused on the romance. Anna’s life as she moved to New York played a huge role in the book, as well.

While this wasn’t one of my favorite Melody Carlson novels, I still found it to be a nice, light read. If you’re a fan of Christian contemporary romance, I would recommend this novel to you.


I give this book 3.5 out of 5 stars.

Thank You



Thank you so much to everyone who downloaded A Castle in the Sky during the sale last week. I’m so happy you all decided to download my book and I sincerely hope you all enjoy it. You all made my week! And of course I’m thankful to the Lord for putting all this into place. None of this would be possible without God.


Thank you a million times over.

-Miranda Atchley

Top Ten Tuesday: Cover Candy



Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and The Bookish.

Hello readers and friends! I hope you’re all doing well this Tuesday. It’s been a while since I’ve participated in Top Ten Tuesday. Well, I’m back this week, and with a fun topic, too; cover freebie. This could really topic could go in many different directions, but I decided to go with my top ten favorite book covers of all time. Now, just a book doesn’t have the prettiest cover in the world, that doesn’t mean I won’t read it. But, if I can find a great book with a beautiful cover, well then that’s even better. And when I find gorgeous covers for my favorite books; that’s pretty awesome. So here are some of my favorite book covers. Enjoy!



10: The Crown by Kiera Cass
No cover candy list would be complete without one of covers from The Selection Series. These covers are all gorgeous with the beautiful gowns, and The Crown is my favorite cover from the series because of the colors.



9: While You’re Awake by Amber Stokes
All of Amber’s covers are pretty, but this one is probably the prettiest. The warm sunlight, Ava’s pretty dress, and Keegan reminds me so much of Jonathan Crombie when he played Gilbert Blythe in Anne of Green Gables.



8: Glamorous Illusions by Lisa T. Bergren
This cover is so pretty. I love that The Eiffel Tower is in the background and the mix of pink, gold, and silver in the sky is beautiful. Plus, Cora’s gown is beautiful and goes really well with the rest of the scenery.



All of the Herringford and Watts Mysteries have great covers. I love the silhouettes and how every cover features different items that are special to the book. For instance, on this cover such items are the church, Merinda’s cane, and Ray’s watch.



6: The Ringmaster’s Wife by Kristy Cambron
This cover is so pretty. I love the color scheme and the lights that drape down. It really feels like the circus; you can practically hear the sounds and smell the popcorn and earth when you look at it.



5: The Sound of Emeralds by Rachelle Rea Cobb
The cover to the conclusion of the Steadfast Love Series is beautiful. I love Gwyn’s gown, and the castle and the hills in the background. All the greenery totally fits the theme of the book; it’s amazing.



4: Persuasion by Jane Austen
I realize there are many different editions of Jane Austen’s novels, but I really like the Vintage Classics set and the cover for Persuasion is my favorite. I love the sea depicted on the cover, Anne’s dress, and the telescope. It’s just a great cover.



3: Emma by Jane Austen
Another lovely Austen cover. This one is so pretty with the different colors and the embroidered look. I love it.



2: Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
I love the Puffin In Bloom collection. This is the only one I own at the moment, but I’m hoping to collect more of them in the future.



1: Anne of Ingleside by L.M. Montgomery

The Sourcebooks editions of the Anne books are just gorgeous. This one is my favorite because I love the colors, Anne’s hairstyle, the flowers, the bird, and the little painting of Ingleside. It’s just beautiful.

April in Review



April was another quiet month around here. But I did get some posts up, and for that I am glad. I also celebrated A Castle in the Sky’s birthday! That was a lot of fun. Thank you so much to everyone who downloaded it this month! This month I also made progress in my latest novel, which is really good, and I read a lot.

Books I Read in April


This is the second month this year in which I’ve read ten books, and I can’t believe it. Honestly, there were some days when I had writer’s block, and when that would happen I would read a lot. Just Patty was a re-read for me. I read it a couple years ago when I first got my Kindle and I really liked it back then. I think I enjoyed it even more this time. I really liked Melody Carlson’s The Inn at Shining Waters series. It was a good series and they became some of my favorite books by her as I read them this month. The Life of Charlotte Brontë was my non-fiction read for the month, as well as my favorite read in April. I really liked this book; the Brontë’s lives, though full of hardship and sadness, were very interesting and inspirational. No matter how hard their lives were, their faith in the Lord endured and I find that very inspirational. And it goes without saying, but they were so talented. I’ve also been working toward one of my goals of reading more of the books that have gone unread on my bookshelf and my Kindle. I’d had Persuasion on both my bookshelf and my Kindle for a long time with plans to read it someday and worked through both copies simultaneously this month. While not my absolute favorite Austen novel, I did like the book and was glad to have read it. Two other books that fell into this category were Dawn’s Prelude and Paint Me True. I think I downloaded both of them a couple of years ago when they were free, and I just got around to reading them. They were both okay books, but I didn’t particularly love them. Monday or Tuesday was a different sort of novel. It wasn’t awful, but it wasn’t really my cup of tea, either.

Favorite Blog Posts from April

                                                       
Thanks for dropping by my blog this month! I hope you enjoyed your visit. Until next time…

-Miranda Atchley