Friday, March 13, 2015

Ella written by Mallory Kasdan and illustrated by Marcos Chin






This is ELLA. She is six years old. She lives at the Local Hotel. She has a nanny called Manny. He has tattoos for sleeves and he might go in with some guys to buy a grilled cheese truck. Sometimes Ella weaves purses out of Ziploc bags and reclaimed twine. (She is artsy of course.) She has a dog named Stacie and a fish named Rasta and a scooter which is important for getting everywhere she needs to be. Altogether she has been to 62 events including that Hillary Clinton fundraiser. She is NEVER bored. If Ella and Kay Thompson’s Eloise got together for a play date, they would have a very good time indeed






My thoughts... Let me begin with the amazing illustrations. Loved them. They really are fantastic and really gave the book the urban flavor. The story itself is a modern day Eloise. A little girl left behind for a nanny (or in this case manny) and hotel staff to take care of. She sees a grown-up world with groupies and beer drinking. Ella is  cute little girl and not nearly as bratty as maybe Eloise, but the story is again sad. Her mom is not there, she is in a sense alone in a grown-up world.

I read the book to my children. Even though we are suburbanites and the urban lifestyle is very different my kids enjoyed the book. They thought Ella was funny, at the end they felt sad for Ella even though she got to do all this running around. I enjoyed being able to share with them the difference in lifestyles in our world. My five year old loves to sit and look at the pictures.

If you are familiar with the Eloise stories you can really appreciate how Ella is an urban parody. Like I said, my kids enjoyed the story, but I think it will resonate more with adults. Some people will love it and others may not, but I think the same is true for Eloise.

Buy your copy!













As of December 1, 2009, According to The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), product reviewers on blogs must disclose whether they received products for free or received payment for their review. The books I review on this site (A NOVEL REVIEW) are sent to me by publishers, authors or downloaded from Netgalley. This is a very common practice. I never take payments for these reviews and all the reviews on this site are my own thoughts and feelings and are not influenced.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

The Reluctant Midwife: A Hope River Novel by Patricia Harman

The USA Today bestselling author of The Midwife of Hope River returns with a heartfelt sequel, a novel teeming with life and full of humor and warmth, one that celebrates the human spirit.

The Great Depression has hit West Virginia hard. Men are out of work; women struggle to feed hungry children. Luckily, Nurse Becky Myers has returned to care for them. While she can handle most situations, Becky is still uneasy helping women deliver their babies. For these mothers-to-be, she relies on an experienced midwife, her dear friend Patience Murphy.

Though she is happy to be back in Hope River, time and experience have tempered Becky’s cheerfulness-as tragedy has destroyed the vibrant spirit of her former employer Dr Isaac Blum, who has accompanied her. Patience too has changed. Married and expecting a baby herself, she is relying on Becky to keep the mothers of Hope River safe.

But becoming a midwife and ushering precious new life into the world is not Becky’s only challenge. Her skills and courage will be tested when a calamitous forest fire blazes through a Civilian Conservation Corps camp. And she must find a way to bring Isaac back to life and rediscover the hope they both need to go on.

My thoughts...The Reluctant Midwife is a follow up to Harman's novel The Midwife of Hope River, having not read the first novel I found no issue in reading The Reluctant novel. Having however read the second novel, I now plan on reading the first novel!

The novel follows Nurse Becky Myers as she brings her former employer, Dr. Blum, back home to Hope River. The Depression leaves nobody untouched in West Virginia. Nurse Becky is desperate to find work to support herself and a catatonic Dr. Blum. She finds help from her friend Patience and her husband as well as odd jobs delivering groceries and helping out in medical situations (though there was much aversion to delivering babies).

I can't say I loved Nurse Becky, but that sorta made the novel great. She was strong, determined and doing what she could in horrible circumstances. I respected her. I rooted for her. What I found most fascinating about this novel is how Harman made the Great Depression feel real to me. I really mean that. I was reading the novel and thinking of my grandparents, this was something they went through and how it must have changed them deeply. In the novel, Nurse Becky even says something about how she hadn't given thought about how the Depression had even changed the lives of the children...what a horrific time. Yet Harmon writes about the townspeople who still push on, helping each other out when there was almost nothing to give and the trying to keep life normal when all comfort and security has been ripped from the country. A great character driven story. I look forward to reading more by Patricia Harman.

A great way to see a part of history come to life. Highly recommending!


Buy a copy of The Reluctant Midwife: A Hope River Novel by Patricia Harman


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Tuesday, March 3rd: West Metro Mommy
Wednesday, March 4th: Bibliotica
Thursday, March 5th: Broken Teepee
Friday, March 6th: Kritter Ramblings
Monday, March 9th: Peeking Between the Pages
Tuesday, March 10th: A Novel Review
Thursday, March 12th: Life Between Reads
Monday, March 16th: Unshelfish
Tuesday, March 17th: A Patchwork of Books
Wednesday, March 18th: Buried Under Books
Thursday, March 19th: FictionZeal
Friday, March 20th: A Chick Who Reads

As of December 1, 2009, According to The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), product reviewers on blogs must disclose whether they received products for free or received payment for their review. The books I review on this site (A NOVEL REVIEW) are sent to me by publishers, authors or downloaded from Netgalley. This is a very common practice. I never take payments for these reviews and all the reviews on this site are my own thoughts and feelings and are not influenced.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Spotlight! The Snow Globe by Judith Kinghorn and a giveaway!

Inside the glass orb was a miniature garden and a house. If she stared long enough, she could almost see the people inside. But whether they were trapped there, or kept safe, in that miniscule snowbound world, she couldn't have said... 

Christmas 1926 holds bright promise for nineteen-year-old Daisy Forbes, with celebrations under way at Eden Hall, her family's country estate in Surrey, England. But when Daisy, the youngest of three daughters, discovers that her adored father, Howard, has been leading a double life, her illusions of perfection are shattered. Worse, his current mistress, introduced as a family friend, is joining them for the holidays. As Daisy wrestles with the truth, she blossoms in her own right, receiving a marriage proposal from one man, a declaration of love from another, and her first kiss from a third. Meanwhile, her mother, Mabel, manages these social complications with outward calm, while privately reviewing her life and contemplating significant changes. And among those below stairs, Nancy, the housekeeper, and Mrs. Jessops, the cook, find that their long-held secrets are slowly beginning to surface...


As the seasons unfold in the new year, and Daisy moves to London, desires, fortunes, and loyalties will shift during this tumultuous time after the Great War. The Forbes family and those who serve them will follow their hearts down unexpected paths that always return to where they began...Eden Hall.

Sounds amazing! I can't wait to cuddle up with The Snow Globe! If you think it sounds amazing then you are in luck because I'm offering a giveaway! One lucky US resident has a chance to win a copy of The Snow Globe by Judith Kinghorn! To win just leave me a comment telling me what the weather is like where you are (giveaway is for US residents only and no po boxes)! Here in Memphis we are cold with frozen snow on the ground and I am ready for Spring!


Follow Judith Kinghorn 

Buy your copy of The Snow Globe by Judith Kinghorn 

As of December 1, 2009, According to The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), product reviewers on blogs must disclose whether they received products for free or received payment for their review. The books I review on this site (A NOVEL REVIEW) are sent to me by publishers, authors or downloaded from Netgalley. This is a very common practice. I never take payments for these reviews and all the reviews on this site are my own thoughts and feelings and are not influenced.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Cover Reveal: MAYBE IN ANOTHER LIFE by Taylor Jenkins Reid!

We’re dreaming of summer—feet in the sand, soaking up the sun, taking a dip in the pool—but what we’re most excited about this summer is the release of Taylor Jenkins Reid’s third novel, MAYBE IN ANOTHER LIFE (on sale July 7, 2015). While we (impatiently!) wait for the book, today we’re giving you a first look at the gorgeous cover!

ABOUT MAYBE IN ANOTHER LIFE:
At the age of twenty-nine, Hannah Martin still has no idea what she wants to do with her life. She has lived in six different cities and held countless meaningless jobs since graduating college, but on the heels of a disastrous breakup, she has finally returned to her hometown of Los Angeles. To celebrate her first night back, her best friend, Gabby, takes Hannah out to a bar—where she meets up with her high school boyfriend, Ethan.

It’s just past midnight when Gabby asks Hannah if she’s ready to go. Ethan quickly offers to give her a ride later if she wants to stay.
Hannah hesitates.
What happens if she leaves with Gabby?
What happens if she leaves with Ethan?

In concurrent storylines, Hannah lives out the effects of each decision. Quickly, these parallel universes develop into surprisingly different stories with far-reaching consequences for Hannah and the people around her, raising questions like: Is anything meant to be? How much in our life is determined by chance? And perhaps most compellingly: Is there such a thing as a soul mate?
Hannah believes there is. And, in both worlds, she believes she’s found him.





Taylor Jenkins Reid is an author and essayist from Acton, Massachusetts. She is the author of Forever, Interrupted and After I Do. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Alex, and her dog, Rabbit. You can follow her on Twitter @TJenkinsReid.

Taylor Jenkins Reid



Atria Books/Washington Square Press Paperback | 352 pages | ISBN:  9781476776880 | July 7, 2015 | $16.00

eBook: Atria Books/Washington Square Press | 352 pages | ISBN: 9781476776897 | July 7, 2015 | $11.99

Pre-order
MAYBE IN ANOTHER LIFE by Taylor Jenkins Reid



























As of December 1, 2009, According to The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), product reviewers on blogs must disclose whether they received products for free or received payment for their review. The books I review on this site (A NOVEL REVIEW) are sent to me by publishers, authors or downloaded from Netgalley. This is a very common practice. I never take payments for these reviews and all the reviews on this site are my own thoughts and feelings and are not influenced.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

New Uses For Old Boyfriends by Beth Kendrick + Giveaway

After growing up in privilege and marrying into money, Lila Alders has gotten used to the good life. But when her happily-ever-after implodes, Lila must return to Black Dog Bay, the tiny seaside town where she grew up. She’s desperate for a safe haven, but everything has changed over the past ten years. Her family’s fortune is gone—and her mother is in total denial. It’s up to Lila to take care of everything...but she can barely take care of herself.

The former golden girl of Black Dog Bay struggles to reinvent herself by opening a vintage clothing boutique. But even as Lila finds new purpose for outdated dresses and tries to reunite with her ex, she realizes that sometimes it’s too late for old dreams. She’s lost everything she thought she needed but found something—someone—she desperately wants. A boy she hardly noticed has grown up into a man she can’t forget...and a second chance has never felt so much like first love.


I personally think New Uses For Old Boyfriends sounds like a great read! I didn't have time to review it, but I wanted all of you to have a chance to win a copy!

To win just leave me an email address and tell me if you ever tried to get back together with an ex? This giveaway is for US only and no po boxes. I will pick a winner in about two weeks. If you tweet about the giveaway leave it in another comment and I'll give you an extra chance (make sure to tag me @anovelreview1 and use a link :) Good luck!


 Beth Kendrick

As of December 1, 2009, According to The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), product reviewers on blogs must disclose whether they received products for free or received payment for their review. The books I review on this site (A NOVEL REVIEW) are sent to me by publishers, authors or downloaded from Netgalley. This is a very common practice. I never take payments for these reviews and all the reviews on this site are my own thoughts and feelings and are not influenced.
FTC Disclaimer
As of December 1, 2009, According to The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), product reviewers on blogs must disclose whether they received products for free or received payment for their review.

The books we review on this site (A NOVEL REVIEW) are sent to us by publishers, authors or downloaded from Netgalley. This is a very common practice. We never take payments for these reviews and all the reviews on this site are our own thoughts and feelings and are not influenced.