Sunday Talk ~ (Mostly) About Books

Hello my lovely friends! πŸ’•

I trust that this finds you and your loved ones healthy and safe!

This is my ‘pull-yourself-up-by-your-bootstraps-before-the-couch-swallows-you-whole’ post. And there is a limit as to how many times one can re-watch a Hallmark movie!

Hubby has to go back to work tomorrow (part-time), so I took that as a sign to get ‘back to normal’…whatever that may be.

~~I thought long and hard if I should talk about the current events. I do feel that there is a long overdue change happening, but there are a lot of amazing people out there better qualified and educated on the subject than I am. So I leave it at that. I work on getting educated, but won’t lecture!

So, over the last couple of weeks…

🌺I made some collagesπŸ€“ They’re now adorning my booth at the local Antique Mall.

I love making these. I hope you enjoy them too! πŸ’œ

🌺 I took a few trips to Thrift Shops in the area.😎The bookshelves at the booth are replenished, and my TBR pile is growing.

And I found some yummy yarn. I think I’ll sharpen the knitting needles for a change. What to make? What to make? Well, since I was only able to get two skeins…scarf it is.

~~I did read a lot, and I must say -Soapbox moment coming! 🧐 – my talent to pick disappointing books is well developed. It seems to be the latest trend to write books without a conclusion, or with story-threads dangling. Or is it really just me? I’ve had quite a few books over the last couple of weeks that ended with a cliffhanger. And they were either not part of a series, or the next book picked up somewhere else without revisiting the prior storyline.
The only exception was the latest installment in Nancy Warren’s Vampire Knitting Series.


In the 10th book of this delightful series Lucy finds herself face-to-face with a High School friend, turned nemesis. They had a falling out over a boy (of course…it being High School and allΒ  😁). Only the visiting “friend”, Pamela, doesn’t seem to remember the feud, and acts suspiciously friendly. When she turns up dead, it’s up to Lucy, Rafe, and the other Vampires to bring the killer to justice. I truly enjoyed this well thought out story, and am looking forward to the next book, which will be released in September. πŸ’ƒπŸ»

~~If you follow me on Instagram you already know this 😊 You know that I was just a few days younger than I am now, when I found out that Agatha Christie wrote Romance Novels under the pseudonymΒ Mary Westmacott. I honestly had no idea!Β πŸ™ˆI’ll give it a whirl, and will report back.

~~Once in a while one has to stretch the legs. So I walked. I walked the dogs. I walked by myself. I walked with a friend. I’m afraid I’ll be about 5″ shorter when this is all over.
But it is Springtime, almost Summer. So beautiful things are happening in nature. 🌷We celebrated the Tulips, the first Roses, the Clematis. And on one of these excursions I discovered this beautiful tree in full bloom.
Some research showed that it’s aΒ Tulip Poplar,Β and I need one!

Isn’t it gorgeous? 😍

And with this I will let you get back to whatever you were doing! Thank you for reading πŸ’•

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Musings Of A BookNerd πŸ€“

Hello my lovely friends πŸ’•

I hope this finds you in good health and spirit! 🌷🌷🌷

These somewhat unusual times are doing weird things to my creative spirit. Thankfully, otherwise I’m doing alright! 😊

It’s not that I’m lacking creativity – that I can deal with…been there, done that! πŸ˜‰

Quite the opposite is happening right now. This here might say it best…

When I have free time, I usually pick a project, and lose myself in the creative process. Now, just thinking about it opens the floodgates. All these ideas come rushing forward, and I have a hard time ‘listening’ to just one. Have you ever experienced anything like this? πŸ™ƒ

Over the last few days I’ve tried to ‘slow the flow’, tried to separate the ideas by writing (scribbling) them down. And I noticed that the “book/reading/blogging” ideas were the loudest. So here we are…hence the title. Even though I’m rethinking that. Maybe it should be ‘ Ramblings of a Booknerd’ πŸ˜…

So…Books and Reading. Love it! Wouldn’t wanna be without it!

But I noticed that I’m a bit of a black sheep in the ‘Reader World’. πŸ˜‹ I’ve joined a few book themed groups on social media, and noticed that no one reads the books I’m reading, and vice versa. 🧐

I don’t like to analyze what I’m reading, don’t wanna cry, books haven’t changed my life, and strongly dislike reading about injustice.

I do like to be entertained, love to learn about different cultures and ways of life.

Apparently this approach is very unusual. Anyone out there who’s like me? ‘Cause I’m not alone, but lonely in the big ‘Bookworld’ 😌

To wrap it up…these are 5 of my favorite books:

1. Rebecca by Daphne duMaurier πŸ’—

2. The Temple Secrets by Susan Gabriel πŸ’œ

3. The Gullah Secrets by Susan Gabriel πŸ’š

4. The Blessing Stone by Barbara Wood ❣️

5. A Woman Of Substance by Barbara Taylor Wood 🧑

There are many, many more – but these 5 are my absolute favorite! 😊

Do you have any favorite reads? Please let me know. I’d love to talk books. πŸ’•

I’m looking forward to hearing from you, and wish you everything good!

Be safe & stay healthy! πŸ€—

An Update…and A Booktalk

Hello my lovely friends πŸ’•

Well, this feels a bit awkward. It seems like it’s been ages since I sat down to share things with you. Mostly because I didn’t have anything to share. And just my daily routine would make for one boring read. 😏

The new year welcomed me into it’s fold with a nasty cold that lasted (seemingly) forever. When I finally came up for air – breathing without coughing is so underrated    – I was full of energy, planning a day out…and on the way fell down some steps and twisted my ankle. πŸ™ˆ So, back to the couch. I didn’t even give that thing time to miss me! πŸ˜‰ When I was finally able to limp around without too much pain, I managed to start on a new path – I snatched up a booth at the local Antique Mall. Yay me! πŸ˜ƒ More on that later.
Then another cold virus found me. Ugh! I haven’t been sick in ages…now this year I am the chosen host for quite a few nasty things. 🀧 It was a milder episode, so I’m not gonna complain (too much).

But, one good thing came out of all this couch-time. I had time to read! So much time for so many wonderful books.

Today I want to tell you about two books that really stood out from the masses.

Temple Secrets 

and

Gullah Secrets 

both by Susan Gabriel.*

They’re both fascinating  stories, taking place in Savannah, Georgio and southern South Carolina.

The Temple family has been collecting secrets of the ‘upper crust’ of Savannah for decades. Every tidbit recorded in diaries. Now these secrets are coming to light, they’re being published, one by one, in a daily paper.
This is the basis for the first book Temple Secrets. But there is so much more to this tale. The characters are fascinating, the family’s own secrets nothing to be proud of.
The story is woven so intricately that it’s hard to describe why it’s so wonderful without giving anything away.
All I can say is that these two books are some of the best I’ve ever read (definitely in the Top 5), and I’m jealous of everyone who hasn’t read them yet.

The second book in the two-part story is Gullah Secrets.

In this sequel the lovely women of the Temple family take us to their roots on a small island at the coast of South Carolina. Here the breathtaking ride continues, and….
well, I’m not gonna give away the ending.    You will have to see/read for yourself.

If you would like to learn more about the author, just click here
(Link will open in a new tab)

I usually read cozy murder mysteries. So these books were a big step away from my TBR list.
I’m now so glad I read them, but at first I was a bit hesitant. I didn’t know what to expect, what to wait for.
See, with a murder mystery it’s easy. You meet the characters, them someone – hopefully someone nasty and unlikeable- gets murdered, and you try to figure out who dunnit.
Well, that was, obviously, not going to happen here.
But the story pulls you in so fast that all you care about is how they cope with the obstacles life throws at them. You don’t wait for anything, you just go along for the ride.

*I honestly have no affiliation with the writer or any bookseller. I’m just so enchanted that I can’t stop gushing! 😍

Okay, I’m done! 😁 All I wanna say now is ‘Thanks for reading’. It’s good to be back.

I hope to see you again soon! πŸ’•

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Books ~ My Year in ‘Review’

I love books! They’ve been a part of my life ever since I can remember. Even though I’ve been warned …. πŸ˜‚


πŸ’₯~from a newspaper article, 1914 

Over the years I enjoyed numerous genres – the common denominator being …crime. It was always some kind of murder mystery ~ Agatha’s Miss Marple (of course!), Sue Grafton, David Rosenfelt, Susan Wittig Albert to name just a few I can remember. Then came Nora Roberts! Everything Nora Roberts…not always a murder mystery, but mysterious nonetheless.
If I had to pick a favorite, I would say Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum! Right?!  πŸ€“    I have to ask…Ranger or Morelli? 😍

For quite some time now I’m reading (and enjoying immensely) ‘Cozy Mysteries’.
I think my love for those began with Jessica Fletcher. Yep, ‘Murder, she wrote’ is an all-time favorite of mine.  πŸ€“   I love the small-town setting, the everyday life of ordinary people, the clever way she solved every murder in her vicinity. The way her life was going, I would have been afraid to be close to her – I just know that I’d either be the victim, or the suspect    πŸ˜ But it’s fun being on the outside looking in.

Back to 2016 and my ‘cozies’.
~1. I started the year finishing the (seemingly) last installment of Madelyn Alt’s ‘Bewitching Mystery’ series – ‘Home for a Spell’. I really enjoyed this series, and I’m quite sad that it looks like there won’t be another book. Nobody seems to know what happened to Ms. Alt. There are rumors that a new book will be released soon…We’ll see, I keep an eye on it.

~2. Once I finished this one, I browsed through the ‘customers also bought’ section, and discovered Bailey Cates’ “A Magical Bakery Mystery” series. Oh, fun!
Cookies, Scones, Witches, Spells, and Recipes (for the cookies, not the spells!     )
Having a small business myself I love the ‘small bakery’ setting! The good news is that there are seemingly endless suggestions for me! If you like to take a closer look, check it out here πŸ“š

Don’t you love it when you discover a book, and then find out that it is a part of a series and you get to read them all right away?! When you don’t have to wait a year for the next one?
Well, that happened with the ‘Magical Bakery’ series, and also with…

~3. ‘A Witchcraft Mystery’ by Juliet Blackwell

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By now I’m not just looking for the small business setting, but also for the ‘witchy’ part.
I find the magical, paranormal, mysterious very fascinating, and Juliet Blackwell really hit a home-run with this series!
The series starts with ‘Secondhand Spirits’. Here we meet Lily Ivory, vintage clothing shop owner, and witch. After years of traveling, trying to ‘fit in’ somewhere, she finally feels at home in San Francisco. Then murder and mayhem start happening – and she has to team up with other ‘undercover’ witches to solve murders and some very ‘unusual’ occurrences. If you wanna dive right in, or read a sample here you go

~4. About half-way through the year I stumbled upon ‘It Takes a Witch’ – you can see why that caught my eye   😊  It’s the first one in the ‘Wishcraft’ series. The first one!!! Eureka!
Some more witches – this time with a little twist! Darcy lives in a town called ‘Enchanted Village’ surrounded by other ‘Wishcrafters’ – meaning they get to grant wishes- and other magical humans. Together they follow their magical paths, and solve a few crimes on the side.

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~5. This series is a regular one – no witches, demons, or other otherwordly spirits.
The authour is Diane Vallere, and these two are from her ‘Material Witness Mystery Series’.
It was a fun read. Small town (and small business  πŸ€—  ) with likeable characters, the mystery is not too obvious, and it’s beautifully written. Overall a great new series, and I’ll be definitely looking for the next (third) book.
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~6. I ended the year with a brandnew favorite – the ‘Pyper Rayne’ series. The first book is called “Spirits, Stilettos, and a Silver Bustier” by Deanna Chase.
This series is a spin-off of the ‘Jade Calhoun’ series, and is an amazing ride.
Pyper is a coffee-shop-owner and a medium. Murder, Mystery, Ghosts, a Witch, and a little bit of love  – doesn’t get better than this, right?!  If you wanna meet Pyper and her friends or just read a sample…here it is

Most of these books I found on Amazon* – and I must say, I love the ‘download a sample’ feature. They give you enough pages (for free!) to let you judge the book (so you don’t have to do it by the cover  πŸ˜‰ )

I just started a new (to me) series….also by Diane Vallere- I’ll tell you about that next time! πŸ€—

Until then

~Tina xoxo
*I am not affiliated with Amazon or the authors. I just love books, want to share the joy I found in these stories. πŸ’•