↠ Despite having record-breaking temperatures I went into full-on fall mode and broke out the crockpot! I shared a link to one of my favorite go-tos: Skinnytaste’s broccoli cheese and potato soup, which Matt loved, even though he’s not a soup kind of guy! What is YOUR go-to crockpot/slow cooker recipe??
↠ This might be the pinnacle of nerdom and geekery, but in October the new glasses I ordered arrived. ♥ Getting new glasses is like an early Christmas!
↠ …or maybe this solidifies my place as Queen Geek: my group of friends and I all used to be booksellers and, although we no longer work together, we still hang out a lot. One night, after dinner, we headed over to B&N (we didn’t work at a Barnes & Noble btw, we just happened to be right next to one that night) and I spent a small fortune on crossword puzzle books. It was a thing at our bookstore – at lunch, a big group of us would work together on them and I became obsessed. Out of the stack I bought, the Rainy Sunday Crosswords book is by far my favorite!
↠ For my birthday (in September) Matt got me a DNA kit and my results came back in October. I wasn’t too surprised by the results although there was one that totally shocked me: I’m 10% Scandinavian WHAT! I would never have guessed that one!
↠ In sad news, one of my favorite boutiques announced they were closing. Since then they’ve been having ridiculous sales – the first week everything was 25% off, the next was 30%, and this week they’re at 40%! My closet has never been happier, though my heart is heavy!
↠ I went to a book launch for Marie Benedict’s The Other Einstein and had a blast! Marie (pen name of Heather Terrell) actually lives in my town, so that made it even better.
↠ The major downside to October was a scare we had with Bay. A loose dog bit her while we were out on a walk. She’s completely fine now and I was more upset and shaken than she was. We spent a lot of time cuddling afterward.
↠ We had another #HistoricalFix chat! The theme this time was historical mysteries and everyone brought their A game! Our guest was the lovely Lyndsay Faye.
WRECKED BY MARIA PADIAN was an incredibly timely, topical YA novel about rape on a college campus, but told in a new and interesting way: the two students directly involved were not the narrators. Instead, the story is told through the eyes of their two friends and the novel really shows just how important the tiniest little detail is. There is a romance subplot that made me uncomfortable, but I thought this book added to the conversation of what is and isn’t considered consent.
HOW TO KEEP A BOY FROM KISSING YOU BY TARA EGLINGTON was originally published in Australia, but recently saw a US release, yay! Although Aurora has gone on several dates, they’ve all come to a screeching halt with Operation Stop Kiss. See, Aurora has never been kissed and is determined to wait for her fairytale prince to come along and sweep her off her feet. However, when she finds herself playing the lead role in their school’s production of Much Ado About Nothing, she realizes she’s going to have to lock lips with her archnemesis Hayden Paris. While I did enjoy this one and am looking forward to the sequel, there were two glaring issues: this book fails miserably at passing the Bechdel Test and it seemed as though Aurora was looking for a husband rather than a boyfriend. Also, her bestie was a horrible, awful, mean person.
PARIS FOR ONE & OTHER STORIES BY JOJO MOYES broke my heart – and not in a good way! I LOVE Jojo and all of her books, but this one fell short. Chalk this one up to me not being a huge fan of short stories if you will, but I found myself not caring about any of these characters – something that has never to me while reading a Jojo before!
FIND HER BY LISA GARDNER was my introduction to Gardner’s work and HOLY MOLY WHERE HAVE I BEEN. Find Her had me hooked from the first page: a woman who had been held captive for nearly 500 days when she was in college now dedicates her time tracking down other missing girls. …though where’s the line between victim and vigilante, especially once she goes missing again. So, so good. If you’re looking to sink into an excellent thriller this winter do yourself a favor and check out this book!
CRUEL BEAUTIFUL WORLD BY CAROLINE LEAVITT surprised me. This was a very character-driven story about a girl who runs away with her teacher and the fallout from her actions. But it was also so, so much more. I honestly couldn’t stop gushing over this book, though I had one teensy issue: Cruel Beautiful World takes place during the era of free love and the Manson Family murders. However, apart from a few passing comments, I would have never guessed. The book had a very modern feel and could have easily taken place today. Still, I highly recommend this one!
THE BEST POSSIBLE ANSWER BY E. KATHERINE KOTTARAS was a HUGE disappointment whose only saving grace was its super short length. An overachiever finds up in the hospital after her stress causes her to pass out – and that story would be great. However, this book read like a rundown of every issue the author could think of: a parent with cancer, another parent who recently passed, the main character had sent her boyfriend (now ex) some nude photos and when they broke up he posted them online, the main character and her best friend like the same boy and he likes the main character to that totally gets in the way of their friendship, the main character’s parents are separated and when she follows her dad one day she learns he has a secret family and has been leading a double life. This was ridiculous.
CITY OF STRANGERS BY LOUISE MILLAR was another book by a favorite author that ended up being a giant letdown. A married couple return from their honeymoon to discover a dead body in their kitchen. Intriguing, yes?? Unfortunately, it’s all downhill from there. When the police aren’t coming up with any answers, Grace makes it her mission in life to find out the man’s identity. She bounces around to different countries and soon uncovers that the man in her kitchen had no less than four aliases and that the Romanian mob is involved. And of course the man she recently married is a jerk – BUT WAIT, is he really?? Another book that was far too silly to be taken seriously and it’s so upsetting that this one came from an author I adore.