• Now that the weather has turned (hello, sweater weather!), Cars & Coffee has ended for the season and for once, Matt and I didn’t have a single thing planned for the weekend! I stayed in my pjs as long as possible and snuggled up with a good book.
• October started my short work weeks. For the rest of the year I work – at most – 4 days a week, sometimes as little as 2. These extra-long weeks have been spent snuggling pups, time travelling to the 1500s, and being as lazy as possible.
• In October I read a total of 8 books: all print! Things were evenly split between library grabs/books I already own and ARCs: 4 each. My favorite reads of the month were The Dream Daughter and The House Next Door (both reviews linked below), and Dear Fahrenheit 451, a delightfully charming collection of break-up notes to books.
LAST NIGHT WITH THE EARL BY KELLY BOWEN is the follow-up to this summer’s A Duke in the Night. As much as I loved the first book, I have to admit, I think I might have loved Last Night even more! An only son and heir – long thought dead – returns from Waterloo horrifically injured. Content to remain “dead,” he secrets away to the family’s country estate, an estate that is now, unbeknownst to him, a school for young ladies. And one of the teachers is the former fiancee of his best friend.
THE DREAM DAUGHTER BY DIANE CHAMBERLAIN might be an exploration of a new genre (sci-fi/fantasy), but it’s still a Diane novel at heart and easily one of my favorite reads of the year. No surprises there, right? A woman in 1970 loses her husband in the Vietnam War and, shortly after, learns their child has a fatal heart defect. Knowing she can’t bear to lose her child too – the last link she has to her husband – her brother-in-law confesses a secret: he can travel through time. And if Caroline wants to save her child, she needs to travel too. If you’ve ever read a Diane novel, you already know you’re going to need a lot of tissues on hand. Silly me for thinking the 9/11 scene would be the emotional one. What happened after was even worse.
THE SPELLBOOK OF KATRINA VAN TASSEL BY ALYSSA PALOMBO is a Sleepy Hollow retelling, giving Katrina’s side of the story. I went into this one expecting a spooky, supernatural read just in time for Halloween. While I read its 400+ pages in nearly one sitting, I was slightly disappointed in the lack of moodiness. As I said in my review, this book has more sex scenes than spells.
OCTOBER’S MINI REVIEW ROUND UP includes a 70s haunted house novel, a contemporary Christmas romance set in Switzerland, and a Middle Grade story about censorship.