Top Ten Tuesday: Thankful Edition


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.

This Week's Top Ten Tuesday Topic:
This week's topic is actually "cozy reads" but it wasn't speaking to me. Since I wasn't 
able to post last week, I'm going to backtrack a bit and do the "thankful" prompt because 
have plenty to be thankful for. 


1. Great Reads
It's been a wonderful year of reading and I've had some real stand-outs. I am always 
thankful for the escapism of reading and the gift of a great story.


2. Page flags and Mildliners
Hand-in-hand with those great reads are two items that are never far from my side. Page 
flags and Mildliner highlighters are a mainstay when it comes to annotating and note-
taking. And they make me happy. :)

3. New-to-me Authors
I love my tried and true authors. The ones I return to book after book. But there's no 
denying the thrill of discovering a new-to-me author who becomes a new favorite. 
This year I'm so thankful to have discovered Catherine Cowles, Mariana Zapata, 
and Nalini Singh.

4. Heartstopper
I am not a TV watcher and up until this spring I couldn't tell you the last time I actively
followed a show (it's been years). But then Heartstopper was adapted and I found myself
getting Netflix (who am I?) so I could experience it for myself. The adaptation from
the books is *chef's kiss* and I have watched each episode with those precious characters
several times. So thankful for this show that is like a warm hug to the heart.

5. Book Blogger Friends
There have been times over the past year when I have questioned why I still blog, and if
I want to continue to blog. But I would miss the book blogging community and the 
special people that I connect with through our shared love of books and reading. I can't
name everyone, but here are just some of those who make my days brighter: Sam @ We 

B E Y O N D   B O O K I S H

6. Health
In the age of Covid, I am more thankful than ever for my health. While a handful of 
family members have had it, they have all recovered. And while there have been some
health scares with my mother, my sister, and my brother-in-law in the past year, my 
husband and I have stayed healthy and well. 

7. The Husband
Speaking of the man himself, I am grateful every single day for my husband. After 31 
years together, he is still my best friend, my biggest support, and the person I admire 
most. It doesn't hurt that he's super cute, and can make me laugh like no one else. :)

8. Home
I am so thankful for (what I hope is) my forever home. There is no place I would
rather be than inside the safety and comfort of its four walls.

9. Travel
While my travel has certainly been curtailed over the past almost-three years, there was 
one trip this year that left a lasting impression. The Husband and I traveled a couple hours 
south and saw our first in-person NHL game. Attending a Tampa Lightning game was a 
total bucket list item and we made the most of it with fourth row seats right behind the 
player's bench. An unforgettable night! I'm so thankful we had the means to make that 
wish a reality.

10. Holidays
I love it all. From the music, to the food, to the décor (especially the décor), I love all 
that the holidays bring and I am so thankful to experience it with family by my side. 

The Sunday Post #313 | November 27, 2022


The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Caffeinated Book Reviewer.
It's a chance to share news: a post to recap the past week on your blog, showcase books, 
and share what's coming up on your blog in the week ahead.

T H E   W E E K   I N   R E V I E W
For those who celebrate Thanksgiving, I hope you had a great day with family or friends. Part of our guest list woke up not feeling well Thursday morning and did not attend (and I was thankful they were considerate/smart enough not to come). So there were just six of us and it was still a wonderful day. Exhausting, but wonderful.

Unfortunately, I woke up Friday morning dealing with a massive allergy attack. All four of the guests on Thursday have pets in their homes (cats and dogs) and I guess the prolonged exposure in close quarters was too much for me. Animal dander is one of my main allergy triggers and it's a very "tacky" allergen (adhering easily to clothes). I think most pet owners are so accustomed to it that they don't even realize their clothes carry it. I had to dose up with Benadryl and was a zombie the rest of the day, but was okay by Saturday.

I headed into the office on Saturday to take care of a project that is needed Monday morning. It only took an hour and I felt better knowing it was done rather than be working against the clock Monday morning. 

Now that Thanksgiving is over, I'm itching to put up my pink Christmas tree? Anyone already have Christmas decorations up? :)

This week's 80's music fix is Kids in America (1981) by Kim Wilde. There are so many remakes of this one but I still love the original the best. 

O N   T H E   B L O G
Not a thing. 
Between work and Thanksgiving I was 100% over-extended
and overwhelmed. I did not post anything or visit a single blog.
Better luck next week!

W H A T   I   R E A D

Kindle:  Branded by Fire by Nalini Singh - ★★★★
Kindle:  Winning the Cowboy by Kennedy Fox - ★★★★
Audio: Second Shot with #76 by Piper Rayne - ★★★.25

C U R R E N T L Y   R E A D I N G

 Well, I plan to start it later tonight (Saturday).

Paperback: The Belle of Belgrave Square - Mimi Matthews

N E W   A D D I T I O N S

I had pre-ordered a physical copy of Before I Let Go from one of the 
indie bookstores on Kennedy Ryan's book tour. It arrived this week signed
and personalized and with the most gorgeous artwork. Love it! 

(I read an ARC several weeks ago and loved it. Review is here.)

T O T A L L Y   R A N D O M


The Sunday Post #312 | November 20, 2022


The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Caffeinated Book Reviewer.
It's a chance to share news: a post to recap the past week on your blog, showcase books, 
and share what's coming up on your blog in the week ahead.

T H E   W E E K   I N   R E V I E W
The week came with a blast of fall-like weather... finally. The high's have been hovering between 55-60 since Thursday and it's been fabulous. The mornings are cold (well, cold to a Floridian) and the afternoons are gorgeous. Loving it!

It was an intensely busy week at the office. The week after Thanksgiving always brings an annual conference where my company has its biggest presence all year. It's months of planning that culminates that week. Since next week is a short week, this week was where it was all coming together. I always breathe a big sigh of relief when it's over. Almost there...

I came across this online and all I can say is: Can I be her when I grow up? This kid is more badass than any adult (and I'm a little scared of her).

@brannmanndan Flashback to 2014. JJ McParland winning thebCadet World Championships. #weapons #martialarts #kickboxing #sword #samurai ♬ original sound - Brannmanndan

This week's 80's music fix comes with a little twist. Instead of one song, here's a video of the best dance scenes from 80's movies. Enjoy!

O N   T H E   B L O G
Tuesday, November 15

Friday, November 18

W H A T   I   R E A D
Not much time for reading this week... didn't finish anything.

C U R R E N T L Y   R E A D I N G

Kindle: Branded By Fire - Nalini Singh

N E W   A D D I T I O N S
Not a thing. 

T O T A L L Y   R A N D O M


Short Take Reviews: My Fake Fiancé, My Brother's Forbidden Friend, When In Rome



Piper Rayne
Format: Kindle
Trope(s): fake relationship, small town

Small town innkeeper Mandi had watched her siblings find their true loves over the years and while she was happy for them, she was also lonely and wished for the same. A  friendship with frequent guest Noah had developed over the past few years but had never progressed beyond a mutual flirtation - which made it all the more surprising when he asked her to pose as his fake fiancé.

I enjoyed Mandi's story so much and that was largely due to the lack of drama and angst. At 30 years old she was ready for a serious relationship and the pretend engagement to Noah wasn't so hard to pull off because the feelings were real. I appreciated that Mandi was a plus size woman who wasn't obsessed with her size, and Noah was a sweetheart who worshipped her and wanted Mandi to see herself as he saw her - curvy, sexy, desirable, and beautiful. Much love for these two characters!  4.25 STARS


Piper Rayne
Format: Kindle
Trope(s): Brother's best friend, enemies to lovers, small town

Cam and Chevelle's story had been teased since practically the first book in the Greene Family series so it's been a long time coming. Cam provided care and understanding to Chevelle when she lost her mother at the tender age of five. Over the next 25 years their combative relationship hid their mutual pining. Chevelle was fiercely independent and still struggled with guilt over her mother's death. Cam was the privileged golden boy who suddenly found himself cut off financially by his father and was forced to find his own way. 

I loved seeing these two slowly (finally!) open up to one another and experience how good they were together. Despite Cam's swagger, he was a total romantic and head over heels for Chevelle. And it was a relief to see Chevelle finally set aside the burden she'd carried for so long and allow herself to love and be loved.  4 STARS


Sarah Adams
Format: Audio
Trope(s): Small town, celebrity, grumpy-sunshine

Inspired by her favorite Audrey Hepburn movie, Roman Holiday, pop star Amelia (aka Rae Rose) ran away from her life and straight to Rome - Rome, Kentucky, that is. When her car broke down in front of Noah's house he reluctantly took her in and let her stay in the guest room until her car was repaired. With Noah, Amelia could let her guard down and be herself, but Noah had been hurt before and knew it was only a matter of time before Amelia returned to her life, far away from Rome, Kentucky.

Sweet and cute are not words I would use to describe my usual reading preferences, but I took a chance on When In Rome and it really paid off. Adams delivered cuteness overload (in a good way) and had me grinning ear to ear for most of the 9+ hours of the audiobook. Noah was a total softy under the grumpy exterior, Amelia was a ray of sunshine, and their banter was everything.  Even though emotional and angsty is more my style, I was totally charmed by this light and fluffy confection.  4.25 STARS


Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Feel-Good Reads


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.

This Week's Top Ten Tuesday Topic:
Favorite Feel-Good Reads
This week's topic is favorite "aw" moments in books but I'm broadening that and sharing some of my favorite feel-good reads. The low-angst, low-drama books that put a smile on your face. I actually had to dig deep for some of these because apparently I prefer books that break my heart and make me suffer. LOL 

Have you read any of these books?

The Sunday Post #311 | November 13, 2022


The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Caffeinated Book Reviewer.
It's a chance to share news: a post to recap the past week on your blog, showcase books, 
and share what's coming up on your blog in the week ahead.

T H E   W E E K   I N   R E V I E W
The week started with the mid-term elections. I was disappointed to see that Florida went almost totally red yet again. Disappointed, but not surprised. Our governor, Ron DeSantis, is the worst (a combative bully) but I feel fairly confident in saying that he will be on the Republican presidential ticket come 2024. He has repeatedly enacted laws that repeal or ban basic rights. He has banned the teaching of critical race theory in schools, signed a "Don't Say Gay" law into effect for schools, banned transgender athletes from playing girl's/women's sports (even stripping a transgender athlete of a title), and the list goes on and on. If you support those initiatives, or disagree with my thoughts, that's fine. Feel free to comment (respectfully), but I'm sharing my views on my space. :)

The rest of the week was all about Hurricane Nicole. Just south of us was hit pretty hard, but once again my area was lucky and was spared the worst of it. Thursday we were pounded by high winds and heavy rain but no damage at my house. My boss, who lives on the riverfront, could not say the same. His boat dock was completely submerged and the river had risen into his yard and was lapping at the pool deck. This is the third time in two years (for hurricane damage) and he and his wife are done. They'll be moving before next year's hurricane season starts. 

BookBub shared the coziest books to read this holiday season. Are there any on the list you want to read? I know some of you have already read several of these (I'm looking at you, Sam 😊). Alice Cochrun's Kiss Her for Me is already on my TBR so hopefully I'll get to it soon.

This week's 80's music fix isn't by an 80's artist but is a pretty awesome remake of an 80's classic. Sam Smith covering Whitney Houston's How Will I Know. That voice!!

O N   T H E   B L O G
Tuesday, November 8

Thursday, November 10

W H A T   I   R E A D

It Starts With Us by Colleen Hoover - ★★★★.5

C U R R E N T L Y   R E A D I N G

Kindle: Branded By Fire - Nalini Singh
(How is it that every edition of the Psy-Changeling series has such horrible covers?)

N E W   A D D I T I O N S
Not a thing. 

T O T A L L Y   R A N D O M