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My Progress:

10 / 30 books. 33% done!

2024 Literary Escapes Challenge

- Alabama (1)
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My Progress:

18 / 51 states. 35% done!

2024 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge

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13 / 50 books. 26% done!

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20 / 50 books. 40% done!

Booklist Queen's 2024 Reading Challenge

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38 / 50 books. 76% done!

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33 / 52 books. 63% done!

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23 / 40 books. 57% done!

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5 / 25 books. 20% done!

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25 / 26.2 miles. 95% done!

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19 / 100 books. 19% done!

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50 / 104 books. 48% done!

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39 / 52 books. 75% done!

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45 / 165 books. 27% done!
Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Top Ten Tuesday: New Authors, Old Year

It's Tuesday and you know what that means!  Time for my favorite weekly meme, Top Ten Tuesday.  Today's prompt is all about new authors you discovered in 2018, which will be a fun one.  Before we get to that, though, here are the deets on how to join in the TTT fun.  It's simple:  click on over to That Artsy Reader Girl, read a few guidelines, make and share your own list, then hop around the book blogosphere visiting other people's posts.  It's a great way to spread the bookish love by revisiting favorite blogs, discovering new ones, and, of course, adding great-sounding books to your toppling TBR pile.  What's not to love?

Okay, here we go with Top Ten New (to Me) Authors I Discovered in 2018:

1.  Emily Carpenter—You know I love me a good Gothic yarn, especially when it involves family secrets, creepy old houses, and some nail-biting suspense.  Emily Carpenter's books deliver on all accounts.  She only has three out so far (with another one coming in March) and I read all of them in 2018.  My favorite:  The Weight of Lies.

2.  Lori Rader-Day—I'm a big psychological thriller fan, so Rader-Day's books definitely caught my attention.  I read three out of her four this year and enjoyed two of them.  My favorite:  Under a Dark Sky.

3.  Dervla McTiernan—I loved this Irish author's debut, The Ruin.  It's a dark, but very compelling mystery.  A sequel, The Scholar, will be out on May 14.  I can't wait!

4.  Kristina McMorris—I'm a sucker for historical fiction and I find books about orphans and children in crisis especially moving.  Naturally, then, I wanted to read Sold On a Monday as soon as I heard about it.  I enjoyed it and plan to read more of McMorris' work.

5.  Hester Fox—Fox's ghostly, atmospheric debut, The Witch of Willow Hall, earned lots of buzz last year.  And deservedly so.  I can't wait to see what Fox does next!

6.  Elizabeth Byler YountsThe Solace of Water, Younts' most recent novel, was one of my favorite 2018 reads.  It convinced me to start Younts' Promise of Sunrise trilogy, which is about how World War II affects an Amish community in Delaware.  Having been raised Amish, Younts has a unique perspective on the culture/religion, which gives her books a refreshing authenticity.  My favorite:  The Solace of Water.

7.  Alison Gaylin—Domestic thrillers are my jam, so I had to give Gaylin's books a go in 2018.  I read and enjoyed two of hers.  My favorite:  And She Was.

8.  Emma Berquist—I loved Devils Unto Dust, Berquist's debut novel.  It's a Western/horror mash-up that satisfies on every level.  I can't wait for her newest, Missing, Presumed Dead, which comes out in May.

9.  Joanna Barker—Regency romance is far from my favorite genre, but I do count on them for light, amusing entertainment that I can sandwich between heavier reads.  It's rare for me to really love a book in this genre, but Barker's debut, The Truth About Miss Ashbourne, really charmed me with its tight prose, engaging plot line, and well-developed characters.  I'm definitely keeping an eye out to see what this talented newcomer does next.

10.  Sarah Maine—The first book I read in 2018 was The House Between Tides, Maine's atmospheric debut.  I enjoyed it and have been meaning to try the author's other two novels ever since.

So, there you go—ten authors I discovered last year.  Hm, I just realized that they're all white women and most of them are debut authors.  Interesting.  Perhaps I need to work on diversifying my reading this year?  Anyway, have you read any of these authors?  What do you think of their work?  Which new-to-you authors did you discover in 2018?  I'd truly love to know.  Leave me a comment on this post and I will happily return the favor.

Happy TTT!

Martha's Vineyard Rom Com Dull and Unsatisfying

(Image from Barnes & Noble)

When her aging, cantankerous uncle injures himself in a fall, Joanna Howes is drawn home to Martha's Vineyard to take care of him.  She's anticipating a short visit, but as Henry's leg refuses to heal, Joanna fears she may be in town for the long haul.  As her bank balance dwindles, the freelance journalist agrees to take a job writing for one of the two local newspapers.  When it becomes obvious she won't be able to pay her bills on the part-time gig, she begins working for the rival paper as well.  Publishing articles under two different names, she hopes to keep her separate identities ... separate.  The more undercover she tries to delve, however, the more complicated her already messy life seems to get.

Things become even more chaotic when Joanna accepts a date with a handsome stranger only to realize he's at the center of a controversy that's got locals (including her Uncle Henry) hot and bothered.  Joanna can't tell her uncle—or either of her editors-in-chief—that her objectivity is being more and more compromised with every minute she spends with Orion Smith.  How can she keep the professional distance she needs in order to report fairly on Orion while she's falling so hopelessly in love with him?  The last thing Joanna needs is more knots in her already tangled-up life, but that's what she's getting.  Can she get herself sorted before she loses everything that's important to her?

On the Same Page, a romantic comedy by N.D. Galland, has a fun premise with lots of potential.  Unfortunately, that potential just isn't realized.  While I enjoyed learning about Martha's Vineyard's dual personality, that's about the only thing in this novel that intrigued me.  For me, the story ran on and on, with so much extraneous detail that it felt
overly long and dull.  In addition, I just didn't care for Joanna.  Selfish and dishonest, she doesn't ever risk enough to cause enough tension and suspense to make her tale interesting.  She doesn't grow as a character, which makes the novel feel unsatisfying.  In the end, then, I didn't love this one.  Bummer.

(Readalikes:  Hm, I can't really think of anything.  Can you?)


If this were a movie, it would be rated:

for language and sexual innuendo

To the FTC, with love:  I received a finished copy of On the Same Page from the generous folks at HarperCollins via those at TLC Book Tours in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you!


Want more opinions of On the Same Page?  Follow along on the book's blog tour by clicking on the links below:

Instagram Features

Monday, December 31st: Instagram: @oddandbookish
Wednesday, January 2nd: Instagram: @laceybooklovers
Thursday, January 3rd: Instagram: @giuliland
Saturday, January 5th: Instagram: @sjwonderlandz
Sunday, January 6th: Instagram: @somekindofalibrary
Monday, January 7th: Instagram: @books.tea.quotes

Review Stops

Monday, December 31st: BookNAround
Wednesday, January 2nd: Tales of a Book Addict
Thursday, January 3rd: Instagram: @diaryofaclosetreader
Monday, January 7th: Ms. Nose in a Book
Tuesday, January 8th: Instagram: @megabunnyreads
Wednesday, January 9th: No More Grumpy Bookseller
Monday, January 14th: What Is That Book About
Tuesday, January 15th: Bloggin’ ‘Bout Books
Wednesday, January 16th: Literary Quicksand
Thursday, January 17th: From the TBR Pile
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