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2021 Literary Escapes Challenge

- Alabama
- Alaska
- Arizona (1)
- Arkansas
- California (4)
- Colorado (1)
- Connecticut (1)
- Delaware
- Florida
- Georgia
- Hawaii (1)
- Idaho
- Illinois (4)
- Indiana
- Iowa
- Kansas
- Kentucky (1)
- Louisiana (1)
- Maine
- Maryland (1)
- Massachusetts (1)
- Michigan (1)
- Minnesota (1)
- Mississippi
- Missouri
- Montana
- Nebraska (1)
- Nevada (1)
- New Hampshire (1)
- New Jersey (1)
- New Mexico
- New York (4)
- North Carolina (1)
- North Dakota
- Ohio (6)
- Oklahoma
- Oregon
- Pennsylvania (1)
- Rhode Island (1)
- South Carolina (1)
- South Dakota
- Tennessee
- Texas (1)
- Utah (1)
- Vermont (2)
- Virginia (3)
- Washington (3)
- West Virginia
- Wisconsin
- Wyoming (1)
- *Washington, D.C.

International:
Australia (2)
Canada (3)
England (6)
France (1)
Ireland (1)
Switzerland (1)
The Philippines (1)
Wales (1)

My Progress:


28 / 51 states. 55% done!

2021 Fall Into Reading Challenge

My Progress:


0 / 24 books. 0% done!

2021 Children's Historical Fiction Reading Challenge

2021 Children's Historical Fiction Reading Challenge
(Hosted by Yours Truly!)

My Progress:


6 / 25 books. 24% done!

2021 Popsugar Reading Challenge

My Progress:


33 / 50 books. 66% done!

Booklist Queen's 2021 Reading Challenge

My Progress:


35 / 52 books. 67% done!

2021 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge

2021 Craving for Cozies Reading Challenge

The 52 Club's 2021 Reading Challenge

My Progress:


39 / 52 books. 75% done!
Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Top Ten Tuesday: If You Can't Stand the Heat, Get Out of the (Arizona) Kitchen


I always look forward to creating and reading seasonal TBR lists, so I'm excited for today's Top Ten Tuesday prompt: Top Ten Books On My Summer To-Read List.  You know I'm all about the reading part.  Summer, though?  Not a fan.  I'm especially unenthusiastic right now since I just got back from a long weekend in the Columbia River Gorge, a beautiful national scenic area in Washington and Oregon, where it was cool and drizzly with lows in the 50's and highs in the 70's.  Landing in Arizona, where it was 112 degrees at 7 p.m., was a very rude awakening for me.  I grew up in the Gorge.  Why did I ever leave?  Oh, the things we do for love!  

Although I reveled in the lovely Gorge weather, I was really there to celebrate my parents' 50th wedding anniversary.  Since COVID pretty much nixed our plans for a blow-out party with lots of family and friends, my siblings and I decided to surprise Mom and Dad instead.  Five of their seven children were able to be there.  Although my youngest brother accidentally spilled the beans a little bit, we still pulled off a great surprise.  I was hiding at the top of my parents' long driveway when my oldest sibling approached them in the backyard and I heard my mom's astonished gasp clear from where I was standing.  It was awesome!  I think this picture of me and my dad (taken by Renée Alumbaugh) says everything about how the weekend went:


(Since someone is bound to ask, the device on my arm is an Omnipod insulin pump.  You may also sometimes spy my Dexcom G6 Continuous Glucose Monitor [CGM] in pictures of me, since I wear both on the backs of my arms.  Although Type 1 diabetes is a horrendous, not-fun-at-all disease, these devices are literally life-changing for diabetics.)

Now that I'm back to the scorching heat, I guess it really is time to start thinking about what I want to read this summer.  I've got some library books I need to finish as well as a few new releases I'm looking forward to.  It's too hot to read by the pool (ours doesn't have much shade and I burn at the mere thought of sunshine), so I'll be enjoying these books inside under the ceiling fan with the a/c blasting.

As always, if you're interested in joining the TTT party, you can find all the details at That Artsy Reader Girl.

Top Ten Books On My Summer To-Read List


1.  The Nature of the Beast by Louise Penny—I brought this mystery on my trip as a back-up book (I never travel without one!) and it's a good thing I did since I couldn't get my stupid Kindle to connect at all.  It's the 11th book in the incomparable Armand Gamache series, which I love.  It's about a young boy who goes missing and the shocking thing that is found in the woods because of the ensuing search for him.


2.  Searcher of the Dead by Nancy Herriman—I've enjoyed a couple of Herriman's historical mysteries, so I'm interested to see how I like this series opener.  It's about a woman in Tudor England who's hiding from a killer in a bucolic little town.  When someone close to her is murdered, it appears she has been found and that she's next on someone's hit list.


3.  The Forgotten Letters of Esther Durrant by Kayte Nunn—I'm always up for a dual-timeline novel featuring old secrets and new discoveries.  This one revolves around a woman in the present who discovers a cache of love letters written during another woman's stint in a mental hospital on a remote island in the 1950's.  As she digs into the past to learn more about the letters, she finds an intriguing mystery that just might answer questions about her own family.


4.  The Hours Count by Jillian Cantor—A month or so ago, I read and enjoyed my first Cantor book.  I'm excited to try another one.  This historical concerns a neighbor of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, with whom the spies' children were left after their arrest.  Sounds interesting.


5.  Survive the Night by Riley Sager (available June 29, 2021)—I've already talked about this thriller, which is about two strangers on a road trip that goes awry.  I'm 31 of 32 on the library's waiting list, so we'll see how long it takes for me to get my hands on this one.  


6.  A Cup of Silver Linings by Karen Hawkins (available July 6, 2021)—I just received this novel from the publisher.  It's the second book in a series, so I'll have to read The Book Charmer first (I've been meaning to anyway).  This one is about three women who "embark on a reluctant but magical journey of healing, friendship, and family."  Sounds like a nice, feel-good read perfect for summer.


7.  Wish You Were Here by Jodi Picoult (available November 30, 2021)—I'm a Picoult fan, although it's been a hot minute since I read anything by her.  To be honest, her newer novels haven't been as good for me as her older ones.  However, I am intrigued by this one, her newest.  It's about a woman who's on a dream trip to the Galàpagos Islands by herself when the pandemic hits.  I've heard some people say it's too soon for them to enjoy a book like this, but I'm all in for it.


8.  The Pact by Sharon Bolton—I'm *trying* to take a break from dark thrillers, but I'm a big Bolton fan, so I probably won't be able to resist this one.  It's about a woman who agrees to take the fall for a group crime in exchange for "favors" done by each member of the group after her release from prison.  


9.  A Solitude of Wolverines by Alice Henderson—While this doesn't sound like a very summery book, it's still one I want to read soon.  The first in a series, it's about a marine biologist who is researching wolverines in Montana, a mission that angers some locals.  When she discovers a different kind of predator in the wildlife sanctuary, the authorities are strangely dismissive of her claims.  Just what
exactly has she stumbled upon?


10.  The Next Ship Home by Heather Webb (available February 8, 2022)—As you probably know, I'm very into researching family history.  While most of my ancestors came to the United States before Ellis Island opened, I'm still fascinated by the place and its role in the nation's history.  I have an e-ARC of this novel, which concerns a woman emigrating from Italy and an American woman who has just started a job at the immigration center.  Their fates entwine as they both struggle to navigate their new lives.

There you are, ten books I'm hoping to read this summer.  Have you read any of them?  Any look like novels you would enjoy as well?  What's on your list today?  I'd truly love to know.  Leave me a comment on this post and I will gladly return the favor on your blog.

Happy TTT!

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Reading

<i>Reading</i>
The Gold in These Hills by Joanne Bischof

Listening

<i>Listening</i>
Glass Houses by Louise Penny



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