Wednesday, April 30, 2014

The Scent of Rain and Lightning.

The Scent of Rain and Lightning
Nancy Pickard
Ballentine Books  2010
5/5 stars

On a warm summer afternoon, Jody Linder is unnerved to see her three uncles parking their pickups in front of her parents house. From her upstairs window she wonders why they are here, do they know about her liaison with Red Bosch.?  No, that couldn't be it, they are dressed in polished boots, pressed jeans, fresh white shirts....her uncles suspiciously clean visiting clothes disturb her.

The three bring news she never wanted the hear. The man, Billy Crosby, convicted of murdering her parents has been released from prison.  Would he dare come back to Rose, Kansas, where her grandparents ranch has been her safe haven?

I fell in love with spunky Jody Linder. She is living her life with a catastrophic past. On a stormy night 23 three years ago, her father was murdered and her mother disappeared.  She has lived just a few doors down from the wife and son of the man accused and convicted of the murder. Jody and Collin Crosby have spent their growing up years avoiding each other in this small town. Now she may have to come face to face with Collin and his father.

This is a wonderfully written story that tells of what can happen when people are quick to judge and slow to look for the truth. And it tells of the healing power of truth if we can open our hearts and minds to look for it.

This book is set in Rose Kansas

and will fulfill the "book with an element of weather" in the title section of

Until next time,
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Wondrous Words Wednesday 4.30.14

Wondrous Words Wednesday is hosted by Kathy at Bermuda Onion's Weblog each week.  It's an opportunity to share new and different words you have encountered in your reading or to highlight words you particularly enjoy. 

defenestration- noun  

1. throwing of a person or thing out of a window. 
2. a usually swift dismissal or expulsion (as from a political party or office)

Last week I encountered this word in a game I play on facebook. I had to look it up. Who knew there was an actual word for throwing someone out a window.  The detective says, "guess we know what the murder weapon is-- defenestration!"

Then while listening to The Collectors by David Baldacci, the bad guy, Jerry had one of his goons throw a poor little maid out a window. 

This word comes from my current read: The Scent of Rain and Lightning by Nancy Pickard.

avuncular - adj

1. The definition of avuncular is acting in a manner similar to the way a person's uncle would act, specifically with kindness and indulgence. 
      A person who treats everyone with kindness is an example of an avuncular person. 

"There they were, the avuncular blessings and banes of her life: Chase, who got more handsome every year...; Bobby, muscular and taciturn, .....;Meryl, with his kind, canny eyes and a girth that came from Belle's fried chicken..."

There are a few more wondrous words in this book, I will share them next week. Did you find any wondrous words this week while reading?

Until next time, 
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intro The Scent of Rain and Lightning.

Every Tuesday Diane at Bibliophile By The Sea hosts this meme where we can share the first paragraph or two of our current read, or one we expect to start soon. It is a great place to check on some new titles, and get an idea of the first chapter.  Join us at Diane's blog every Tuesday and link your first paragraph of the first chapter.

June 9, 2009
Until she was twenty-six, Jody Linder felt suspicious of happiness.
She hated that about herself, because it tended to sour some otherwise pretty damn fine moments, but this was Rose, Kansas, after all. Only the year before, a pencil tornado had dropped down and killed three people only a few miles from her hometown. A tornado, when the sun was shining! In the winter, there were ice storms. In the summer, there were grass fires. At all times, people she knew went bankrupt, lost their homes, their ranches, their jobs. Or, they died just when you least expected them to. A person could, for instance, belong to a nice family living an ordinary life in a small town in the middle of nowhere, and on some innocent Saturday night, violent men could drop in like those tornadoes and turn nice people into the dead stars of a Truman Capote book. Such things happened. That wasn't paranoia. It was a terrible fact that Jody knew better than anybody - or at least better than anybody whose father had not been murdered when she was three years old and whose mother had not disappeared the same night. 

I started this book on Friday night. I am nearly 1/2 finished. It is really good and I am enjoying it a great deal. It will complete an item in the What's in a Name 2014 challenge sponsored by Charlie at The Worm Hole. This is the gateway post. . A book with a weather element in the title. What do you think? Would you continue on?

Until next time,
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Monday, April 28, 2014

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

This weekly meme is sponsored by Sheila @ Book Journey. Click on over to Sheila's blog and see what everyone else is reading. 

My new read this week is The Scent of Rain and Lightning by Nancy Pickard. 

From Goodreads:

The Scent of Rain and Lightning

One beautiful summer afternoon, from her bedroom window on the second floor, Jody Linder is unnerved to see her three uncles parking their pickups in front of her parents’ house—or what she calls her parents’ house, even though Jay and Laurie Jo Linder have been gone almost all of Jody’s life. “What is this fearsome thing I see?” the young high school English teacher whispers, mimicking Shakespeare. Polished boots, pressed jeans, fresh white shirts, Stetsons—her uncles’ suspiciously clean visiting clothes are a disturbing sign.

The three bring shocking news: The man convicted of murdering Jody’s father is being released from prison and returning to the small town of Rose, Kansas. It has been twenty-six years since that stormy night when, as baby Jody lay asleep in her crib, her father was shot and killed and her mother disappeared, presumed dead. Neither the protective embrace of Jody’s uncles nor the safe haven of her grandparents’ ranch could erase the pain caused by Billy Crosby on that catastrophic night.

Now Billy Crosby has been granted a new trial, thanks in large part to the efforts of his son, Collin, a lawyer who has spent most of his life trying to prove his father’s innocence. As Jody lives only a few doors down from the Crosbys, she knows that sooner or later she’ll come face-to-face with the man who she believes destroyed her family.

What she doesn't expect are the heated exchanges with Collin. Having grown up practically side by side in this very small town, Jody and Collin have had a long history of carefully avoiding each other’s eyes. Now Jody discovers that underneath their antagonism is a shared sense of loss that no one else could possibly understand. As she revisits old wounds, startling revelations compel her to uncover the dangerous truth about her family’s tragic past.

Engrossing, lyrical, and suspenseful, The Scent of Rain and Lightning captures the essence of small-town America—its heartfelt intimacy and its darkest secrets—where through struggle and hardship people still dare to hope for a better future. For Jody Linder, maybe even love. 

In addition, I am still listening to The Goldfinch on my Kindle, The Collectors by David Baldacci on our boombox (while sewing) and I have a paperback in the car that gets picked up when I have downtime while waiting for Mr. Busy or in line at the bank or wherever. That one is a wonderful cozy mystery by Joyce Lavene called Poisoned Petals. It is a easy read, easy to pick up when I have a few minutes.

Until next time.
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Saturday Snapshop - when I'm not reading!

Saturday Snapshot is hosted by Melinda at West Metro Mommy Reads. To participate in the Saturday Snapshot meme post a photo that you (or a friend or family member) have taken then leave a direct link to your post in the Mister Linky (at West Metro Mommy). Photos can be old or new, and be of any subject as long as they are clean and appropriate for all eyes to see. How much detail you give in the caption is entirely up to you. Please don’t post random photos that you find online.

 This is a BOW ( Block of the Month) that was sponsored by my local quilt shop in 2011. It is called America Modern by Bernatex and the fabric is Nancy Halvorson.  I got stopped on it in 2012 and finally finished it this week. The original pattern stopped at the pieced red/gold/teal border, but it did not fit the bed where I want it to live. So I added a 10" border all around. It is now ready to go to the long arm quilter and then I will have to put on the binding. There was barely enough room to lay it out on our family room floor. You can see my antique cedar chest corner peeking out. :)  I also have plans to make a contrasting dust ruffle following a tutorial I found on Pinterest. It will be attached to the box spring with hook and loop tape. I hope it will work. Of course all this will necessitate new paint on the walls, new curtains and a total redecorate of our guest room!!  

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

A Time to Dance : What's in A Name 2014 and Mega Mix II.

A Time to DanceA Time to Dance by Karen Kingsbury
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

 from the book: "They are the perfect couple-envied by their friends, cherished by their children, admired by their peers. But John and Abby Reynolds know they are pretending to be happy. In fact, they're waiting for the right time to tell the kids they're going to divorce. But at the family meeting where they plan toe tell their children, Nicole shares a surprise of her own; she's getting married. How can they spoil her joy with their announcement? They can pretend a little longer - until after the wedding. But questions begin to haunt them as the date draws nearer. What happened to the love and commitment that held them together for so long? Is it still there somewhere under all the pain and misunderstanding? And is it still possible, alone in the moonlight on an old wooden pier, to once more find..a time to dance? "

my thoughts:  This story is very close to home. I understand the pain and misunderstanding. I understand the hurt and the loss of trust. I understand the anger and the vindictiveness. This story touched my heart. I picked up this book at a bookstore on the sale rack. I had not heard of Karen Kingsbury, but the title spoke to me. "There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven...a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance." Ecclesiastes 3:1,4. I had no idea what the focus of the story was, but I needed to hear it.

Mega Mix II Challenge on Goodreads

Until next time,
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Wondrous Words Wednesday 4-23-14

Wondrous Words Wednesday is hosted by BermudaOnion each week. It's an opportunity to share new words you've encountered in your reading, or highlight words that you particularly enjoy.

Here are three new-to-me words (plus an extra one) from Comfort Foods by Kate Jacobs. You can read my review  here on Goodreads/

On page 15 :

"All followed by a rich buttery financiere with homemade raspberry sorbet "

A financier is a small French cake. The financier is light and moist, similar to sponge cake, and usually contains almond flour, crushed or ground almonds, or almond flavoring. The distinctive feature of the recipe is beurre noisette. Wikipedia

So then I needed to look up beurre noisette.

Definition: Beurre Noisette - French term for "brown butter" or literally "hazelnut butter". Butter is cooked in a pan until it turns a golden brown. The resulting butter has a nutty flavor.

Pronunciation: burr-nwah-ZET

Neither of these words were in any dictionary that I looked in. So I just Googled the words and this is what I got.

Next  found on page 21. "Having the Internet as her main companion all day only encouraged her cyberchondria."

This one I thought I could have deduced by the use in the sentence, but decided to look it up anyway.

Cyberchondria is the unfounded escalation of concerns about common symptomology based on review of search results and literature online.[1][2] Articles in popular media position cyberchondria anywhere from temporary neurotic excess to adjunct hypochondria. Cyberchondria is a growing concern among many healthcare practitioners as patients can now research any and all symptoms of a rare disease, illness or condition, and manifest a state of medical anxiety.

Last but not least on page 130. " Oliver, looking stressed, took up a place at the Aga stove. He'd been working frantically setting up the kitchen, putting together a mise en place of salt, pepper, spices and olive oil.....

Mise en place (French pronunciation: ​[mi zɑ̃ ˈplas]) is a French phrase which means "putting in place", as in set up. It is used in professional kitchens to refer to organizing and arranging the ingredients (e.g., cuts of meat, relishes, sauces, par-cooked items, spices, freshly chopped vegetables, and other components) that a cook will require for the menu items that are expected to be prepared during a shift.[1]The practice is also effective in home kitchens.[2]

I suspect that Paulita from An Accidental Blog is laughing at me right about now!  Her blog and her books are about all things French. I am sure she knew all the words above.  I learned a few things and that is always good. I wonder if I could improve my cooking if I put together a mise en place everyday in my kitchen. Surely, it would help!

Until next time,
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros A Time to Dance

Diane at Bibliophile By the Sea hosts this meme every Tuesday. It's a way share the first paragraph of the first chapter of you current read or maybe from a title you just finished. Hop on over to Diane's blog and link up to share yours or to read what others are reading.

Last week I shared that I was going to start Wildflower Hill by Kimberley Freeman.  However, when I finished Comfort Food by Kate Jacobs, I wasn't feeling Wildflower Hill. In fact, I ended up coming down with a nasty stomach flu and spent Thursday and Friday in bed. Saturday was a bit better, but then Mr. Busy got sick. Needless to say all our Easter plans got cancelled. We both are better today. It helps that the sun is shining, the weather is warm, I even have the front door open and screen partly open. I can hear birds singing and you can almost hear the grass start to grow! LOL.

Anyway, I decided to chose a different book to read. This one has been on my bookshelf for a few months.

a Time to Dance 
Karen Kingsbury
Timeless Love Series #1
Thomas Nelson Inc.   2001

Without question, it was the moment Abby Reynolds had waited for all her life.
Beneath the Friday-night lights, in the biggest college stadium in the state of Illinois , Abby's husband was on the brink of winning his second high-school football championship.  Moreover he was about to do so largely on the talents of their older son, the team's senior quarterback. 

Now, I did not pick this book because of the first paragraph or the first two. I picked it because of the title,  A Time to Dance. It is part of  a favorite bible verse of mine. Ecclesiastes 3:1,4 .  Also it fits into 2 challenges that I am doing this year. Mega Mix II from Love of Reading group on Goodreads and What's in a Name 2014 hosted by Charlie at The Worm Hole.  I am about 1/3 of the way finished, the story is touching my heart.

Do the first two paragraphs of the first chapter grab you?

Until next time,
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Monday, April 21, 2014

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? A Time to Dance by Karen Kingsbury

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly meme hosted by Sheila at Book Journey. As she says, it’s “a great way to plan out your reading week and see what others are currently reading as well… you never know where that next “must read” book will come from!”

This week I am reading:


From Goodreads: A Time to Dance (Timeless Love #1)by Karen Kingsbury4.28 of 5 stars
John and Abby were the perfect couple. But after surviving twenty-one years of love, loss, and laughter, they are about to lose it all. They've become strangers, and finally they make the sad decision to divorce. They gather their three children to tell them the news, but before they can speak, their daughter makes an announcement of her own: she's getting married that summer. Determined not to ruin their daughter's season of happiness, Abby and John secretly agree to put their divorce plans on hold. But as the wedding nears, they are haunted by questions. And is it possible to find joy, after all these years, and perhaps the dance?

I had no idea what to expect from this book, Karen Kingsbury is a new author to me, though I have been getting her facebook page on my news feed for some time. It is a very Christian based story with lots of scriptual reference. And the subject matter is familiar to me. It is touching my heart.

Mr Busy and I are still listening to The Collectors by David Baldacci. We have been away from it for awhile. On Thursday I came down with an awful stomach virus that laid me low for almost 3 days and on Saturday, it got a hold of Mr B. He is still just "puny". We listened some yesterday, Easter was a bust for us, but we both fell asleep. Guess we need the sleep more. Hopefully this week , it is supposed to be warmer and sunny, we will both start to feel better and we can finish it. It is due back at the library on Wednesday, but I can always renew it and take it back later. Hope you all have a super week. I will be working on a quilting project in addition to getting some reading done.

Until next time

Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Wondrous Words from The Goldfinch and another's blog

Wondrous Words Wednesday is hosted by BermudaOnion each week. It's an opportunity to share new words you've encountered in your reading, or highlight words that you particularly enjoy.

from The Goldfinch   chapter 104  audible 17:02 hours

" ..real age, as I came to see from the genuine pieces that passed through my hands , was variable , crooked , capricious, singing here and sullen there...."


     adjective\kə-ˈpri-shəs, -ˈprē-\
: changing often and quickly; especially : often changing suddenly in mood or behavior
: not logical or reasonable : based on an idea, desire, etc., that is not possible to predict

This word is not unfamiliar to  me, I read it a lot in books and understand it in context. But I don't use it in my everyday vocabulary. So I wanted to look it up and to make sure that I knew precisely what it meant and when and how to use it. 


: described or thought of as being like human beings in appearance, behavior, etc.
: considering animals, objects, etc., as having human qualities

This word was new to me. I found it while reading BookNAround's blog about things that make her put a book back on the shelf. 

Did you come across any new words this week Or maybe 
just some words that you felt needed further clarification?

Until next time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros Wildflower Hill

Every Tuesday, Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea posts the first paragraph or maybe two of her current read. Anyone can join in. Go to Diane's website for the image and share the first paragraph (or2) of the current book you are reading.

Touchstone /Simon & Schuster
July 2011

Beattie:  Glasgow 1929

Beattie Blaxland had dreams. Big dreams.
Not the confused patchwork dreams that invade sleep. No, these were the dreams with which she comforted herself before sleep, in her trundle bed rolled out on the floor of her parents' finger-chilling tenement flat.  Vivid, yearning dreams. A life of fashion and fabrics; and fortune, of course. A life where the dismal truth about her dismal family would fade and shrink and disappear. One thing she had never dreamed was that she would find herself pregnant to her married lover just before her nineteenth birthday. 

Would you read on?  The copy I have on my nightstand has a different cover than the one I show here, but it has been on my TBR list for a couple of years.  I will read it as part of the Mega Mix II Challenge on Goodreads Love of Reading group. I hope to start it this week.

Until next time,
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Monday, April 14, 2014

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? Comfort Food

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly meme hosted by Sheila at Book Journey. It's a good way to check out what others are reading and maybe find a gem you have missed in the past. Some are reading new titles, some of us are reading older titles that we missed the first time around. Come join  the fun, but be warned.....your TBR stack may grow to toppling over!

This week I finished The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbrosky. You can read my review here

Mr Busy and I finished listening to the Camel Club by David Baldacci, but not before returning it to the library to have the discs polished or cleaned or whatever they do to them. They suggested it was our reader by I  don't think so. We did get it finished and now have started on the next in the series.
In Washington, D.C, where power is everything and too few have too much of it, four highly eccentric men with mysterious pasts call themselves the Camel Club. Their mission: find out what's really going on behind the closed doors of America's leaders.

The assassination of the U.S. Speaker of the House has shaken the nation. And the outrageous iconoclasts of the Camel Club have found a chilling connection with another death: the demise of the director of the Library of Congress's rare books room, whose body has been found in a locked vault where seemingly nothing could have harmed him. 

A man who calls himself Oliver Stone is the groups unofficial leader. Staying one step ahead of his violent past and headquartered in a caretaker's cottage in Mt. Zion Cemetery, Stone, drawing on his vast experience and acute deductive powers, discovers that someone is selling America to its enemies one classified secret at a time. When Annabelle Conroy, the greatest con artist of her generation, struts onto the scene in high-heeled boots, the Camel Club gets a sexy new edge. And they'll need it, because the two murders are hurtling them into a world of high-stakes espionage that threatens to bring America to its knees.

From an ingenious con in Atlantic City tho the possible forgery of one of the rarest and most valuable books in America history, to a showdown of epic proportions in the very heart of the capitol, David Baldacci weaves a brilliant, white-knuckle tale of suspense in which every collector is searching for one missing prize: the one to die for...

The one is a bit different, but promises to be a true Baldacci thriller. 

I also read and finished the April read for my book club. I did post a short review. But I am anxious to see what the rest of my book club thinks.
I started reading a book that I have had on my shelf for almost a year. It is one that a fellow book club member brought to a meeting to share. It also will fulfill part of the Mega Mix II challenge that I am doing on Goodreads.

Shortly before turning the big 5-0, boisterous party planner and Cooking with Gusto personality Augusta "Gus" Simpson finds herself planning a birthday party she'd rather not-her own. She's getting tired of being the hostess, the mother hen, the woman who has to plan her own birthday party. What she needs is time on her own with enough distance to give her loved ones the ingredients to put together successful lives without her.

Assisted by a handsome up-and-coming chef, Oliver, Gus invites a select group to take an on-air cooking class. But instead of just preaching to the foodie masses, she will teach regular people how to make rich, sensuous meals-real people making real food. Gus decides to bring a vibrant cast of friends and family on the program: Sabrina, her fickle daughter; Troy, Sabrina's ex-husband; Anna, Gus's timid neighbor; and Carmen, Gus's pompous and beautiful competitor at the Cooking Channel. And when she begins to have more than collegial feelings for her sous-chef, Gus realizes that she might be able to rejuvenate not just her professional life, but her personal life as well. . . .

I am about 1/3 of the way through it and I am enjoying it. I can see Gus and her daughters quite clearly. I have a daughter just her age, almost 5-0. 

I should be busy with these two selections and of course, I am still working through The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt. I know it seems like maybe this is a chore to read, but the real reason it is taking me so long is the format, not that this book is not a great read. 

Until next time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Saturday, April 12, 2014

A Sure Sign of Spring!

Saturday Snapshot is hosted by Melinda at  West Metro Mommy Read To participate in the Saturday Snapshot meme post a photo that you (or a friend or family member) have taken then leave a direct link to your post in the Mister Linky (at West Metro Mommy). Photos can be old or new, and be of any subject as long as they are clean and appropriate for all eyes to see. How much detail you give in the caption is entirely up to you. Please don’t post random photos that you find online.

This picture was taken by my sister in South Dakota last week. She loves her flowers and has an amazing garden. I know she is looking forward to getting out and digging in the dirt. 

Then 3 days later she took this picture...... alas, spring is not here yet.  Just outside her patio window, sat a lonely robin, looking like he may want to come inside. 

We are all anxiously awaiting warmer temperatures and sunny skies. 

Until next time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Friday, April 11, 2014

Review: The Astronaut Wives Club by Lily Koppel NF challenge #8

Title: The Astronaut Wives Club: A True Story

Author: Lilly Koppel

Genre: Biography Memoir, Non Fiction
Publisher/Publication Date: Grand Central Publishing, June 2013
Rating: I liked it
Did I Finish: Of course, I did. 
Buy. Borrow, or Avoid?: Borrow or buy, the pictures at the back are worth the buy option.
Why did I read this book?:  It was the monthly selection for my F2F book club. 

Review:  The Astronauts Wives Club tells the real story of the women who stood by their men, some of America's biggest heroes.

Beginning with the Mercury Seven astronauts, the wives were thrust from the bleak living conditions on various military bases to almost royalty status. They were given clothes, makeovers, new homes and then expected to accept the press, Life Magazine in particular, into their lives and homes , all the while smiling, never showing fear, anger or ordinary stress.

From Annie Glenn, with her picture-perfect marriage to Trudy Cooper, who had a secret to hide from NASA, the wives came together to support each other through their husbands absences, infidelities, and then their husbands epic flights into space.

This memoir is written with candor and comedy and  with compassion and realism. You will come away with a different perspective of NASA, the astronauts and  the world of 1957 ( when Russia trumped the US with the first launch of a man-made satellite) to 1972 ( when Apollo 17, the final flight to the moon and the first night launch).

The space program continued into 2010, but this book only covers the beginning of the program up through the Apollo program. I lived that time period, as a teenage and a young wife and mother. I had no idea the government was so active in their day to day lives, and I had no idea of the tenuous marriages that mostly did not survive.

The one issue I did have with the writing, was that it seemed not to tell a story, but to recount happening after happening. It all seemed a bit mundane and I know the space program and the surrounding events were anything but mundane. I mean all this happened during the Cuban Missile crisis, JFK's assassination, the Vietnam War, the murders of Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Jr. our world was changing minute by minute.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

the perks of being a wallflower by Stephen Chbrosky

Synopsis from

First published in 1999, The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a modern classic that captures the aching, confusing, and glorious experience of being a teenager—all through the eyes, ears, and letters of the book’s narrator, Charlie. We don’t know where Charlie lives and we don’t know to whom he is writing. But Charlie’s haunting letters, addressed only to “Dear Friend,” bring readers straight to the heart of his struggles to fit in, to find the will to “participate” in life, and to cope with the realities of the larger world as he learns how to grow up.

My thoughts : 

This is one of several books I have read lately that use the epistolary format. I usually enjoy the format and in this instance I think it really fits well. At first I wondered who Charlie was writing to and then near the end, I decided it did not matter. Maybe he was writing to no one. I wonder if it was his way of "talking to someone", sharing what he couldn't share with his family or friends. Sometimes, it just helps to put your thoughts and feelings on paper.

I really liked Charlie and Sam and Patrick. Their characters were well thought out and developed. I understood the feelings of each of the characters.

I was really surprised at the ending. I did not see that coming, though as I look back it makes sense. No wonder Charlie had trouble asserting himself. The Perks of Being a Wallflower grapples with a universally complex and difficult part of growing up. It made me stop and try to remember all those years ago, and wonder what I should or could have done differently. 

Reading this book as a grandparent, I hope I listen to my grandchildren and encourage them to be present and to participate in life. To stand up for yourself and what you believe is right and above all to be honest with yourself and others.

I highly recommend this book to all parents or grandparents of adolescents. 

As an afterthought:  My first impression of the cover was that it was odd. Tiny font, in lower case on a basically blank background. Now I think it is inspired.

Until next time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Though this book does not tell us where it's setting is, Charlie refers driving 2 hours to Ohio for Christmas. The author is from Pennsylvania so I am going to use Pennsylvania as it's setting.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros: Heaven is for Real

Every Tuesday, Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea posts the first paragraph or maybe two of her current read. Anyone can join in. Go to Diane's website for the image and share the first paragraph (or2) of the current book you are reading. Or in my case, just finished!

Title: Heaven is for Real
Author: Todd Burpo with Lynn Vincent
Publisher: Thomas Nelson 2010


The Fourth of July holiday calls up memories of patriotic parades, the savory scents of smokey barbecue, sweet corn, and night skies bursting with showers of light. But for my family,
 the July Fourth weekend  of 2003 was a big deal for other reasons. 

My wife, Sonja, and I had planned to take the kids to visit Sonja's brother, Steve, and his family in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. It would be our first chance to meet our nephew, Bennett, born two months earlier. Plus, our kids, Cassie and Colton, had never been to the falls before. (Yes, there really a Sioux Falls in Sioux Falls. )  But the biggest deal of all was this: this trip would be the first time we'd left our hometown of Imperial,  Nebraska, since a family trip to Greeley, Colorado, in March had turned into the worst nightmare of our lives.  

Have you read this book?  Would you read on from this prologue if you knew nothing of the subject of the book?  I had, of course, heard of this book, read some excerpts and it was again recommended by members of my book club. Since the movie comes out the 17th of April, I decided I should read it.

Until next time,
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Monday, April 7, 2014

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? 4-7-14 Tartt, Baldacci, Chebosky, Burpo

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly meme hosted by Sheila at Book Journey. It is a great way to see what others are reading. So link up to Sheila's blog and join in the fun. Fair will add to your reading lists by leaps and bounds.!

This week I am still listening to The Goldfinch. I am enjoying it, but am finding it hard to find some alone time to listen to it. It is the audible version on my Kindle and my DH does not want to listen to it. "Sigh"

I read  Heaven is for Real in 2 days. Find my review here  on Goodreads. 
Mr. Busy and I started listening to The Camel Club . It is the first in a 6 part series I think. The second one is The Collectors. We borrowed both of these from our library this week. 

And because I finished Heaven is for Real in such a short time, I started on the perks of being a wallflower by Stephen Chbosky. This one had such hype surrounding it several years ago. I found it on sale late last year at our local bookstore, and decided to buy it. I am participating in a Mega Mix II challenge that is part of the Love of Reading group on Goodreads. The first item in the challenge is to read 3-4 actual print books off your personal bookshelf. So this qualifies as one of those selections. It is a small quick read, I am almost finished. Then I hope to start on the next selection for my F2F bookclub,
Well, that should keep me occupied, plus I am working on a personal challenge to finish a quilt top that I started in 2011. Pictures to follow when finished.

Until next time,
Stay Busy and Stay Happy