June 2018 Book Review

I’m back, friends!!  And it’s July!

I mean…I have so many rambling thoughts before we get to today’s PHENOMENAL book review.  Phenomenal? Yes!  Because I read the BEST books of the year to date this month.  It’s an a-mazing line up, so sit tight!

First up, today is our sweet Samuel’s 2nd birthday!! 

Oh my goodness!  How is he already two?  It just seem like yesterday that we were sleeping at the hospital with my entire family waiting for him to arrive.  That still goes down as one of our best nights 🙂 .  That sweet boy is TWO today, and we cannot wait to celebrate him this weekend!

Second thing…how is it already July?  I’m a mix of emotions right now.  This summer seems to be flying by and all I want it to do is slow down.  The Shull Six has loads of fun stuff still in store for summer 2018…but time needs to stop just a bit.

Speaking of the Shull Six, we had the BEST time on our family vacation this year.  There are TONS of pictures in your future.  The best part?   All the uninterrupted, un-plugged family time.  That my friends, is priceless.

I know I say this every single time I take a little blogging break and return…but I honest to goodness miss you while I’m away.  I think about you, I find things funny, interesting, spectacular when I’m gone and think “my friends need to know about that/hear about that”.  You guys are such an important part of who I am, and I’m thankful to each and every one of you.

Third…guys, if you’re planning a Walt Disney World vacation for 2019, the rates are now officially out!  #woohoo  Email us and we can get you fixed up with the BEST vacation at WDW!  mixandmatchtravelagency@yahoo.com 🙂 .  We love, love, love our Disney families!!

Okay, vacation pics coming up soon, but today, my JUNE BOOK REVIEW!

June Book Review

Spoiler alert: if I don’t name at least two of these as favorites for the entire year come December, I will be shocked.  I read some AMAZING books, friends!

One month, some very long flights, and lots of downtime means I read six books for the month starting with…

Island Girls by Nancy Thayer.

It’s summer.  Give me ALL the chick lit I can read.  And Nancy Thayer never disappoints.

This sweet little novel is about three sisters all forced to return to Nantucket for a summer in order to claim their inheritance from their dad.  This book is quintessential Thayer…strong female characters you love, complex families, descriptions of food that will make you want to run to the nearest gourmet market and stock up, and the beautiful setting of Nantucket.  This was my first official read of the summer and it was PERFECTION.  I loved all three sisters, I loved their friends/love interests, I thought the story was charming while also not being too obvious and I thought this was the PERFECT beach read.  I loved this novel so much that I used Thayer as bookends for my month…I started and ended with her books because they are always the perfect reads this time of year.  I would recommend this book to everyone from my girlfriend to my grandmother.  Just easy.

The second book I read this month was a recommendation from you ladies last month…My Oxford Year by Julia Whelan.  I don’t say this lightly…I cannot imagine this book not being in my top three for 2018.  It was absolutely amazing.  Friends!  Thank you so much for suggesting this novel to me!!!  Okay, I don’t want to give anything away…but this fictional tale gave me all the feels of The Royal We (a book I loved!) along with another very popular book (but if I say it…it will spoil it, so I won’t!).  I could not put this one down, and it stayed with me long after the final page.  This is about a young American woman, who after earning a Rhodes Scholarship, spends a year studying at Oxford.  This reads like all of the chick lit I love BUT with some meat too.  I found it very unpredictable, captivating, emotionally engaging, gripping and funny at the same time.  It’s light and it’s heavy all at once.  It was fantastic!  You know how much I love chick lit…and it was that with a dash of something else too.  Read it!  I loved it.

Speaking of phenomenal books recommended last month by you ladies…Castle of Water by Dane Huckelbridge was a home run.  This novel was nothing short of riveting, friends.  I saw that several of you suggested it in the comment section of last month’s book review, so I looked it up on Amazon…it sounded kind of intriguing, so I bought it for my Kindle and didn’t really think much about it.  Fast forward to the day I started reading it and before the first fourth of the book was even over, I told my girlfriends at the pool that it was most likely going to be in my top 3 for the year.  It was captivating!

As soon as I finished it, I told Andrew it was one of the best books I’ve read.  Ever.  Thank you so much for suggesting it!! 

In a nutshell, it’s a novel about two strangers who are plane crash survivors and how their stories unfold.  This is not chick lit…this is just a fantastic piece of fiction full of depth with fate, hope, survival, and tenacity all woven into one fast-paced story.  I honestly didn’t want it to end.  I was completely caught up in both characters.  Read this one!  I was so surprised by how much I loved it!

Speaking of loving things…my very favorite author, Elin Hilderbrand released her much anticipated new novel the day we left for Scotland, and I read the entire thing on the flight over.  Now, you know how much I love me some Hilderbrand…we all know that I should be the president of her fan club, and I liked this new one, The Perfect Couple, but it wasn’t my favorite (read last year’s The Identicals if this is your first time with Elin).  

I know, I know, I know…when you’ve read like 20 books by the same author that you love so much, the bar is high.  This novel reads less like the chick lit I love so much (she writes the BEST), and more like a “who done it”.  Anyone else think that?  It’s good, and I clearly read it quickly…but it was more “here’s a death at the very beginning of the book, now let’s find the killer” with the story told in a lot of flashbacks.  Hilderbrand writes the best beach reads, and this one just wasn’t as light and carefree as she usually writes.  So, if you’re over all the “chick lit”, you might actually love this one because it is a little more mystery than her typical novels.  Of course, this novel also takes place in Nantucket (like all of her novels do) and is about a wedding weekend gone very wrong.  This perfect family isn’t quite so perfect after all.  I would love to hear what you thought about it too.  I know there are many Elin Hilderbrand fans out there!

Annnnnnd book number five this month was ANOTHER recommendation by you from last month.  Girls, you really knocked it out of the ballpark in May with your suggestions!  After reading all of this fiction, I decided to read the memoir The Sound of Gravel by Ruth Wariner.  I don’t even feel adequate enough to review this one.  It was brilliant.  I have thought more about this book since I finished than any other book this year.  It was tragic, hopeful, terrible, optimistic, and devastating all at once.  Ruth describes growing up in the 1980’s in a polygamist compound in Mexico.  Moved from her family in California, her mom and dad settled her and her siblings there to be raised in a very unique society.  This story poignantly touches on everything from polygamy and its affects on families, sexual abuse to poverty, to dealing with family members who have psychiatric disabilities, physical disabilities, emotional problems, the death of loved ones and so much more.  It is so well-written and so full of details and stories that will just tear at your heart.  I still think about this one several times a day.  It really from the bottom of my heart, moved me.

Whew!  And wrapping up June…I needed a little lightness and happy after reading that last memoir, so I book-ended my month with another Nancy Thayer novel. #allthechicklitforsummer

Heat Wave is like my 400th Thayer book to read and it was just as delightful and easy to read as the first one this month.  It was the perfect ending to a great lineup of books.  This novel is about a young widow living on Nantucket (the predominate setting for my summer reading apparently) with her two daughters and how she navigates life with her in-laws, her friends, how she creates a new career for herself and of course, dips her toe back in the dating scene.


This book is just easy.  If you need something light to read by the pool, the beach or on a plane this summer, pick this one up.  Thayer just has a way with making me happy as I read her books.  I promise you…there will be more Thayer books in my summer lineup.

Well, holy cow!  What a way to come back from a two week blogging break, right?!  Six books, all amazing, so many of them suggested by YOU and every last one of them a “must read” this summer.  

I’m so happy to be home with you ladies again!  I love this community so much.  Thank you for showing up every day with me.

Okay…can you do it again?  Can you recommend another stellar lineup of books like you did last month?  Comment and tell me what I should be reading in July!!  One of the best parts about summer is that I have extra time to read, so load me up with books that are a can’t miss.  

Don’t forget!!  To see a running list of the books I’m reading this year, click HERE.
To see the complete list of books I read in 2015 (all 63 of them), click here.
To see the complete list of books I read in 2016 (all 62 of them), click here.
To see the complete list of books I read in 2017 (all 62 of them), click here.

See you tomorrow, friends! xo

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  • Linda Z July 2, 2018 at 4:53 am

    Welcome back. We miss you too, Shay! I am always the “if you love to read (insert photo here) person” and summertime is such a wonderful time of the year to read. Check out the PBS Great American Read and book list for some additional inspiration.

  • Kathleen July 2, 2018 at 5:00 am

    Next must read book — The Wife Between Us!

    • Mix and Match Mama July 2, 2018 at 5:28 am

      I read it earlier this year! I literally gasped out loud at one point and my friend Megan had to ask me if I was okay. Hahahaha!

      • Kathleen July 2, 2018 at 6:18 am

        Doh! I’m just realizing the reason I even read the Wife Between Us is because of your book review about it a couple of months ago! 😉 😉

  • Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog July 2, 2018 at 5:10 am

    Shay, so happy you’re back! I’ve missed your posts so much and can’t wait to read about your fantastic vacation! Thank you for this month’s book reviews, I can’t pick my favourite! They all sound pretty good 🙂

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

  • Eileen McCullough July 2, 2018 at 5:11 am

    I’m a huge Elin Hilderbrand fan too – I’ve read them all. The Perfect Couple actually may be one of my top favorites of hers, maybe because it was different? I loved that it was still beachy and chick-lit, with a great mystery mixed in. The Great Alone by Kristen Hannah is my favorite so far this year. I still think about it.

    • Casey July 3, 2018 at 9:18 am

      Eileen…I’m with you. I LOVED The Great Alone. It has definitely been my favorite this year too. 🙂

  • Erika Slaughter July 2, 2018 at 5:38 am

    Okay, friend! I’m cancelling all my plans this week to sit and read. That’s what I want to do after every book review!

  • Lindsay F. July 2, 2018 at 5:42 am

    I anxiously wait for your monthly book reviews and I have my library account up on another tab so I can reserve them as I read your reviews! haha I just finished “The Sun Does Shine: How I Found Life and Freedom on Death Row,” by Anthony Ray Hinton. It’s one of Oprah’s Book Club Summer 2018 selections and I easily can see why it was selected. Mr. Hinton served 30 years on death row, for murders he DID NOT commit (and had alibis for) and was released in 2015 from a prison in Alabama. Living in the south and being African American, 30 years ago, left him with little chance. I am hooked and I am shaken over his story. A fire in me was lit with this one. Talk about a quick read, I couldn’t put it down. Do yourself a favor and PLEASE READ IT!!!!!!! Mr. Hinton’s faith in God is inspiring.

    • Mary Jane McNeill July 2, 2018 at 9:35 am

      Lindsay, if you loved that one, read “Picking Cotton”. Same premise, except the girl who pegged the man for the wrong crime admitted it and fought to have him released. This book was our city’s One Book selection, and at the end of the month, both of these people came to speak at a forum. It was so moving!

      • Lindsay F. July 3, 2018 at 5:51 am

        Thank you, Mary Jane. I’m reserving it right now!

    • Alexis July 2, 2018 at 12:04 pm

      One of the best books I’ve EVER read!!!!

    • Carrie July 4, 2018 at 11:25 am

      I do the same thing! I never buy books anymore, you can get anything from the library and most of our books I can now get on my kindle app through the library too.

  • Elspeth Mizner July 2, 2018 at 5:43 am

    Shay!!!! So happy you are back from your trip! Can’t wait to read all about it!! Great books selections! I am in need of new books so i will definitely check some of these out!

  • Colleen July 2, 2018 at 5:51 am

    Have you read Kristen Woodson Harvey? She reminds me a little of Elin Hilderbrand and Nancy Thayer, but in the south. The first book I read was Slightly South of Simple. I’m now reading the Secret to Southern Charm. They are books one and two in a three part series (book 3 isn’t out yet) about three very different sisters and their mother. Easy read, chick lit, but also had some unpredictable turns. Definitely a fun summer read! (At least the first. And the second so far! 😊)

    • Rebecca July 2, 2018 at 7:27 am

      Love love loved these books!!!

    • Taylor July 2, 2018 at 8:14 am

      I’m reading these now! I agree, very light and easy summer reads.

      • Laura July 5, 2018 at 10:58 pm

        Favorite post of the month!!! I can’t stop reading thanks to all of your great recommendations. I also recommend The Great Alone. I’m amazed at what a great story teller Kristin Hannah is and how she can write about such different things. I think after your trip to Alaska that you will appreciate all of the details of what it takes to live in a place with wildly different seasons. A light cute read is Last Christmas in Paris. It’s a little love story told through letters during WW1. If you are looking for another thriller I recommend The Good Daughter by Karin Slaughter. Heavy but a well told story. She also wrote Pretty Girls which is also good. Happy reading!!!

    • Anna July 10, 2018 at 1:15 pm

      Love Slightly South of Simple!!

  • Colleen July 2, 2018 at 5:52 am

    Sorry the author is Kristy, not Kristen!

  • Amy July 2, 2018 at 5:58 am

    Thank you for sharing your love of reading. I look forward each month to your book review. Because of you I have found authors that I had never even heard of, and you have helped me step outside of my usual reading rut.

    I am curious though, now that you and the kids have Kindles, do you ever utilize your library’s online service? Most libraries have the Libby app and it makes it so incredibly easy to find and check out books in seconds. Thank you again for the suggestions. I am going to go jump on my app and see if I can grab a few of these books before your other readers do.

  • Tanya July 2, 2018 at 6:01 am

    I can’t wait to read your recommendations, especially My Oxford Year. The Sound of Gravel was one of my favorites from last year – such a tough story. I wrote about my reads for the month today, too –
    Tanya – The Other Side of the Road

  • Kelsey July 2, 2018 at 6:17 am

    The Sound of Gravel is also one of my favorites. Some I’ve read recently that I’ve also really loved- Reedeming Love, Once Upon a Flock, Tuesday’s with Morrie, Yes my Darling Daughter, Educated (by Tara Westover), Bread and Wine, and i’m currently reading Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult.

  • Kelly Sites July 2, 2018 at 6:18 am

    Castle of Water was a top fav last year. So so so good. I REALLY enjoyed Dorothea Benton Frank’s BY INVITATION ONLY…so so fun and good. A fantastic summer read. Also, if you LOVE a great memoir, and I know you do…you must read EDUCATED. So good. And November 9th by Colleen Hoover. FANTASTIC.

  • Mary Grace July 2, 2018 at 6:19 am

    Just finished Emily griffins newest, all we ever wanted and liked it a lot! Also just finished the wife between us (thanks for the rec!) and the light we lost! Liked them all!

    • TG July 2, 2018 at 7:58 am

      I second that! I enjoyed “The Light We Lost” too!!

  • Amanda @ Cupcake N Dreams July 2, 2018 at 6:19 am

    So happy you are back! I can’t wait for the travel recaps! Island Girls was alright in my book as far as Nancy Thayer books but I’m excited about Heat Wave. I just got done with Secrets in Summer, which I think you’ve already read. I have Little Fires Everywhere on my list next! Now adding some of these lol. Welcome back Shay!
    Amanda @ Cupcake N Dreams

  • Anna in N.C. July 2, 2018 at 6:24 am

    Oh! Castle of Water was wonderful but also heartbreaking. All kinds of feels for this book.
    Love to read your book reviews!

  • Christine July 2, 2018 at 6:27 am

    Welcome back! I read a good one you might like… The Beach House by Mary Alice Monroe. It’s a little heavier than a normal beach read, but I loved the characters and the story. And I was glad to know that it’s the first of a series, so I’m going to read the next one, too. 🙂

    • Alexandra C July 2, 2018 at 8:04 am

      Yes!! This series is great, as is her Summer Girls series! I love MAM, and a lot of books by Mary Kay Andrews, too. Highly recommend High Tide Club (Her newest), The Weekenders, and Summer Rental.

    • Tamara H. July 2, 2018 at 11:06 am

      I second “The Beach House” by Mary Alice Monroe. A great read!

    • Chelsey July 2, 2018 at 11:38 am

      I’m currently reading The Beach House on my kindle! I too picked it up because I saw it was an ongoing series! Always helps make it easier on what to read next 🙂 Agreed, it is heavier then normal beach reads but I’m loving it so far

  • Cassie July 2, 2018 at 6:28 am

    I read The Great Alone and No One Ever asked last month and loved them both! They are not light beach reads, though. I love your book reviews!

  • Amy Heinl July 2, 2018 at 6:29 am

    Between You and Me by Susan Wiggs…se is one of my favorite aothoes..sumiliar to Kristin Hanah..always great reads with very rich characters and this one does not disappoint…leaves you asking how far would you go to keep a secret…The other I read is Beach House Reunion bu Mary Alice Monroe. Sequel to The Beach House which was Hallmark Move several weeks ago…she is just simply the best in chick lit…so glad you had a great vacwtion. Welcome Home

    • Mary Jane McNeill July 2, 2018 at 9:38 am

      A Hallmark movie??? I just read the third (fourth) one, Beach House for Rent, and thought it would make such a great movie!!

  • Sally Hepworth July 2, 2018 at 6:29 am

    Hello lovely! I’m reading Shelter In Place by Nora Roberts (actually I’m listening to it on Audible). Do you ever listen to books? I love audio books for my morning walk, long car rides and errands. My kids listen to audio books on the iPad before bed. It doesn’t replace a paperback (on the beach!) but it’s a great way to get some reading done.

    • Sara July 4, 2018 at 10:56 am

      I just finished The Family Next Door and really enjoyed it!

  • Cassi July 2, 2018 at 6:33 am

    Have you read The Great Alone by Kristen Hannah? It’s a good one!
    I’ve finally got my hands on Before We Were Yours, about 1/2 way finished, so good!

    • Jessica Turocy July 2, 2018 at 8:01 am

      I second The Great Alone! By the same author (Kristin Hannah) as my all time favorite book, The Nightingale. The story is set in Alaska and is centered around a family. The main character you root for from the very beginning!

      I also learned that the setting of Alaska is loosely based on Kristin Hannah’s own experience when her family moved there growing up!

      Such an intense and amazing book!

      • Christie July 17, 2018 at 2:38 pm

        Have you read her book “winter garden”? If you haven’t yet, make it your next book.

    • Mary Jane McNeill July 2, 2018 at 9:41 am

      I was going to recommend Before We Were Yours!! I listened to it on our road trip from Georgia to Missouri and going through Memphis and crossing the Mississippi hit home! I can’t believe it’s based on true events! It has stuck with me for daaaaaays. If you haven’t listened to any books, make this your FIRST one!

      • Mix and Match Mama July 2, 2018 at 11:50 am

        Yes!!! Read it this year!! Loved it too!!

  • Jillian July 2, 2018 at 6:40 am

    I just finished up The Perfect Couple, and while I did like it, I feel like somethings weren’t solved? Like the water glass for example, was it ever said where that went and I missed it? I know that is a minor detail but when it ended I was kind of like “that is it?” haha I wanted more! I did enjoy the story though, and I liked the mystery feel. I love her books, but I think my favorite will always be the The Winter Series and the Quinn family. That probably largely has to do with it being a Christmas theme and I love all things Christmas haha. I have for sure added a couple of these books to my list. A book similar to The Royal We?? Say no more!!

    • jen July 5, 2018 at 10:18 pm

      Yes! What about the water glass AND the mysterious photo sent to Shooter? Is it supposed to be the ex’s friend who was on the island? And this is a sharp police chief, would he really just be, “Oh well, sounds like an accident.” Not my favorite of hers

      • Mix and Match Mama July 6, 2018 at 5:35 am


    • Melissa July 8, 2018 at 12:52 am

      I felt the same way…I didn’t feel like she finished the novel. I loved The Identicals but this one not so much. I’m glad I’m not the only one.

  • Katrina July 2, 2018 at 6:47 am

    I loved The Oxford Year!! Have you read How to Walk Way? I can’t remember if you have posted about it or not. 😳

    • Rayne July 2, 2018 at 8:19 pm

      I loved how to walk away too!

  • Amy B. July 2, 2018 at 6:48 am

    Charles Martin’s books are AMAZING too! Not chick lit obviously, but still light enough…even when the plots are heavy…at times because there’s a common theme of hope in all of them (which I love!). The Mountain Between Us was one of the first I read of his and have been hooked since, so that might be a good place to start. There might even be a movie made from that one?!? Anyways, I hope you’ll give his books a try!

    • Mary Jane McNeill July 2, 2018 at 9:43 am

      That is one of my Top 10 (if not 5) books ever! And the movie is NOT like the book. I had to reread the ending three times to believe it! I even made my husband read it!!

      • Nikki July 5, 2018 at 12:37 pm

        Agreed, I love Charles Martin’s books!!

  • Amy B. July 2, 2018 at 6:49 am

    heavy at times…*

  • Kaitlyn July 2, 2018 at 6:54 am

    How To Walk Away by Katherine Center is a fun easy summer book with a little bit of meat to it! It’s a good one!!! Thank

  • Liz Winter July 2, 2018 at 6:57 am

    Welcome home! I just finished “Then She Was Gone” by Lisa Jewell— highly recommend!
    My favorites this year so far have been that one, as well as “The Stolen Marriage” by Diane Chamberlain and “Lie To Me” by J.T. Ellison. Oh and Emily Giffin just released a new book last week— “All We Ever Wanted”!

  • Narci Dreffs July 2, 2018 at 6:58 am

    Well, now I want to sit and read all day!! Your book reviews are always the best!! Hopping over to Add these to my Amazon cart right now! ❤️❤️

  • Kate July 2, 2018 at 7:04 am

    In June, I read Charles Martin’s latest, “Send Down The Rain.” Like all of his books, it sucked me in from the first few pages. If you haven’t read anything by him, I suggest starting with “When Crickets Cry.” It’ll take your breath away.

    • Rayne July 2, 2018 at 8:20 pm

      Yes!! I loved his newest one too!

  • Sarah Shaneyfelt July 2, 2018 at 7:06 am

    I just bought Elin’s new book and I’m excited to start reading it! I really need to read a Nancy Thayer book since you love her so much, too!

  • Heather Pressley July 2, 2018 at 7:06 am

    The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah was one of the best books i have read in a while!

  • Laura July 2, 2018 at 7:08 am

    You must read Educated by Tara Westover. It is also a memoir. The story of a girl raised by survivalists in Idaho. It is riveting from start to finish. It is so fascinating that I downloaded the Kindle app to my phone so I could read on bathroom breaks at work…I literally could not put it down.

  • Kate July 2, 2018 at 7:09 am

    Hi shay. I am currently reading The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid (author of One True Loves). Great book so far! I recommend it. Great book review today 🙂

  • Julie July 2, 2018 at 7:10 am

    I totally agree on he Perfect Couple. Was not my favorite by Elin but I did read it quickly. Thanks for the great recommendations. I have been reading like crazy this summer and always look forward to your book posts!

  • Lesley McFarland July 2, 2018 at 7:14 am

    Hey Hey
    Welcome back! I just love this post and look forward to them every month. I just Finished Educated by Tara Westover. I could not put it down!!

  • Kate July 2, 2018 at 7:16 am

    Tell Me More by Kelly Corrigan. SO, SO good.

  • Wendi jay July 2, 2018 at 7:18 am

    The Girl of Hummingbird lane By Lisa See

  • Rebecca July 2, 2018 at 7:26 am

    Kristin Woodson Harvey reads a lot like Thayer and Hilderbrand. Her first two books of the Peachtree Bluff series are out. Start with Slightly South of Simple. SO good!

    • Alexis July 2, 2018 at 12:14 pm

      YES!!! They’re such good books! Perfect summer ones.

  • Dustie Day July 2, 2018 at 7:26 am

    So many good books to add to my list! Glad you’re back:)

  • Kim July 2, 2018 at 7:27 am

    Welcome back Shay and Happy Birthday Samuel!! 🎉 So, I’m finishing up Best Day Ever by Kaira Rouda and it’s so good! The main character is so creepy but entertaining and I recently read The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah and Surprise Me by Sophie Kinsella, both really good. Next up is Emily Giffin’s new one All We Ever Wanted. Thank you for all the great recommendations!

  • Elaine Burbank July 2, 2018 at 7:33 am

    Little Fires Everywhere, is a must read if you haven’t already!!

  • Julie July 2, 2018 at 7:35 am

    You should read – A Fine Romance: Falling in Love With the English Countryside by Susan Branch. Wonderful story about the author’s time spent in England with beautiful illustrations.

  • Madison July 2, 2018 at 7:36 am

    Have you read Jodi Picoult? I love all of her books but her latest Small Great Things is my absolute favorite! You should also read The Lost Wife. That is probably the top book I’ve read this year!

  • Shannon July 2, 2018 at 7:36 am

    The Paradigm by Jonathan Cahn. A fascinating looks at recent politics and how scripture foretold everything from the Clintons to Trump. Takes a little to get going, but once things get going, you want to read it as fast as possible! Wow!

  • Tracy K July 2, 2018 at 7:37 am

    How To Walk Away & The Light We Lost are two recent favorites!
    I’m excited to read Castle of Water now! Added it to my list. 😊

    • TG July 2, 2018 at 8:01 am

      Agree! I enjoyed “The Light We Lost” too!

  • Lauren Hufford July 2, 2018 at 7:38 am

    I am reading My oxford Year right now and loving it! You need to read How to Walk Away by Katherine Center…it’s sooooooo good!!!

    • Lauren Hufford July 2, 2018 at 8:19 pm

      Also, Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay is fantastic! I highly recommend it!

  • Sarah July 2, 2018 at 7:40 am

    I love your book review posts! I’ve read so many great books this year from your recommendations. Some of my favorites that haven’t been on your reviews are The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, The Great Alone, and Forever is the Worst Long Time. All so good!

  • Paula July 2, 2018 at 7:43 am

    Welcome Back! I have missed your post, but so happy you got that unplugged family time. You are right, priceless.
    I love your book suggestions. They make me happy…adding now to my cart.
    I am currently reading Small Great Things….WOW! It makes you sad & angry. Have you read it?

  • Brooke July 2, 2018 at 7:46 am

    You must read The Summer I Met Jack… it was released this spring and is a super interesting chick lit read with some meat to it. Its a “fictional” (maybe true) story that revolves around Jack Kennedy years before he is elected into office. So good!

    • Bernie July 2, 2018 at 11:37 am

      I am just starting The Summer I Met Jack….I agree…it is good right from the start.

  • TG July 2, 2018 at 7:56 am

    Have you read “When Breath Becomes Air”, “The Glass Castle”, “The Bright Hour” and “The Kitchen House”? You HAVE to read all 4, if you haven’t already, and I so wish I could send them straight to your Kindle for you. I want to hear your reviews of these 4 so desperately! 😂 For chick lit, I just read “The Marriage Lie” and it was pretty good, finished in a day.

  • Deanna Zehr July 2, 2018 at 7:58 am

    I felt the same way about Elin’s newest book; liked but didn’t love. Island girls is one my nightstand now and I just ordered My Oxford Year. Thank you for the other great suggestions. Happy reading, Shay!


  • Jen July 2, 2018 at 7:59 am

    Just finished Shelter in Place by Nora Roberts and it was very very good!

  • Julie July 2, 2018 at 8:05 am

    Welcome back-we missed you too! Have you read Sarah’s Key? It is not a light read, but it was one of the most moving books I’ve ever read. Based on the true historical event of Vel D’Hiv ( round up of Jewish families in France during WW2) it is the story of a young girl and how she handles being taken away from her family and sent to camp. Although it is serious subject matter, it is so inspiring and the heroine is so brave and amazing it will stay with you! Highly recommend. In the lighter category, I’m now enjoying “The Windfall” (Kevin Kwan reviewed it) about and Indian family who comes into a lot of money later in life, and how their lifestyle changes. Just cute and funny!

    • Michelle July 4, 2018 at 10:22 pm

      I agree, Sarah’s Key was fantastic! Another similar book (in that it’s a fictional account of historical events) is The Alice Network, set in WW1 and just after WW2. I just finished it, and it was phenomenal…I couldn’t put it down towards the end because I just had to know how it turned out. And just like when I read Sarah’s Key, I then had to google all of the information surrounding the events that took place in the book. That time in history was so very fascinating.

  • Jenn July 2, 2018 at 8:07 am

    I just finished Then She Was Gone by Lisa Jewel, and Lie To Me by J.T. Ellison. They are both thrillers and both page turners. I also love any books by Jill Mansell. She is the perfect summer British author, just easy chick lit.

  • Courtney Ventresco July 2, 2018 at 8:08 am

    I think you’d love the book the forever summer by Jamie brenner. Great summer chick flick read based on Nantucket

  • Sheaffer Sims July 2, 2018 at 8:10 am

    I’ve got nothin’.

    • Susanne July 2, 2018 at 10:27 pm

      Your comments always crack me up! How in the world can you be such good friends with all these girls and not turn into a reader?!? 😂

  • Rachel July 2, 2018 at 8:12 am

    Welcome back!! What great book recommendations 🙂 Looking forward to seeing trip pics!

  • Nicole July 2, 2018 at 8:13 am

    The Girl You Left Behind – it WILL be in my top 3 favorite books this year, unless something crazy happens! I love love loved it!!

  • Kate R July 2, 2018 at 8:14 am

    Can’t wait to check these out! I just finished “How Will You Measure Your Life?” by Clayton M. Christensen, James Allworth, and Karen Dillon. While there are a lot of business themes in this book, I thought they did a wonderful job applying them to your personal life- really loved this book.

    Another book that I love is “Tiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life from Dear Sugar.” My mom got me this book which is a collection of advice columns. It is a book you can read multiple times and pick up something new each time.

  • Mary Beth July 2, 2018 at 8:17 am

    I really look forward to your book reviews! I have started reviewing books I read on instagram and I love finding new suggestions. I have now reserved 3 of the books you listed from my library.

    Have you read Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate? Such a good story and I think you would love it.

  • Sara July 2, 2018 at 8:17 am

    Educated by Tara Westover is a winner this year.

  • Lauren July 2, 2018 at 8:20 am

    So glad you’re back! Love this book review. I’m about to finish The Perfect Couple and I like that Elin Hildebrand ventured into the murder mystery rather than her typical love stories. It’s been an exciting read, but understand it’s different for her. Can’t wait to read the rest of your suggestions!

  • Taylor July 2, 2018 at 8:21 am

    So glad you’re back! I find it so crazy that I can actually miss someone I’ve never met! Haha. That just goes to show how great of a bond you have with your readers. Anyways, I read quite a few books in June but my absolute favorite was “When Life Gives you Lululemons.” It was so good and had me laughing out loud through most of it. It’s the third book in the Devil Wears Prada series but I haven’t read any of them, only saw the movie, and it made complete sense to me. So it can definitely be a stand alone book.

    • Sara July 4, 2018 at 11:08 am

      I’m finishing that book up right now. A fun summer read so far!

  • Kelly July 2, 2018 at 8:21 am

    READ OUTLANDER! AMAZING SERIES!!!!!!! I cannot put it down.

    • Lynn July 2, 2018 at 12:14 pm

      Yes, read Outlander — especially since you just returned from Scotland!!

  • Taylor July 2, 2018 at 8:22 am

    Jamie Ivey’s Summer Book Club read “No One Ever Asked” by Katie Ganshert in June – oh my lanta I couldn’t put it down. The book begins by throwing you in, introducing you to basically all the characters; so I would start the book when you have time to read the first few chapters. Then you’ll be sucked in 🙂
    I think I may have commented this recommendation on your last book review, but this year I read Corrie ten Boom’s “The Hiding Place” which was absolutely beautiful. Such faith those ten Boom girls had!

  • Jodi July 2, 2018 at 8:22 am

    Just finished Of Mess and Moxie by Jen Hatmaker…loved it!

  • Jaren July 2, 2018 at 8:24 am

    Can’t wait to read these and can’t wait to hear all about your trip!

  • Kristen Hardison July 2, 2018 at 8:25 am

    So happy you’re back Shay! Can’t wait to read about your trip! I have been reading a ton this summer too! I just read “Small Great Things” by Jodi Picoult and I can’t stop thinking about it either. It will make you think. It’s for sure not a chick lit book. She is a master at telling stories from various perspectives. I also read the new Lauren Weisberger one “When Life Hands You Lululemons.” I flew through that one! Now I’m starting the new Emily Giffin one! It’s the summer of amazing books!! ❤️

  • Brittany July 2, 2018 at 8:26 am

    Love and Other Words by Christina Lauren …. so good!!

    Also, thank you for your book reviews… it’s my first point of reference when finishing one book and looking to start another. ❤️

  • Tamela Lake July 2, 2018 at 8:30 am

    I’ve just recently became an Erin Hilderbrand fan because of your reviews. Is there a certain order I need to read the books in? Are they part of a series with the same characters?

  • Kristine G. July 2, 2018 at 8:30 am

    I just reserved Island Girls and Castle of Water from the library! Can’t wait to read them! I recently read Shonda Rhimes’ book Year of Yes and When Breath Becomes Air. Both were so good! I also just started How to Break Up with your Phone and Not That I Could Tell by Jessica Strawser. So far so good!

  • haley @ cupcakes and sunshine July 2, 2018 at 8:33 am

    Oooh I’m looking forward to reading My Oxford Year and The Sound of Gravel!!! On my list!!

  • Jessica Sellers July 2, 2018 at 8:37 am

    Since you’re a Francophile, check out Janice MacLeod’s Paris Letters, if you haven’t already! I’m having fun reading it now and dreaming of living in Paris!

  • Heather July 2, 2018 at 8:37 am

    You must read When Life Gives You Lululemons. It’s from the Author who wrote The Devil Wears Prada. I loved it so much that I read the entire thing yesterday.

  • Andrea July 2, 2018 at 8:41 am

    Welcome back! I recommend “On Fire” by John O’leary, I feel it will really strike a cord with you and your sweet Ashby. I know John from college, and never knew his whole story. It is his story of faith, healing and the human spirit. I cannot emphasize how wonderful this book is. GO GET IT NOW 🙂

  • Amanda Wilson July 2, 2018 at 8:42 am

    Wahoo you are back!! I have my pile of books ready to go for summer vacation thanks to you!! Super stoked to wake up and see you are back.

  • Taylor July 2, 2018 at 8:48 am

    The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo and How to Walk Away were both so good!

  • Shawna Beucler July 2, 2018 at 8:51 am

    Love your book reviews!!! I’m currently reading Tell Me More by Kelly Corrigan. Not quite sure what I think about it just yet. Leaving town on Thursday for a week, and definitely taking a couple of these books with me!!! Welcome
    Back! XO
    Shawna @ http://www.lunchboxbabies.com

  • Carly July 2, 2018 at 8:56 am

    I agree with you on the Perfect Couple. It was not my favorite of Elin’s. I just didn’t like the characters!

  • Cassidy July 2, 2018 at 8:58 am

    So happy you’re back and can’t wait to hear about your travels! I added most of these to my “want to read” list on Goodreads! Thank you!

  • Jamie Kimberling July 2, 2018 at 9:03 am

    Missed you, Shay!! Just finished “Everybody, Always” Bob Goff, excellent. xo

  • Brittany July 2, 2018 at 9:08 am

    “Come Matter Here” by Hannah Brencher is just food for the soul. It’s her latest and it does not disappoint!

  • Brooke July 2, 2018 at 9:08 am

    I just ordered Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine after reading reviews on it! Can’t wait to read some of these books you recommended!

  • Chelsey July 2, 2018 at 9:23 am

    I always love your book reviews! Have you ever read any books by Mary Kay Andrews? She is a Southern, chick-lit author and her books are delightful – I highly recommend them.

  • Shelley July 2, 2018 at 9:24 am

    Going old school, have you read My Antonia by Willa Cather? Great insight into what life might have been like for my ancestors.

    • Mary Jane McNeill July 2, 2018 at 4:57 pm

      That’s in my Top 5 of ALL TIME!

  • Morie Smith July 2, 2018 at 9:31 am

    Definitely read Emily Giffin’s newest All We Ever Wanted this month!! It was so good! So relevant to current events, but not preachy or overly/ obviously opinionated. Love your book reviews!

  • Holly July 2, 2018 at 9:31 am

    Hi Shay! So glad you’re back – can’t wait to read all about your trip!! I love your book reviews so much. I have a running list of books to order/pick up and I always, always add nearly every book you review to that list.

    Idea: I think it would be fun if you did a post comparing all of the major chick lit/beach read authors… I know you’re an Elin Hildebrand girl, but comparing her style of writing and books to Nancy Thayer, Susan Mallery, and I’m sure there are many more. I’ve read a couple of books by each of those authors, but I’d love your take – you are most definitely the book expert 🙂

    • Mix and Match Mama July 2, 2018 at 11:50 am

      They are VERY similar!!! I probably couldn’t tell them a part without knowing which author wrote which one.

  • Sarah Smith July 2, 2018 at 9:31 am

    I’m so happy you’re back and it’s book review day! I highly recommend The Secret Wife by Gill Paul, it is one of my all-time favorite books. Have a great summer! Xx

  • Holly July 2, 2018 at 9:33 am

    Try reading “Swear on this Life” by Renee Carlino! I’ve also just read and recommend “When Life Gives you Lululemons” by Lauren Weisberger and “Winter Garden” by Kristin Hannah.

  • Abbie July 2, 2018 at 9:34 am

    Currently reading The Marriage Pact, I am curious to see where this is going to go. A recommendation is Small Great Things, a very good book! One of my favorite books I read last year

  • Rachel July 2, 2018 at 9:34 am

    No One Ever Asked by Katie Ganshert was great – still thinking about it 🙂 Anything by her is sure to be a good read!

  • Ashley Hall July 2, 2018 at 9:35 am

    “The Broken Girls” by Simone St. James. It is a thriller/mystery book where multiple mysteries end up tying together. It kept me guessing until the last few chapters.

  • Grace July 2, 2018 at 9:38 am

    You have to read When Life Gives You Lululemons!!!

  • Cheri Thompson July 2, 2018 at 9:39 am

    Love your monthly book reviews. I couldn’t believe I read one of those books last month too!

  • Elizabeth July 2, 2018 at 9:39 am

    I love all of Renee Carlino’s books. Literally read them all one after anohter.

  • Jocie July 2, 2018 at 9:43 am

    Welcome back Shay and Happy Birthday Samuel! Way to make a come back with the book review! Love these days! I read all the comments and add them all to my library list- they recently told me I have reached my limit for the amount of books on hold so hm… Anyway! I have enjoyed reading some recommendations this month! I read: “The Great Alone” and just like everyone else recommending it I really think you have to read it- It may very well be my top book of 2018! I also read “Beartown” and wow thought this was going to be a simple read like “A Man Called Ove” but no, surprising depth and loved it! There is a sequel out too I hear! Some of my other favorites this month were “Class Mom”, by your recommendation, “Baby Proof” and “Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine” I would recommend all these books to anyone who hasn’t read them! “Before we were yours” was also close to the top books for the month.

    • Eileen McCullough July 2, 2018 at 12:44 pm

      I loved The Great Alone and Beartown too! I just got the sequel to Beartown called Us Against You. I can’t wait to read it.

  • Caroline July 2, 2018 at 9:45 am

    Book review days are my favorite! I would highly suggest The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane by Lisa See. It’s such a sweet story about girl turned women in China who is raised in the tea mountains and her biological daughter who is being raised in Los Angeles. It was beautifuly written with wonderful character development and a few twists and turns I didn’t see!

  • Sydney July 2, 2018 at 9:45 am

    Taylor Jenkins Reid Caleb out with a new book recently called “The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo.” I haven’t read it yet, but I’ve read all her others. You turned me on to them, and I’ve loved them all! “Seven Husbands” is on my next up list!

  • Jocie July 2, 2018 at 9:46 am

    Also how could I forget about “Small Great Things” ? Well probably because I haven’t finished it! I held off reading this book because I wasn’t sure if I would like it! But honestly the writing is so good and the plot is quick moving! I read half of it in one day! Pick it up and give it a try if you haven’t!

  • Marcela K July 2, 2018 at 9:46 am

    Our book club read A Simple Favor by Dacey Bell and it is a crime/mystery.. It’s about a women with a blog (lol) and her friend disappears and tries to find her through the blog! Also the movie is coming out in the fall with Blake Lively and Anna Kendrick are starting in it! Must read!

  • Nicole Scales July 2, 2018 at 9:48 am

    Now that you’ve read “The Sound of Gravel”, you MUST read “The Polygamist’s Daughter” by Anna LeBaron – she’s Ruth Wariner’s cousin, and her father Ervil Lebaron put the hit out on Ruth’s father. They wrote their books separately, and did not meet until afterward – I forget exactly how it went, whoever wrote their book first came across the other’s book when it was coming out or something. Fascinating!! I heard them on a podcast together, I think on Jamie Ivey’s Happy Hour!

  • Sarah July 2, 2018 at 9:54 am

    Forgive me if you’ve already read some of these but they’re rather new: The Woman in the Window {AJ Finn}, An American Marriage {Tayari Jones}, Sisters Like Us {Susan Mallery}…and going out on a limb but The President is Missing {James Patterson and Bill Clinton — if you loved Scandal, you’ll love this!}

  • Lex July 2, 2018 at 9:56 am

    Maybe in a Different Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid–great beach read and gets you thinking about all the everyday choices we make!
    The Great Alone by Kristen Hannah
    From Sand and Ash by Amy Harmon–one of my favorite historical fiction alongside Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly

  • Meg July 2, 2018 at 9:58 am

    The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah was AMAZING! I think you’d really love it, especially since you loved visiting Alaska last year. So far it’s tied with Beneath a Scarlet Sky for my favorite read of 2018. Beneath a Scarlet Sky is about a teenager in Italy during WWII and is a true story. Crazy inspiring and about to be a movie too. I’m off to order My Oxford Year and Castle of Water!

  • Kayla Bruce July 2, 2018 at 10:01 am

    These all sound great, but I’m so glad you reviewed My Oxford Year. I have it on my Kindle and haven’t started it yet, but now I’m excited! I studied abroad in Oxford my junior year of college, and I have a feeling I might just fall in love with this book. I’m currently reading My Simplified Life by Emily Ley. Would recommend! Along similar lines of Unstuffed. Welcome back from vacation!

  • Celina Shwam July 2, 2018 at 10:03 am

    The Great Alone is so good and stays with you! A beautiful story about a mother/daughter’s love and so much more! Also, I’ve mentioned before Eight Hundred Grapes by Laura Dave. Cute and easy.

    • Renee July 2, 2018 at 2:01 pm

      I loved Eight Hundred Grapes. I just finished The Divorce Party, by the same author, and enjoyed it also.

  • Jenny July 2, 2018 at 10:03 am

    I just finished Those Who Save Us by Jenna Blum. I couldn’t put this book down. Best book I have read in quite awhile.

  • Celina July 2, 2018 at 10:06 am

    The Great Alone is a beautiful story! It’s about a mother/daughter love and so much more! Eight Hundred Grapes is light and easy!!

  • Kimberly Waller July 2, 2018 at 10:08 am

    Just finished The Great Alone last night and it was SO good!! Starting on Nantucket Wedding now. Love your book reviews!

  • Kim July 2, 2018 at 10:10 am

    I just saw Elin Hildebrand speak and do a short book reading at our public library. She was great—very breezy and conversational even though there were at least 200 people there. Anyways, she said that she purposely tried to write a murder mystery because she felt like she had kind of run out of ideas for her Nantucket characters after so many books. Also, she said that she had originally written it with the bride dying, but her editor said it was too sad so she rewrote it. And can you believe she hand writes all her novels on legal pads, then types them in for editing and so forth. That amazed me!

    • Mix and Match Mama July 2, 2018 at 11:49 am

      I didn’t know all of that!! That’s so cool!!

  • Morgan July 2, 2018 at 10:16 am

    Must Read- “Everything I Never Told You” by Celeste Ng. I read it earlier this year and fell in love! It’s funny at times but very thought provoking. Fictional book about an Asian-American family who all keeps secrets from one another and how their lack of communication (along with many emotional scars) really hurt their family. I couldn’t put it down!

  • Dianna July 2, 2018 at 10:20 am

    This month I read Before we were yours, The Hating Game, The Children by Ann Leary (not sure where I got this one to read but it wasn’t my fav), and Inconceivable by Carolyn and Sean Savage (an amazing story about having faith during an unimaginable time)

  • JULIE THRAPP July 2, 2018 at 10:21 am

    My favorite Anne Tyler books–Back When we were grown-ups, Breathing Lessons, A Spool of Blue Thread, The Accidental Tourist, The Amateur Marriage. She has a new one coming out this month.
    Wait Till Next Year By Doris Kearns Goodwin
    Crossing to Safety By Wallace Stegner.
    When Character was King By Peggy Noonan.

  • Morgan July 2, 2018 at 10:26 am

    Another great book to read is “The Invisible Girls” by Sarah Thebarge. It’s a memoir by a girl who was diagnosed with breast cancer in her 20s, but she moved across the country to start a new life. It’s about recognizing people around us that feel invisible.

  • Amy July 2, 2018 at 10:27 am

    Shay, have you read Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers? It’s the best book I’ve read in I cannot tell you how long…. it’s engaging from page one. It’s a fictionalized story set during the California Gold Rush… but the core is about the story of Hosea in the Bible. If you haven’t read it, try it… I loved it… You will cry, be angry, be encouraged, be hopeful… it’s a beautifully written book.

    • Mix and Match Mama July 2, 2018 at 11:48 am

      I have read Redeeming Love!! That one is fantastic!!

  • Amanda @ That Inspired Chick July 2, 2018 at 10:38 am

    I loved The Perfect Couple because of the whole mystery aspect but it did read more like a Mary Kay Andrews book! I read The Island by Elin this month too though and LOVED IT. I also read Then She Was Gone by Lisa Jewell and it was so good!! My book review will (hopefully) be up this week. Can’t wait to hear about your trip! Welcome back!
    That Inspired Chick

  • Susan July 2, 2018 at 10:41 am

    The Perfect Mother by Aimee Molloy was a great book!

  • Debbie Lang July 2, 2018 at 10:43 am

    If you haven’t read Great Alone by Kristin Higgins. Run and get it ….. Oh my such a page turner.

  • Shay July 2, 2018 at 10:46 am

    I always look forward to your book reviews and always add them to my “to read” list!! Thanks for sharing! Sounds like a GREAT month of reading!

  • Kelly July 2, 2018 at 10:49 am

    Before We Were Yours — I couldn’t put it down, highly recommend it!! Welcome back! You were missed!

    • Mix and Match Mama July 2, 2018 at 11:48 am

      Yes!!! i read that one too!! Loved it!

  • Sarah July 2, 2018 at 10:49 am

    The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah was amazing – the best book I’ve read in a long time!!

  • Debbie Lang July 2, 2018 at 10:50 am

    The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah. So good …. definite page turner.

  • Susie July 2, 2018 at 10:55 am

    Have you read Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid?

  • Megan July 2, 2018 at 11:06 am

    Two great books that I’ve read recently and would recommend are When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi and After I Do by Taylor Jenkins Reid.

  • Page July 2, 2018 at 11:18 am

    Hi Shay, welcome home! Scotland is one of my bucket list trips, so I can’t wait to hear all about your journey. One book that I’ve been recommending to everyone lately is Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate. It’s definitely not an easy read, but it kept me captivated. Thanks for your reviews, I look forward to them each month!

  • Angela Ellingson July 2, 2018 at 11:21 am

    Read this morning, but wanted to swing back and say so happy you’re back! Missed you! Looking forward to vacation pictures. 🙂

  • Amanda July 2, 2018 at 11:26 am

    I just finished How to Walk Away last night and it’s my favorite for 2018. I can’t imagine another novel outshining this book. Also Love and Other Words would be in my top five. When Life Gives You Lululemons is another fantastic beach read.

  • Allison Levy July 2, 2018 at 11:32 am

    “The Namesake” by Jhumpa Lahiri is an amazing family saga.

  • Linda July 2, 2018 at 11:48 am

    Just reading your reviews of your June books made me happy. Thanks.

  • Erica Werner July 2, 2018 at 11:52 am

    When Life Gives You Lululemons
    By Lauren Weisberger

  • Amy July 2, 2018 at 11:55 am

    Shay, have you read Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers? It’s a fictionalized account of the Bible story of Hosea but set in the 1840’s gold rush. It is beautifully written and will draw you in from the first pages. I loved it and have recommended it to several friends. My book club loved it. It will make you cry, it will make you angry, it will encourage you, it

  • Ali July 2, 2018 at 11:55 am

    I always look forward to your book reviews! I recommend On the Island by Tracey Garvis Graves for your July list! I was surprised by how much I loved it, and it’s the perfect Summer book! 🙂

  • Chelsey July 2, 2018 at 12:02 pm

    Yay, so glad you’re back Shay! I’m currently listening to The Sound of Gravel on Audible and it’s SO good, it stays with me long after I stop listening for the day! Just finished Marriage Vacation by Pauline Turner Brooks (it was released in conjunction with the show Younger but you don’t have to watch the show to read the book), it’s a beach read with a little more substance! Next on my list this month are Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows and The Dirty Book Club!

  • Beth July 2, 2018 at 12:04 pm

    I’ve just added several of these to my hold list at the library. Thanks so much. I’m finishing “The Great Alone” by Kristen Hannah and can hardly put it down. It’s wonderful to find a book like this that you can become immersed with, that draws you in and keeps you in. I highly recommend it. One other book I just finished is “Eleanor Oliphant Is Perfectly Fine.” What a jewel! Unique, interesting, funny at times, thought provoking.

  • Brandy July 2, 2018 at 12:09 pm

    Have you read 11/22/63 by Stephen King? It is older but it is my all-time favorite- I’ve read it 3x! Totally not his normal type of novel. It’s historical fiction mixed with a bit of romance and mystery. It’s AMAZING. Other books I’ve loved: On the Island by Tracey Graves, Goldfinch, The Paris Wife, The Aviator’s Wife, and the Outlander series.

  • Alexis July 2, 2018 at 12:11 pm

    Okay, open up your Amazon cart!! You and I read all the same books so here’s some you’ll love! Also, I read My Oxford Year this month and agree with you…it’s one of my top books of the year, no doubt!

    How to Walk Away by Katherine Center is the only book I’ve read this year that I loved equal to (or more than) My Oxford Year. It’s one of the absolute best books I’ve read. Chick lit but with a lot of depth. I can’t say enough good things. Order it ASAP!!

    All We Ever Wanted by Emily Giffin is incredible. One of her best books by far. Super relevant. She never disappoints and this one was excellent.

    Slightly South of Simple and The Secret to Southern Charm by Kristy Woodson Harvey are two of the best summer/southern reads out there!! And she’s endorsed by Elin Hilderbrand so you know they’re good!! You’d love these.

    So…which ones are you ordering?! 😂 I hope you love all of them!!

  • Carly July 2, 2018 at 12:30 pm

    Welcome Back Shay! We missed you too. Loved reading your review today. I read Mary Kay Andrews new book over the weekend and felt the same way about your review for Elin. Normally total chick-lit heavy but this had so many mysteries added into it! Must be a trend! SO EXCITED FOR THE SCOTLAND REVIEW!

  • Deb July 2, 2018 at 12:35 pm

    “The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto” by Mitch Albom, is absolutely the sweetest love story, “ with a Forest Gump-like journey through the music world.” It will resonate with you in many ways Shay. It’s a beautiful story.

  • Jamie July 2, 2018 at 1:13 pm

    You have to check out the author Charles Martin! My personal favorites are “When Crickets Cry” and “Water from my Heart” but they’re all SO GOOD!

  • Chelsea July 2, 2018 at 1:41 pm

    I look forward to the end of every month just so I can read your book reviews! I just finished Educated, a memoir by Tara Westover. I’ve seen a few others suggest that one to you this month, and I could not agree with them more! It was riveting… I could not put it down! I also love Jodi Picoult, and my favorite by her is Leaving Time, which is actually a few years old (2014). It involves a psychic, and I know that some people have a hard time reading about that… I am usually one of those people, but once I started this I could not stop. It is the best book I have ever read. You will never guess what happens — it is completely shocking, yet makes so much sense once you find out! Absolutely wonderful.

  • Olga July 2, 2018 at 1:53 pm

    Welcome back. Always love your book reviews and have already updated my audible wish list (I mainly listen during my commute to work). I’m actually listening to Island Girls right now! I’ve added The oxford year and heat wave to my list!!
    Before Island Girls I was listening to Something in the Water by Catherine Steadman. This was Reese’s pick for June in her book club and would recommend it.
    Also, last week I discovered that Amazon has something called Amazon First Reads where you get early access to editor’s first picks and if you’re a prime member you get 1 book free per month from those picks (forgive me if this is old news but i’m very excited!). Right now I’m reading one called The Thinnest Air and it’s pretty good so far 😀

  • Kelly Bonner July 2, 2018 at 1:53 pm

    I Just finished Same Beach Next Year by Dorothea Benton Franke & really loved it! It was my first time to read anything of hers & I’ll definitely read more of her books. I finished it yesterday & have now started The One & Only by Emily Griffin.

  • Julie July 2, 2018 at 1:59 pm

    So glad you are back!! I can barely have my morning coffee without you! lol! Can’t wait to hear all about the trip and Happy Birthday precious Samuel!

  • Sarah July 2, 2018 at 2:30 pm

    I love your book reviews so much! I always end up with new books to pick up at the library after these fun blog posts! I just finished “The Perfect Couple” and enjoyed it!

    One book I am looking forward to reading (and hopefully reading your review of it too!) is Bill O’Reilly’s new book out in Sept, “Killing the SS”. Your book reviews got me hooked on that series!

  • Terri Dunham July 2, 2018 at 2:36 pm

    I am telling EVERYONE I know to read “The Sound of Gravel”. That was the best book and like you said, it will stay with me forever! Shay, I really, really think you would love “Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine” by Gail Honeyman. You will fall in love with the main character! Promise me you’ll read it !!😜

  • Angie Wilbur July 2, 2018 at 2:38 pm

    The book Between the Lines by Jodi Picoult is amazing. I never read anything like it. You owe it to yourself to read it. I also liked House Rules by her as well. You and I seem to share similar tastes in books and these won’t disappoint. Thank you for your monthly reviews! I’ve read several you recommended and have never been disappointed. 🙂

  • Robin Ince July 2, 2018 at 3:02 pm

    In June 2 of the 5 books I read are going to make my top 3 for 2018. How to Walk Away by Katherine Center (read in one day) and Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine (a Reese Witherspoon book club pick). Both were excellent
    And the latter has the added bonus of being set in Scotland!

    I also think you would love Kate Morton since you’re an Anglophile! All of her books are good except for The Distant Hours. The Secret Keeper is my favorite!

    • Susanne July 2, 2018 at 10:46 pm

      Ooh I have loved all of Kate Morton’s books and The Secret Keeper is definitely my favorite! I gasped out loud at the end!

  • Caitlin July 2, 2018 at 3:10 pm

    Young Jane Young!

  • Grace July 2, 2018 at 3:31 pm

    Emily Griffin’s new book All We Ever Wanted is out. I haven’t read it yet. (I need to finish the current book I’m on. I refuse to start a book and leave one unfinished; historically I never end up going back.) I have read all of Griffin’s other books and she never disappoints!

  • Valerie July 2, 2018 at 3:36 pm

    You should read Eunice: The Kennedy Who Changed the World by Eileen McNamara. It’s historical but very entertaining and not boring in the least. Even if you don’t have time to read it, you should look up how much of an impact she made for the area surrounding mental health and disabilities. She truly changed how they were seen in the world and opened up her heart and home to make sure they were included in everything “normal” kids got to do. She was truly an amazing lady!

  • Jeanine July 2, 2018 at 4:06 pm

    Thanks so much for your book reviews, love them! I’m planning to read The Oxford Year, and it reminded me of one of my favorite books of all time, a memoir by Carolyn Weber called “Surprised by Oxford”. I think you would really like it, especially if you like reading C.S. Lewis. Also, have you read Melanie Shankle’s books? “Church of the Small Things” is also one of my favorites!

  • Lauren July 2, 2018 at 4:24 pm

    Historical Fiction –
    The Nightingale by Kristen Hannah
    The Women in the Castle by Jessica Shattuck
    Both are fantastic! You will keep thinking about these long after you finish the last page.

    And one more – Before the Fall by Noah Hawley
    This one sounds like one you just finished, about a plane crash. This one was great, I could not put it down. Such a great ending! Read it, you will not be disappointed.

  • Shannon July 2, 2018 at 4:36 pm

    The Mark of the Lion series and Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers are some of my all time favorites!

  • Val July 2, 2018 at 4:59 pm

    Great suggestions – I’m adding a few to my must-read list. If you’re looking for something different, I highly recommend “The Eight” by Katherine Neville. Its the first book my book club read and we all loved it. It’s actually one of my favorite books of all time! I also recommend Mary Alice Monroe as some others suggested – she’s one of my favorite authors for summer beach/pool reads!

  • Jen McNeely July 2, 2018 at 5:03 pm

    Jen Hatmaker did a podcast episode with Ruth Wariner and it’s great if you loved her book!

  • Jeanie July 2, 2018 at 5:18 pm

    Happy birthday to sweet Samuel! The books sound great, Shay. I have a list of readables. So many books, so little time.

  • Shanna Corn July 2, 2018 at 5:37 pm

    Love your reviews! I love Mary Alice Monroe, especially the Beach House series!

  • Lauren July 2, 2018 at 5:49 pm

    The Nightingale by Kristen Hannah
    The Women In the Castle by Jessica Shattack
    Both of these are great reads. Historical type fiction. You will think about these long after you read the last page. So good!!
    Before the Fall by Noah Hawley
    Fabulous!!! About a plane crash – thrilling, suspenseful…once you have read it you will tell others!

  • Sharon July 2, 2018 at 5:49 pm

    A GREAT GREAT GREAT memoir I recently read (and see others have also recommended) is Educated – by Tara Westover. You won’t want to put it down. Reminded me a lot of The Glass Castle.

  • Sharon July 2, 2018 at 5:50 pm

    PS: which of your June books should I start FIRST?

    • Mix and Match Mama July 3, 2018 at 5:26 am

      My Oxford Year!

  • Joslyn Lazarevski July 2, 2018 at 6:26 pm

    We Were the Lucky Ones by Georgia Hunter & The Alice Network by Kate Quinn!

  • Debbie July 2, 2018 at 6:33 pm

    The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah was deep, engrossing, and unforgettable. I also read The Book of Essie by Meghan Maclean Weir which was different but captivating. Then She Was Gone by Lisa Jewell was a mystery, thriller that I could not put down! Love your book reviews. I read four books this week while on a beach vacation. I love reading and am always looking for new reads!

  • Christine Smith July 2, 2018 at 6:46 pm

    I can’t wait to read My Oxford Year! I’ve heard rave reviews from it and now your endorsement makes me want to order it now! Have you read Love and Other Words by Christina Lauren? It’s a great love story told from the past and present. I read it in two sittings; you won’t be able to put it down!

  • Vicki July 2, 2018 at 7:33 pm

    I’m reading You Me Everything by Catherine Isaac. It is set in France so I automatically thought of you! It is a nice easy read.

  • Jaime July 2, 2018 at 8:43 pm

    Lots of people have mentioned this, but absolutely “The Great Alone”. All the feels. My best friend has a pretty picky book club and I suggested this one and they read it and agreed it was the best they have read yet! It’s one I definitely still think about and have re-read multiple parts over and over. I’ve read a handful of chick lit and psychological thrillers, as well (Crazy Rich Asians and The Last Mrs Parrish are a couple of them)… and just finished Emily Giffin’s newest one- good and quick read but not over the top amazing. Can’t wait for Colleen Hoover’s new book in a couple weeks! Your book posts introduced me to her 🙂

  • Olya @ The Siberian American July 2, 2018 at 8:56 pm

    I just read Love and Other Words by Christina Lauren, and it was SO good. I think you would love it!

  • Emily July 2, 2018 at 9:10 pm

    I always love your suggestions!! I’ve just finished Eleanor Oliphant is completely fine, such a quirky book about a quirky girl and the story behind her… and The Girls in the Garden, about a totally dysfunctional community in London and a little “who-dun-it” mystery behind them! Both So good!!!

  • Elizabeth Cave July 2, 2018 at 9:15 pm

    Bought My Oxford Year today and read it tonight. Oh my stars! I need to re-read it already. Thanks for the great suggestion!

  • Amanda July 2, 2018 at 9:17 pm

    I also didn’t love The Perfect Couple and I’m such a huge fan of Elin Hilderbrand books. It was ok but felt flat to me, Silver Girl will always be my favourite of hers. Currently re-reading my absolute favourite beach and chick lit read, Summer Sisters by Judy Blume. Even though it’s 20 years old it’s still my favourite book about female friendships, growing up and my favourite beach read. I really wish they would make a movie out of it.

  • Ralinn July 2, 2018 at 9:28 pm

    I will definitely be reading these books. I can’t wait to get started. I’m glad y’all had a fantastic vacation. It’s always so nice to get away.

  • Kathryn Looney July 2, 2018 at 9:35 pm

    Hi Shay!
    I am excited to read the Sound of Gravel. I read the Polygamist’s Daughter written by Anna LeBaron who is local to DFW and is the cousin of the other author. She also came to our book club which was so exciting. The story is so fascinating. Jen Hatmaker recently interviewed both authors for her podcast and it is really interesting how they are connected and met.
    I recently read Francine River’s newest The Masterpiece and really liked it.

  • cassie [hi sugarplum] July 2, 2018 at 10:16 pm

    I just added a whole stack of books to my Amazon cart!!! I’ve been on a WW2 kick lately…like 5 in a row! I’m ready for a light beach break. And I adored every book I read on the topic, but too heavy to recommend for your summer. But I want to know HOW you take care of 4 kids, 2 dogs, a husband, 2 blogs, book travel, binge TV shows…AND read six books?!?!?!?! Like, really. Tell me.

  • Laci July 2, 2018 at 11:13 pm

    Welcome back! We missed you so much! I’m adding a ew of these to my cart-thanks for all the wonderful book reviews.

  • GiGi Turner July 3, 2018 at 2:28 am

    Welcome back! I know I am late posting, but wanted to wait until I had plenty of time to read and savor your post about all the good books you’ve read. I picked up Dreams Of Falling by Karen White on a whim, and loved it. It’s set in the low country of South Carolina and tells the story of three life-long friends who share a secret that plays into the lives of three generations and is told in a past and present format. It has intrigue, romance, southern charm, friendship and more. I thoroughly enjoyed it! It is high on my favorite list for the year.

  • Els van den Hoek July 3, 2018 at 4:31 am

    You should try Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng.

    Adoption and motherhood plays a big roll in this book and I think you will love it.

  • Lindsay @ Lindsay's Sweet World July 3, 2018 at 7:32 am

    I’ve been tearing through all the books this summer so I needed some new recommendations!! Don’t forget, Emily Giffin’s new book just released this month, too! Woo hoo!! I’m starting it next! And if you haven’t read the third installment of the Me Before You books, read that one, too! I’m almost done with it and I’m loving it! It’s called “Still Me.”

  • Tina July 3, 2018 at 8:09 am

    I read The Perfect Couple in June as well. I knew ahead of time that it was a mystery and I rather enjoyed the departure from her typical formula. I liked it although Summerland will always be my favorite Hilderbrand book! (I couldn’t help but notice that the family home/compound in this latest book is called summerland too!)

    I just finished reading “The Book of Essie”…so good!!! Seriously you will love it and likely finish it in a day…it just sucks you in,

    Here is my June book review:

  • Sydney July 3, 2018 at 9:38 am


    The Choice by Dr Edith Eva Eger
    She’s a living survivor of the Holocaust. I only love books that I can’t put down lol. And this was one. Makes me look at life in a whole new way!

  • Gentry Adams July 3, 2018 at 10:22 am

    I just read “The Marriage Lie” and “how to Walk Away” – both were AMAZING!!!!!

  • DetroitDuchess July 3, 2018 at 11:38 am

    The Sound of Gravel is the next book on my reading list so I’m glad to see you give it a positive review!

  • Joanna July 3, 2018 at 3:10 pm

    Hi Shay,
    I’m an avid reader too and judging from some of your most favourite books, I’m going to predict you will love, love, love a book called A Gentleman in Moscow. Just a beautifuly written book. In my opinion as a fellow “bookie” it should be high up the list on your next book to read. Enjoy July!!

  • Breanna Ruelas July 3, 2018 at 4:04 pm

    When Life Gives You Lululemons is a must read!! I absolutely adored this book!

  • Amy D. July 3, 2018 at 6:29 pm

    The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah! I read it last month and it’s absolutely amazing!

  • Stephanie July 3, 2018 at 7:35 pm

    Last month on your book review comments Sally Hepworth suggested “The Flight Attendant ” by Chris Bohjalian. I read it and it was awesome!! Suspenseful with many twists and turns! Also I recommend ( along with many others,) The Great Alone ! Happy Reading:-)

  • Amy July 3, 2018 at 7:53 pm

    Thank you for these monthly lists. Love them! Have you read Educated by Tara Westover? It’s a riveting memoir – I think you will enjoy it!

  • Gardner Story July 3, 2018 at 8:51 pm

    You must read “Surprised by Oxford” by Carolyn Weber. It’s a memoir about a woman studying in Oxford and is one of the best books I have ever read. You will not regret reading it! It’s a BIG book but I read it in 3 days.

  • Molly July 4, 2018 at 6:22 am

    Shay – I love your book reviews! I’ve read many of the same books and have enjoyed them all. Just yesterday, I finished reading The Secret Life of Bees (don’t know why I haven’t read that until now). If you haven’t read it yet, you absolutely should. It was fantastic!!

  • Carrie July 4, 2018 at 11:14 am

    Not sure if these have been on your lists but I just finished The Secrets she Carried and Good Daughter. Good Daughter had a lot of language in it and it was a very dark novel but good. I listened to the audio book because I am training for a half marathon and for some reason music just isn’t cutting it for me lately. At points in this book I did gasp and stop, which prompted a lady one time to ask if I was ok! But honestly the language got to be a little annoying to me, just not necessary in my opinion. Maybe it was more in my face because of the audio book?

  • Amanda July 4, 2018 at 12:14 pm

    I love your book reviews! I read them with my Goodreads account open so that I can update my “Want to Read” list! 🙂

  • Lauren July 4, 2018 at 4:01 pm

    I just finished the book “Love Anthony” and it was amazing! I highly recommend it as one of your next reads 🙂

  • Amy July 5, 2018 at 9:46 am

    love these! added so many to my list. I recently read – How to walk away (Katherine Center) in one afternoon it was so good! Then she was gone (Lisa Jewell) was also so good! and if you are looking for a new show to binge. I just got all caught up with Younger (on TV Land) but all episodes on Hulu! It is so good! reminds me of some of these books 🙂

  • Kathy July 5, 2018 at 11:54 am

    The Queen of Hearts by Kimmery Martin is amazing!!! This is her first novel – she is also an ER doctor and carpool mom that lives in Charlotte, NC. Evidently she has a contract for two more books. I can’t wait!!

  • Andrea July 5, 2018 at 6:18 pm

    Next Year in Havana (Reese Witherspoon’s Book Club July Pick) is wonderful! If you like a historical fiction/mystery/love story, it’s a beautiful book!

  • Krista MacKay July 6, 2018 at 12:21 am

    I love a lot of the authors and books you read, but here are some books I’ve read this summer that you might not have read – Cancel the Wedding, High Tide Club, Little Bookshop on the Siene, One True Loves, If You Only Knew. I always look forward to your book review each month to see what books I might want to buy next from Amazon.

  • Julie July 6, 2018 at 12:19 pm

    Have you ever read “Slightly South of Simple?”/ Kristy Woodson Harvey? It is such a light, fun, summer read and there is a sequel out now too. I’m really enjoying it. And it takes place in the South-I think you’d love! Kind of like the Southern version of Hilderbrand!

    • Mix and Match Mama July 6, 2018 at 3:52 pm

      I have it now!!!

  • leah July 6, 2018 at 8:43 pm

    i’ve been making my way down your reading lists this summer! thank you!!
    This is a little different direction but my favorite book i’ve read in a long time (i’m telling everyone to read it) was Francine Rivers, Lineage of Grace – made me fall in love with the Bible even more and it outlines 5 different women of the lineage of Jesus. It’s fiction but she gives context and expands on these women’s stories in such a powerful way. SO GOOD. Redeeming Love by her is also a great- its more popular i think but this one was equally as good if not better in my opinion!!

    • Erin July 7, 2018 at 11:28 pm

      YES!!! I literally came on here to suggest Lineage of Grace too!! I read almost all of Francine Rivers years ago and she’s an all-time fave but I just finally read this one – SO good!!! Truly makes the stories of 5 Old Testament women in the lineage of Jesus come alive. With each story, I’d think she took a lot of creative liberties (bc it’s a fictional adaptation of Biblical accounts) with details of the stories and characters to make them come alive and then I’d go back and read the Biblical account to find that sure enough many of the details were there, Francine Rivers just has such a gift at storytelling in such a way that it really makes it memorable and I feel like I got to know the times and culture of those 5 women. Highly recommend!! Also, while Redeeming Love is what Francine Rivers is known for, have you read The Mark of the Lion trilogy?? That series seems to fly under the radar for many Francine Rivers fans and it may be my all-time favorite books of hers!! The only books I’ve ever re-read.

      Also just discovered Lynn Austin, Christian fiction – great plots and character development and each book is set in a prominent historical time (WWII, Great Depression, etc…and she makes the cultural setting and the historical era come to life in ways that make me feel transported in time and place. Really well-written!

  • Carolyn July 8, 2018 at 12:00 pm

    I read this book in 2 days! Loved it!
    All We Ever Wanted by Emily Giffin

  • Dana July 8, 2018 at 8:16 pm

    Your book reviews are my favorite posts. My current rec is Jewelweed. I was sucked in after chapter one!

  • Marty Rafferty July 9, 2018 at 12:39 am

    Oh my goodness you have a lot of comments/recommendations to read through. I just finished ‘All we ever wanted’ by Emily Giffin and truly enjoyed it. I’ve read all her books and some aren’t as good as others but this one was a keeper. My son lives in LA so I make the trip from Chicago to LA frequently and need to have several new books downloaded for the plane.

  • Amy July 9, 2018 at 3:05 pm

    The Rock, The Road and the Rabbi by Kathie Lee Gifford! I just started it and I’m already telling anyone who will listen to read it! Such neat perspective and insight into things I thought I knew!
    LOVE your book reviews!

  • Maya July 10, 2018 at 2:27 pm

    Hey! First of all- I love your blog! ☺️ First time commenting.
    Just wanted to let you know that you really inspired me to read again!
    I used to read ALL THE TIME but since having a baby and going back to my full time job, I kind of stopped. I ordered “the family next door’ after reading one of your book reviews and absolutely LOVED it!!!! And realized how much I needed reading for my mental health haha……
    SO THANK YOU! my new humble goal is 1 book a month 😊

  • Kimberly Flores July 10, 2018 at 10:23 pm

    Elin Hilderbrand was featured in the Nantucket episode of Huang’s World, the food/travel show, and I thought of you immediately. Eddie Huang interviewed Elin and her kids at her home, and she made lobster salad and fries for everyone. Thought I would share in case you haven’t seen this peek into her home life.

  • Melyssa July 11, 2018 at 1:32 am

    You MUST read The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid. I could not put this down.

  • tiffany July 12, 2018 at 12:40 pm

    PLEEEEEASE do on post on e-books, kindle, renting, sharing, difference, etc…..

    • Mix and Match Mama July 12, 2018 at 12:52 pm

      Love this idea!

  • Pam July 13, 2018 at 8:55 pm

    You have to read “Solace of Water!” Soooooo good!!!!

  • Mary July 14, 2018 at 6:35 am

    The Great Alone overall was excellent. I found it to slow down a bit between 25%-40% but the second half picked right back up again. Such a great book.
    Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine. I’d heard so much about this book (now becoming a movie) and for whatever reason(s) was apprehensive. It is awesome. Eleanor is such a strong character.

  • Stephanie Simpson July 17, 2018 at 11:13 pm

    Oh, goodness. Late to the game, but I just have to say…Castle of Water might be one of my favorite books ever. I couldn’t put it down and had all the feels. A unique and captivating story that is so well written. Finished it last night and have been thinking about it all day! Just fantastic. In between reading my book club books, I always hop back to your book reviews and pick one to sneak in during the month. Always worth it! (FYI – for my book clubs this month, I’m reading The Devil in White City and Sometimes I Lie – both were great.) Thanks for sharing your passion for books with all of us!

  • Lauren July 19, 2018 at 11:36 am

    The Night Circus

    I’m not even done and I want to recommend this to everyone I know. It’s so beautifully told, suspenful (in that way that you are sure how it is going to end up) and completely imaginative.

  • Heather Bauerschlag July 19, 2018 at 4:34 pm

    I’ve never left a comment but today is the day because you MUST READ Eleanor Oliphant Is Perfectly Fine. Loved her character so much I didn’t want the book to end!! It’s been a while since I’ve read a book as good as this one! HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT!!! Happy reading 😍

  • Sara mayo July 19, 2018 at 10:24 pm

    How are you able to read? What do you do with your kids. My kids are always all over me and need my attention nonstop😔

    • Mix and Match Mama July 20, 2018 at 5:14 am

      I read mostly when they’re in bed or otherwise occupied. I think my kids are older now and don’t demand my attention nearly as much as they did.

  • Kalynn Batkoski July 21, 2018 at 4:10 pm

    Do any of you have book suggestions for MEN? My husband travels a lot for work and I’ve been encouraging him to read more on the plane and he has! He mostly reads war and sports books, but I think is getting a little burnt out on those topics.

    • Mix and Match Mama July 23, 2018 at 5:31 am

      Yes!!! The Girl with Seven Names and The Red Notice!!!

  • Anne-Marie July 22, 2018 at 9:55 am

    I highly recommend The Woman In The Window by A.J. Finn. It’s a page turner for sure!

  • Brittany Cuenin July 23, 2018 at 7:25 pm

    Great book recommendations! I just finished “The Perfect Couple” and found it great – except the way the ending wrapped up. I agree with the above comments; you will LOVE the Outlander series. They are long (but in the best way possible when you don’t want a series to end).

    I’m a big fan of the Chrome plugin called “Library Extension.” It’s free, and it shows right up on a book’s Amazon page and let’s you know if the book is available at your local library, how many copies there are, and if there is an ebook version. It’s really up to date, and it makes it very easy to go check it out of the library, if available.

  • Amanda July 27, 2018 at 3:17 pm

    Sisters Like Us by Susan Mallery is good one. Although it is her 4th book in the Mischief Bay series so you may like to start with the first one (The Girls of Mischief Bay).
    I loved My Oxford Year too! I think the author said it’s being developed into a movie?!