August 2018 Book Review

August Book Review

It’s my favorite post of the month!


Woohoo!  We get so excited about books around here!!!

This month, I did something a little different!  I shared with you last month what I would be reading in August, so that today, in the comment section, we can discuss these books in more detail (like a book club).  So, if you haven’t read these books and are planning on it, DO NOT READ THE COMMENTS!  Typically, I don’t post spoilers in the comment section, but today I am.  Now, my reviews are going to be normal (my thoughts without spoiling anything about the plot), but in the comment section, I’ll talk to you about more in-depth spoiler alert stuff.  This was fun, so maybe, I’ll do it again from time to time.

On top of these four books…

…I also read two other books in August, so I’m sharing my reviews on all six below.

Ready, set, here we go…

This right here was my favorite book of the month 🙂 .  I loved When Life Gives You Lululemons!!

Now, I want to point out two things right off the bat: one, this book is RATED R, so buyer bewared.  The second thing is that this is the third book in the Devil Wears Prada series, but in my opinion, you really don’t need to read the other two to love this one.  I think this book can totally function as a stand alone novel.

This is a fictional tale of three friends all going through transitional (or very unfortunate) times in their lives.  One has moved to the ‘burbs from NYC and has become a stay at home mom for the first time (she was an attorney), one is now the “old” gal in her career and getting beat out for clients by a younger woman…so, she’s having to make some career adjustments and overall life acknowledgements and one, well her hubby has filed for divorce and taken away the kid because she got a DWI (or did she?!).  These friends come together in a hysterical way to sort out all of their problems…while sitting amongst the other suburbanite women wearing head to toe Lululemon (and they probably didn’t even work out!).  I flew through this book!  I thought it was funny, charming, lovable and endearing.  I hope she writes another one soon!

The second book I read this month was Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine.  This book was slow going for me until about the halfway mark and then, I couldn’t put it down.  This Eleanor character starts off very Bridget Jones-ish (my favorite character!), but with some other more serious life events thrown into the mix.  A lot of readers told me this one was like A Man Called Ove, but honestly, I liked this one a lot better.  You pull for Eleanor.  She’s endearing and charming without trying to be…she’s the underdog and you just want her to succeed.  I also really liked the Raymond character a lot in this book too.  He was very likable and the perfect accompaniment to Eleanor.  I hear this is going to be a movie, and I bet when we watch it that it will tug at our heartstrings.  It’s not a light chick-lit, it’s just a good read.

Friends, why did you make me read We Own the Sky????  Me oh my oh!  Hahahaha!  Oh my word.  Okay, I had so many people recommend this one to me that obviously no one made me read it, but due to the number of recommendations, I felt like I needed to.  And it’s brilliantly written.  And the characters are so thought out and there is no void in any of them.  BUT IT WAS SO SAD.  Oh.  So sad.  This book is a complete work of fiction, but let me tell you right now, YOU WILL CRY.  This book is about a couple who have a young son dying of brain cancer.  Guys, it ripped my heart out. I was looking for one redeeming thing at the end of this book, but if I’m being honest, when I finished the last page, I was just more sad.  It’s brilliant…and sad.  And I know stories like this happen every single day…so that makes it even more sad.  I don’t know what else to say…I was sobbing through this one.

The fourth book that I suggested we read together was Less…and it was ‘eh, less than I had expected.  This novel isn’t bad…it just was hard for me to get into because the author writes very sing-songy (you know, in that lyrical way that some writers do), and for me, that’s harder to get in to.  Plus, it has really long chapters and I prefer shorter chapters (because I typically don’t sit down and read a lot at one time), so the long chapters just seemed kind of long.  Now, it’s a Pulitzer Prize winning book, so what do I know?  I thought it was cute enough, the premise was fun (he’s traveling the world over in an attempt not to come to terms that his love is in love with someone else), but it didn’t just give me all the happy feels other books do sometimes.  The ending was odd for me too (I had to go back and re-read it a second time) because the narrator changes kind of abruptly, so I got confused on who was saying what.  It’s fine…just coming off of the book above, I needed amazing to pull me out of the darkness 😉 .

I was super, super, super excited to read B.A. Paris’ new book, Bring Me Back.  (You know Paris!  She’s the author of great books like The Breakdown and Behind Closed Doors.)  Girls, I found myself laughing one night in bed because as I was reading this super intense thriller, I was holding my Kindle away from my face…kind of like I was afraid the words were going to jump out and get me.  Hahahaha!  I was lying in bed reading, but my Kindle was stretched way out in front.  What in the world?!  Like her other books, this novel is filled with mystery and suspense.  It’s about a girlfriend that goes missing one night and then fast forward twelve years and her former boyfriend thinks she might be back.  I was sucked in immediately.  By the end of the first page, I was HOOKED!  I texted FOUR friends and told them to read it as I was reading it.  I was OBSESSED with this book to the point that I woke up extra early on a Sunday morning to finish it and you know what?  IT WAS SO STUPID.  There.  I said it.  I don’t think I’ve ever called a book stupid before, but that’s how mad I was at the end.  HUGE DISAPPOINTMENT.  This book was amazing to me until the last two pages and then I thought it was a complete waste of time and absolutely ridiculous.  (If you can’t tell, I’m bitter.  Hahahaha!). What made me so mad was HOW GOOD THIS BOOK WAS UNTIL THE VERY, VERY END.  It’s like the author phoned in the last two pages.  Urg.  I’m going to be upset about this one for a while 😉 .

My last book of the month is Lysa TerKeurst’s Becoming More Than a Good Bible Study Girl.  I started reading this book in July as part of my daily quiet time and just finished it this month.  I’ve read several of her books and completed many of her Bible studies and this one (that she wrote years ago) was just as good as the others.  If you’re looking for a book about your Christian faith and how to become “more than a good Bible study girl”, but really live a life that God has called you to live (which will be different for everyone), then you should read this one.  It’s encouraging, inspiring yet very direct at the same time.  I want to live out my faith in the unique way God has called and created me, and this book definitely spoke to that.

Whew!  That wraps up my August Book Review!  Can you believe our summer reading is over?  It’s time for all of the cozy fall reads now…which leads me to this…

Fall Reading List

…woohoo!  I came up with our FALL READING LIST!  These are books I’ve read in the past that I think would make excellent reads between now and Christmas.  In November, I’ll share with you a Christmas Reading List too, but for now, get your Pumpkin Spice Latte, light a cider scented candle and enjoy one of these books.  They’re all easy to read, happy and light chick-lit books with a little “fall” thrown into many of them.  I hope you read them all!

Okay, friends, what should I be reading in September?  Comment below and tell me what should be next!!

DON’T FORGET THOUGH, TODAY, THERE WILL BE SPOILERS IN THE COMMENT SECTION ABOUT OUR FIRST FOUR BOOKS!!  If you read any of the first four, let me know your thoughts in the comment section!

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.
Happy book day!!  I hope you all have that perfect read to cozy up with at some point today! xo
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  • Erika Slaughter August 27, 2018 at 4:42 am

    Eeeekkkk!!!! Just like every month,now I wanna be super unproductive and do nothing but read.

  • Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog August 27, 2018 at 4:43 am

    I think I’m going to give When Life Gives you Lululemons a try! I love that there’s another book to the Devil Wears Prada series! 🙂

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

  • Beth Rowlett August 27, 2018 at 4:59 am

    I loved “Eleanor Oliphant”! I completely agree that the first half was too slow. I can’t even pinpoint when it sucked me in, but I am still thinking about the second half of the book. That’s the mark of a great book in my opinion—when you are still thinking of it week(s) later! I could visually picture Eleanor as she went through her “dark” time near the middle of the book and my heart just went out to her. Thanks for your monthly reading lists! I’ve gotten several good recommendations from it. I’m glad you gave us titles beforehand this month, though I only managed to read the one with back to school, lol. One of my recent favs is “How to Walk Away” by Katherine Center. Can’t wait to see what you read in September!

    • kim k August 27, 2018 at 10:24 am

      Love Katherine Center! Reading Lost Husband by her right now.

      • Robin August 30, 2018 at 6:57 am

        Yes!! Katherine Center is one of my faves. How to Walk Away was excellent! The Road Back to You by Cron and Stabile is so good if you’re wanting to get into the enneagram which seems to be everywhere these days. It’s really insightful and helpful.

  • Sheaffer Sims August 27, 2018 at 5:09 am

    So, you’ll be happy to know that this month I’m going to read Crazy Rich Asians. Just Kidding. I’m going to see it.

    • Mix and Match Mama August 27, 2018 at 5:19 am


  • Brooke August 27, 2018 at 5:25 am

    Oh my gosh I love your book reviews!!

    So I read “Bring Me Back” and I have to say, I did not like the book at all. That says a lot for it because I’m easily amused!! I disliked the main character so much and the ending (as you said) was a joke. I have a new book coming that Erika talked about on her blog but I definitely will be adding some more to my list after reading this! 🙂

    • Mix and Match Mama August 27, 2018 at 5:44 am

      I was so mad!!! Hahahaha! And I didn’t like him either. Give up everything for someone who’s leaving little dolls around like a creepy person? No thanks. Ha!

      • Taylor August 27, 2018 at 5:57 am

        I had to look back at my Goodreads account and remember how I rated it because I remember feeling the same way! I gave it 3 out of 5 stars because of the ending. I feel like the author had big expectations to meet because Behind Closed Doors was sooo good. Overall disappointed:/

      • Kathy August 27, 2018 at 10:37 am

        I put Paris on my “do not read” list of authors after reading Behind Closed Doors. Although I found it somewhat interesting enough to read it, I felt it was unrealistic and simply jumping on the thriller bandwagon. Your review reinforced that choosing not to read any more of her books was the right choice for me. Thanks. I love your book reviews.

        • Mix and Match Mama August 27, 2018 at 11:42 am

          It was AMAZING until the very end.

      • Grace August 27, 2018 at 12:30 pm

        I thought the premise was kinda cool and I sort of guessed it throughout the book or towards the end, but was very disappointed that she died!! I felt like if she lived and they confronted each other with the truth it would have been a much better ending – even if they didn’t end up being together.

  • Lauren Stauffer August 27, 2018 at 5:28 am

    I read Bring Me Back as well and felt the same! It was so good up until the end-the ending was horrible and so disappointing compared to her other books! I just read Then She Was Gone and it was so good if you need a recommendation 🙂

  • Danielle Piede August 27, 2018 at 5:31 am

    The Curious Case of the Dog in the Night time is amazing I just finished it! And I’m an urban teacher and The Hate U Give was even more amazing! Check them both out! From your favorite travel agent client haha

  • Eileen August 27, 2018 at 5:38 am

    I read 3/4 of the list . . . I loved When Life Gives You Lululemons. I had read a Devil Wears Prada, but didn’t read the 2nd book in the trilogy and I totally agree – When Life Gives You Lululemons can totally be a stand alone book.

    I loved Elinor Oliphant. I was just rooting for her the whole time and I really liked the Raymond character. I didn’t know there was a movie coming out – can’t wait to see it.

    We Own The Sky killed me – I cried through it, but couldn’t put it down. I felt like both of the main characters were so thought out and relatable. It was a beautiful story and so well written.

    It was fun to read along this month. I loved “How To Walk Away” – definitely one to check out!

  • Julie August 27, 2018 at 5:38 am

    Love your book reviews! I just finished Colleen Hoover’s new one “All Your Perfects,” and I think you’d enjoy it. It’s about a couple dealing with infertility. A little R-rated, but very good!

    • Emily August 27, 2018 at 6:06 am

      Yes I recommended this one last month! I just read next year in Havana and really enjoyed it.

    • Eileen McCullough August 27, 2018 at 7:25 am

      I loved All Your Perfects! Soooo good

  • Monica August 27, 2018 at 5:45 am

    I agree with beth. i would put Eleanor first over lululemons. Lululemons is a fun read, but Eleanor is one you keep thinking about well after you put it down. Thanks!

  • Elspeth Mizner August 27, 2018 at 5:47 am

    Great suggestion! Going to add a few to my reading list!

  • Erica August 27, 2018 at 5:48 am

    The Husband Hour by Jamie Brenner – characters are well developed. Chapters are short which I love as I can easily read a chapter when I have a quick moment in my day. The story line was about PTSD and CTE both topics that are current but ones I’ve never read about. I think you will like this one!

    • Courtney August 27, 2018 at 6:31 am

      Yes! I just finished this one as well and it was good.

  • Emma Scalero August 27, 2018 at 5:51 am

    Being from the Greenwich area, I can say, When Life Gives you Lululemons is an accurate description of the ‘burbs!! LOVED the Crazy Rich Asians triology, except the first one is a little slow, second one is great, and I’m currently reading the third!

  • Lis August 27, 2018 at 5:52 am

    Oh my goodness, I read “We Own The Sky” this month too and was sobbing the whole time. So well written but just so so sad. And made even sadder by the fact that even though it wasn’t a true story, that story plays out so much for so many families. I can’t even think about the book without tearing up again! Definitely makes you hug your littles a bit tighter.

  • Narci August 27, 2018 at 5:56 am

    My favorite post of the month!! Woohoo! You always have the very best reviews and recommendations! Adding these to my Amazon cart right now. Xo

  • Taylor August 27, 2018 at 6:01 am

    LuLulemons was probably my favorite book I read this summer. I loved the characters and I laughed out loud at multiple parts of the book. I had an overall good feeling after I read it and I like when books make me feel that way.
    Right now I am reading Something In The Water by Catherine Steadman (a Reese Witherspoon book club pick) & so far so good!! Definitely a good thriller if you are looking for one for the upcoming fall months. I have a ton of thrillers on my TBR list and my goal is to read most of them in October.

    • Sara August 28, 2018 at 9:43 am

      Just finished Something in the Water & really liked it. I think you would enjoy it Shay!

  • Cindy August 27, 2018 at 6:05 am

    Bring Me Back, YES!! I felt exactly the same way. I was So Mad!! And I loved her other to books so much!!

    • Mix and Match Mama August 27, 2018 at 6:17 am

      Me too!!!

  • sydnee August 27, 2018 at 6:07 am

    Still haven’t read When Life Gives You Lululemons but I hear such good things about it. I’m glad you liked it as well!

    Design by Sydnee 💗

  • Gail August 27, 2018 at 6:08 am

    Thank you for posting when the book is rated R. so helpful for people who can be tripped uo by reading these books.

  • Susie Harrold August 27, 2018 at 6:10 am

    PLEASE. READ. CAGE OF STARS. just read the first 50 pages. Jacquelyn Mitchard is a literary genius and her books lift you into the pages – she is so talented. This is, by far, the best. If you aren’t hooked by p. 50 then let it go, but from one avid reader to another, you’ve got to at least try it!! : )

    • Stacy August 29, 2018 at 4:31 pm

      Fellow reader, you had me at literary genius. I downloaded Cage of Stars immediately and devoured it in two days! I loved it, loved it. Hope Shay listens to you but wanted to let you know I listened, too. Great read indeed. So, thank you!

  • Alexis deZayas August 27, 2018 at 6:14 am

    I’m in the middle of Unstuffed right now and can’t put it down! I downloaded it a while back when you recommended it 🙂

  • Kimberly August 27, 2018 at 6:20 am

    You should add The Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager!

    • Beth August 27, 2018 at 12:59 pm

      Yessss just finished this one and it was so so good!

      • Wendy Foote August 29, 2018 at 7:49 pm

        I just finished Educated by Tara Westover. It’s an intense read but so worth it because it’s a true story. I also hear great things @ An American Marriage by Tayori Jones. Also, about to dive into A Perfect Mother.

  • Amy Broughton August 27, 2018 at 6:25 am

    Have you read Swear on this life by Renee Carlino? I can’t figure out how it got on my kindle list but it was SUCH a sweet love story. Just really really good. Highly recommend. Rated R, I would say.
    I’ve read a lot of your romantic favorites and I think this would totally be a winner for you.

    • Kim C August 29, 2018 at 6:29 am

      Swear on This Life has been my favorite book this year! I read it in a single sitting! The story just pulls you in.

  • Beth Miller August 27, 2018 at 6:26 am

    Definitely felt the same with Bring Me Back!!! Ugh. I’ve already read ALL your fall recommendations! Ha! I just finished “As Bright as Heaven” by Susan Meissner, same author as Secrets of a Charmed Life. Put it on your list! It was amazing historical fiction that I couldn’t put down. She tells such amazing stories. I’m getting ready to start the audio of The Banker’s Wife. It’s been highly recommended!

  • Courtne August 27, 2018 at 6:29 am

    I just read How to Walk Away by Katherine Center and it was so good! Also finished crazy rich Asians and something in the water. Both were great!

  • Cassi August 27, 2018 at 6:32 am

    The Art of Racing in the Rain is a good book!

    • Michelle August 27, 2018 at 9:40 pm

      One of the best books I read.

  • Shannon August 27, 2018 at 6:48 am

    A House In the Sky by Amanda Lindhout was my favorite book I’ve read in awhile! Normally stick to more chick lit books, but this memoir is fantastic!

    • hannah August 27, 2018 at 11:29 am

      yes this book is amazing! I loved it. I think they are making a movie of her story as well

  • Erin Port August 27, 2018 at 6:55 am

    I am reading Crazy Rich Asians right now and the Royal We is still one of my favorites 🙂 I am almost done with Uninvited, so good!

  • Jen August 27, 2018 at 6:56 am

    How to Walk Away by Katherine Center needs to be on your list for September! Such a great book!!

  • Kristine G. August 27, 2018 at 6:58 am

    I read We Own the Sky because it was the only one of your picks available at the library. 😉 I don’t mind a sad book every once in awhile. I actually didn’t think this one was as sad as others I’ve read. Rare Bird is based on a true story and is a sad but excellent read if you’re up for it. For a lighter read, I highly recommend All Your Perfects by Colleen Hoover. The French Girl was a good too!

  • Kristin August 27, 2018 at 6:58 am

    Ah yay! These are my favorite posts 🙂 I just got done reading Next Year in Havana (I’m loosely following Reese Witherspoon’s book club) and it was really good! I think you would really like it based on your past reviews. Also loved Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng.

    I just started Class Mom based on one of your past reviews and I’m loving it as it coincided with the school year starting for my kiddos. Hilarious!

  • Shannon August 27, 2018 at 7:00 am

    I’m almost done with “Where the Crawdads Sing” and it’s so good.

    Also this month I loved “I’ll Be Your Blue Sky”.

  • Amy D. August 27, 2018 at 7:27 am

    I’m so glad you’re going to read Class Mom. I loved that book! I hope you enjoy it, too!

  • Sherry August 27, 2018 at 7:35 am

    I agree about Little Fires Everywhere. All books by Celeste Ng sooooo good! Was looking forward to reading latest B. A. Paris book but think I will pass after reviews! Love your reviews!

  • Jen August 27, 2018 at 7:38 am

    It is YA, which isn’t for everyone, but after watching “To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before” on Netflix a week ago, I couldn’t help but order the trilogy after I found out it was based on the first book! I read that entire trilogy in 4 days! I could NOT put them down! And the movie was absolutely adorable. And if you haven’t already read “The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society,” I’d definitely add that to your list and then also watch that Netflix movie! 🙂

  • Laura @ Cheered On Mom August 27, 2018 at 7:41 am

    Shay, thank you for warning me about those books! I don’t enjoy sad books or horrible endings. 😅 I read Eleanor Oliphant last year and absolutely loved it! 💗 I think you’ll love Crazy Rich Asians.

  • Cari August 27, 2018 at 7:42 am

    A new book is coming out September 13th called Silent All these Years! I read this in 2 days…it kept me on my toes until the end. A new author from Austin TX wrote it. Please give it a try. This post of yours is the one I look forward to every month!

  • Julie August 27, 2018 at 7:45 am

    You should read A Fine Romance – Falling in Love with the English Countryside or Martha’s Vineyard – Isle of Dreams both by Susan Branch. Lovely books!

  • Ellie S August 27, 2018 at 7:59 am

    I totally agree with your thoughts on Bring Me Back- I was so disappointed in that one! I loved When Life Gives You LuLuLemons, and I don’t believe I ever read the second book in the series,/ so it definitely works as a stand alone novel. I’m on the list for Less and Eleanor Oliphant at the library, but it’s looking like it will be next year before I get my hands on them (haha). I love following your book reviews and loved that you told us ahead of time this month! I also cannot wait for your December picks- I read all of them last year and it made the Christmas season that much better. Lastly, I highly recommend Ghosted by Rosie Walsh! I got it in my BOTM club box and loved it! It’s a mix of romance and suspense and was a great read.

  • Kate August 27, 2018 at 8:00 am

    The Last Mrs Parrish! (Liv Constantine) I just finished it and it’s so crazy! I couldn’t stop reading and now can’t stop thinking about it! Loved lululemons and agree with you on Bring me Back, what the heck!

    • Mix and Match Mama August 27, 2018 at 11:46 am

      That one is awesome! The halfway point!!! Eeeks!

  • Jenny Bedner August 27, 2018 at 8:08 am

    Firefly Lane and the Great Alone, both by Kristin Hannah. Could not put down either of them!

    • Mix and Match Mama August 27, 2018 at 11:46 am

      The Great Alone is AMAZING!!!!

    • Beth August 27, 2018 at 1:02 pm

      Firefly Lane is one of my favorite books. Love it so much.

  • Cari August 27, 2018 at 8:16 am

    Silent All these Years! A new thriller-mystery from an author in Austin, TX. Available Sept 13th. I read this book in two days. Easy read that keeps you on your toes! Goes back and forth between characters and time periods…which I love. I love reading your monthly book reviews. I also cook from your Eats cookbook weekly!

  • Beth August 27, 2018 at 8:17 am

    The Sound of Gravel, The Last Time I Lied, What She Left Behind- the three best books I’ve read this year!

  • Amanda @ Cupcake N Dreams August 27, 2018 at 8:30 am

    Yay for book review day! I have been wanting to read When Life Gives you Lululemons. Glad you recommend it. I’m happy you share all the books you like and don’t like. Bring Me Back sounds awesome but if the ending is that bad then I’ll skip it lol. In case I didn’t recommend it last month then I highly suggest Little Fires Everywhere!

    Amanda @ Cupcake N Dreams

  • Jenna August 27, 2018 at 8:36 am

    Love the recommendations on the fall reading list!! I bought Cancel the Wedding for my mom for Christmas last year and that book has been passed around to so many people because of how much we loved it! Also enjoyed Crazy Rich Asians and can’t wait to read When Life Gives you Lululemons! Thanks for the recommendations!

  • STACY TSOUKATOS August 27, 2018 at 8:41 am

    I just finished The Sound of Gravel off Erika’s recommendation and I highly suggest you give this memoir a whirl. I am not a huge fan of life stories but I read this and The Girl with 7 names off your recomendation and they were two of my faves this year!!

    • Mix and Match Mama August 27, 2018 at 11:45 am

      I read it!! I will NEVER forget this book!

  • Laura August 27, 2018 at 8:48 am

    I’d like to know more about We Own the Sky before I read it. I have a friend who’s grandson was diagnosed with DIPG (a rare form of brain Cancer that is terminal on diagnosis) in late May. The family is trying everything they can to change the prognosis for this little boy. Would you say I should avoid reading this book at this time?

    • Mix and Match Mama August 27, 2018 at 11:45 am

      I just exhaled really loud in my office. It is not a book with hope. I probably would avoid it during this time. I am stopping right now to pray for this boy though.

  • Rebecca Jo August 27, 2018 at 8:49 am

    UGHHHH -I hate when books fail at the end. That’s so disappointing.
    I just recommend that Lysa book to my bible study group – sounds like a good support book.

  • Julie August 27, 2018 at 8:53 am

    Shay! By random coincidence, I also read ‘Bring Me Back’ this month and had the same exact reaction. I was super into it-brought with me on vacation and stayed up late to read. And then at the end, I was, umm, so annoyed!

    Although I thought “Less” was beautifully written, I am with you, I was thoroughly confused for a lot of it. And then because it won the Pulitzer, I felt DUMB for not being able to follow it! (And I almost majored in English at a liberal arts school-ha!). Just didn’t resonate with me. And I found it kind of a chore to get through at times?

    I read Eleanor a while back and also found the first half slow, but the end/twist was SO SO good I was really glad I read it. It would make a great movie!

    I just started ‘Ghosted’ which seems really promising. I also really want to read ‘An Unwanted Guest’ (Shari Lapena). Sounds like a great winter suspense book!

    Love your new book format. It’s fun to have a virtual book club.

    • Mix and Match Mama August 27, 2018 at 11:44 am

      I felt dumb too! Hahaha! Glad I’m not the only one 😉 .

  • Sonia August 27, 2018 at 9:07 am

    I remember you enjoyed Kristin Higgins book “The Best Man” last year, and that’s a part of a whole series called the Blue Heron series. I think the series got even better as it went on, and I like that the books were all somewhat intertwined because then it allows you to keep up with the characters.

  • Diana Barton August 27, 2018 at 9:12 am

    Love Book Review day! I’ve read almost all the books on your Fall list and agree 100%. OK – you have to read All Your Perfects by Colleen Hoover – it’s her newest novel that just came out in July. I could not put it down. It had me all in my feels! It’s one of those that you don’t want to stop reading but then I was also mad at myself for reading it so fast since now it’s over!

  • Jessica August 27, 2018 at 9:14 am

    Hi Shay, I know todays post was about books but I was wondering if you were still watching Grey’s? I started watching it about the same time you did. I’m half way through season 7 and I CANT STOP WATCHING. I wish I could set down and read a book but all I want to do is binge watch Grey’s lol.

    • Mix and Match Mama August 27, 2018 at 11:44 am

      That’s where I am too!! Meagan and I started on the same day and she’s about a season ahead of me, but I’m halfway through seven!!

  • Susanne August 27, 2018 at 9:17 am

    If you haven’t read The Forgotten Room you should add it to your list. Beatriz Williams & two other authors each wrote part of it. But it flows together beautifully and is such a good story!

  • Jennifer Smotherman August 27, 2018 at 9:22 am

    L O V E book review day!!! Elinor Oliphant is one of my faves books I read all year! You MUST read The Book of Essie. I just finished it and wow, soooo stinkin good! I would love to see your thoughts on it!

  • Dana August 27, 2018 at 9:23 am

    I really like the idea of a “book club”!! so I picked one book for your “book club” this month. When Life gives you Lulamons! I’m halfway through and loving it!!

  • Ashley August 27, 2018 at 9:29 am

    Finished The Nightengale a week ago because of your recommendation a while back and it was incredible! Still can’t get it out of my head. Pleeeeease read Lilac Girls so we can see your review! Love me some WW2 historical fiction! Happy reading Shay and friends! 🙂

  • Megan August 27, 2018 at 9:32 am

    I’m not sure if you suggested this one or not, but I read How to Walk Away this month and loved it! Also, Educated. You won’t forget it for a long time. It’s gripping.

    • Mix and Match Mama August 27, 2018 at 11:43 am

      They’re both on my list for this fall!!!

  • Keisha Dawson August 27, 2018 at 9:33 am

    I just started Eleanor Oliphant is Completly Fine yesterday, and I’m glad to know the first half is a little slower. I will keep pushing on. I’ve heard so many great things about this book, but I’m just not sucked in yet. Your fall reading list is superb. I’ve read all but two of the books, and I loved every single one of them!

  • Amanda @ That Inspired Chick August 27, 2018 at 9:40 am

    Ahhh!! I can’t believe you liked Eleanor!!! hahahaha. I really think I may be the only person who did not like that book at all!! Totally with you on Bring Me Back. That book could have ended with a much cooler twist. I know I’ve told you already but you should read Big Sexy Love! (Don’t let the title fool you. It’s total chick lit not “romance”.) It’s my favorite chick lit book of the year so far!
    That Inspired Chick

    • Mix and Match Mama August 27, 2018 at 11:43 am

      I have Big Sexy Love!! I’m going to try and read it ASAP!

  • Marie August 27, 2018 at 9:42 am

    I loved last month’s post when you shared which books you will be reading in August so I could read along with some of them. But personally, I am not crazy about the spoilers in the comments section on this post. Why? Because I just saw a spoiler to one of the books I haven’t read yet while searching for a suggestion on a new book to read next. Just my two cents.
    When Life Gives You Lululemons was a GREAT read! And I agree with you, you do not need to read the previous books in the series in order to enjoy this one!

  • Sharon August 27, 2018 at 10:04 am

    Ok have you read “A Homemade Life” yet by Molly Wizenberg? It is speaking our love language: food!!! It’s a wonderful memoir of her dad, recipes, food, love, life. It was on one of Jen Hatmaker’s favorite books lists a few years ago, I bought it then, and I’m finally reading it and absolutely ADORING it! It also has some Paris included, which I know you’d love. This book is right up your alley!!! (Also, I read The Summer Wives before this, per your rec, and loved it so much too!! Thx!)

  • Sarah August 27, 2018 at 10:21 am

    I read Then She Was Gone by Lisa Jewell this summer on my trip to Scotland and it was soooo good! I really loved how unpredictable it felt while reading it and I couldn’t put it down!

  • Leigh August 27, 2018 at 10:46 am

    My favorite post every month! I recently finished How to Walk Away, The Book of Essie, and After I Do and recommend them all!

  • Jennifer Stillwel August 27, 2018 at 10:57 am

    If you have not read The Goldfinch… stop what you are doing and read it!!!

  • Laurel August 27, 2018 at 11:23 am

    This was really fun! I read 3 out of 4, I just started reading Less last night. I LOVE the idea of a seasonal book list! 4 books in a month is a lot for me so the seasonal list feels more attainable. I really hope you do that every season from now on!

  • Carly August 27, 2018 at 11:33 am

    I had to put Less down, and I literally never do that! It just dragged on, I had no interest in the main character, and I checked Goodreads and most reviews said it never really picked up so I just let it go. I had too many good TBRs waiting!

    I recommend The Last Time I Lied, How To Walk Away and Ghosted for Sept. All so good!!

  • Suzy Bennett August 27, 2018 at 11:35 am

    I agree with your assessment of Less. Can’t believe it won a Pulitzer. I’d forgotten I’d read it and checked it out again since it was a prize winner but couldn’t bear reading it again. What were they thinking? Loved Elinor Oliphant.

  • Eileen McAllister August 27, 2018 at 11:43 am

    Really enjoyed How to Walk Away and All your Perfects. Next up for me is Vox (the one where women’s voices are being silenced – they can only speak a certain number of words a day!!). Still plodding through Summer Wives. Don’t know why it’s taking me so long cause it’s pretty good when I actually read it.

  • Lisa August 27, 2018 at 11:53 am

    Love the Crazy Rich Asian series and can’t wait to see the movie! Just finished Now That You Mention It and really enjoyed. Currently reading All The Perfects, good so far! Glad to hear Elenor O is good, that’s up next🙂. Thanks for all the recommendations and your reviews📚

  • Gina August 27, 2018 at 12:00 pm

    How to Walk Away by Katherine Center and All Your Perfects by Colleen Hoover should be on the list. I loved them both!

  • Sarah August 27, 2018 at 12:33 pm

    Have you read Woman of God by James Patterson? It’s such a great read, I think you’d really like it and it’s a super quick read – you could probably finish it in a day or two. It’s definitely a page turner.

  • Maggie B August 27, 2018 at 1:21 pm

    I love these book reviews. I would definitely read Next Year in Havana, I couldn’t put it down!

  • Lena August 27, 2018 at 1:43 pm

    Yay! I looove book review days!!

    I also love reading all of the comments, which between your reviews and comments is where I get everything on my reading list!

    I just got done with two books that I LOVED: Swear on this Life by Renee Carlino and The Husband Hour by Jamie Brenner. Check them out, think you’ll love them too!

  • Denise Hunter August 27, 2018 at 2:10 pm

    I just finished Good Luck with That by Kristan Higgins. It was so good. Might be my favorite book this year!

  • Carla Johnson August 27, 2018 at 2:41 pm

    I just read The Alice Network for a book club and really liked it – it reminded me of The Nightingale b/c it’s historical fiction. I felt the same way about Eleanor Oliphant – slow to start but once it picked up I enjoyed it. I just added about 8-10 additional books to my list from your post and the comments so THANKS!

  • Cherie August 27, 2018 at 2:45 pm

    If you haven’t read it already… All the Light We Cannot See.
    Such an awesome book. 2 stories interwoven and just fantastic writing.

  • Kelly Nett August 27, 2018 at 2:46 pm

    I would recommend ‘what Alice forgot’ by liane moriarty. She is the author of big little lies; turned tv series. And while I’ve enjoyed her books, what Alice forgot just made me really dwell on the entire premise of the book and what it would be like to have the same thing happen but in my shoes. I really enjoyed this one; easy read, hard to put down, picking up my kindle every chance I had to read it even for 2 minute breaks!

  • Amanda August 27, 2018 at 3:32 pm

    Hey Shay!! I was curious if you could do a post on greys anatomy or any of the other shows you watch and share your thoughts!! I’m a total greys junkie!!!!

  • Kelli August 27, 2018 at 4:07 pm

    Have you read Digging In by Loretta Nyhan? I thought it was so cute. I bet you’d like it.

  • Chelsey C August 27, 2018 at 4:10 pm

    The last two books I read were Shelter in Place by Nora Roberts – stop what you’re doing and order it now! It’s full of suspense and romance and some of the subject matter is dark but SO SO GOOD! Also, Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows, it was one of Reese Witherspoon’s book club picks and oh my gosh it was so good. A little Rated R but also has a little thriller mixed in and some complicated family dynamics. Currently reading The Dirty Book Club by Lisi Harrison – it’s really good and funny so far – but yes Rated R.

  • Angela August 27, 2018 at 4:32 pm

    I just read “The Wife” by Alafair Burke and it was so, so good! It was the first book I’d read by her but it won’t be my last. Such a great suspense/mystery book and the ending-WOW! It’s so so good!!!

  • Jes August 27, 2018 at 4:53 pm

    So glad I’m not the only one that couldn’t get into “Less”. I pride myself on finishing a book, but just couldn’t do it and had to cut my losses (I even started a new shelf on Goodreads called “Had to Put Down”, ha!) Plus, I think with it having won a Pulitzer- I assumed it would be great, but it’s not a book to read while you’re tired, I couldn’t follow it and am glad to hear I’m not alone. As for “We Own the Sky”- Shay, I wondered how you would do with this one. As a parent who is at the dr a lot- this book might be way too much for people going through anything to do with a sick child or even family member. I didn’t expect the ending… I felt it could have ended sooner, but was taken aback with the end of such a dark book. Shay- I’m continually impressed by how much you can read in a month. I powered through and could only read 3.5 books! Excited for your Fall list- thanks for sharing 🙂

    • Carly August 28, 2018 at 4:16 pm

      OH MY GOSH— I started a new ‘DNF’ shelf on Goodreads just because of Less too! So slow and plodding and boring to me!!

  • Heather August 27, 2018 at 5:18 pm

    Want to encourage a new Texan girl on her journey to becoming an author? You should read SILENT ALL THESE YEARS by T.A. Massa. It comes out September 13 through Amazon and Kindle. I got an early copy and LOVED it. Very interesting characters and interesting plot twists. It’s an easy and thrilling weekend read.

  • Julie August 27, 2018 at 5:23 pm

    I love book review day and love the new format where we can read along with you. I’ve been looking forward to reading everyone’s comments. But, today is only the 27th….I still have 150 pages left of Lululemon and thought I’d be done before your book review post. I scanned the comments for new recommendations and just glanced at anything mentioning Lululemon, so I wouldn’t ruin the ending for myself:)

    I liked Eleanor Oliphant, but wouldn’t put it even in my Top 10 favorites for the year. I fully expected to love it, as others have listed it as their favorite book. I rooted for her and for Raymond and did not see the plot twist coming. Overall, it was a 3.5 star book for me.

    As for Crazy Rich Asians, I’ve been trying to read it for a year now and just CANNOT finish. I think I may be the only person who does not love it, and it takes a lot for me to leave a book unfinished. I am wondering if part of the problem is that I am reading it on my Nook. There are a lot of footnotes for asian slang and explanations of culture, and on the Nook rather than being at the bottom of the page, they are at the end of the chapter. It’s hard to flip back and forth electronically, so I just sort of skip over it, and maybe I miss some of the humor?

    • Mix and Match Mama August 28, 2018 at 5:33 am

      Oh! I can see how that would be hard!! In all three books, I had to refer back to the first page for the family tree too (to keep everyone straight). This might be a paperback-only read!

    • Carly August 28, 2018 at 4:19 pm

      Julie, I didn’t like the CRA book, but I LOVED the movie and it makes me want to read the sequels!! I highly recommend you see the movie, even if you set the book down for good ;)!

  • Kathleen August 27, 2018 at 5:36 pm

    Something In The Water. SO GOOD!!

  • Leticia August 27, 2018 at 5:44 pm

    Maybe I’m just odd, but I was into Eleanor Oliphant from page 1. Probably because I related to the character in that she just didn’t get relating to people in general and was very literal in the few relationships that she did have! I have been inspired since finishing the book to keep an eye out for the odd one out, the person who just isn’t connecting to the group. I very much enjoyed this book 🙂
    It was the only one I could finish in July, but thanks for all the book recommendations!

  • Gale Johnston August 27, 2018 at 6:19 pm

    SPOILER IN THIS COMMENT! BEWARE! I was intrigued with your suggestion of reading and discussing the 4 books for August, so I read all 4 of them. I enjoyed When Life Gives You Lululemons. I never read The Devil Made Prada, but I really enjoyed the movie, and I enjoyed this book. I also really liked Eleanor Oliphant. Parts of it made me chuckle, and other parts had me really feeling for her. I agree with others that the character Raymond is just wonderful. There should be more people in the world like him. Did no one else notice the similarity to Woman in the Window? How she was carrying on a discussion with someone who had died? We Own the Sky…oh, my word! So incredibly sad, but also so incredibly well-written. Amazing author! I was glad to have read all 3 of these books. Less? No. I really could have done without this book. I suppose it’s good to broaden one’s scope, but this was just not my cup of tea.

    On another note, I plan to buy Class Mom for my daughter as she has a child attending kindergarten this year. And I want to get Confessions of a Domestic Failure for both of us to read.

    I’m loving your blog and your book reviews! Thank you so much for all you do!

    • Mix and Match Mama August 28, 2018 at 5:30 am

      Amen, amen and amen! I couldn’t agree more, Gale! You ladies will love Class Mom and CDF! They’re both such good reads!! Sending you so much love! xo

  • Emily August 27, 2018 at 6:32 pm

    I know this going back a couple months, but I just read “Castle of Water” and OMG. I was sooooo sad at the ending!!! I was in total shock for several days after reading it! Did it have to end like that?!? 🙁

    • Mix and Match Mama August 28, 2018 at 5:29 am

      Hahahahaha! Didn’t it just stick with you?! I am still thinking about it too!

  • Amy August 27, 2018 at 6:43 pm

    Shay- you HAVE to read Next Year in Havana! One of my top Books of all time! Couldn’t stop reading! It is awesome!!!!

  • Cristy D. August 27, 2018 at 7:09 pm

    I loved your book club this month! I agreed with all of your reviews, except that I possibly felt less for Less than you did.
    I also love your fall book list and I’m looking forward to the Christmas one! Since I started reading your blog, I’m never disappointed with my book choices; I just follow your recommendations. Thank you!

  • Lyndsay August 27, 2018 at 7:21 pm

    The Royal We is one of my favorites! It’s pretty long, but I highly, highly recommend it, especially for fellow royal watchers.

    Shay, have you read any of Allison Winn Scotch’s books? I love her writing! Her most recent is Between Me and You, and I really enjoyed it.

  • Sally Hepworth August 27, 2018 at 7:31 pm

    Oh aren’t you lovely? Thank you for including The Secrets of Midwives in your Fall reading list. And I think there should be a copy of my new book, The Mother In Law, on its way to you soon too x

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

      I cannot wait!!!

  • Nikki Mik August 27, 2018 at 9:07 pm

    Omg I just read bring me back in one day it was so good. I read all of her books and was so excited when I found out she came out with a new one

  • Sara August 28, 2018 at 7:24 am

    This fall reading talk has me wanting a nice cup of tea! Can you remind me again of your fav harney & sons tea?

    • Mix and Match Mama August 28, 2018 at 7:52 am

      Paris and Hot Cinnamon Spice!!

  • Deanna August 28, 2018 at 7:30 am

    I read Castle of Water last week, based off your June book review and I loved it. You need to read Everything Everything. It’s YA, but if sucked me in. I think you’d really like it.

  • Alli Mullins August 28, 2018 at 8:22 am

    I could not agree more about Bring Me Back. I read it in June on vacation and LOVED IT. Could not put it down. Talked to everyone I know about how awesome this book was, & how I couldn’t wait to pass it on. The ending is horrible. I was so disappointed and felt duped & annoyed. I’m embarrassed that I told people to read it.

    • Mix and Match Mama August 28, 2018 at 9:02 am


  • brooke entrekin August 28, 2018 at 9:32 am

    I LOVED When Life gives you LuLulemons! Super cute read! I think you would enjoy Girl Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis…I don’t remember seeing it in any of your reviews and I know you would love it 🙂

    • Mix and Match Mama August 28, 2018 at 1:29 pm

      I read it! It’s one of my faves for the year!!

  • Laura Sotelo August 28, 2018 at 9:51 am

    Yahoo, my favorite post every month!!! I read some good books this month and am still waiting for a couple you read this month. I read We Own the Sky and it was heartbreaking but so well written that I couldn’t stop reading between the crying. I also read Eleanor and had a tough time starting but man it picked up the second half. I almost wish it would have started from the middle and then kept going at the end because I wasn’t ready to stop reading about them. Im waiting for Less but I’m now thinking of not checking it out after reading reviews. Lululemons should be available soon to me at the library. This month I read Next Year in Havana and I liked the history of Cuba and the love story. I also read The Family Next Door and totally didn’t see that ending coming! Have you read the Marriage Pact? I feel for every four thrillers I read I like one of the books. This one I think was actually well written, the story progressed easily, and I recommend it. I also recommend Educated. Took me a couple of chapters to really get into because I read chick lit right before it and this one is a bit serious. Its one of those books that you can’t stop thinking about after. Next up this month for me is How to Walk Away, All Your Perfects, The Husband Hour, and Lululemons. Happy reading!!!

  • Emily August 28, 2018 at 11:22 am

    You need to read Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers! It is so incredible you will not want to put it down!

  • Elizabeth B August 28, 2018 at 12:42 pm

    You must read Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers! I cannot say enough good things about this book.

    • Mix and Match Mama August 28, 2018 at 1:27 pm

      I have! It’s wonderful!!

  • Janice August 28, 2018 at 6:39 pm

    I love your book reviews – Castle of Water is my 2nd favorite book of the year! My favorite is Beneath a Scarlet Sky by Mark Sullivan. Based on a true story about an Italian teenager, Pino Lella, in WWII. Incredible read – absolute favorite, you won’t be able to put it down! It’s being made into a movie starring Tom Holland. Limelight by Amy Poeppel is really good (if you can get past the language). Why I Hate Green Beans is also very good! But please, please read Beneath a Scarlet Sky – you won’t be able to stop thinking of Pino (and googling everything about him… :))

  • Claudia Mcconnell August 28, 2018 at 8:32 pm

    I thought the exact same thing about Bring me Back. Total disappointment!! I’m reading The Great Alone and loving it! Definitely recommend!

  • Lauren August 29, 2018 at 11:11 am

    We Own the Sky tore me up. I wanted to quit reading the sadness even though it was so beautifully written. The scene at the fair when his little friends came up and took him to play on the bouncy house and treated him so gently and hugged him goodbye, nearly did me in. I was angry sad the whole time reading this book, and was thankful when it was over.

    Eleanor delighted me and had far more depth than I originally anticipated. I loved Raymond so hard and just delighted in how this story played out and her growth overall. I really loved it.

    I didn’t make it to the others but based on your reviews I’m going to steer clear of Less. Thanks for your recommendations, I always enjoy them. 🙂

  • Jordan August 30, 2018 at 2:34 pm

    Just finished Lululemons and LOVED it! But I have a SERIOUS question for those who have read it… Is Emily pregnant with Alistair’s baby?! Am I the only one who thought that was possible? I thought we’d find out! Not that I wanted that to happen. But I was bummed at the end when it wasn’t confirmed. Thoughts??

  • Alexis August 30, 2018 at 6:38 pm

    How to Walk Away by Katherine Center and All Your Perfects by Colleen Hoover…SO GOOD!!! And Kristan Higgins has a new one out that I’m dying to read!

  • Robin September 2, 2018 at 5:58 am

    I read The Last Time I Lied by Riley sager (it was one of my Book of the Month books) and really enjoyed it! You should read it!

  • Sandy Carter September 2, 2018 at 10:24 pm

    I loved Eleanor Oliphant so much! She’s a character that will stick with me for a while. We’re launching a book club at my school for teachers and this is going to be our first book. We deal with students who have emotional trauma daily. This book gives some insight to some of their home situations.

  • Tanya September 3, 2018 at 4:18 pm

    This is always my favorite post. I can’t wait to read the Lululemons book, and I’ve heard lots of mixed reviews about Bring Me Back. So disappointing – I’m not sure if I’ll read it. I just posted my monthly book review post –

  • Mary Jacques September 5, 2018 at 10:19 pm

    Please read Educated by Tara Westover! Such a great book!

  • Haley Sulka September 10, 2018 at 9:17 am

    The Sun Does Shine!

  • Katie N. September 19, 2018 at 10:18 pm

    The Sun Does Shine is one of the best books I’ve ever read! So So good!