Monthly Archives: August 2010

Word Shakers Online Book Club Read: September Book Choice

I am exited to announce our next Wordshaker online Book Club choice:

The Wife’s Tale by Lori Lansens

On the eve of their silver anniversary, Mary Gooch is waiting for her husband, Jimmy — still every inch the handsome star athlete he was in high school — to come home. As night turns to day, it becomes frighteningly clear to Mary that he is gone. Through the years, disappointment and worry have brought Mary’s life to a standstill, and she has let her universe shrink to the well-worn path from the bedroom to the refrigerator. But her husband’s disappearance startles her out of her inertia, and she begins a desperate search.
She boards a plane for the first time in her life and flies across the country to find her lost husband. So used to hiding from the world, Mary learns that in the bright sun and broad vistas of California, she is forced to look up from the pavement. And what she discovers fills her with an inner strength she’s never felt before: perfect strangers who come to her rescue, an aging, sometimes hostile mother-in-law who needs her help, friends who enjoy her company. And through it all, Mary not only finds kindred spirits, but reunites with a more intimate stranger no longer sequestered by fear and habit: herself.
With the generosity and delicate grace that had readers falling in love with her bestselling novel, The Girls, Lori Lansens brings us another moving and beautifully wrought story, this time of a woman taking small yet courageous steps toward her authentic self.


If you would like to be a part of this book discussion please fill out the form below.  You have between now and October 6 to read and either post a book review on your blog (if you have one) or for non bloggers you may email me your thoughts on the book.

Author Lori Lansens

As a bonus for those who choose to participate this month, author Lori Lansens will be offering a few signed copies of her books, not only this book, but also of The Girl’s and Rush Home Road.  I will announce the actual giveaway closer to the review date, but for those of you who sign on to review the book with me through Wordshakers, you will automatically be entered twice into the giveaways.

Following our online review on October 6, there will be an author chat here with Lori Lanssen and participants in this discussion will have the opportunity to send in your questions for her for this chat.

If you have already read the book you are still welcome to join in.  A five-week window will be given to give participants enough time to secure the book and read it.  If you would like to be included in a mailing group that will be notified each time a new read is announced, leave me a comment below saying so and I will add you to the group.  (*You do not need to post your email, I receive it with every comment)


Fill Out Form Here


Where did word shakers come from?  I read a lovely book called The book Thief, and if you have not read it I highly recommend it.  There is a part in the book when one of the characters writes a story involving a word shaker.  The whole story is beautiful, and if you have the opportunity to read even the word shaker part of the book it is pages 445-450.  The part that touches me deeply is:

THE BEST word shakers were the ones who understood the true power of words.  They were the ones who could climb the highest.  One such word shaker was a small, skinny girl.  She was renowned as the best word shaker of her region because she knew how powerless a person could be without words.

I think this one touches me so because I am a word lover, much like many of you, and therefore – we are all word shakers.

Sheila

Morning Meanderings…. oh yeah, it’s SSSQQQUUUEEE Worthy!

Hello and good morning!  COFFEE is on!!!  SO what is so SSSQQQUUUUEEEE worthy that I am dancing around my home at such an early hour – in some cases rousing you out of your email boxes?  WELL… I thought you would never ask!

Last week Wordshakers went live with its first 2010 Online group review of Summer At Tiffany.  Around the blogosphere and even throughout some homes, 26 people signed up to read and review this book.  While most were bloggers who posted reviews on their blogs, a handful were book lovers – blog free, who just sent me emails of how much they enjoyed the book.

The fun of this review went beyond the review.  Marjorie Hart, the wonderful author of Summer At Tiffany has been in communication with me over the last month chatting about her book and the memories and that all went into the author chat we had last week as well as her gift of a signed copy of her book to one of my Book Journey readers.

All of this has left me with warm fuzzies of what Wordshakers can be…. and so I allowed myself to dream…


I wanted Wordshakers online book discussions to be not only a group of us booklovers all gathering our noses around the same book, but I really wanted our book choices to involve author interaction as well.  I wanted to move us to the next level and I felt all I could do was try.

SO….  (I know I am rambling a bit – blame the coffee) I asked last months participants for ideas for our next read and some lovely ideas came out of that.  Then I took two of the books mentioned that I thought would make for wonderful discussions and I contacted the publishers about the idea behind Wordshakers hoping one would be able to respond with a yes, this will work.

Both publishers and book authors responded favorably, not only wishing to be a part of making this a successful reading experience, but offered the author chat as well as a giveaway post.

Thus the SSSQQQQUUUEEEEE!!!

I will announce later today the Wordshaker book for now – October 6.  I think it will generate excitement.  I know it has for me.  After this book is reviewed by whoever wishes to participate, I will then announce the next book that will go from the second week of October to the third week of November (before Thanksgiving).


Anyhoo – I am beyond excited.  :D

Stay tune for the book and the plan …..

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading, is where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week.  It is a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list.

I love being a part of this and I hope you do too!  As part of this weekly meme I love to encourage you all to go and visit the others participating in this meme.  I offer a weekly contest for those who visit 10 or more of the Monday Meme participants and leave a comment.  You receive one entry for every 10 comments, just come back here and tell me how many in the comment area.

Last weeks winner (using Random.Org) was:

Heather at Based On A True Story

Congratulations!  Please choose an item out of the PRIZE BOX and email me your choice with your mailing address as well!   journeythroughbooks@gmail.com


** And on a special note I totally overhauled the Prize Box earlier today and it is filled with new book choices!  So many in fact that I think for this next week we will have two winners!!!  Why do I do this?

  1. I think to get the full “community” of this meme, its important to go out and visit a few blogs that are new to you…. you may just find one that you love – and you will definitely hear about books that are new to you.  :D
  2. I always have books that I have read and reviewed that I do not wish to keep.  I like passing them on so they may be enjoyed by others.
  3. For every 10 blogs you stop in and leave a comment on and tell me here in the comment section, I enter you for a chance to choose a book.


So how we all doing now as we come to the end of August?  I find it pretty bitter sweet as I know my days of summer are flying by and fall is in the air.  While I love summer for the bike rides, the reading on the deck, trips to the cabin….  I appreciate fall because life starts to slow down and I tend to read more as I have more time to read.


Here is what I had happening here this past week:


The Postcard Killers by James Patterson (audio giveaway – woo hoo!!!!!!)

Summer At Tiffany by Marjorie Hart review (this is the Wordshaker online book club review!)


Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins review (with a link to a spoiler page so if you have read you can stop in and hash out your thoughts with other Mockingjay addicts….:D )


Author Chat with Marjorie Hart – author of Summer at Tiffany (this 86 year old spitfire has caught my heart!)


Summer At Tiffany – Hard cover SIGNED copy of this book giveaway (ummmm….. SSSQQQUUUEEEE!)


Where Is God In Your Life by Susan Provost (A book divided into three sections for retreat ideas)


eat the Cookies, buy the Shoes by Joyce Meyer (A review of the book and the audio)


That’s my week!  I actually read a few  more books this week but have not had time to post their reviews yet:

PREP

To Kill A Mockingbird

I Am Nujood Age 10 and Divorced


And – I am really excited about this week!  Here is what I am planning:


I will be announcing at some point  this week what the next read for the Wordshaker Online Book Club will be. I am waiting on one little detail…..  it’s a secret…. ;)


I am starting this one for my Bookies Book Club.  This is our September read and I am so excited to finally get a chance to get into this book :D


Woo Hoo!  Just in from my library reserve is this little gem that I can not wait to dive into!  Doesn’t it look awesome?  Doesn’t it?  Huh?  Huh?  :D



Off the TBR Mountain(s), comes this mystery that the cooler evenings call me to.  I also have two of these.  Hmmmm….. what to do with the second one… what to do……. I think we will be having a giveaway!


Here is the audio I will be starting in my car this week.  Fresh from Hachette I am excited to start listening to this one.  I have a cabin road trip this weekend, and I may actually head up a day early to get things ready as will have guests this time.  Going early means going alone and going alone means – AUDIO!!!  :D


And this is a treat for my IPOD that I picked up off of Audible.com this week.  I am mere moments away from starting this one and – well, I know right?  It’s just calling to me!

Oh yes, my long anticipated author chat with Sarah Ockler, author of Twenty Boy Summer…. oh and yes, we are going to talk about her new book too!


So this looks like a big week for me and I obviously will not finish the audio this week, or for that matter the book club read either as I have until the second Tuesday of September to get that one done…. but it will be a fun start anyway.


I am so ready to hang out with all of you now and see what you can add to my TBR list are reading!!!  :D

Please add your post link to the spot below where it says “Click Here” so I and other happy “What Are You Reading memers” can pop in and say hi!  :D    I hope you meet some of our newer participants this week as well as our regulars – you are all such a fun group!


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Click here to enter your link and view the entire list of entered links…

The Postcard Killers by James Patterson (Audio Giveaway)

Thank you to Hachette Audio for offering me three copies of this audio to give away to lucky readers of Book Journey!


Paris is stunning in the summer

NYPD detective Jacob Kanon is on a tour of Europe’s most gorgeous cities. But the sights aren’t what draw him–he sees each museum, each cathedral, and each cafe through the eyes of his daughter’s killer.

The killing is simply marvelous

Kanon’s daughter, Kimmy, and her boyfriend were murdered while on vacation in Rome. Since then, young couples in Paris, Copenhagen, Frankfurt, and Stockholm have been found dead. Little connects the murders, other than a postcard to the local newspaper that precedes each new victim.

Wish you were here

Now Kanon teams up with the Swedish reporter, Dessie Larsson, who has just received a postcard in Stockholm–and they think they know where the next victims will be.

I know many of you are not big audio fans but I have to tell you – if you were to try audio (and I a going to continue bugging you of course on this!  ;)  )  Patterson is a sure win.

If you have read any of my past reviews on Patterson’s  I have raved about the quality.  In fact I have probably not read James Patterson in 5 years, but I have listened to just about everything he has put out on audio.

SO why not give audio a try and look here – I am offering a giveaway where you may be able to do just that!  If you love a good thriller mystery – come along and try Patterson!

How to enter

If you are a book person even if you have not read Patterson you must have seen that the man has a new book coming out at least once a month recently.  I read that he has a large conference table in his study that is covered with unfinished manuscripts.  Amazing!

So to enter this giveaway, I would like you to come up with a character for a Patterson book (and remember his genres are not only mystery so go with whatever) and a scenario:  such as,

Johnathon Winters:  Once second-hand store owner/ hitman now Priest and undercover FBI

:lol:  Or something like that

Bonus Entries

Tweet, blog, or add this giveaway to your Facebook page and receive an extra chance by letting me know here in a separate comment

Subscribe to Book Journey (upper right sidebar – third down) and let me know in a separate comment and receive two bonus chances

This giveaway will end on September 17.  USA and Canada only please.


eat the Cookies… buy the Shoes by Joyce Meyer

Discipline discipline discipline.  Structure is a way of life.  Make sure you hit the gym 5 times a week.  Do not splurge on yourself.  Never give in to desert and never ever fall for the gorgeous pair of shoes in the window.

In Joyce’s new book, eat the Cookies… buy the Shoes Joyce explains how we were not built for guilt.  Using biblical stories Joyce Meyer reminds us how God likes to celebrate, and while we shouldnt give in to our every whim… we certainly can celebrate and enjoy “cookies” that come our way.


Ok…. confession time.  I would like to think that what this book is telling me is go ahead Sheila…. eat ALL the cookies you want!

Or…. moderation…. shmoderation!   Get the shoes….. get all the shoes!

Ok, I am just being funny.  I really did enjoy this read because I came from that world that Joyce Meyer’s describes.  There was a time when I thought that I had to always be on my game… that I was never to falter and had to remain structured and disciplined at all times. What I found interesting is that is where Joyce once was as well, and like her – our worlds were bland.

Joyce in a light humorous manner explains in this book why it is ok to enjoy life and what is has to offer.  Moderation of course is the word, and making good choices, but God does want us to have fun…. and the sooner I learned that the better my life became all the way around.

If you woke up this morning with more body parts that don’t hurt than those that do, you are blessed.

If you have food, clothes, and a place to live, you are richer than 75% of the world.

If you have money in the bank, in your wallet, or spare change at home, you are among the top 8% of the world’s wealthiest people.

If you have never experienced the dangers of battle, the loneliness of imprisonment, the agony of torture, or the pangs of starvation, you are ahead of the five million people in the world.

If you can read this message, you are more blessed than two billion people in the world who can not read.

eat the Cookie… buy the Shoes page 100-101

I also had the opportunity from Hachette to review the audio version of this book.  The audio is read by Sandra McCollum, who is Joyce Meyer’s daughter.  While the audio is handy to listen to while driving, and I really like that…. I almost hate to say this,but the reading was not what I had hoped for.  Sandra’s voice felt to me like she was reading to a child and gave me the impression she was always talking down to the listener.  I am hopeful that is just my opinion.  I was unable to finish the audio for that reason.

Overall – the message in the book/audio is an easy one to follow with gentle reminders of how we can live out our lives fully as God had planned being able to be who we are He created us.  I found it enjoyable and refreshing.

I received both the book and audio from Hachette Books

Morning Meanderings…. boy I listen to that song alot…


Good morning!  I was mowing the lawn last night jamming out to my IPOD and mastering what I call lawn mower dancing and my neighbors fondly refer to as my need to pull a trailer behind me when I mow as I can not carry a tune.  HA!  They are so funny, and yes they really told me that – in a loving way.  :D

So I went to charge my IPOD last night and when my I Tunes pops up it tells me how many times I have listened to each song and I am amazed that the song I listen to the most out of my 124 songs I have downloaded is Jai Ho from the movie Slumdog Millionaire.  If you have not seen this movie I highly recommend it.  I watched it last fall and found it to be a brilliant look at what happens in some third world countries and adds a unique twist to it in this movie.  If you have not seen it, please consider renting it and let me know what you think of it.  I think it was one of the best movies I seen last year.

Here is the video – or the song anyway the way I listen to it on my IPOD.  It is fast paced, a great work out song that I can even run to on the treadmill:



And this is more of a video to the song that shows more of what the movie is about:

Author Chat with Marjorie Hart (author of Summer At Tiffany)

Hey all, as promised earlier this week, I am back with the lovely Marjorie Hart.  Marjorie is the author of Summer At Tiffany, the book that we just read for the online book club Wordshakers.  The book was wonderful and my pre-chatting with Marjorie was as well.  I am so excited to have her here and ask you all to warmly welcome Marjorie Hart.

Marjorie Hart

Welcome Marjorie!   Right off the bat I have to ask my signature first question, how do you take your coffee?


Marjorie: Wonderful to be here–only cream, thank you.

When you were back in New York in 1945, did you and Marty have a coffee spot you frequented or were you not really coffee drinkers?

Marjorie in 1945, the year of Tiffany's


Marjorie:  Interesting question, for I don’t remember any coffee spots on Manhattan that summer.  In any case, a luxury we couldn’t afford.  We stirred our pwd. Nestle’s chocolate with water!

You probably get asked this all the time but I am so curious, what made you decide to write this book about your summer at Tiffany’s?


Marjorie:  I was really inspired by my children and grandchildren to write after I had told them bed-time stories about Tiffany’s and that amazing summer.  I wanted to leave a personal history as a  legacy for them. I feel passionately about everyone writing their story.

Book Signing!

Did you approach Marty with the idea of this book, and if so what was her reaction?


Marjorie:  Marty was an incredible help when I was writing and very excited when the book was published. Though we lived on opposite coasts, can you imagine the fun we had reliving that summer over the phone?  Her memory of our costs–like the train trip from Iowa–was accurate to the dime!

At the time you were in New York, did you realize that you were living in a time that would have such huge historical significance?


Marjorie:  We were at war all during my college years and  war casualties were heaviest that summer.  What a total surprise when the atom bomb was dropped– that secret bomb– and the war  ended in August.   VJ Day, was, to us, the greatest historical event ever!

Marjorie, I can only imagine! Do you have any favorite memories of New York in 1945?


Marjorie:  I’ll  never forget the thrill of entering Tiffany’s, wearing our Tiffany-blue dresses and waiting for the diamond rap on the glass counter from the salesmen. Every day was a glamorous event!

When you went back in 2004, what really stood out to you from the New York you remembered?


Marjorie:  So many landmarks were gone! No Astor Hotel, Bonwit Teller,  Automat or Schrafft’s to name a few. Thankfully, there was–and is– the wonderful art-deco Tiffany building  on  Fifth Avenue and 57th St.

One of my favorite parts of the book is the whole brandy sniffing memory.  For me, I learned a little bit about brandy from reading your book.  Did you ever put that lesson to use in the future?


Marjorie:  I still laugh when I think of that day!  I’ve never owned a brandy snifter, but a friend in our writing group did and he loved to demonstrate the best way to swirl brandy!

Book signing have to be interesting and from other authors I have heard all sorts of funny stories.  Do you have any funny or interesting happenings while doing a book signing?


Marjorie:  I hear wonderful stories, but  one that stands out  was in Coronado at Bay Books a few years ago.  A lady told me she had been working that summer in the Empire State Building  the morning the bomber crashed into it. She was one of the fortunate to survive.

Wow, Marjorie that is quite the memory!  It is tradition that when I chat with an author I ask them to share a little known fact about themselves.


Marjorie:  As you know, I play the cello. What is unusual, is that I play with three other cellists and we have a quartet. This morning we played a great arrangement of Eleanor Rigby which attracted the dog-walkers passing by!

Oh I love that Marjorie!  Thank you so much for stopping by, sharing a cup of coffee with me and chatting about your book!

The tea kettle as mentioned in the book, was a going away gift from her co-workers at Tiffany

Readers, you can see more about Marjorie on her website and her blog.  Her twitter is @tiffanylady

Oh and be sure to sign up for a chance to win a copy of this delightful book in hard cover and signed!

Summer At Tiffany by Marjorie Hart- Hard Cover Signed Copy Giveaway

The lovely and delightful Marjorie Hart has offered one lucky Book Journey reader a signed copy of her wonderful book Summer At Tiffany.  You can read my review as well as see others who linked their reviews and see what an amazing read this is.

Although the country is still at war, Manhattan during the summer of 1945 is an intoxicating place, especially for two fresh-faced young coeds who step off a train from Iowa armed with little more than their youthful exuberance and the name of a very influential contact. The combination is enough to land Marjorie and her best friend, Marty, jobs as pages at the prestigious Tiffany & Co., making them the first female employees ever to work the sales floor. From this groundbreaking vantage point, the girls see and do it all, from assisting notorious gangsters and international playboys at the jewelry counters, to rubbing elbows with celebrities at the city’s legendary nightclubs, to glimpsing General Eisenhower during his triumphant victory parade, to kissing soldiers in Times Square on V-J Day


Here’s how to enter this giveaway!

Share here a favorite memory you have from a summer of your past….   you must answer this question to be entered in the giveaway.


Optional Bonus Entries?  Sure!!!

Leave a comment on my review of Summer at Tiffany and/or a comment on the author chat with Marjorie for a bonus entry (one entry for each comment)


Subscribe to this blog (right sidebar, 3rd link down) and let me know in a separate comment here and I will add 2 entries

Tweet or blog about this giveaway and let me know with a link left is=n a separate comment here and add another entry to your chances.


This giveaway will close on September 14. I will select a  winner using random.org and the winning information will be sent to Marjorie who will sign the book and mail it directly to the winner. USA and Canada entrants only please.


Morning Meanderings… What relative of mine is about to skydive for a cause?


Good morning and happy happy Saturday!  I am hitting the gym shortly here with Wendy so I am pounding the coffee and tapping away at my laptop to you.  :D  Today looks like it will be a beautiful day in Minnesota and a great day for skydiving.

My cousin Jarrod will be skydiving today to raise money for the Special Olympic Minnesota athletes at Paul Bunyan Land in Brainerd Minnesota.  I wasn’t sure we would be in town but since we are and Paul Bunyan is about 6 miles from me, I want to attend this event and watch Jarrod.  I am so proud of him and often refer to him as the male version of me….. except… I think he’s braver – but don’t tell him I said that!

You can click the picture to go to a page about this and here is an article in our newspaper

Beyond that – I wanted to make sure that everyone knew that you can sign up now to have an interview swap partner for the BBAW week (Book Blogger Appreciation Week).  It’s a lot of fun and last year I interviewed Ryan from Wordsmithonia and he interviewed me.  It is a wonderful way to get to know another book blogger.   Sign up to be on the list for an interview at the BBAW site.  Hurry – you only have to August 31 to do this and registration takes about 15 seconds.  It is also time to register for BBAW if you have not already.  If you already registered during the award tie them you are good to go, but if you did not, now is the time to sign up to be included in the Book Blogger Directory.


Then yesterday I received an email that I won Mary Kay Anderson’s Beach Bag giveaway for entering a contest about my book club.  I do love my book club and it looks like what I won is something like this:

Kind of excited.  I have not read Mary Kay Anderson’s books before but have heard good things about her latest book The Fixer Upper, which peaking in the basket looks like it is is in there.  SQUUUEEEEEE!  :D


Ok – obviously I am just chatty this morning so hang on while I wrap this up.  Do stop by later today to meet Marjorie Hart of Summer At Tiffany.  She graced this space to share with us about the book – AND I will also be doing a giveaway for a signed copy of her book in hard cover.

That’s it – I am off to prep for my day!  I hope your day is a wonderful sunny one too!

Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

The third and final book of the Hunger Games series, we find Katniss, the survivor of not one but two Hunger Games, homeless as her district 12  has been destroyed and many of the people she grew up with that did not escape are feared to be dead.

Katniss and her family have been moved to district 13, as well as Gale and his, a district that up until recently, was considered to not exist.  While being fed and clothed, there is not much freedom.  Katniss is still unsure if Peeta is dead or alive, tortured or well…. and this haunts her knowing whatever is fate has been because of her.

As the unrest continues to rise in Katniss, she is continuously called on to fight as a rebel – a title she is not sure she has the strength to take on….or even wants.  yet as The Capital continues to taunt her, trying to call her out she knows she and only she – can become the Mockingjay.

I have not been as excited about a book coming out since the final book of the Harry Potter Series.  On that release day, I had taken the day off of work – and waiting on my back deck for the delivery of my treasured book.  I had pre-ordered because I thought we were going to be out-of-town and did not want to miss my chance of having a book waiting for me.   Around 10 am I was cursing out the UPS man for the torture brought into my life and considering driving around to see if I could still get a copy at any of our near by books stores – when I discovered it had been delivered and was neatly tucked in between the main door and the screen door to my home.

In a word?  Bliss.

I was just as eager for Mockingjay, and maybe part of that was I remember the excitement of the Harry Potter books that to this day I have not been able to match and continuously find myself jonesing for that book or series that will take me back to where I can hardly wait to turn the page yet I am afraid to turn the page as that takes me closer tot he end….

This review will be spoiler free, as you will see below I have the spoiler button in use, all fueled up and ready to go.  That will be where you can enter to talk more deeply about this book in a safe environment – and I hope you do, as I want to talk and talk about Mockingjay.  :D

I never could make up my mind between Team Peeta and Team Gale – both had qualities I liked and I entered into this read without a strong sense of one or the other, but always the independent woman that I am – I didn’t even mind if she walked away from them both.  I know many readers would disagree with me there.  :D

The beginning of the book brings you up to speed as to where we are all at this time.  A few things have happened between books – and Katniss is torn as to what to do now.  Her family is safe, but at what cost?  She is being asked to play yet another role that she is not sure she wants any part of – at 17 she is tired and broken.

I enjoyed how Susanne Collins starts the book, while it is a bit slow and filled with details that may bother the eager reader, I didn’t mind it as I didn’t really want it to end.  And no worries, there is plenty of action, plenty of old characters and new and when the book takes off – we are all literally on the run.

There are surprises along the way and that is what I will discuss more in the spoiler section.  I highly recommend the series and encourage you if you have not already to get your hands on Hunger Games and find out for yourself the magic within this series.  I like books that are not cookie cutter copies of a story that I have already read and Suzanne Collins really takes this series out of the typical ring and makes it unique and memorable.

Want to talk more about Mockingjay?  Click the button below and lets chat!


My Amazon Rating

I purchased my copy through Amazon

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