So This Is January…

There is something about January.

Maybe it’s the end of the holidays, the slightly slower pace of life…

or maybe it’s just that it is a new year… new possibilities.

January seems to be the time when I turn more to my love of books and to this site where I can talk books with other book lovers. Book Journey after all was the beginning. This site was how I learned about the Book Expo in New York and attended many years and met many amazing reviewers that I am proud to call friends. This is where I connected to my local Library and became involved in the board; not only with the Friends Board but the City Board as well as State. This is where I started connecting to Authors and Publishers which led to Wine and Words (about to celebrate 10 years!)….
and all of this…
It is why my son’s bench (funded by fellow bloggers, friends, and Publishing houses) sits at the Brainerd Public Library to this day.

So this is the why. The why I love this site and while I go a little radio silent when my life gets busy… I always return.


The heart wants what the heart wants….

So… On to the books. The books, pictured above are the books that have come into my home this week.

The Barrens by Kurt Johnson and Ellie Johnson (sent from the Author) :

Two young women attending college decide to have a summer adventure canoeing the rapids-strewn Thelon River that runs 450 miles through the uninhabited Barren Lands of subarctic Canada. Holly made the trip once before with a group of skilled paddlers she trained with at camp, and she wants to share that experience with her friend and lover, Lee, believing it will draw them closer. But a week in, Holly, the risk-taker, falls while taking a selfie near the edge of a cliff. She is left injured and comatose, and soon dies. Their locator beacon for summoning rescue was smashed in Holly’s fall. It remains to Lee, the inexperienced paddler, to continue the grueling and dangerous trip alone, to save herself and return her lover’s body to civilization and Holly’s family.

The Why: The author sent me an email and I thought it sounded interesting.

House Of GUCCI by Sara Gay Forden (given to me by my friend Brenda Johnson):

On March 27, 1995, Maurizio Gucci, heir to the fabulous fashion dynasty, was slain by an unknown gunman as he approached his Milan office. In 1998, his ex-wife Patrizia Reggiani Martinelli–nicknamed “The Black Widow” by the press–was sentenced to 29 years in prison, for arranging his murder. 

Did Patrizia murder her ex-husband because his spending was wildly out of control? Did she do it because her glamorous ex was preparing to marry his mistress, Paola Franchi? Or is there a possibility she didn’t do it at all?

The Gucci story is one of glitz, glamour, intrigue, the rise, near fall and subsequent resurgence of a fashion dynasty. Beautifully written, impeccably researched, and widely acclaimed, The House of Gucci will captivate readers with its page-turning account of high fashion, high finance, and heart-rending personal tragedy.

The Why: Brenda purchased for herself but could not get into it. I know a little about the story but nothing I really followed – we will see 🙂

The Fashion Orphans by Randy Susan Meyers and MJ Rose (sent by Randy Susan Meyers):

Estranged half-sisters Gabrielle Winslow and Lulu Quattro have only two things in common: mounds of debt and coils of unresolved enmity toward Bette Bradford, their controlling and imperious recently deceased mother.

Gabrielle, the firstborn, was raised in relative luxury on Manhattan’s rarefied Upper East Side. Now, at fifty-five, her life as a Broadway costume designer married to a heralded Broadway producer has exploded in divorce.

Lulu, who spent half her childhood under the tutelage of her working-class Brooklyn grandparents, is a grieving widow at forty-eight. With her two sons grown, her life feels reduced to her work at the Ditmas Park bakery owned by her late husband’s family.

The two sisters arrive for the reading of their mother’s will, expecting to divide a sizable inheritance, pay off their debts, and then again turn their backs on each other.

But to their shock, what they have been left is their mother’s secret walk-in closet jammed with high-end current and vintage designer clothes and accessories— most from Chanel.

Contemplating the scale of their mother’s self-indulgence, the sisters can’t help but wonder if Lauren Weisberger had it wrong: because it seems, in fact, that the devil wore Chanel. But as they being to explore their mother’s collection, meet and fall in love with her group of warm, wonderful friends, and magically find inspiring messages tucked away in her treasures — it seems as though their mother is advising Lulu and Gabrielle from the beyond — helping them rediscover themselves and restore their relationship with each other.

The Why: Sent to my by the author, sounds like a fun and interestign read.

Just Haven’t Met You Yet by Sophie Cousens (purchased by me at the airport):

Laura’s business trip to the Channel Islands isn’t exactly off to a great start. After unceremoniously dumping everything in her bag in front of the most attractive man she’s ever seen in real life, she arrives at her hotel only to realize she’s grabbed the wrong suitcase from the airport. Her only consolation? The irresistibly appealing contents of the case: a copy of her favorite book; piano music; and a rugged, heavy knit fisherman sweater only a Ryan Gosling lookalike could pull off. The owner of this suitcase is Laura’s dream man–she’s sure of it. Now, all she has to do is find him.

The mix-up seems written in the stars. After all, what are the odds that she’d find The One on the same remote island where her mom and dad had first fallen in love, especially as she sets out to write an article about their epic romance? Commissioning surly cab driver Ted to ferry her around seems like her best bet in both tracking down the mystery suitcase owner and retracing her parents’ footsteps. And if beneath Ted’s gruffness lies a wit that makes their cab rides strangely entertaining, so much the better. But as Laura’s long-lost luggage soulmate proves difficult to find–and as she realizes that the love story she’s held on a pedestal all her life might not have been that perfect–she’ll have to rethink her whole outlook on love to discover what she really wants.

The why: It looked good fom the airport selections and they have travel bags on the cover lol

The Sanatorium by Sarah Pearse (purchased by me at the airport):

Half hidden by forest and overshadowed by threatening peaks, Le Sommet has always been a sinister place. Long plagued by troubling rumors, the former abandoned sanatorium has since been renovated into a five-star minimalist hotel.

An imposing, isolated getaway spot high up in the Swiss Alps is the last place Elin Warner wants to be. But Elin’s taken time off from her job as a detective, so when her estranged brother, Isaac, and his fiancée, Laure, invite her to celebrate their engagement at the hotel, Elin really has no reason not to accept.

Arriving in the midst of a threatening storm, Elin immediately feels on edge–there’s something about the hotel that makes her nervous. And when they wake the following morning to discover Laure is missing, Elin must trust her instincts if they hope to find her. With the storm closing off all access to the hotel, the longer Laure stays missing, the more the remaining guests start to panic.

Elin is under pressure to find Laure, but no one has realized yet that another woman has gone missing. And she’s the only one who could have warned them just how much danger they are all in.

The Why: Looks a little spooky and there was a refernce to The Shining

The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave (my purchase for our February Book Club Read):

Despite her confusion and fear, Hannah Hall knows exactly to whom the note refers: Owen’s sixteen-year-old daughter, Bailey. Bailey, who lost her mother tragically as a child. Bailey, who wants absolutely nothing to do with her new stepmother.

As Hannah’s increasingly desperate calls to Owen go unanswered; as the FBI arrests Owen’s boss; as a US Marshal and FBI agents arrive at her Sausalito home unannounced, Hannah quickly realizes her husband isn’t who he said he was. And that Bailey just may hold the key to figuring out Owen’s true identity—and why he really disappeared.

Hannah and Bailey set out to discover the truth, together. But as they start putting together the pieces of Owen’s past, they soon realize they are also building a new future. One neither Hannah nor Bailey could have anticipated.

The Why: Book Club selection – sounds good and I have been curious about this author.

There they are. It’s the weekend, I have a little house cleaning to do, the Peloton awaits, and I work later today until late afternoon. Hopefully a little reading time later.

Happy weekend!
~Sheila

6 thoughts on “So This Is January…

  1. I love seeing your post alerts come through my reader! Have a good weekend, Sheila. And thanks for sharing the pic of Justin’s bench 🥰

  2. Thanks for your comments and I love your son’s bench. I hope to have a contemplative moment in it next time I visit the BPL. And thanks for the recommendations. Gotta say, I’ve long had a fascination with the Barrens, so The Barrens is now on my list.

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