13 Books in 2013-Book Six

I finally finished reading my sixth book. Man, am I behind in this reading challenge or what?!

Belong To Me by Marisa se los Santos


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I’m not sure where to start with this book. I didn’t hate it, but I didn’t totally love it either. I think my problem with the book was that I didn’t really connect with any of the characters until at least half way through, and because I didn’t connect, I had a hard time wanting to keep reading. Obviously.

But once, I got about a third of the way through, I finally started to like the characters. And once that happened, I wanted to keep reading.

I also thought there were way too many points where the characters are rambling. And even though it was intellectual rambling, it got super annoying, and I ended up skimming over most of it.

I have a couple more of her books on my must-read list, but I think I’ll move those down the list a bit. At this point, I’m not really interested in reading more from her, but that could still change. Especially if I get a recommendation from someone.

This book slowed me down a lot and I’m very behind, but hopefully I can make up for it in the next three and a half months and still make all the projects I have floating around in my head!

Have you guys read any good books lately? I’m open to suggestions!

Have a great weekend!


13 Books in 2013-Book Five

I finished my fifth book over the weekend. This time chose Defending Jacob by William Landay because I don’t remember ever having read a legal thriller in the past and I was very intrigued.


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The book’s plot revolves around a man named Andy Barber, his wife, Laurie and their fourteen-year-old son, Jacob. Andy works as the town’s assistant DA until a local teen is found stabbed to death in the park and his son is charged with the murder.

I thought this book was exceptional. I had me hooked from the first page and I didn’t want to put it down. The plot twists were riveting. They were emotional and thought-provoking.

The book centers around the question, “How far would you go for you child/children”? Having children of my own, I found myself wondering if you do what’s right or do you do what’s right for your child, and how do you know the difference when the lines become blurred.

I highly recommend this book. My little review can’t even come close to doing it justice. Now that I’ve read it, I can’t wait to read more from William Landay. Terrific writing.

Happy July! I can’t believe it’s July already!

13 Books in 2013-Book Four

I read The Rhythm of Family by Amanda Blake Soule & Stephen Soule.



image via amazon.com


I’d had this book on my Amazon wishlist for a while. I almost bought it once, but decided on something else. I’m glad that I finally got around to making the purchase.

The book includes short essays by both Amanda and her husband detailing their lives and stories in regards to each month and season, as well as, beautiful photography, crafting tutorials and seasonal activities.

The essays were well written and I enjoyed reading them for the most part. There were some times when I thought they were a little “over” written, but still good. They made me want to move to Maine…and I hate snow.

The crafting ideas and tutorials weren’t anything all that original, but that’s not to say that they didn’t add to the book. There were a few that I want to try.

The same can be said about the activity suggestions. Some were new ideas to me, but most were activities that my family and I already do. But I did pick up a few picnic pointers that I will definitely be using.

I really enjoyed the overall feel and mood of the book. I’m always looking for good books that revolve around family. Plus, I really like they way they detail their everyday lives, making even the simplest of tasks seem special. It made me realize just how awesome the ordinary moments can be.

On to the next!

13 Books In 2013-Book Three

I burned through book number three in less than a week. It was that good.

I read The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman



I couldn’t put this book down. It was so beautifully written. I absolutely loved it. It was heart wrenching and lovely. The author paints such vivid pictures with her words and you feel everything the characters feel. By the end I was sobbing. 

I would say that it has become one of my favorite books of all time. 

I highly recommend this book. Five stars.


Happy Monday!

P.S. I have no idea what to read next because I don’t know how anything can compare. I think I’ll have to go with a nonfiction book. 

13 Books in 2013-Book Two

It didn’t take me long to finish book two of thirteen! The second book in my challenge was Dinner: A Love Story.



I received this book as a gift from my husband for Valentine’s Day. I’d been wanting it for a long time.

I fell in love with it instantly. It does have a lot of recipes, but there is a great story about how the author’s family dinners evolved over the years. She in no way makes you feel guilty about your own approach to family dinners. In fact, she makes you feel like you can easily accomplish family dinners on your own terms, but that the important thing is the family bond it creates when you follow through.

I was able to really relate to so much of her story. We almost always sit down together and eat as a family, even if we’re just eating sandwiches. Not only is she relatable, but she’s really funny. I laughed a lot. She kept the writing light and entertaining.

I’m looking forward to trying out quite a few of the recipes and will definitely share my thoughts on them with you.

If you simply just enjoy cooking, enjoy cooking and are thinking of having a family, or enjoy cooking and already have a family, I would totally recommend picking up a copy of this book.

Now, on to the next…only I haven’t figured out what I want to read yet.

P.S. The sun is sort of shining today. I’ll take what I can get at this point…

13 Books in 2013-Book One

The first book of my 13 books in 2013 is Daring Greatly by Brene Brown.


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It took me way too long to finish. And not because it wasn’t good, because it was a good read, but for some reason I had a hard time getting really into the book. Maybe that was because I would only read a little bit every night before I fell asleep.

I connected with the content and found it to be very interesting and eye-opening. It talks a lot about vulnerability and how it’s so important in our lives with regards to living wholeheartedly and our ability to dare greatly. I would definitely recommend it. It was much different from what I thought it would be, but so worth reading.

Up next: Dinner-A Love Story by Jenny Rosenstrach

Can’t wait to dive right in!

I have a lot of catching up to do…

Have a great day!



13 Books in 2013

Today as I was adding yet another book to my must-read list, I realized how long it’s been since I’ve finished a book. I’ve started a few within the past six months, but haven’t finished a single one. I tend to go through reading spurts. I’ll read five books back to back and then not pick up another book for months. Instead, I spend time watching too much tv or spending too much time online. So, with all that being said, I’ve come to the conclusion that if I set a reading goal for myself for the year, maybe I’ll actually spend more time reading.

I chose thirteen books because it’s 2013, and twenty seemed like too many considering the number of books I read last year. Because it’s already February and I’m just now starting this, I have a little catching up to do, but I’m confident that I can make it happen!

The first book I plan to cross off my list is Daring Greatly by Brene Brown. I started it a few months ago because I heard a lot of good things about it. I didn’t get very far into it before losing interest, but I think that was because I wasn’t in one of my reading spurts, so I think I’ll start it again from the beginning. I’ll be sure to fill you in when I finish and I think I’ll even put together a post with a list of some of the books I plan to read.

Although my must-read list is long, I would love any suggestions. So, let me know if there’s a book you’ve read that you just couldn’t put down and I’ll do my best to add it to my ever growing list.

I need a reading nook like this!