What I’m Reading: A Fun Blog Series

I read a LOT — for work, for my book club, for my writing career, for fun, to relax, and anytime I’m in a long line waiting for anything.

So I thought I’d start to share some of the fun pieces I constantly run across, in case you’re always looking for fun, new things to read, too.

One blogger I started reading last year is Shay Shull, who writes the Mix and Match Family blog. And she’s been writing the most fun-to-read posts over the last two weeks as she adopts a daughter from China. She outlines the process, her day-to-day activities there as she and her husband wait for their new daughter, and how she’s keeping her two older kids entertained. Here’s where the series starts: China, Days 1-3.

Then there’s: China Day 4, China Day 5, China Day 6, Ashby, China Days 9-10, China Day 11, China Days 12-13, China Days 14-15, and that’s as far as I’ve read. (She doesn’t have forward nav on her posts, so I put all the links up there for you!)

I normally like to read Shay’s blog because she’s cute and sweet and seems like such a good mom, and her kids are adorable. Her husband is a former football player and seems like such a good dad. And she’s also the sister of one of the Bachelors — Sean, who married the girl he met on the show. So if you want more to read, you can dig back into Shay’s archives and read all about her life! (She also gives really great fashion advice.)

But the China story just seemed particularly interesting, and the process of adoption, and the good, open hearts of the parents who do that.

I loved reading it, and hope you do, too.


Free Books!

Who doesn’t love free books? I feel like I’ve been living in a cave, not even realizing that Goodreads has constant book-giveaways. Sheesh. My publisher puts out nearly four new books per week on the GR giveaway circuit, and I’m sure other publishers do as well. It’s a book extravaganza going on over there!

If you’re on Goodreads, and you like giveaways, and you like romance, zoom on over to Berkley’s giveaway page here. My book is on there somewhere if you scroll around, but feel free to peruse and enter as many as you like! It’s not like you can only win once.

And if you want a fast-track to my giveaway, you can go here.

Please share my link with all your romance-reading friends (or the woman next to you at the hair salon, or the person who sits in the next cubicle). There are 20 chances to win, so the more the merrier! My giveaway runs another 11 days.

Good luck! And come back and tell me if you win!

Our 2014 Book Club List!

Nothing like realizing in … uh … MAY … that you’ve never published your book club list that you meant to publish in January. … (No one’s ever accused me of being too punctual).

But here it is, our book club’s big list for the year:

Have you read any of these?

  • Jan — Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore (Robin Sloan)
  • Feb — Flight Behavior (Barbara Kingsolver)
  • Mar — Life After Life (Kate Atkinson)
  • Apr — The Fault in Our Stars (John Green)
  • May — Care of the Soul (Thomas Moore)
  • July — The Goldfinch (Donna Tartt)
  • Aug — The Sweet Life in Paris (David Lebovitz)
  • Sept — The Sun King (Nancy Mitford)
  • Oct — A Piece of My Mind (JAMA)
  • Nov — The Last Runaway (Tracy Chevalier)
  • Dec — Night Circus (Erin Morgenstern)
  • Jan 2015 — The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao (Junot Díaz)

Have you read any of these? What’s on your reading list this year?

Here’s our 2013 book club list.
Here’s our 2012 book club list.
Here’s our 2011 book club list.
Here’s our 2010 book club list.
Here’s our 2009 book club list.
And here’s how we come up with our book club list each year.

A Switch Out of Holiday Music!

So what music is everyone listening to on these fine January days?

Over the holidays, I was listening to a lot of sentimental holiday stuff (Bing Crosby, Nat King Cole, Michael Buble, et. al), but now the holidays are over and I feel like I should move on.

In Januaries past, I’d listen to my kids’ music, where I always got introduced to some fun stuff by Ricky: Mumford and Sons, The Lumineers, The Tallest Man on Earth, etc. In fact, just typing those names right now makes me sort of miss some of those. … I just had to go find a video of my fave TMOE song. Here’s a video of one that I especially fell in love with. Although seriously, it took me forever to figure out what he was saying. …

Happy Friday!

What Was Your Favorite Book of 2012?

Yikes, I’m way behind on my blogging. It’s already April, and I’m still in January mode, asking what your favorite book was in 2012! But I really want to know — Do you remember what your fave was?

Here’s what I read last year. I’d love to hear your comments on any of these! My fave is at the end (had to mull it over!).

I put links to any from my friends and fellow Firebirds! :

* Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop TalkingSusan Cain. Wow. This was really a life-altering book. It was a recommendation from Gretchen Rubin (The Happiness Project) on Facebook. And I couldn’t resist the title. I was going to buy it for my Kindle, but I’m still unsure of how borrowing works on the Kindle, plus I knew right away I’d want to lend it to my son Ricky, so I ended up driving out to Barnes and Noble one night and buying it in hardcopy. And then I bought a second one and had it shipped to Ricky, so he could keep his own copy! It’s EXCELLENT. Truly a must-read for all introverts who have felt like outcasts in some way, and even for the extroverts who love them! It will help you understand yourself, or understand each other. And it really makes introverts feel like they’re not as weird as they thought they were. Very validating.  Continue reading

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