December 2022 TBR

November has flown by for me (I don’t know about you guys). It was a busy month. Here is what I am planning to read for December.

Indie Authors

From Novel Cause
From Author
Author Request
Author Request
From Novel Cause
From Novel Cause


Goodreads Giveaways

Kindle winner
Paperback winner

WWW Wednesday: November 30th, 2022

WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Words.

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Thursday: Well, obviously, it was Thanksgiving….lol. It was also Miss B’s birthday. She’s 17 (and no, I can’t believe it!!) We had brined turkey, ham, potatoes, stuffing, turnips mixed with carrots, and rolls. For dessert, we had pumpkin pie. We enjoyed the parade and the dog show (a tradition in our house), and we chilled for the rest of the day.

Friday: We didn’t do much of anything. We went to Sams Club (I needed gas in my car). Miss R had an abbreviated horseback riding lesson (half hour) and that was it.

Saturday: BK and I packed Miss R and Miss B up and drove to the mountain outlet shops. Miss B has a winter formal on Friday, and she needed to get clothes for it. She also needed long sleeve shirts. Miss R needed leggings (or jeans) and shirts. After we got home, we put up our tree and decorations.

Sunday: Another chill day. But it was also a day of keeping Tony and Vinnie out of the tree. I’ve gotta say, in all my years of owning cats, I have never had a cat climb my Christmas tree until Tony. He is a TERROR. The lower branches are broken, which is fine because we were going to get a new one anyway. But still. I am hoping the newness of it wears off soon.

Monday: That is the only day this week without an appointment. I finished Love and Anarchy (not a fan of the end of that season) and started Uncoupled. I love Neal Patrick Harris, and I am enjoying the show.

The longest book I read this week: The Beholder. I couldn’t get into it, and it took me a couple of days to finish.

The shortest book I read this week: Shadows Wake.

I joined Kindle Unlimited this week. I have meant to for a while but have been putting it off. BK and I already have Audible (he shares the books with me), so I won’t have an issue finding books to read (or listen to) in the future.

This week’s list might look the same as last week’s. I decided not to read ARCs and instead cleaned up some other books on my list. So, I will have almost the same books listed for this week.

So that’s the essential things for this past week. How was your week?

As always, let me know if you have read or are planning to read any of these books!!

What I Recently Finished Reading:

What I am currently reading:

What books I think I’ll read next:

WWW Wednesday: November 23rd, 2022

WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Words.

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Thursday—Nothing too much happened. I started watching Love and Anarchy (a Swedish series) on Netflix. It is hilarious but also VERY raunchy. A lot of sex going on in this show.

FridayMiss R marched with her 4H Club in our city’s Christmas parade. It is a massive affair for our city, bringing hundreds of people downtown. Miss R did a great job throwing candy and marching. She can’t wait to do it next year. Miss B was a little jealous. Last year, she marched with the now-defunct Junior ROTC. But, still, we had a good time.

Saturday—We went to Sam’s Club and then Food Lion. We needed to pick up the last odds and ends for our Thanksgiving dinner. After that, we hung out at home and watched TV.

Sunday—-It was Mr. Z’s birthday!! He turned 15. We had cake (no ice cream since 3 out of the 5 people in our family are lactose intolerant) and presents. He got a coffee mug that turns into his favorite anime when hot, The Stand by Stephen King, and a couple of gift cards from my brother, his family, and my parents. He also got a cookie basket from BK’s mom, a Keurig machine purchased last week, plus a jacket/jeans/pants bought at Sam’s on Saturday.

Monday—It was busy, believe it or not. I had a parent/teacher conference with Miss R’s teacher. She’s doing great but needs to stop doodling. Our leaf service (provided by the city) came by and sucked up the leaves we raked/blew to the curb. There were many (we have 3 huge oak trees in the yard). After I got Miss R from school, we headed to a local barn to work with mini-ponies. The owner uses them as therapy horses and is looking to implement an educational program. The kids will read out words/read to them/or do math equations with the horses. It is supposed to help the kids with retention. Miss R loves doing it and interacting with horses that are small than her. Her riding instructor (who is involved) thinks it is a good way to get her confidence up with the bigger horses.

Tuesday—Nothing too much happened. It was almost like the calm before the storm (with Thanksgiving coming up on Thursday). I did a bunch of laundry and cleaning.

The longest book I read this week: The Boy in the Mirror. It took me all weekend to finish. I couldn’t get into it.

The shortest book I read this week: The Prisoner by B.A. Paris. I devoured this book. I started it last night and finished it this morning (I read it while eating breakfast).

I decided to make a Giveaways shelf on Goodreads. It is mostly for me to track what I have won. I did win one book this week, The Stranded by Sarah Daniels.

I haven’t been updating my old posts. I have been too busy watching Love and Anarchy during the day and The Game of Thrones at night (with On Patrol Live on Friday and Saturday nights). I am going to try and squeeze in time.

I am still behind on reviews, but I am not sweating it. I am getting the reviews for my indie authors done in the promised time frame. The reviews for my NetGalley books are also getting done, but it varies. I am either ahead or behind. Depends on the book’s publication date. But, to repeat myself, I am not stressing over it.

So that’s the essential things for this past week. How was your week?

As always, let me know if you have read or are planning to read any of these books!!

What I Recently Finished Reading:

What I am currently reading:

What books I think I’ll read next:

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Hope Santa Brings

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

How it works:

She assigns each Tuesday a topic and then post her top ten list that fits that topic. You’re more than welcome to join her and create your own top ten (or 2, 5, 20, etc.) list as well. Feel free to put a unique spin on the topic to make it work for you! Please link back to That Artsy Reader Girl in your own post so that others know where to find more information.

  1. What You Wish For by Katherine Center
  2. White Oleander by Janet Fitch
  3. To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo
  4. The Marsh King’s Daughter by Karen Dionne
  5. The Night Swim by Megan Goldin
  6. The Shadows by Alex North
  7. The Midnight Lie by Marie Rutkoski
  8. Havenfall by Sara Holland
  9. Girls of Paper and Fire by Natasha Ngan
  10. LaRose by Louise Erdrich

Things You Save in a Fire by Katherine Center

4 Stars

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Date of publication: August 13th, 2019

Genre: Romance, Women’s Fiction

Where you can find Things You Can Save in a Fire: Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Goodreads synopsis:

From the New York Times, bestselling author of How to Walk Away comes a stunning new novel about family, hope, and learning to love against all odds. 

Cassie Hanwell was born for emergencies. As one of the only female firefighters in her Texas firehouse, she’s seen her fair share of them, and she’s excellent at dealing with other people’s tragedies. But when her estranged and ailing mother asks her to uproot her life and move to Boston, it’s an emergency of a kind Cassie never anticipated.

The tough, old-school Boston firehouse is as different from Cassie’s old job as it could possibly be. Hazing, a lack of funding, and poor facilities mean that the firemen aren’t exactly thrilled to have a “lady” on the crew, even one as competent and smart as Cassie. Except for the handsome rookie, who doesn’t seem to mind having Cassie around. But she can’t think about that. Because she doesn’t fall in love. And because of the advice, her old captain gave her: don’t date firefighters. Cassie can feel her resolve slipping…but will she jeopardize her place in a career where she’s worked so hard to be taken seriously?

Katherine Center’s Things You Save in a Fire is a heartfelt, affecting novel about life, love, and the true meaning of courage.

My Review

Cassie is a hotshot firefighter in Austin, Texas. One of the only female firefighters in a progressive firehouse, Cassie is at the top of her game. Until the night of the awards ceremony, where she attacks the presenter. Given a choice of being fired or reassigned, Cassie takes the reassignment. She is reassigned to a fire station outside of Boston, where she will be taking care of her estranged mother. Cassie is in for a huge change when she joins the department. Underfunded, with inadequate facilities and ripe with sexism, Cassie has her work cut out for her. She also has her work cut out for her in her personal life too. What will happen to Cassie? Can she overcome the odds stacked against her? Will she be able to put the past behind her and move on?

Socksmith Men’s Novelty Crew Socks

I am going to start this review with a complaint. 95% of the book takes places in a fictitious town of Lillian, Massachusetts. Lillian is located south of Rockport/Gloucester. Which would put it in the Manchester-by-the-Sea/Ipswich area. That is not the Boston area. Boston is an hour drive from there. How do I know? I grew up in that area and lived there until 5 years ago. Where I grew up was 20 mins from Boston and Rockport is 20-30 mins from there. That is not the Boston area. That is considered the North Shore/Cape Anne area. So it irked me when I read that. It was the only thing that I didn’t care for in the book.

The primary plotline of Things You Save in a Fire is forgiveness and healing. When Cassie is introduced, she had shut herself off from everything. She didn’t trust because of events that happened 10 years earlier. Cassie despised her mother and had little to do with her. She didn’t have any close relationships outside of work. After the incident and moving to Rockport, I could see her walls coming down. She started to forgive her mother for leaving. She began to come to terms with her rape. Everything came to a head when Owen was injured in the fire, and DeStasio put the blame on her. That scene with DeStasio was one of the most heartbreaking scenes I have read in a while. The details she went into broke my heart in smithereens. But talking about it helped her heal. And in a way, helped her forgive.

I liked the storyline with the rookie and Cassie. I laughed at her first reaction to seeing him the first time. I felt awful about her panicking when she realized that she like liked him. I cried when she told him (in not so many words) what happened to her. I cheered when she decided to throw caution to the wind and pursue a relationship with him. I will say that I thought it was odd that Owen was only known as “the rookie” for about 75% of the book.

The other plotline that caught my attention was the relationship between Cassie and her mother. Cassie was traumatized by her mother leaving on her 16th birthday. In the 10 years since she left, she had little contact with her. I didn’t blame Cassie for flat out saying no to her when Diana called after the incident. But with her father intervening and being forced to transfer, she had to go. Cassie was forced to face her mother. She was forced to start caring. She was also forced to listen to why Diana left. What Cassie believed happened and what she found out is two different things. Towards the middle of the book, it was revealed why Diana wanted Cassie to come to Massachusetts. I didn’t blame Cassie for her reaction.

I loved that Cassie was a firefighter. There are very few female firefighters. The author did a fantastic job of portraying what Cassie had to do to make the men of the Lillian station respect her. She also did a great job of detailing the harassment that Cassie had to deal with.

I will say that I was surprised when I realized that Cassie was the firefighter from How to Walk Away. That one sentence made me go “No way” when I realized it was her.

The end of Things You Save in a Fire was sad and happy at the same time. I was thrilled that Owen and Cassie got their HEA. I loved Cassie’s mindset at the end of the book. I LOVED IT!!! She did get the best revenge.

I would give Things You Save in a Fire an Adult rating. There is sex (not graphic). There is language. There is mild violence. There are triggers. They would be parental abandonment, rape, cancer, and addiction. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

I would recommend Things You Save in a Fire. I would also recommend this book to family and friends.

I would like to thank the publisher, the author, and NetGalley for allowing me to read and review Things You Save in a Fire.

All opinions stated in this review of Things You Save in a Fire are mine.

How to Walk Away by Katherine Center

How to Walk Away

5 Stars

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Date of publication: May 15th, 2018

Genre: Romance, Women’s Fiction

Where you can find How to Walk Away: Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Book synopsis (from Goodreads):

Margaret Jacobsen has a bright future ahead of her: a fiancé she adores, her dream job, and the promise of a picture-perfect life just around the corner. Then, suddenly, on what should have been one of the happiest days of her life, everything she worked for is taken away in one tumultuous moment. 

In the hospital and forced to face the possibility that nothing will ever be the same again, Margaret must figure out how to move forward on her own terms while facing long-held family secrets, devastating heartbreak, and the idea that love might find her in the last place she would ever expect. 

How to Walk Away is Katherine Center at her very best: an utterly charming, hopeful, and romantic novel that will capture reader’s hearts with every page.

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