March 2023 Wrap Up

Here is what I read/posted in March.

As always, let me know if you have read any of these books and (if you did) what you thought of them.

Books I Read:

ARC from Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine, Ballantine Books
ARC from author
Kindle Unlimited Purchase
Free Kindle Purchase
ARC from author
ARC from St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Griffin
ARC from St. Martin’s Press, Wednesday Books
Free Kindle Purchase—No Review
Free Kindle Purchase—No Review
Free Kindle Purchase—No Review
ARC from St. Martin’s Press, Minotaur Books
ARC from St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Griffin
ARC from Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine, Dell
Free Kindle Purchase—No Review
Free Kindle Purchase—No Review
KU Purchase—No Review
ARC from author
ARC from author
ARC from St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Griffin
ARC from Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine, Ballantine Books
Non ARC from Author (KU Purchase)
KU Purchase—No Review
ARC from St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Paperbacks
ARC from St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Griffin
ARC from St. Martin’s Press, Wednesday Books
Free Kindle Purchase—No Review
Free Kindle Purchase—No Review
Free Kindle Purchase—No Review
Free Kindle Purchase—No Review
Free Kindle Purchase—No Review
KU Purchase—No Review
Free Kindle Purchase—No Review
Non-ARC from author
ARC from Crooked Lane Books
ARC from Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine, Ballantine Books

Books I got from NetGalley:

Read Now from St. Martin’s Press
Read Now from St. Martin’s Press, Wednesday Books
Read Now from St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Griffin
Read Now from St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Griffin
Read Now from St. Martin’s Press, Minotaur Books
Read Now from St. Martin’s Press, Minotaur Books
Invite from St. Martin’s Press, Minotaur Books
Wish granted from Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine, Del Rey
Invite from Level Best Books, Independent Books Publishers Association, Members Titles
Wish granted from Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine, Del Rey
Wished granted from Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine, Del Rey
Invite from St. Martin’s Press, Wednesday Books
Invite from Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine, Bantam
Wish Granted from Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine, Ballantine Books
Limited time Read Now from Sourcebook Casablanca
Wish granted from Sourcebooks Casablanca
Read Now from Crooked Lane Books
Read Now from St. Martin’s Press

Books I got from Authors/Indie Publishers:

Invite from Novel Cause
Invite from Author
Invite from Author
Invite from Author
Invite from Author
Invite from Novel Cause
Invite from author
Invite from Author
Invite from author
Invite from Novel Cause
Invite from author
Invite from Dancing Lemur Press

Giveaway Winners

Goodreads Giveaway Winner through William Morrow—Hardcover

Books Reviewed:

The Things We Do To Our Friends—review here

Too Wrong to Be Right—review here

The Shadow of Theron—review here

Mad Honey—review here

A Paroxysm of Fear—review here

The Last Lap—review here

Mr. & Mrs. Witch—review here

Missing Clarissa—review here

What Have We Done—review here

Off the Map—review here

Solomon’s Crown—review here

For Our Soul—review here

AI—review here

Not That Kind of Ever After—review here

The Fake—review here

Peril in Paradise—review here

Yours Truly, The Duke—review here

Hotel of Secrets—review here

Reading Challenges

Buzzword Reading Challenge (words in the title like secret, secretive, secrets)—A Dangerous SecretFinished 3-6-2023

2023 Sami Parker Reads Title Challenge (A book with one of these words in the title: Ice, Snow, Flurry, or Blizzard)—Ice—Finished 3-6-2023

Cover Scavenger Hunt 2023 (Food)—The Obituary Society—Finished 3-10-2023

The StoryGraph’s Onboarding Reading Challenge (read a book from your StoryGraph recommendations)—Beautiful DemonsFinished 3-10-2023

The StoryGraph Reads the World (Cuba)—Of Women and Salt—Finished 3-12-2023

The StoryGraph’s Genre Challenge (a sapphic romance)—She Who Became the SunFinished 3-22-2023

Beat the Backlist 2023 (about dragons or robots)—The Glow of the Dragon’s Heart—Finished 3-22-2023

Scavenger Hunt TBR Book Challenge (what is the most common letter in the title of the last book you read for this challenge. Find a book with a title that starts with that letter)—Even the Moon has Scars—Finished 3-23-2023

Scavenger Hunt (the prettiest book in your TBR)—The Watchmaker’s Daughter—Finished 3-23-2023

Popsugar Reading Challenge 2023 (A book about a vacation)—The SwapFinished 3-24-2023

2023 TBR Toppler (the first book in a series)—The Last Artifact—Finished 3-26-23

2023 Monthly Themes (March of the Memoirs)—In the Dream House—Finished 3-1-23

2023 Reading Challenge (A book in a series you already started)—Catching Fire—Finished 3-27-23

2023 ABC Challenge (C)—Contained—Finished 3-6-2023

Romanceopoly 2023 (Killer crescent: read a mystery or thriller of your choosing)—Malevolent—Finished 3-1-23

2023 TBR Prompts (a book written about women in STEM or a book with a strong female lead)—Vicious DelightsFinished 3-28-2023

Bookish Travels—March 2023 Destinations

This meme is what it says: Places I travel to in books each month. Books are lovely and take you to places you would never get to. That includes places of fantasy too!!

Bon Voyage!!

Please let me know if you have read these books or traveled to these areas.

United States

New Hampshire (Adams)
New York (Haverford, Limerick, Johnstown), Connecticut (Ashford, Canterbury, Bayfield), Pennsylvania (Philidelphia)
Iowa (Iowa City), Pennsylvania (Philidelphia, Allentown), Georgia (Savannah), Indiana (Bloomington), New York (New York City)
Louisiana (New Orleans, Algiers Point, French Quarter, Port Sulphur)
Florida (Key West, Orlando), Georgia (Atlanta)
Georgia (Atlanta, Decatur)
Washington (Oreville)
California (post-apocalyptic Sacramento)
Hawaii (unnamed island)
Washington D.C., West Virginia, Pennsylvania (Chestertown, Philadelphia), Florida (Miami)
Florida (Fort Lauderdale)
Nebraska (Auburn), Wyoming (Rock Springs)
Georgia (Peachville)
Florida (Miami), Texas
Hawaii (Maui, Maalaea Bay, Lahaina, Wailuku)
Oregon (countryside), California (Los Angeles)
Massachusetts (Gloucester, Boston)
Massachusetts (Boston), New York (New York City)
Wisconsin (Lofty Pines, Pine Lake)

South Africa



Paris, Aquitaine, Rouen, Nantes, Brittany, Rennes, Poitiers
The French Riviera


Dexford, Jersey, St. Helier
Regency London
Victorian London
Chiswick, London




Scottish Highlands, Arach Caim, Glasgow
Glasgow, Isle of Benbarra


Dublin, Tralee, Wicklow Mountains, Donegal, Ballybunion
Unnamed Village, Dublin


Estancia Moat


Camaguey, La Habana



The Afterlife

Purgatory, Heaven




Toronto, St. Clair


Southern Henan (Huai River Plains, Zhongli, Wuhuang, Anfeng, Anyang, Lu, Jiankang, Bianliang), Hichetu (Shanxi)



Erlanis Empire

Arborren, Chrysalis


The Cantabrian Mountains, Los Picos De Europa, Costa Brava, Toledo




Florence, Rome


The Atlas Mountains





District 12, District 11, District 8, Capitol, District 13

Isle of Midnight

Isle of Midnight (Devil’s Bay)


Typgar (Loh’dis), Narcaya

WWW Wednesday: March 22nd, 2023

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?


Remember last week when I said I had been super busy and expected to continue to be super busy for the next couple of weeks? Well, life has a way of changing plans. Let me catch you all up on what’s been happening around here.

Mr. Z got his Herbst devices put in on the week I skipped. The poor kid was in pain, and BK wanted me to call and have them removed. I said no (he needs them) and gave BK the link the orthodontist gave me. Mr. Z is no longer in pain but complains he sounds like some steampunk creation….lol.

Miss R got her braces off last week. She is wearing a retainer full-time and loving not having braces. She has been eating gum nonstop. The ortho told me that she will be going in for her second step in treatment (upper and lower braces) when she’s in 7th grade (so not thinking about that right now).

Miss B has been doing OK. She’s been very active with all sorts of groups in school and has been looking at some local colleges to apply to next year. She took her ACT’s two weeks ago, and we’re waiting for her score.

Miss B, BK, and I got sick over the past week. It wasn’t Covid (we all tested around four times each). But whatever it was knocked us all out. It started with a headache, a sore throat, extreme tiredness ( I slept all day Friday and Saturday and I never sleep that much), and an awful cough and sneezing. I am still getting over it.

I took my almost 7-year-old female cat, Snickers, to the vet to start getting once-monthly arthritis shots. I was a little skeptical if it would work, and I was proven wrong. It’s been a week since the shot, and she has acted like a new cat. She’s been jumping on things (without wincing), not being as grumpy, and (this is huge) using the litterbox 100% of the time.

Kevin, our newest kitten, is getting so much better. We can walk past him now without him running away. We can also walk up to him and pet him. He’s been leaning into our pets and giving tail hugs. Miss B has been able to pick him up for short periods too. He is also sleeping with BK and me at night. I woke up Saturday night, and he was by our waists….lol. Do you think he’s getting comfy? The vet says he is older than she originally thought, but she wasn’t sure. His teeth and his weight said two different things. She placed him between 4-5 months old. I have to call next month to schedule his neutering, but that might be a problem. The vet only found one testicle. She thinks the other one is undescended. She said it was no biggie but would have to go through the abdomen to remove it.

Shows I watched this week: The Last of Us and OnPatrol Live.

What I Cooked/Baked: Nothing. When I say I have been sick, I couldn’t even cook. I supervised Miss B in making eggs and pasta before returning to bed.


I didn’t read from Wednesday until Sunday. BK told me that’s how he knew I was truly ill. I had to stop reading one book to read the two ARCs I had left for the month.

Also, because I was sick, I didn’t write reviews. Thankfully, I had written Solomon’s Crown before I got too sick to concentrate. That left me behind three reviews. I was able to catch up yesterday (Miss R was home from school sick).

I have decided to start accepting invites from indie authors again, but I put on the contact form that I won’t get to their books until June. I also decided to start putting how many spots I have open for reviews. Not sure if that’s going to help or hinder me. We’ll see.

The longest book I read this week: She Who Became the Sun. This is the book that I had to stop reading because I was sick.

The shortest book I read this week: Yours Truly, The Duke. It was a cute non complicated read!!! Just what I needed after not reading for a while.

Other Interesting Bookish News: I was contacted by an author to review her book (a mystery), and she offered me a cookbook along with it. I don’t have to review it either. I was thrilled. The cookbook is Cozy Food: 128 Cozy Mystery Writers Share Their Favorite Recipes by Nancy Lynn Jarvis.

What I Recently Finished Reading:

During ball season, anything can happen, even love.

It’s ball season in Vienna, and Maria Wallner only wants one thing: to restore her family’s hotel, the Hotel Wallner, to its former glory. She’s not going to let anything get in her way – not her parents’ three-decade-long affair; not seemingly-random attacks by masked assassins; and especially not the broad-shouldered American foreign agent who’s saved her life two times already. No matter how luscious his mouth is.

Eli Whittaker also only wants one thing: to find out who is selling American secret codes across Europe, arrest them, and go home to his sensible life in Washington, DC. He has one lead – a letter the culprit sent from a Viennese hotel. But when he arrives in Vienna, he is immediately swept up into a chaotic whirlwind of balls, spies, waltzes, and beautiful hotelkeepers who seem to constantly find themselves in danger. He disapproves of all of it! But his disapproval is tested as he slowly falls deeper into the chaos – and as his attraction to said hotelkeeper grows.

What I am currently reading:

Mulan meets The Song of Achilles; an accomplished, poetic debut of war and destiny, sweeping across an epic alternate China.

“I refuse to be nothing…”

In a famine-stricken village on a dusty yellow plain, two children are given two fates. A boy, greatness. A girl, nothingness…

In 1345, China lies under harsh Mongol rule. For the starving peasants of the Central Plains, greatness is something found only in stories. When the Zhu family’s eighth-born son, Zhu Chongba, is given a fate of greatness, everyone is mystified as to how it will come to pass. The fate of nothingness received by the family’s clever and capable second daughter, on the other hand, is only as expected.

When a bandit attack orphans the two children, though, it is Zhu Chongba who succumbs to despair and dies. Desperate to escape her own fated death, the girl uses her brother’s identity to enter a monastery as a young male novice. There, propelled by her burning desire to survive, Zhu learns she is capable of doing whatever it takes, no matter how callous, to stay hidden from her fate.

After her sanctuary is destroyed for supporting the rebellion against Mongol rule, Zhu uses takes the chance to claim another future altogether: her brother’s abandoned greatness.

Francesca Flores’s The Witch and the Vampire is a queer Rapunzel retelling where a witch and a vampire who trust no one but themselves must journey together through a cursed forest with danger at every turn.

Ava and Kaye used to be best friends. Until one night two years ago, vampires broke through the magical barrier protecting their town, and in the ensuing attack, Kaye’s mother was killed, and Ava was turned into a vampire. Since then, Ava has been trapped in her house. Her mother Eugenia needs her: Ava still has her witch powers, and Eugenia must take them in order to hide that she’s a vampire as well. Desperate to escape her confinement and stop her mother’s plans to destroy the town, Ava must break out, flee to the forest, and seek help from the vampires who live there. When there is another attack, she sees her opportunity and escapes.

Kaye, now at the end of her training as a Flame witch, is ready to fulfill her duty of killing any vampires that threaten the town, including Ava. On the night that Ava escapes, Kaye follows her and convinces her to travel together into the forest, while secretly planning to turn her in. Ava agrees, hoping to rekindle their old friendship, and the romantic feelings she’d started to have for Kaye before that terrible night.

But with monstrous trees that devour humans whole, vampires who attack from above, and Ava’s stepfather tracking her, the woods are full of danger. As they travel deeper into the forest, Kaye questions everything she thought she knew. The two are each other’s greatest threat—and also their only hope, if they want to make it through the forest unscathed.

What books I think I’ll read next:

Who knew dragons could be so… hot?

I grew up as a trash bag kid. I don’t want to even try counting how many foster homes I’ve lived in, since I was orphaned at the age of five!

When some long-lost relatives take me in during my last year in the system, I’m careful to remain on my best behavior. Finding family and living happily ever after has always been a secret fantasy, so getting the boot would be devastating!

But these perfect strangers are turning out to be perfectly strange. Like when they tell me dragons are real and my great-aunt’s husband just happens to be one!


But before I can pack my few belongings and bolt, I see the evidence with my own eyes. Then I catch sight of my new uncle’s five gorgeous nephews and decide… maybe dragons aren’t so bad after all…

Two strangers.
Two broken hearts.
One night to set each other free.

Almost dying from an undiagnosed heart condition means every second of your life is a precious gift to be guarded.
Lena Pettitt was born a miracle.
And her parents never let her forget it.
Even if that daily reminder kept her from experiencing the one thing they were trying to protect most–her life.

Gabriel Martinez’s heart has been ripped out.
His pride has been stomped on.
Oh, and he now has an arrest record that’s caused an even bigger rift between him and his DA mother. All for a love that wasn’t really true.

Now he’s exiled to his grandmother’s, working on his late grandpa’s old Corvair, when a shivering girl knocks on the garage door. Lena, left alone for the first time ever, has locked herself out of her house. Gabe knows he could help this girl get back inside her house–but that may mean missing the next train to Boston to pick up the part he’s spent weeks tracking down. She can wait for him at his grandmother’s or…

A few hours, an aluminum valve cover, and some strong coffee later, neither Gabe nor Lena can feign disappointment when they race to the station and arrive just as the last train home from Boston is pulling out.

As jaded as he is, Gabe can’t deny the fact that he’s excited to spend the night exploring a city he knows nearly every corner of, with a girl who sees magic in the simplest things.

Lena has been waiting for her tiny world to crack open her entire life. Now that it’s finally happened, she finds the only thing she can focus on is the unexpected tour guide who opens her eyes to possibilities she never imagined.

All they have is this one night, together, under the bright moon in a city full of hidden beauty.
It’s one night that will change how they see the world and the paths their hearts will take forever.

India Steele is desperate. Her father is dead, her fiancé took her inheritance, and no one will employ her, despite years working for her watchmaker father. Indeed, the other London watchmakers seem frightened of her. Alone, poor, and at the end of her tether, India takes employment with the only person who’ll accept her – an enigmatic and mysterious man from America. A man who possesses a strange watch that rejuvenates him when he’s ill.

Matthew Glass must find a particular watchmaker, but he won’t tell India why any old one won’t do. Nor will he tell her what he does back home, and how he can afford to stay in a house in one of London’s best streets. So when she reads about an American outlaw known as the Dark Rider arriving in England, she suspects Mr. Glass is the fugitive. When danger comes to their door, she’s certain of it. But if she notifies the authorities, she’ll find herself unemployed and homeless again – and she will have betrayed the man who saved her life.

With a cast of quirky characters, an intriguing mystery, and a dash of romance, THE WATCHMAKER’S DAUGHTER is the start of a thrilling new historical fantasy series from the author of the bestselling Ministry of Curiosities, Freak House, and Emily Chambers Spirit Medium books.

When Nicole Graves arranges a summer-long swap of her Los Angeles condo for a London couple’s house, she thinks it’s the perfect arrangement. She’s always dreamed of seeing the real London; she’s also hopeful the time away with her husband Brad will be good for their troubled marriage. But things don’t turn out the way Nicole expects: The Londoners fail to arrive in L.A. and appear to be missing. Then people begin following Nicole and making threats, demanding information she doesn’t have. Soon, Nicole realizes she’s in serious trouble––but she can’t get Brad or the police to believe her. When the confrontations turn deadly, Nicole must either solve the case or become the next victim.

March 2023 TBR

February has flown by for me (I don’t know about you guys).

Indie Authors/Publishers

From Author
From Author
From Author

A Paroxysm of Fear by Chad Miller

From Author


From Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine, Ballantine Books
From St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Griffin
From St. Martin’s Press, Wednesday Books
From St. Martin’s Press, Minotaur Books
From St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Griffin
From Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine, Dell
From St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Griffin
From Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine, Ballantine Books
St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Paperbacks
From St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Griffin
From SMP, Wednesday Books

Reading Challenges:

Cover Scavenger Hunt 2023
Scavenger Hunt TBR Book Challenge
Scavenger Hunt
Popsugar Reading Challenge 2023
2023 Monthly Themes
2023 TBR Toppler
2023 Reading Challenge
Buzzword Reading Challenge 2023
2023 Sami Parker Reads Title Challenge
The StoryGraph’s OnBoarding Reading Challenge 2023
The StoryGraph Reads the World 2023
The StoryGraph’s Genre Challange
Beat the Backlist 2023
2023 ABC Challenge
2023 TBR Prompts