Weekly Wrap Up: November 25th through December 1st 2018

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Books I’ve Read (clicking on the picture will bring you to Goodreads page):

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Sisters of the Fire (Blood and Gold, #2)

White Stag (Permafrost, #1)

Books with reviews pending (clicking on pictures will bring you to the Amazon page):

An Anonymous Girl—review coming January 8th, 2019

An Anonymous Girl

White Stag—review coming January 9th, 2019

White Stag (Permafrost, #1)

The Duke I Once Knew—review coming December 31st, 2018

The Duke I Once Knew (Unlikely Duchesses, #1)

Books with published reviews (clicking on pictures will bring you to the Amazon page):

Perfectly Inappropriate—review here

Perfectly Inappropriate

The Good, The Bad, and The Duke—review here

The Good, the Bad, and the Duke (The Cavensham Heiresses #4)

Rend—review here

Rend (Riven, #2)

Foam on the Crest of Waves—review here

Foam On The Crest Of Waves

NetGalley Haul(clicking on the picture will bring you to the Goodreads page):

Keep Her Close

Email Haul (clicking on the picture will bring you to the Goodreads page):

The House of Fire and Rain (Firemountain Chronicles, #2)

Weekly Posts:

Weekly Wrap Up

Freebie Sunday

Music Monday

WWW Wednesday

Throwback Thursday

Foodie Friday

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Foam On The Crest Of Waves by Silke Stein

Foam On The Crest Of Waves

4 Stars

Publisher: Self-published

Date of publication: November 25th, 2018

Genre: Women’s Fiction

Where you can find Foam On The Crest Of Waves: Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Goodreads synopsis:

Can facing the past transform the present?

In a small fishing town on the Mendocino coast, the tides of time have washed over rumors and suspicions, yet the members of a maimed family still struggle to cope with their memories.

A broken woman, refusing to let go of her vanished husband.
Her widowed brother, clinging to the shatters of the life he loved.
His delusional daughter, planning to turn mermaid on her fifteenth birthday.

But when a young man realizes he made a mistake, secrets start emerging from the deep. Will they bring further grief, or possibly redemption?


My review:

Abalone has never recovered from the death of her mother. Becoming selectively mute, Abby communicates with gestures and through her jewelry/artwork. Because she won’t talk, Abby hasn’t let on that she plans on turning into a mermaid on her 15th birthday. She believes that her mother is alive, living with the mermaids and wants Abby to join her. Jeremy is Abby’s father. For the past 7 years, he has been in a fog of grief, only coming out to somewhat deal with Abby’s issues. He is jolted out of his fog by a series of events. He is forced to face that his wife wasn’t who he thought she was. Devastated by the disappearance of her husband, Gina has thrown herself into helping Jeremy and Abby. But, Gina knows a secret. A secret that could devastate Jeremy and Abby if they found out. Lief somehow has gotten himself into abalone smuggling without knowing how. His secret passion singing and he has a voice that rivals professionals. Lief has developed a stalker like interest in Abby after she assaults him. What will happen on Abby’s 15th birthday? Can this family survive the secrets? Or will Abby be lost to the mermaids?

Foam on the Crest of Waves is a very loose retelling of The Little Mermaid. The more accurate description would be a reverse telling of The Little Mermaid. What I liked about this book was that the author ran with the retelling. She took that fable and put her own twist on it. I also liked that she followed the original Hans Christian Andersen tale. She did mention the Disney retelling several times during the book. The mural was a huge homage to it. But the bones of the story was the original story.

There was one point in the book where I had several “WTH” moments. I didn’t understand how Lief’s parents didn’t know what he was up to. Didn’t they want to know where he was getting the extra money from? How did they not know about his amazing voice? He had to of sang when he was younger. Abby was 15, why was she allowed to wander all over the place? At one point in the book, she took a train out-of-town and she spent the night in the woods. Jeremy and Gina didn’t notice that she was gone. That drove me nuts.

The only thing that I didn’t like about the book was how it went back and forth in time. One moment I would be reading about Gina and her struggles post-accident, then I would be reading about her life pre-accident. No warning about the change in time periods. It happened. It drove me absolutely nuts.

The plotline involving Abby was broke my heart. She believed that she would turn into a mermaid on her 15th birthday. I liked how the author chose to have Abby doubt if that was going to happen. I liked how what happened the night that Fern died was leaked. It kept me guessing. But the truth of what happened was a shocked the heck out of me. I wasn’t expecting that.

Lief’s storyline was very well written also. He was so conflicted about what he should do with his life. Abby assaulting him made him think about what he was doing with his life. The scene in the woods was the turning point for him. I was afraid for him, considering what Abby was thinking when they were in the water towards the end of the book.

Jeremy was broken. Fern’s death destroyed him. Abby was the only thing that kept him going. But, as the book went on, it seemed like Fern played fast and loose with him. The news he got about Abby the night Fern died was heartbreaking. I did want to know what the DNA test results were, though. It was never mentioned again.

I did like Gina and felt awful for her. I couldn’t imagine not knowing what happened to my husband for 7 years. And the secret that she carried was soul eating. Do I think that she should have told Jeremy sooner? Yes but then the book wouldn’t have played out the way it did.

The end of the book was amazing. I loved how the author brought all the storylines together. It was perfect. The epilogue was great also. But I did worry about Abby. Her final scene bothered me. It made me think that nothing changed with her.


I gave Foam On The Crest Of Waves a 4-star rating. This book was a wonderful retelling of The Little Mermaid. I connected with each character. The plotlines were all very well written. The only thing I didn’t like was how it went back and forth in time. Other than that, a wonderful book.

I would give Foam On The Crest Of Waves an Adult rating. There is sex but it is not graphic. There is language. There is violence. There are triggers. They would be the death of a parent, death of a spouse, cheating, traumatic accident, and talk of suicide. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

I would reread Foam On The Crest Of Waves. I would also recommend this book to family and friends.


I would like to thank the author and NetGalley for allowing me to read and review Foam On The Crest Of Waves.

All opinions stated in this review of Foam On The Crest Of Waves are mine.

**I chose to leave this review after reading an advance reader copy**


Have you read Foam On The Crest Of Waves?

Love it? 

Hate it?

Meh about it?

Let me know!!!

Weekly Wrap-Up: November 18th through November 24th 2018

Books I’ve Read (clicking on the picture will bring you to Goodreads page):

White Stag (Permafrost, #1)

Foam On The Crest Of Waves

The Duke I Once Knew (Unlikely Duchesses, #1)

Perfectly Inappropriate

The Good, the Bad, and the Duke (The Cavensham Heiresses #4)

Books with reviews pending (clicking on pictures will bring you to the Amazon page):

Perfectly Inappropriate—review coming November 27th, 2018

Perfectly Inappropriate

The Good, the Bad, and the Duke—review coming November 27th, 2018

The Good, the Bad, and the Duke (The Cavensham Heiresses #4)

Rend—review coming November 27th, 2018

Rend (Riven, #2)

Books with published reviews (clicking on pictures will bring you to the Amazon page):

NetGalley Haul(clicking on the picture will bring you to the Goodreads page):

Email Haul (clicking on the picture will bring you to the Goodreads page):

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Weekly Posts:

Weekly Wrap-Up

Freebie Sunday

Music Monday

WWW Wednesday

Throwback Thursday

Foodie Friday

WWW Wednesday: November 21st, 2018

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Wars. So here what I have read/are reading/will be reading.

The Three Ws are:

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


What’s going on with me this past week:

Personal:

I am in prep mode for Thanksgiving. BK and I have prepped most of the food for tomorrow (except the turkey breast and ham). We are having carrots and turnips, stuffing and mashed potatoes. Dessert is pumpkin and Dutch apple pie. Besides Thanksgiving, I am celebrating two birthdays. Mr. Z turned 11 yesterday and Miss B is turning 13 on Saturday.

Miss R had her Thanksgiving Feast last Friday at her preschool. She loved it. She goes to a private, church-based preschool and they have it catered (which is included in with the tuition. Also included, art museum lessons, a storyteller, and something called stretch and grow). So, the kids got turkey, gravy, stuffing, green beans and cranberry sauce (or the yucky stuff as she calls it). She loved it. The teachers had the kids make special shirts for Thanksgiving. The 3’s class dressed up as Pilgrims and I am going to assume that Miss R’s class (the 4’s) were the Native Americans.

I also got a new phone as an early Christmas present. I got an LG Stylo 4 plus a very cool case. I was not expecting it. I had a Moto 6 before that and didn’t like it. It kept rebooting on me. All the freaking time. I was a huge LG fan before my last phone and I don’t think I won’t ever get another brand again…lol. Also (and yes, I am nerding out here for a minute), I got a new World of Warcraft calendar for 2019. What excited me the most about this calendar is that it shows the scenes from the events leading up to the World Tree burning. Everything from Jaina’s journey to Arthas turning Sylvanas to the Tree burning. I won’t lie. I squeed like a fangirl when I got it. BK just shook his head when he saw heard me.

Reading:

I am in a good place readingwise. I have caught up with all of my reviews that were past due (there were quite a few). My next project is to whittle down my books on NetGalley. And I am going to try to read some of my books on my TBR list. I have been slowly adding books from my Amazon TBR to Goodreads.


What I am currently reading:

The Duke I Once Knew (Unlikely Duchesses, #1)

click on the picture for Amazon link

First love is always the sweetest. 

For years, Abigail Linton devoted herself to caring for her aging parents and the children of her siblings. Now, eager to make her own life, she takes a position as a governess on the neighboring estate. It shouldn’t matter that her absentee employer is Maxwell Bryce, the Duke of Rothwell, the infamous rake who once broke her youthful heart. Surely he’s forgotten her, for he hasn’t set foot on his estate for fifteen years. At least, that is, until he arrives unexpectedly.

Max is incensed to meet his sister’s new governess. But why does Abby appear just as displeased to see him when it was she who’d rejected him all those years ago? Why is he so drawn to the independent spinster she has become? And why is there a sparkle in her beautiful blue eyes that suggests they might have a second chance at love?

I am not liking this book. I am about halfway through it and I keep eye-rolling and/or shaking my head. I am hoping that it gets better. Or at least a couple of characters leave (and not the main ones). The expected publication date for this book is December 31st, 2018. My review should be on or after that date.


What I recently finished reading:

Perfectly Inappropriate

click on the picture for Amazon link

A woman scorned and a politician with a wild side connect online—and explore their hottest fantasies in the flesh.

Olivia Watts knows that her problems are painfully average. She got engaged, and her fiancé cheated. She gave up on her dream job—street photographer—and settled on a more practical one: graphic designer. She scrimped and saved to buy a home, only to realize how empty it was. So when Olivia hears about an exclusive dating app that matches subs with highly trained doms, she does something she never thought she’d do in a million years: She signs up. The last thing she expects to find is a man whose sizzling touch reawakens the woman she used to be. . . .

Noah Grant has no time for relationships. His sole purpose is to win reelection. That’s why he pays a premium to the discreet app that satisfies all his dark desires. But after sweet, innocent Olivia is vetted and arrives for their week together in his penthouse, it’s blatantly clear that she’s running from her demons. Noah’s more than willing to be her escape—until their emotions get tangled up in their games. Now, to become worthy of Olivia’s heart, Noah will have to prove that he’s more than a fantasy.

I wasn’t expecting to like this book as much as I did. There are BDSM and erotica in this book but the author was able to weave a story in with that element. It ended up being a very sweet story about finding one’s self again. Perfectly Inappropriate’s expected publication date is November 27th, 2018. Be on the lookout for my review on or after that date.


What books I think I’ll read next? (click on the pictures for Amazon links)

Foam On The Crest Of Waves

Can facing the past transform the present?

In a small fishing town on the Mendocino coast, the tides of time have washed over rumors and suspicions, yet the members of a maimed family still struggle to cope with their memories. 

A broken woman, refusing to let go of her vanished husband.
Her widowed brother, clinging to the shatters of the life he loved.
His delusional daughter, planning to turn mermaid on her fifteenth birthday. 

But when a young man realizes he made a mistake, secrets start emerging from the deep. Will they bring further grief, or possibly redemption?

I read the blurb and I knew I had to review this book. Plus, look at the cover. It is beautiful. Hoping that this book is as good as I have built it up to be in my mind.

White Stag (Permafrost, #1)

The first book in a brutally stunning series where a young girl finds herself becoming more monster than human and must uncover dangerous truths about who she is and the place that has become her home.

As the last child in a family of daughters, seventeen-year-old Janneke was raised to be the male heir. While her sisters were becoming wives and mothers, she was taught to hunt, track, and fight. On the day her village was burned to the ground, Janneke—as the only survivor—was taken captive by the malicious Lydian and eventually sent to work for his nephew Soren.

Janneke’s survival in the court of merciless monsters has come at the cost of her connection to the human world. And when the Goblin King’s death ignites an ancient hunt for the next king, Soren senses an opportunity for her to finally fully accept the ways of the brutal Permafrost. But every action he takes to bring her deeper into his world only shows him that a little humanity isn’t bad—especially when it comes to those you care about.

Through every battle they survive, Janneke’s loyalty to Soren deepens. After dangerous truths are revealed, Janneke must choose between holding on or letting go of her last connections to a world she no longer belongs to. She must make the right choice to save the only thing keeping both worlds from crumbling.

This book sounds like it is fantastic. I have read a couple of books about the Goblin King but they were romances. Those books also didn’t deal with the citizens of the Goblin King’s world. I am super excited to read this book and be on the blog tour!!

An Anonymous Girl

The next novel of psychological suspense and obsession from the authors of the blockbuster bestseller The Wife Between Us

Seeking women ages 18–32 to participate in a study on ethics and morality. Generous compensation. Anonymity guaranteed. 

When Jessica Farris signs up for a psychology study conducted by the mysterious Dr. Shields, she thinks all she’ll have to do is answer a few questions, collect her money, and leave. But as the questions grow more and more intense and invasive and the sessions become outings where Jess is told what to wear and how to act, she begins to feel as though Dr. Shields may know what she’s thinking…and what she’s hiding. As Jess’s paranoia grows, it becomes clear that she can no longer trust what in her life is real, and what is one of Dr. Shields’ manipulative experiments. Caught in a web of deceit and jealousy, Jess quickly learns that some obsessions can be deadly.

From the authors of the blockbuster bestseller, The Wife Between Us comes an electrifying new novel about doubt, passion, and just how much you can trust someone.

I was beyond thrilled when I got accepted to review this book. I had read The Wife Between Us and loved it. So, I am hoping that An Anonymous Girl is as good as that book!!

Sisters of the Fire (Blood and Gold, #2)

An action-packed, compelling historical fantasy, from the pen of an award-winning author

The battle-scarred warrior princess Bluebell, the heir to her father’s throne, is rumoured to be unkillable. So when she learns of a sword wrought specifically to slay her by the fearsome raven king, Hakon, she sets out on a journey to find it before it finds her. The sword is rumoured to be in the possession of one of her four younger sisters. But which one? Scattered as they are across the kingdoms, she sets out on a journey to find them.

Her four sisters all have their own paths to tread, the gifted magician Ash is on a journey to find a dragon that could determine her destiny. The beautiful, unhappy Rose has left her undermagician Aunt and is speeding to the aid of her daughter, Rowan, who has been lost to her. Ivy, sold into marriage for the sake of an alliance, is now set to become the ruling Duchess of Seacaster with the imminent death of her much older and sick husband, and the power-hungry Willow is raising her infant child as a potential trimartyr king and training to be a warrior for the fanatical religious order Maava.

From the wild rocky coastline to granite-topped tors, from bustling harbours to echoing ghost towns, from halls of kings to ancient primal woodlands, this story follows five sisters upon whose actions kingdoms will rise and fall.

Another book that I had been waiting for. I had read the first book and enjoyed it. I am hoping that this book is as good as the first one.


So that’s it. Be on the lookout for the reviews of all these books in the near future.

Have you read any of these books?

Let me know what you thought of them!!

Weekly Wrap Up: October 28th through November 3rd 2018

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Books I’ve Read (clicking on the picture will bring you to Goodreads page):

Pandemonium

The Wizard's Gift

Black Diamond Fall

The Storyteller's Throne

Books with reviews pending (clicking on pictures will bring you to the Amazon page):

Books with published reviews (clicking on pictures will bring you to the Amazon page):

The Wizard’s Gift—review here

The Wizard's Gift by Michael Waller

Black Diamond Fall—review here

Black Diamond Fall

Kiss Me at Christmas—review here

A True Cowboy Christmas—review here

A True Cowboy Christmas (Cold River Ranch, #1)

The Corner of Holly and Ivy—review here

The Corner of Holly and Ivy: A feel-good Christmas romance

The Storyteller’s Throne—review here

The Storyteller's Throne

The Rain Watcher—review here

The Rain Watcher

A Nanny for Harry—review here

A Nanny for Harry

Stripped Down—review here

Stripped Down

NetGalley Haul(clicking on the picture will bring you to the Goodreads page):

Foam On The Crest Of Waves

The Night Before

You Are The Everything

Email Haul (clicking on the picture will bring you to the Goodreads page):

Deadly Cage—Tom Howard (No Amazon/Email page yet)

Weekly Posts:

Weekly Wrap Up

Freebie Sunday

 Music Monday

WWW Wednesday

Throwback Thursday

Foodie Friday

Sleep, Merel, Sleep by Silke Stein

Sleep, Merel, Sleep

4 Stars:

Publisher: Caper Books

Date of publication: June 7th, 2018

Genre: Middle Grade, Fantasy

Trigger Warning: Death of a loved one, Sick sibling

Where you can find Sleep, Merel, Sleep: Amazon 

Book synopsis (from Goodreads):

Who wants to be awake forever?

Life has changed for eight-year-old Merel. Since the birth of her sick baby brother, her parents seem to have forgotten she exists. But when she finds a tiny silver violin in her bedroom rug, things take a turn for the worse. 

Merel learns that her sleep has abandoned her and that she must embark on a perilous journey to recover it or stay awake forever. Together with her devoted toy sheep Roger, tired Merel sets out in search of Lullaby Grove. Before long, she finds herself haunted by a scary stranger. 

Follow Merel into a surreal world. Meet a sleepy king with an obsession for feathers and a transparent old man on a night train going nowhere. Discover why the moonfish cry, why you should never walk across the Great Yawns ― and if poor Merel can escape her pursuer, win back her sleep, and realize what matters most in her life.

My review: 

I have gotten away from reading middle-grade books. No real reason. I stopped requesting them on NetGalley. I rarely get an author request through my contact form/email. So, when the author contacted me to review Sleep, Merel, Sleep I almost declined. Then I read the blurb and my attention was caught. From what I read the blurb, I needed to read the book. I am glad that I decided to accept the request because Sleep, Merel, Sleep was a one of a kind middle grade book.

Merel’s Sleep went AWOL. He was tired of listening to her tantrums. He was tired of trying to get her to sleep. He was tired of watching her struggle to go to sleep. So he left. Merel learns that he left when she finds his violin on her rug. That finds sends her on a journey to find her Sleep in a place called Lullaby Grove. But, Merel is also stalked by a stranger. This stranger doesn’t want her to find her Sleep or Lullaby Grove. He has other reasons for keeping her from finding them and they aren’t great.

I will be the first one to admit that Merel was unlikable during the first few chapters of the book. She came across as a brat who went out of her way to make everyone around her miserable. I was prepared to not like her. But then, something happened. There was more to Merel’s story than what the author first shared. There was a significant amount of trauma that happened to Merel within a couple of months. My dislike of her started to go away while journeying to Lullaby Grove. By the time she was on the Sandman’s Beach, my dislike of her faded. I pitied her but I also realized that she was a strong child.

I liked how the author addressed the issues of death and having a sick sibling. Merel’s reactions to the turmoil going on in her life were what I would expect an 8-year-old to do. I also liked how the author chose to have Merel make peace with everything that happened to her. Even the scary things that happened to her was a way of making her accept and move on.

I did find parts of the book to be scary. Mainly, the scenes with the scary stranger. What he did to Merel at the end of the book shocked me. I wasn’t expecting it. It did make sense

The end of the book confused me at first. I had to reread the last chapter to understand. It confused me because Merel went from one situation to another without the reader knowing. Saying that I did like it because the author left if Merel completed her journey until the end.

What I liked about Sleep, Merel, Sleep:

A) Original storyline

B) Merel’s journey

C) Seeing Merel’s journey to accepting everything that happened to her.

What I disliked about Sleep, Merel, Sleep:

A) The stranger. I thought he was too scary at certain points in the book

B) The death of Merel’s grandfather and the premie birth of her brother back to back.

C) The end of the book. I got confused and had to reread the first few chapters.

I would give Sleep, Merel, Sleep a rating of Child. There are no sexual situations. There is very mild violence. There is no language. There are several scenes that could scare a younger child. Also, there are scenes describing a car accident and a premie in the hospital that could scare a child. While this book could be read by children under the age of 10, I would supervise them reading it.

There are trigger warnings in Sleep, Merel, Sleep. They are the death of a grandparent and a sick sibling. If you or your child is triggered by those then I suggest not reading the book.

I would recommend Sleep, Merel, Sleep to family and friends. I would make sure that they knew about the triggers. This is a book that I would reread.

I would like to thank Silke Stein for allowing me to read and review Sleep, Merel, Sleep.

All opinions stated in this review of Sleep, Merel, Sleep are mine.

**I chose to leave this review after reading an advance reader copy**