Saturday, July 30, 2016

Hard Cold Winter by Glen Erik Hamilton

Uncorrected Proof Paperback
I read the uncorrected proof paperback edition of Hard Cold Winter by Glen Erik Hamilton that I'd received for free from Goodreads Giveaway.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of Hard Cold Winter by Glen Erik Hamilton.

Hard Cold Winter by Glen Erik Hamilton is the first novel I've read by Glen Erik Hamilton. It's also the second novel to feature Van Shaw. 

I liked the leading character of Van Shaw quite a bit as he's a likable character with an interesting past. I also enjoyed Glen Erik Hamilton's writing and how he draws readers into his novel, Hard Cold Winter, from the start and keeps readers interested through to the very end. If you enjoy reading enthralling thrillers with good plots, then you'll enjoy reading Hard Cold Winter.

The following is the plot summary for Hard Cold Winter by Glen Erik Hamilton from Goodreads:
Former Army Ranger and thief Van Shaw is thrust into danger as lethal and unpredictable as the war he left behind in this emotionally powerful and gritty follow up to the acclaimed Past Crimes. 
When an old crony of Van Shaw’s late grandfather calls in a favor, the recently-discharged Ranger embarks on a dangerous journey to the Olympic Mountains, in search of a missing girl tied to Van’s own criminal past. What he finds instead is a brutal murder scene, including a victim from one of Seattle’s most influential families. 
But the dead bodies are only the start of Van’s troubles. A fellow Ranger from Afghanistan turns up at Van’s doorstep, seeking support from his former sergeant even as Van wrestles with his own reemerging symptoms of PTSD. The murder investigation leads to heavy pressure, with a billionaire businessman on one side and vicious gangsters on the other, each willing to play dirty to get what they want. 
The price of his survival may be too high, demanding moral compromises that could destroy Van’s relationship with his iron-willed girlfriend, Luce. And when a trusted friend’s betrayal pushes him to the edge, Van has to enlist help from some unexpected places—including someone he believed was lost forever. 
The Ranger will need every ally he can get. A powerful, unseen player is about to unleash a firestorm on Seattle that will burn Van and his people to ashes—and it will take a miracle to stop it.
All in all, I highly recommend reading Hard Cold Winter by Glen Erik Hamilton. I am giving Hard Cold Winter by Glen Erik Hamilton a rating of 4 stars out of 5 stars. I would now like to read the first novel in the Van Shaw Series just to see where it all began.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

The Girl With Nine Lives: The Adventures of Benedict and Blackwell by E. Earle

Unabridged Audio Version
listened to the unabridged audio version of The Girl With Nine Lives: The Adventures of Benedict and Blackwell by E. Earle and narrated by Anna Parker-Naples.

Listening time for The Girl With Nine Lives: The Adventures of Benedict and Blackwell by E. Earle is 3 hours, 53 minutes.


This novel was not what I was expecting in a cozy mystery novel! The Girl With Nine Lives: The Adventures of Benedict and Blackwell by E. Earle is billed a cozy mystery with a talking cat... If I didn't know that this novel was a cozy mystery novel, I would have guessed it was contemporary fiction based on the first 25-30% of the novel. The start of this audiobook initially captured my attention, but I quickly lost interest and almost gave up listening to this audiobook numerous times as the story is depressing in parts. 

The leading character, Ellena, is a depressing character I ended up not liking very much... She does some really dumb things all in the name of solving a mystery that puts her in harms way, like ditching the police by giving them a laxative and then stealing their vehicle to rescue a friend who'd been kidnapped. The police were out to help Ellena, so why did she needed to play hero is beyond me! 

Also, the talking cat is a cute gimmick, but it's her childhood cat come back to Ellena years and years later under mysterious circumstances. The cat would be too old to still be alive. The cat disappears and comes back again, but this time it comes with it balls grown back??? How does that work??? There are too many odd things that make me question the leading character's sanity.

The best part of The Girl With Nine Lives: The Adventures of Benedict and Blackwell by E. Earle is the narration of it by Anna Parker-Naples and the artwork found on the cover.

There are other novels that make up this series, but I'll be passing on them after listening to this novel.

The following is the publisher's summary for The Girl With Nine Lives: The Adventures of Benedict and Blackwell by E. Earle from Audible:
If you are a fan of cozy mysteries and have a soft spot for talking cats, you will love E. Earle's The Girl with Nine Lives.
What do you do when friends start going missing and all signs point to your boss being a crime lord? 
Nothing is going right for Ellena Blackwood. She is failing at life and teetering on an emotional collapse. When she accidentally discovers a secret at work, a secret the Home Office is willing to keep at any price, she has must rely on her wits to save her own life.
The mystery and danger only deepen when friends begin to disappear and Ellena's boss turns out to be a big time crime boss. Even the local police seem intent on keeping Ellena quiet. The only one she can depend on is her cat Ben, who has no trouble telling Ellena when it's time to end the pity party.
Will Ellena and Ben have what it takes to unravel the twists and turns before it's too late?
Elizabeth Earle is the author of four books, including three Adventures of Benedict and Blackwell books. She studied at the Norwich University College of the Arts after studying a National Diploma in Fine Art. After a switch she earned her BA (Hons) in Creative Writing and began her writing career. 
 I am giving The Girl With Nine Lives: The Adventures of Benedict and Blackwell by E. Earle a rating of 1 star out of 5 stars. 

Until my next post, happy reading!

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Blood Passage (Blood Destiny #2) by Connie Suttle

Unabridged Audio Version
I recently listened to the unabridged audio version of Blood Passage (Blood Destiny #2) by Connie Suttle and narrated by Traci Odom from Audible.

Listening time for Blood Passage (Blood Destiny #2) by Connie Suttle is 8 hours, 37 minutes.

I received this edition of Blood Passage (Blood Destiny #2) by Connie Suttle FREE from the narrator, Traci Odom. Below is my honest, unbiased review of Blood Passage (Blood Destiny #2) by Connie Suttle.

I found that Blood Passage (Blood Destiny #2) by Connie Suttle was another fun, fast audiobook to listen to during the past two days! I enjoyed this audiobook overall, although not as much as I did the first novel in the Blood Destiny SeriesBlood Wager: Blood Destiny #1 by Connie Suttle. Most of the characters were entertaining ones... However, Gavin is too hot headed and jealous with regards to Lissa and his behavior has become annoying!! I also wish that Lissa wasn't left in the dark about so much of the vampire ways. It's kind of ridiculous really that her vampire mentors and elders don't readily spell things out for her on certain occasions and leave her in the dark about many things. I also think Lissa is treated badly on several occasions and I can understand why she is fearful of other vampires by the end of the novel. The ending of Blood Passage (Blood Destiny #2) by Connie Suttle has a wonderful cliffhanger ending and leaves you wanting to know what happens in the next installment of the Blood Destiny Series.

I felt that Traci Odom did another fabulous job narrating Blood Passage (Blood Destiny #2) and I look forward to hearing more audiobooks that she narrates in the future.

The following is a plot summary for Blood Passage (Blood Destiny #2) by Connie Suttle from Audible:
"The sight of three naked, bloody men wandering into the clearing with moonlight clouding their eyes would probably send anyone else running for their life. I just sighed and watched them walk toward me." 
As the first female vampire successfully turned in 700 years, Lissa finds herself in demand by the Vampire Aristocracy. Forced into an unexpected engagement as a result, Lissa feels trapped and stifled as she continues training with her surrogate sire. When a request comes from the Grand Master of the werewolves, Weldon Harper, Lissa leaps at the opportunity to work as his bodyguard once more. 
Wlodek, Head of the Vampire Council, in an effort to solidify vampire/werewolf relations, allows Lissa to provide protection for the Grand Master during his yearly travels across the U.S. The only vampire ever named Pack, Lissa is permitted to work with the Grand Master without supervision from others of her kind.

Things become complicated and then downright deadly as old enemies reemerge. Intent on exacting revenge for a failed coup against the Grand Master, rogue werewolves join with new and perilous allies. Now, Lissa must find a way not only to keep the werewolf race alive, but the vampires as well.
I am giving Blood Passage (Blood Destiny #2) by Connie Suttle a rating of 4 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Monday, July 25, 2016

Aurora Sky: Vampire Hunter Book #1 by Nikki Jefford

Unabridged Audio Version from Audible
I usually don't gravitate towards the young adult, paranormal/fantasy genre, but for whatever reason, I've been on a paranormal/fantasy genre kick this year! 

I've heard a couple of people mention the Aurora Sky: Vampire Hunter series in passing, so I decided to listen to the unabridged audio version of Aurora Sky: Vampire Hunter Book #1 by Nikki Jefford and narrated by Em Eldridge

Total listening time for Aurora Sky: Vampire Hunter Book #1 by Nikki Jefford is 6 hours, 44 minutes.

For me, the best part of the audio version of Aurora Sky: Vampire Hunter Book #1 by Nikki Jefford was the narrator Em Eldridge. She read this novel really well and made the story pop for me. 

As far as Aurora Sky: Vampire Hunter Book #1 by Nikki Jefford goes, I really wanted to like this young adult, paranormal/fantasy novel about vampire hunters, but it didn't really resonate with me. I didn't like Dante's character (he seemed so shallow/immature to be a vampire hunter) or Aurora's parents' characters... There were a few other characters that weren't that great either. 

Additionally, there was too much left unsaid about how Aurora was turned into a vampire hunter, her training, etc. other than she was to hunt down vampires. I wanted more details as what was expected of her.

I also felt like there was too much teenage angst and snarkiness in this book. I also wish that Aurora had been able to discuss more about her unhappiness at being turned into a vampire hunter with family or others instead of having to keep it all pent up inside.
The following is a book video trailer that I discovered on YouTube about Aurora Sky: Vampire Hunter Book #1 by Nikki Jefford:



I'm giving Aurora Sky: Vampire Hunter Book #1 by Nikki Jefford a rating of 2.5 stars out of 5 stars. It was really difficult for me to decide whether or not to give this novel a 2 star rating or a 3 star rating.

Until my next post, happy reading!

Bookish Quote of the Day!!


Sunday, July 24, 2016

High Summer Read-A-Thon Wrap-Up Post


This was my first time participating in the High Summer Read-A-Thon and I had a very relaxing time reading a few books for this read-a-thon.

I originally thought I'd finish reading three books I'd started awhile ago as follows:

1. Hard Cold Winter by Glen Erik Hamilton
2. The Fortune Cookie Chronicles: Adventures in the World of Chinese Food by Jennifer 8 Lee
3. Eat Dirt: Why Leaky Gut May Be the Root Cause of Your Health Problems and 5 Surprising Steps to Cure It by Josh Axe


However, I went complete in a different direction and ended up reading other things during the past week for the High Summer Read-A-Thon.

I started and finished listening to two unabridged audiobooks, which already reviewed on my blog as follows:


2. Blood Wager: Blood Destiny #1 by Connie Suttle

I also started reading Inherited Disorders: Stories, Parables & Problems by Adam Ehrlich Sachs and am about 45% into this novel.

I also started listening to another audiobook titled Aurora Sky: Vampire Hunter by Nikki Jefford and am 57% into this novel so far.

If you participated in the High Summer Read-A-Thon, I hope you had a fabulous week of reading and met your reading goals for this read-a-thon.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Blood Wager: Blood Destiny #1 by Connie Suttle



Lucky me!! I was offered a free unabridged audio version copy of Blood Wager: Blood Destiny Book #1 by Connie Suttle and narrated by Traci Odom by the narrator, Traci Odom!

I was able to download Blood Wager: Blood Destiny #1 by Connie Suttle. from Audible.com. Listening time for Blood Wager: Blood Destiny #1 is 9 hours, 9 minutes. 

Below is my honest, unbiased review of Blood Wager: Blood Destiny #1 by Connie Suttle and narrated by Traci Odom.

Connie Suttle is a new to me author. I really enjoyed
listening to the unabridged audio version of
Blood Wager: Blood Destiny #1
and look forward to listening to (or reading)
the rest of the Blood Destiny series by 
Connie Suttle in the future.

Blood Wager: Blood Destiny #1 by Connie Suttle
falls into the paranormal/fantasy genre. So,
if you love vampires and werewolves, then you'll love this novel.
The characters and plot are fun and well written.
I was pretty much captivated by the entire novel from start
to finish.

There were only a few minor negatives about the novel itself.
I loved the main character, Lissa, as she is a kind, strong, and sassy
character. However, I disliked that she lamented on several occasions about not having a vampire manual and wishing
 she had one so that many of her answers about being a vampire could be answered. Her frustrations were understandable. But, Lissa broached the topic of not having a vampire manual TOO many times that it became annoying to me.

I was also sort of surprised that Lissa wasn't able to eventually
figure out that Gavin was a vampire on her own... But since she'd never been around vampires much before or after turning into
a vampire, it's a forgivable faux pas.

The best part of listening to the unabridged audio version
of Blood Wager: Blood Destiny #1 by Connie Suttle,
was listening to Traci Odom narrating this novel.
Traci Odom is an excellent narrator and does a great job
of reading each character's unique voice. So kudos to
Traci Odom!! She narrates all the other novels in the Blood Destiny series that have been published as well, which is good news.


The following is the publisher's summary of Blood Wager: Blood Destiny #1 by Connie Suttle from Audible:
"I agree to pay Sergio Velenci one million pounds if the female takes less than nine days to fully turn."
Lissa's life as a vampire begins on the day her husband is removed from life support. Turned by rogues who wager her life, Lissa is running from her maker who is determined to kill her, hunted by the Council who has branded her a rogue and blackmailed by werewolves, who utilize her newly developed talents for their own gain.

I highly recommend Blood Wager: Blood Destiny #1 by Connie Suttle and am giving it a rating of 4 stars out of 5 stars.


Until my next post, happy reading!

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Bookish Quote of the Day!!


How Books Help Us After Tough Break-Ups!

I came across another article on Bustle's website titled, Why A Good Book Is The Best Thing You Can Have After A Breakup by Averi Clements. In the article, Averi Clements wrote the following: 
Calling things off in a relationship can be painful, especially if you weren't the one who wanted to end it. Despite knowing that you'll be happy again eventually, the pit of sorrow you can fall into after a rough breakup can be a hard one to climb out of, and it leaves many of us searching desperately for something that can help give us a respite from the pain. Some might turn to alcohol, others to our favorite foods, others to That Person we know would be down to help us rebound, but devoted readers know that nothing helps nurse a broken heart quite like the pages of a good story.
Click on the top link to see the ways in which a book can help ease the heartache of a break-up! 

Queen of Someday (A Stolen Empire Book 1) by Sherry D. Ficklin

Unabridged Audiobook
I excitedly decided to listen to the unabridged audio version of Queen of Someday (A Stolen Empire Book 1) by Sherry D. Ficklin and narrated by Elan O'Connor. 

Total listening time for Queen of Someday (A Stolen Empire Book 1) by Sherry D. Ficklin is 6 hours, 38 minutes.

The Queen of Someday is the first book in a young adult series and deals with topics/themes that peaked my interest in general -- Russia, the Imperial Court, and royalty!

Although, I found Queen of Someday (A Stolen Empire Book 1) by Sherry D. Ficklin to be a fun, fast, and easy read overall, I wasn't completely enthralled with this novel as I thought I would be... Sure, I liked the story, the characters, and the plot with its twists and turns, but the novel just didn't quite hit the mark for me in a way I can't describe at the moment. I felt like Queen of Someday (A Stolen Empire Book 1) by Sherry D. Ficklin could have been so much more. 

I also thought that the narrator, Elan O'Connor, was a middle of the road narrator... Her narrating style wasn't great, but not horrible either. Let's just say, I've heard better narrators than Elan O'Connor.

The following is the plot summary for Queen of Someday (A Stolen Empire Book 1) by Sherry D. Ficklin from Audible:
Before she can become the greatest empress in history, 15-year-old Sophia will have to survive her social-climbing mother's quest to put her on the throne of Russia at any cost. Imperial Court holds dangers like nothing Sophia has ever faced before. In the heart of St. Petersburg, surviving means navigating the political, romantic, and religious demands of the bitter Empress Elizabeth and her handsome but sadistic nephew, Peter. Determined to save her impoverished family and herself, Sophia vows to do whatever is necessary to thrive in her new surroundings. But an attempt on her life and an unexpected attraction threatens to derail her plans. Alone in a new and dangerous world, learning who to trust and who to charm may mean the difference between becoming queen and being sent home in shame to marry her lecherous uncle. With traitors and murderers lurking around every corner, her very life hangs in the balance. Betrothed to one man but falling in love with another, Sophia will need to decide how much she's willing to sacrifice in order to become the empress she is destined to be. In a battle for the soul of a nation, will love or destiny reign supreme? 
I am giving Queen of Someday (A Stolen Empire Book 1) by Sherry D. Ficklin a rating of 3 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Riker's Calling by Rico Lamoureux

eBook Novella
I have a fondness for novellas and also for thrillers! I think that novellas are great ways to explore new to me authors.

I recently received an email from author, Rico Lamoureux, inquiring if I'd be interested in reading and reviewing his soon to be published novella, Riker's Calling, in exchange for an honest/unbiased review of Riker's Calling

I liked the premise/storyline of Riker's Calling, so I decided to give Riker's Calling by Rico Lamoureux a go! Riker's Calling is a 110 page novella that falls into the thriller/suspense genre, so if you like novellas and thrillers, then you'll probably enjoy Riker's Calling as it is a fast paced read.

I enjoyed reading Riker's Calling by Rico Lamoureux. The start of Riker's Calling is fast paced and draws the reader into the action right away... Initially, I had a lot of questions after reading the first few pages of Riker's Calling... Like, who was Jeremy Riker? How did Jeremy Riker get the training he did and who did he work for? I also wanted to know more about the woman he rescued and why was she targeted by thugs? Wanting to know the answers to these questions and more, I read onward and was rewarded with plenty of answers!

I enjoyed the plot, characters, and how the storyline unfolded for Riker's Calling. There were a few minor issues that need to be edited, but nothing major. I liked Riker's Calling overall.

The following is a plot summary for Riker's Calling by Rico Lamoureux from Amazon
From school bullies to the crime-ridden streets of his hometown of Los Angeles, Jeremy Riker has always felt the need to do something about the injustice surrounding him. Just as he sets out on his journey as an urban warrior, he unknowingly gives rise to an obsessive adversary, who ends up becoming one of the most notorious serial killers the city has ever known. Dubbed by the news media as The Spyderco Killer, the methodical psychopath roots himself deep into Riker's life for the long haul, until his own madness propels everything into an intense climax.
Riker's Calling by Rico Lamoureux will be released on August 4, 2016 and is available for pre-order as an ebook through Amazon. The pre-order price for Riker's Calling is $1.49 (25% off the regular price). So, if you're interested in reading this novella, you may want to pre-order it before the price goes up.

I am giving Riker's Calling by Rico Lamoureux a rating of 3 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!

Top Ten Tuesday --- Ten Books Set Outside The US



Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

Each week we will post a new Top Ten list that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join. All we ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun with it! It's a fun way to get to know your fellow bloggers.


Here is a list of books that I've enjoyed reading where the storyline is set outside of the USA. 

1. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Annie Barrows & Mary Ann Shaffer (England)
2. Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay (France)
3. The Master & Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov (Russia)
4. Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood by Marjane Satrapi (Iran)
5. Sold by Patricia McCormick (India/Nepal)
6. The Zookeeper's Wife by Diane Ackerman (Poland)
7. Dream Jungle by Jessica Hagedorn (Philippines)
8. The Kitchen Boy: A Novel of the Last Tsar by Robert Alexander (Russia)
9. A Hero of Our Time by Mikhail Lermontov (Russia)
10. I Am Livia by Phyllis T. Smith (Ancient Rome)

Monday, July 18, 2016

Best Time Travel Novels

Time travel in novels is a fun topic to read about for sure! Occasionally, I've wondered what it would be like to travel through time whether it be to the past or to the future. So, when I came across an article on Bustle's website titled, 12 of the Best Time Travel Novels To Read In Your DeLorean by Shaun Fitzpatrick, I couldn't resist seeing which book titles made the list. 

No surprise at some of the titles that made the list of novels in Shaun Fitpatrick's list, like Outlander by Diana Gabaldon (I've read and loved this novel!!), The Time Machine by H. G. Wells, The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger, and A Wrinkle In Time by Madeleine L'Engle (I have this novel in my 'to be read' stack)... But there were quite a few surprises in terms of novels about time travel that I look forward to checking out sometime in the future. 

Until my next post, happy reading to you!!

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Do You Reread Books You Love?

I've read some fabulous books over the years! Haven't we all read some awesome books throughout our lives that really resonated with us on some level?? I've reread a few of the books I've enjoyed reading over the course of my life, but there are still too many of them that I would love to reread again... Yet, I keep reading new books that I continue to add to my ever growing 'to be read' pile.

One day I'll have to read some of my favorite books to rediscover the reason I fell in love with them in the first place. Below are some of the books I'd like to reread in the future.

East of Eden by John Steinbeck
The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov
Animals in Translation by Temple Grandin
The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein
The Forty Fathom Bank by Les Galloway
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
The Scent of God by Beryl Singleton Bissell
To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert
The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
The Sacred Well by Antoinette May

I also happened to stumble across an article on Bustle about the joy of rereading books titled 11 Joys of Re-Reading Books, Because Starting Over at Page 1 Is a Feeling You Can't Replicate by Kristen Scatton... And the list of reasons that rereading books brings such joy are good ones!

Saturday, July 16, 2016

High Summer Read-A-Thon Monday, July 18 - Sunday, July 24, 2016



I learned about the High Summer Read-A-Thon from Vonnie at Vonnie's Reading Corner. I love participating in read-a-thons so thought I'd go ahead a sign up for this one as well.

The High Summer Read-A-Thon is hosted by Seasons of Reading. It's a pretty laid back read-a-thon, which suits me just fine! Here's a brief overview of the High Summer Read-A-Thon from the Seasons of Reading website:
Dates are July 18 - 24, starting at 12:00am Monday and ending at 11:59pm on Sunday. That's central time (U.S.), but you can adjust your times according to your time zone. Of course, like most read-a-thons, the books read must be novels or novellas, adult or young adult are fine, and you can read children's books too (as long as you do read some novels too). Note: Non-Fiction is also okay! You DO NOT have to participate the entire week. Join in when you can, start in the middle, end early...whatever works best for your schedule. As with all of my read-a-thons, it will be a week of relaxed reading during which we can personally challenge ourselves and whittle away that ever looming TBR.
Since I have three physical books I've begun reading, but haven't finished reading I'm choosing to finish reading them during the High Summer Read-A-Thon. The books I'll be finishing (hopefully) are titled:

1. Hard Cold Winter by Glen Erik Hamilton
2. The Fortune Cookie Chronicles: Adventures in the World of Chinese Food by Jennifer 8 Lee
3. Eat Dirt: Why Leaky Gut May Be the Root Cause of Your Health Problems and 5 Surprising Steps to Cure It by Josh Axe

Click on the link above to sign up for the High Summer Read-A-Thon hosted by Seasons of Reading!

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Jack the Ripper Books to Read!

I read an article on the Bustle website that captured my interest. The article's title is 9 Jack The Ripper Books Any Amateur Detective Needs To Read by Shaun Fitzpatrick. In the article, Shaun Fitzpatrick writes:
Jack the Ripper is one of the most (in)famous serial killers in history. Though the killer's identity was never discovered, at least five women were thought to have been murdered by him over the course of his killing spree, and several more have tentative links to the killer. Various men have been suspected of the crimes, but no arrests were ever made. Jack the Ripper's identity continues to be a mystery. 
And what reader doesn't love a mystery? 
Even though the murders happened well over 100 years ago, we still can't stop speculating over Jack the Ripper's identity. This fascination has found its way onto our book shelves, where an interested reader can find a ton of books, both fiction and nonfiction, focusing on the killer. While the list of Jack the Ripper titles available is exhaustive, I've rounded up nine of my favorite books about Jack the Ripper, featuring both fiction and nonfiction titles (depending on whether you like your history factual or fictional!).
Click on the top link to see which books made the list of Jack the Ripper books to read! 

Bookish Quote of the Day!!


This Common Secret: My Journey as an Abortion Doctor by Susan Wicklund

Unabridged Audio Version
I listened the unabridged audio version of This Common Secret: My Journey as an Abortion Doctor by Susan Wicklund and narrated by Robin Miles. 

Listening time for This Common Secret: My Journey as an Abortion Doctor by Susan Wicklund is 7 hours, 47 minutes.

I thoroughly enjoyed the content of This Common Secret: My Journey as an Abortion Doctor by Susan Wicklund. Susan Wicklund's compassion, knowledge, and insight into the world of an abortion doctor is eye opening one. Wicklund's personal story and journey are amazing, if not riveting from the start through the finish of her book. I enjoyed Wicklund's candor of the facts and the information she provided about her life and career as a medical doctor. 

The only downer for me with regards to this audiobook was narrator, Robin Miles. I felt like a different narrator would have been a great choice as I felt that Robin Miles narration was lackluster for the most part. I've heard worse narrators for books.

The following is a summary for This Common Secret: My Journey as an Abortion Doctor by Susan Wicklund from Audible:
In This Common Secret, Dr. Susan Wicklund chronicles her emotional and dramatic twenty-year career on the front lines of the abortion war. Growing up in working class, rural Wisconsin, Wicklund had her own painful abortion at a young age. It was not until she became a doctor that she realized how many women shared her ordeal of an unwanted pregnancy - and how hidden this common experience remains.
This is the story of Susan's love for a profession that means listening to women and helping them through one of the most pivotal and controversial events in their lives. Hers is also a calling that means sleeping on planes and commuting between clinics in different states - and that requires her to wear a bulletproof vest and to carry a .38 caliber revolver. This is also the story of the women whom Susan serves, women whose options are increasingly limited.
Through these intimate, complicated, and inspiring accounts, Wicklund reveals the truth about the women's clinics that anti-abortion activists portray as little more than slaughterhouses for the unborn. As we enter the most fevered political fight over abortion America has ever seen, this raw and powerful memoir shows us what is at stake.
I am giving This Common Secret: My Journey as an Abortion Doctor by Susan Wicklund a rating of 5 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Little Free Libraries in Petaluma, California!!

This past weekend, my husband and I visited Petaluma, California for the day... I love day-trips! We had a blast in Petaluma for the day. If you haven't been to Petaluma before, it's a small quaint town in Northern Californian near Napa.

During our visit to Petaluma, we visited two different Little Free Libraries near downtown Petaluma. I was able to drop off a total of four books -- Three books into one Little Free Library and one book into another Little Free Library!! The two Little Free Libraries I visited in Petaluma mark the 10th and 11th Little Free Libraries I've visited. I even snagged a free paperback copy of Amsterdam by Ian McEwan to read.

All of the books I left inside each Little Free Library in Petaluma were registered on Bookcrossing.

I've visited six different Little Free Libraries in the past month. I really enjoy visiting Little Free Libraries as each one is unique in its own way. :-)


Little Free Library on 823 Madison Street
Petaluma, California 94952-3339

Little Free Library on 422 Walnut Street
Petaluma, California 94952

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday --- Ten Facts About Me


Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

Each week we will post a new Top Ten list that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join. All we ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun with it! It's a fun way to get to know your fellow bloggers.


1. I love listening to audiobooks! In fact, audiobooks have only recently become one of my favorite ways to savor books in the past few years. There's something special about listening to someone else read a book to you that makes one's experience with books all that much better.

2. I consider myself to be a 'Polygamist Reader', which according to an article on Bustle titled 
13 Types Of Readers Everyone Knows, Because We Aren't All Alike by Sadie L. Trombetta, is defined as:
You might have trouble keeping track of more than one story at once, but there is a certain type of reader who loves to juggle multiple books at once. Their nightstand is like your television queue — full of things you're part of the way through covering every kind of genre. They like to keep things interesting, and multitasking is their most beloved trait.
I do tend to read more than one book at a time and I also tend to read books from a wide range of genres.

3. I enjoy reading mysteries and thrillers... And cozy mystery novels fall into one of my most recent favorite sub-genres in the mystery genre.


4. The two authors I would most like to meet in real life at an author event/book signing would be Diana Gabaldon and Margaret Atwood. I have yet to met these authors and I've really enjoyed reading their novels over the years.


5. My biggest pet peeve while reading, is being bothered/interrupted while reading. Usually, I'm really engrossed in what I'm reading and I want time to focus on my reading and enjoy the content provided by an author. So, if I'm interrupted for whatever reason, it disrupts the follow of the book/novel I'm reading


6. As far as reading habits go, I usually don't eat a snack or drink a beverage while reading a physical book as I find it somewhat awkward to eat or drink while flipping pages of a physical book... However, eating food or drinking a beverage while listening to an audiobook is something I do frequently. Also, I usually read at home or read while traveling on a plane, train, or other type of public transportation.


7. I love visiting independent bookstores, attending author events/book signings, and book festivals.


8. Recently, I've been on a kick/streak to visit Little Free Libraries. They are fun to visit as I like leaving books inside of them.

9. I am an avid fan of Bookcrossing!! I've been a member of Bookcrossing since January 2007 and enjoy interacting with other avid readers and book lovers via the Bookcrossing forum section or through private messages... Plus, I've enjoyed sharing books with other avid readers around the world through Bookcrossing and learning what they think about the same books that I've enjoyed reading.


10. I am enjoying nonfiction reads more these days than works of fiction.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Reading Novels That Are Part of a Series

Do you like reading novels that make up a book series? Personally, I kind of find book series hit or miss.  

I recently finished reading the Island Trilogy by Tudor Robins. The Island Trilogy is a young adult series. I loved the first two novels in the series, but I did not enjoy reading the last novel in the series.

Last year, I finished reading the young adult series 'His Fair Assassin' by Robin LaFevers and loved reading the entire series.

I'm currently one novel away from finishing the cozy mystery series 'Den of Antiquity' by Tamar Myers. I've found this cozy mystery series hit or miss for me, which is so frustrating as I wish all the novels in the entire series were equally good.

I've started other book series over the years... Some of the books weren't to my liking and others were really good... For instance, I've enjoyed reading a few of Sue Grafton's novels in her 'Alphabet Series'. I've also enjoyed reading a few novels in J. D. Robb's 'In Death Series'. I love Diana Gabaldon's 'Outlander' novels and I have even read a few of Janet Evanovich's 'Stephanie Plum Series'... The list of book series's I've started could go on, but I'll keep the list short to keep this post from going on too long. Will I eventually finish reading all the novels in each of these series? Maybe, but most likely not. I find that I have too many books by different authors that I want to read to remain hooked or caught up in one series... Especially if there are a lot of books that make up the entire series.

What are your thoughts about books that comprise a series?? Do you prefer stand alone books or do you love reading books that are part of a series?

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Join Up (Island Trilogy #3) by Tudor Robins

Young Adult eBook Edition
Last year, I read the first two novels in the Island Trilogy (Appaloosa Summer and Wednesday Riders) by Tudor Robins and really enjoyed reading them both. So, I looked forward to reading the final novel in the Island Trilogy when it was released. 

I recently devoured Join Up (Island Trilogy #3) by Tudor Robins in a 24 hour period.

Unfortunately, Join Up (Island Trilogy #3) by Tudor Robins didn't hit the mark for me, which was such a disappointment as I loved the first to novels in this young adult series!!

First off, the first two novels in the Island Trilogy prominently feature Meg Traherne and Jared Strickland as the leading characters. In Join Up, Lacey Strickland (cousin to Jared) is the leading character, with both Meg and Jared only having minor roles in Join Up... For me, personally, I wanted Meg and Jared to be leading characters in Join Up as well... I felt like having Lacey Strickland be the leading character wasn't in keeping with the series itself. I also didn't enjoy that most of the story/plot for Join Up didn't take place on the island. I mean if you're going to call the series the Island Trilogy, then keep the story on the island.

I also felt that Join Up (Island Trilogy #3) by Tudor Robins started off to slowly/was difficult to get into. The story picked up towards the middle of the novel. I liked Lacey Strickland's character the best in Join Up... Fitch's character was grating at first and I didn't like his character in the beginning. But Fitch became likable by the end. Lacey and Fitch's romance becomes a case of insta-love and too perfect to be true type of romance to be realistic, which was another negative for me.

Some minor drama occurs in Join Up (Island Trilogy #3) by Tudor Robins, but nothing earth shattering... And the ending of Join Up (Island Trilogy #3) by Tudor Robins was kind of boring.

I kind of felt like the author wore out of steam when it came to writing Join Up and wished that it had lived up to the standards of the first two novels in the Island Trilogy.

The plot summary for Join Up (Island Trilogy #3) by Tudor Robins from Amazon:
A summer at one of the poshest riding camps in the province. A hundred horses. Rolling hills ribboned with hacking trails and cross-country jumps.

It could be perfect. Unless you’re Lacey Strickland, and you’re leaving Salem, Meg, and Jared behind on the island.

The only thing that isn’t hard to leave is Lacey’s memory of her first kiss, delivered in a spring-scented hayfield, which sizzled, then fizzled into nothing at all.

The other thing making camp less-than-perfect for Lacey? She’s not a cosseted camper, but a staff member – teaching riding lessons from sun-up to sun-down.

In Meg’s first letter to Lacey, she writes: “I bet anything there’s at least one amazing horse waiting for you there. And maybe a new great – if not best – friend.”

Is Meg right? Could Lacey meet a horse she’ll love just as much as Salem? And are there new friends in her future? Maybe even somebody who could give her more than just one kiss in a hayfield?
I am giving Join Up (Island Trilogy #3) by Tudor Robins a rating of 2 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!

Friday, July 8, 2016

The Bitter Season by Tami Hoag

Abridged Audiobook

Last month, I listened to the abridged audio version of The Bitter Season by Tami Hoag and narrated by David Colacci. I'm finally writing my review for this novel now.

Listening time for The Bitter Season by Tami Hoag is 7 hours, 7 minutes.

I'm normally not a fan of listening to the abridged audio version of a novel as I prefer to listen to the unabridged audio version of a novel the way the author intended for readers to experience their writing... However, I accidentally purchased the abridged of The Bitter Season by Tami Hoag.

Despite The Bitter Season by Tami Hoag being abridged, I enjoyed listening to this audiobook. I thought that David Colacci was a terrific narrator... Good narrators make one's listening experience that much more enjoyable. 

I also enjoyed the story, characters, and writing for The Bitter Season by Tami Hoag. There were a few scenes that had me laughing out loud, but mainly, I enjoyed the story and how it unfolded.

The following is the plot summary for The Bitter Season by Tami Hoag from Audible:
#1 New York Times Bestselling author Tami Hoag returns to the bestselling series of her career with a Kovac and Liska case that will delight fans and new listeners alike.
A murder from the past. A murder from the present. And a life that was never meant to be....
As the dreary, bitter weather of late fall descends on Minneapolis, Detective Nikki Liska is restless. After moving to the cold case squad in order to spend more time with her sons, she misses the rush of pulling an all-nighter, the sense of urgency of hunting a murderer on the loose. Most of all she misses her old partner, Sam Kovac. Sam is having an even harder time adjusting to Nikki's absence, saddled with a green new partner younger than pieces of Sam's wardrobe. Sam is distracted from his troubles by an especially brutal double homicide: a middle-aged husband and wife bludgeoned and hacked to death in their home with a ceremonial Japanese samurai sword. Nikki's case, the unsolved murder of a family man, community leader, and decorated sex crimes detective for the Minneapolis PD, is less of a distraction: twenty years later, there is little hope for finding the killer who got away.

On the other end of the spectrum, Minneapolis resident Evi Burke has a life she only dreamed of as a kid in and out of foster homes: a beautiful home, a family, people who love her, a fulfilling job. Little does she know that a danger from her past is stalking her perfect present. A danger powerful enough to pull in both Kovac and Liska and destroy the perfect life she was never meant to have.
I am giving The Bitter Season by Tami Hoag a rating of 3 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!

Thursday, July 7, 2016

I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban by Malala Yousafzai

Unabridged Audio Version!!
I listened to the unabridged audio version of I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban by Malala Yousafzai and narrated by Archie Panjabi. 

Listening length for I Am Malala is 9 hours, 55 minutes.

I'm not sure what I can say about this audiobook that hasn't already been said or written. I'll start by saying that I enjoyed listening to the audio version of I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban by Malala Yousafzai. I thought that Archie Panjab was a very good narrator for this book.

Malala, herself, is such an inspiration. She's smart and articulate. I love that she promotes education for girls. And, of course, Malala being the youngest recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize is beyond amazing. I look forward seeing what the future holds for Malala!

I enjoyed hearing Malala's life's story as well as the history of Pakistan as I really don't know much about Pakistan's history... In fact, I was kind of overwhelmed by the amount of information I learned about Pakistan as a country in I Am Malala

After reading I Am Malala, I feel very grateful for all the freedom I have as a woman living here in the USA and the access I've had to educational opportunities that people elsewhere do not have.

Below is an interview of Malala on The Ellen DeGeneres Show.



I am giving I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban by Malala Yousafzai a rating of 4 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

The Genius of Opposites: How Introverts and Extroverts Achieve Extraordinary Results Together by Jennifer B. Kahnweiler, PHD

Paperback edition
The Genius of Opposites: How Introverts and Extroverts Achieve Extraordinary Results Together by Jennifer B. Kahnweiler, PHD is a business book I received for FREE through the Goodreads Giveaway program. 

Below is my honest/unbiased review of The Genius of Opposites: How Introverts and Extroverts Achieve Extraordinary Results Together by Jennifer B. Kahnweiler, PHD.

Nonfiction books that fall into the business genre, are usually books that I do not read. However, the topic of introverts and extroverts and how they can overcome their differences to achieve stellar results captured my interest. 

Jennifer B. Kahnweiler's book, The Genius of Opposites, primarily focuses on the business relationships one has with colleagues, business partners, and clients... However, I think it's very possible to translate the ideas Kahnweiler presents to one's personal relationships... Or at least I'm hoping so, as I'm looking to greatly enhance a couple of close my personal relationships after having read this book.

Introverts and Extroverts Achieve Extraordinary Results Together by Jennifer B. Kahnweiler, PHD is a short, super fast book to read. Each chapter is well organized, well written, concise and easy to follow. I loved the ideas presented in this book and how easy it is to follow, understand, and (hopefully) implement the ideas to improve one's relationships with colleagues and clients.

Below is a YouTube video of Jennifer B. Kahnweiler discussing The Genius of Opposites: How Introverts and Extroverts Achieve Extraordinary Results Together.


I am giving The Genius of Opposites: How Introverts and Extroverts Achieve Extraordinary Results Together by Jennifer B. Kahnweiler, PHD a rating of 4 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Little Free Library in Oakland, California



I visited my eighth Little Free Library over the long holiday weekend here in the USA!! I am becoming addicted to visiting Little Free Libraries as I enjoy sharing books I've read with other readers and finding new books to add to my ever growing reading pile.

So, this past Saturday, I visited a Little Free Library in Oakland, California on my way to spend time in Emeryville, California with my husband. The Oakland, California Little Free Library had a nice collection of books to select from. I also liked the colorful paint choices used to paint the outside of this Little Free Library.

Have you visited any Little Free Libraries lately??

Top Ten Tuesday Top Ten Books That Have Under 2000 Ratings On Goodreads



Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

Each week we will post a new Top Ten list that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join. All we ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun with it! It's a fun way to get to know your fellow bloggers.


Below are the top ten books I've read that have under 2000 ratings on Goodreads that I really enjoyed reading.

1. A House in Fez: Building a Life in the Ancient Heart of Morocco by Suzanna Clarke
2. The Sacred Well by Antoinette May
3. The Scent of God: A Memoir by Beryl Singleton Bissell
4. Mind Over Medicine by Lissa Rankin MD
5. The Dead Beat: Lost Souls, Lucky Stiffs, and the Perverse Pleasures of Obituaries by Marilyn Johnson
6. Appaloosa Summer (Island Trilogy #1) by Tudor Robins
7. Wednesday Riders (Island Trilogy #2) by Tudor Robins
8. Pure Sex by Lucinda Betts, Sasha White, & Bonnie Edwards
9. Stoned: Jewelry, Obsession, and How Desire Shapes the World by Aja Raden
10. The Good Traitor by Ryan Quinn

Monday, July 4, 2016

Little Free Library in Milpitas, California



Happy 4th of July!! I hope all my American readers had a fabulous day celebrating our nation's independence day today... And that all my blog readers who live outside the USA, had a marvelous 4th of July as well.

Today, I visited my ninth Little Free Library. The Little Free Library, I visited was in Milpitas, California. After leaving a book and taking a book from the Little Free Library's inventory, I spent time in Sunnyvale, California attending a picnic/barbecue with my husband and friends for the afternoon at Baylands Park. It was a fun day.

I hope you all had a wonderful 4th of July today!!