5 Books I’ve Read Plus 5 Books I’m Gonna Read
Part II

I have something special to tell you all.  I had, what was without a doubt, the happiest moment of my entire life yesterday. The kind of moment you don’t think will happen but when it does you think,  Yes.  Thank you.  I really do deserve this and I’m grateful for it.

I got a shipment of books from Amazon.

YESSSSSSSSS.  Today I thought realizing I could probably get away without vacuuming for another day was the happiest moment of my life.


I really do get a tingly feeling in my toes when a big box full of books arrives.  I’m not an order one or two books kind of person.  I order them like pancakes.  By the stack.

When last we met, several of you recommended a few books for me to read. In fact if you look at the comment section of the last “5 Books I’ve read, Plus 5 Books I’m Gonna Read” post you’ll see there are hundreds of book recommendations from readers.  I read all of those comments, cross referenced them with reviews from GoodReads and Amazon and put together an Amazon order.  That was several months ago.  I’ve since read my first shipment of books recommended by you and am now moving onto my second shipment.


Have Read


The Hunger Games Trilogy  3 out of 4 stars

I’d been hearing about the Hunger Games triology for a longgg time.  I wasn’t sure I’d like it but the set was on sale so I bought it.  I absolutely loved the first book.  Could NOT put it down.  Which of course is the sign of a good book.  Or blankie.   The second and third books were good and very readable, but were a little flat compared to the first.  Still an excellent trilogy that you can read in NO time.  Probably because they were written for 12 year old girls.


I Still Dream About You – Fannie Flagg 3.5 of 4 stars

I keep going back to Fannie Flagg based on her phenomenal book Fried Green Tomatoes.  So far nothing has equalled that novel, but a few have come close.  This isn’t one of them.


Animal, Vegetable, Miracle – Barbara Kingsolver 3.5 of 4 stars

Award winning novelist Barbara Kingsolver is know for her works of fiction like The Poisonwood Bible and The Bean Tree but several years ago she wrote a work of non-fiction chronicling a period in her life when she uprooted herself and her family to move to a farm to live off the land.  As in only eat what she could buy locally or grow/kill herself.  Yep.  If that sort of thing interests you, you’ll love this book with all of your heart.  If it doesn’t … it probably won’t keep your attention.



I read other books as well, these are just a select few I thought I’d bring to your attention.  The one book that came highly recommended by a lot of people was Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close.   I have tried and tried and I cannot get through this book.  I find the kid (from whose point of view the book is written) annoying, the writing extremely jarring, pretentious and forced.

Mind you, it took me about 6 tries to finally get through Lonesome Dove,  which I hated every time I started to read it.  The Pulitzer Prize winning western is now my favourite book of all time.


Will Read


The Book Thief –  I’ll admit it.  I have a thing about novels revolving around WWII.  I don’t know what it is, but I’m inexplicably attracted to them.  Two of the best I’ve read … Sarah’s Key and Suite Francaise.

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn – Originally published in 1943, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.  An American Classic about a girl coming of age at the turn of the century.  Of my stack, I’m most looking forward to reading this book.  I have no idea if that means I’ll read it first or last.  I’m kind of known for delaying gratification for as long as possible.  Ahem.

The Saturday Big Tent Wedding Party (Book 18 of The #1 Ladies Detective Series) – I love these books.  I just LOVE them.  The television series was even better, but alas it’s been cancelled.   If you’re looking for a series of books that are funny, heartfelt and just make you feel good every time you read them, this is the series to go for.

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society – I’d heard mixed reviews about this book that’s written as a series of letters.  So I checked the reviews on Amazon and if 1,638 readers gave it an average review of 4.5 out of 5 stars … I think it’s a safe bet I’ll like  it.  Also takes place during WWII.  Which I swear, I didn’t know when I bought it.

Explosive 18 (Book 18 in the Stephanie Plum series) – These are great, no brain books.  You can read them fast, they entertain you and there’s always genuine laugh out loud moments.  You’re not tucking into it for the greatest story ever told, you’re reading it for mindless entertainment, good writing and a guilty pleasure.


O.K.  So let’s have it.  Let the next round of recommendations begin …


  1. Stefanie says:

    Let’s Pretend this Never Happened (a mostly true memoire). Hands down the funniest book I’ve ever read!

    • Brittany says:

      Seconded. Chapter 3 (the one about the racoon)had me laughing so hard I was crying. Then I tried to read it outloud to my husband, which just resulted in almost hyperventalating from laughing/trying to breathe.

    • Lauren says:

      DO IT! I’ve recommended it to five people at work, men and women, who have all loved it. It’s seriously I a great book…and I’m kind of a literary snob.

    • Ariel says:

      Must read! I almost choked on kale at work trying not to laugh too loudly while eating/reading during my lunch break. It was embarassing. And totally worth it.

    • Bethany says:

      I am so glad so many have already recommended this one, because I was totally going to. Read it. And if you’ve never read her blog…then I feel very, very sad for you. http://thebloggess.com/

  2. Gabrielle says:

    Very first ones that come to mind:

    “Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff” by Christopher Moore (Hi-larious)

    “Blackout” and “All Clear” are a pair by Connie Willis about time-travelling historians from the far future in WWII England.
    (I’ve very much enjoyed everything I’ve read by Connie Willis)

    • Denise Leavens says:

      The Connie Willis books Black Out and All Clear are FABULOUS! They left me with an imprint of WWII London lingering long after I was done reading. Loved them. She has written a few others set in WWII besides these two.

      On a hilariously playful note is Connie Willis’ book “To Say Nothing of the Dog”. I keep rereading this one when I want to laugh out loud.

    • Lucy says:

      I agree with your choice of “Lamb.” I laughed a lot and learned a lot, too. It’s one of the funniest books I’ve ever read.

    • Tara says:

      I also love Christopher Moore. Lamb is a good introduction to him if you aren’t into supernatural creatures. If you find them (vamps, etc) even slightly amusing, then I’d say You Suck is a better intro.

      In terms of WWII books, I’d recommend David Downing’s John Russell series which begins with Zoo Station. All the books are named after train stations. He’s a brit-american with a german son, ex-wife, and girlfriend who wants to stay in Germany to protect them when the war starts. I wasn’t sure about them but read all 5 this summer (I’m obsessive about series).

      • `tara says:

        And I’ll second:
        The Help (interesting historical perspective-is seen as racist by many)
        Enders Game
        The Girl with Dragon Tattoo series (couldn’t put it down but the way 99% of the men treat her made me want to hit all men first, ask questions later. Not a good time in for the hubs).

        Amusing non fiction
        Packing for Mars
        The sex lives of cannibals

        • angie says:

          A note on The Help, a few friends listened to the audio version, book on tape or whatever it’s called now-a-days, and they all agreed that it was the best audio version of a book they’d ever heard.

          A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson (Non-fiction) is hysterically funny and you learn stuff too. One of those annoying books you try to read out loud to anyone unfortunate enough to be in the same room with you.

    • Stephanie says:

      ALL Christopher Moore books are hilarious! Finishing up Lamb now..

  3. AnnW says:

    Best book ever: The Power of ONe by Bryce Courtenay. Small white boy grows up in Black Africa. I just learned their is a sequel. Tandia? On the way from Amazon. All the Lee Child books with the hero Jack Reacher. May boycott them in the future because Tom Cruise, the midget is playing 6’4″ Jack. Worst casting ever. Another great book.”Lets not go to the Dogs Tonight:” About white owned farms in Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Rhodesia. Eye opening. True story. Sequels abound. I loved most of the 1st Ladies Detective Agency books, but I think they are getting a little thin. I’m reading the book “overdressed” about how our profligate buying of super cheap clothes is ruining the world’s economy and wasting resources. That’s all for now. I keep saying I am going to keep a list of what I read, but I don’t. I love my kindle, but sometimes I get free or cheap books, or buy them from Amazon.

  4. Heather says:

    Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander Series–well researched with wonderful characters. George R. R. Martin’s Song of Ice & Fire series is great too–never know what will happen. And finally James Herriot’s All Creatures Great and Small series–laugh out loud. Esp with your love of farming.

    • Cynthia says:

      I second the recommendation of this writer, Diana Gabaldon. Usually my preferred genre is mystery/thriller or any of the Janet Evanovich books, but Diana Gabaldon’s writing style, characters and settings is well done.

    • Chau says:

      I loved the Outlander series. Diana Gabaldon is a gifted writer. Her research for these books were as thorough as it could be.

    • marne says:

      Seconding (or thirding or whatever) Outlander and Song of Ice & Fire. Both are epic!

    • Heidi G says:

      I also highly recommend the Outlander series. Diana Gabaldon’s books are my favorite. I would also recommend George RR Martin’s Song of Ice & Fire series, although with a caveat that his books take a lot of mental energy to read.

  5. Heather says:

    Whiskey Rebels by David Liss.
    Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde.
    Bloodsucking Fiends by Christopher Moore.

    • Denise Leavens says:

      Jasper Fforde’s entire Thursday Next series (of which “Eyre Affair” is the first) is wonderfully funny, and pokes a lot of fun at literature, sci-fi and time travel.

  6. Bev says:

    I loved the Guernsey book (and Sarah’s Key), really enjoyed the HungerGames trilogy and have just started the Book Thief.
    Just finished a number of YA books which I have really enjoyed as well:
    Divergent and Insurgent
    Blood Red Road
    The Boy in the Striped Pajamas (WWII)
    One for the Murphys
    The One and Only Ivan
    (each Monday there is a meme called It’s Monday, What are You Reading?” – lots of great books shared each week)

    • Jennifer H. says:

      The Boy in the Striped Pajamas was amazing and heartbreaking. Definitely second this recommendation. I also have the movie in my Netflix cue but haven’t watched it yet.

      • Karen says:

        Jennifer H. – I’ve seen the movie but haven’t read the book. 🙂 Movie was great. But then again … I hadn’t read the book. ~ karen

  7. karenagain says:

    While attending the hubby’s brother’s wedding in the home town of Brent Butt, I picked up a book entitled ROOM. It is a novel by Emma Donoghue.

    A boy turns five years old. He lives in a room 12′ by 12′ with his Mom. He doesn’t know that anything exists outside the windowless room. His Mom tries to make his life as normal as possible within the confines of their room.

    This was kind of a stupid book, but I couldn’t put it down and I can’t stop thinking about it and recommending it.

  8. Elise says:

    Wow, that list is AWESOME! I read The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society and The Book Thief one after the other last year, and both brought me to tears, made me laugh, and made me wish they didn’t end.

    Also, Janet Evanovich is pure gold, i laugh so hard i can’t see the page, and when i’ve calmed down, i inevitably reread the same line again, so it takes me a good half an hour to get through a page…

    Email me if you ever want to talk/wax lyrical about any of those!

  9. Dawn says:

    Ooo – if you liked the Hunger Games trilogy, try the Maze Runner trilogy by James Dashner, and/or the Chaos Walking trilogy by Patrick Ness 🙂

  10. Barbie says:

    Do you ever read any of Nora Ephron? She is so hilarious and I love the way she writes! “I feel bad about my neck” is my favorite! You would LOVE.

  11. Court says:

    Just finished Hugh Howey’s “Wool” (the Omnibus edition). Was sad I finished it so quickly; the nearly 1400 five star reviews are on par. I loved it! Gladly, Howey is still making additions to the series (Omnibus includes books 1-5), and #6 just arrived. I’ll be thinking about Wool for a loooong time.

  12. shauna says:

    okay – I’ve read all the recommendations from your past “5 plus 5” and the ones above. I gobbled up Hunger Games and agree that book one is the best, the others ok. Janet Evanovich is fun and I’ve read all 18. And Ender’s Game is one of the best books I’ve read (and I’ve read plenty). But if you haven’t read Lee Child’s Reacher novels then you haven’t lived! These are the fastest paced, most enjoyable reads I’ve found in the past two years. There are 12 or 13 of them and they certainly have a formula – but it’s a good one. Reacher is a great anti-hero and the stories are so urgent you can’t put these books down. My husband and I are both hooked and have read them all. (He reads them on his iPhone). Violent, no holds barred but really entertaining. Not for those who love pages of flowery description or moody maunderings! Enjoy.

  13. Lucy says:

    On my way to bed (it’s almost 1 a.m., but I’ll still read for an hour or so before really calling it a night), but wanted to thank you for the new round of book recommendations and for picking up the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. It is one of my all-time favorite books, but my s-i-l was unable to get through it. I hope you like it. I’m a Janet Evanovich fan, too. The books are perfect for vacation trips. They aren’t prized possessions, so I often leave them somewhere along the way when I’ve finished one. Since you’re a WWII book fan, I highly recommend Flags of Our Fathers by James Bradley. It’s the TRUE story of Iwo Jima — you’ll be surprised what you thought you knew but didn’t. It was triumphant and heartbreaking at the same time. Off to read….

  14. Laura says:

    All Over But the Shoutin’ and Ava’s Man, both by an Alabama author named Rick Bragg. I also love historical fiction, and Phillippa Gregory has several great novels about the kings and queens of England and all their drama. They are juicy and scandalous but not x rated. Or you could just read the Little House series 50 times over, like me. I was meant to be a pioneer or Amish, I swear.

    • Karen says:

      I know the feeling. ~ karen

      • Patti says:

        Haha! My sister is totally like that, too – and, in fact, volunteers at her local Pioneer Village for fun. She churns butter and stuff. We realized that she *actually* wanted to be a pioneer when she dressed as one for like 5 years in a row at Hallowe’en. Her favourite book is the Root Cellar. It got her hooked.

  15. Tabitha says:

    If you like WWII novels, try _Code Name Verity_. It’s amazing and full of interesting surprises.

  16. Vaughn says:


  17. Alison says:

    Totally agree with stefanie! Let’s Pretend This Never Happened is a nonfiction laugh out loud book. Easy to read and kind of reminds me of your writing style and humor.

  18. Jenny says:

    Ahem – the 50 Shades of Gray trilogy!! They were NOT written for 12 year old girls 🙂

  19. Mollie says:

    Room. And Rules of Civility. My two recent favs. But Guernsey is one of my all time favorites — read that one first!

  20. Renee says:

    Gone Girl – I just finished it and read it in two days. I could not put it down!

    • Pam says:

      I loved Gone Girl until the ending and then I hated it!

    • Michelle says:

      I loved Gone Girl and it was a good, quick read. The ending was sort of a let-down at first, but the more I thought about it, the more I liked it. It made sense to me to go with the characters. Highly recommend.

  21. Lyn says:

    Loved The Book Thief so much!
    I’d recommend, if you haven’t already read:
    The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
    American Gods
    All of Tana French’s Dublin Murder Squad novels
    The Hypnotist
    Case Histories
    Practical Magic (OK, that’s a really old one, but Alice Hoffman is my favorite living author)
    The Keeper of Lost Causes

    I could go on & on…

  22. Janet says:

    The Pull of the Moon – Elizabeth Berg
    Actually anything by Elizabeth Berg – by far my favourite author

  23. Sharon says:

    I just finished reading “Gone Girl” which I had a hard time putting down. The suspense just about killed me. If I hear one more reference to the “Fifty Shades of Grey” series, I think I just might gag! I’m sinking my teeth into “Butterfly” by Kathryn Harvey. Loving it so far. “Wild” was good as well. I listen to books on my IPad through audible.com. A fun way to read by someone telling you a story.

  24. Beckie says:

    The Help..Kathryn Stockett~ it took me a bit to get into it, but it was really good by the end

    A Discovery of Witches
    Shadow of the Night …both by Deborah Harkness~ for me, you can never go wrong with vampires and witches and this is really well written vampires and witches

    Gone With the Wind…Margaret Mitchell~ *my* favorite book of all time…I’ve read it about 12 times or better…there have been times where I have read the last page, turned back to page 1 and began to read it again, right then and there. Everyone know the “love story” of GWTW but it is so much more than that.

    Summer Sisters…Judy Blume~ Judy Blume for big girls…easy read for a lazy summer day

    She’s Come Undone…Wally Lamb~ you will never believe this is written by a man…it is so…inside a woman’s head…couldn’t put this one down

    I buy books like pancakes too!

    • Kimm says:

      Thanks for sharing your book recommendations. I found so many that I want to read!

      “The Help” by Kathryn Stockett is one of my all time favorite books. I listened to it on Audible rather than reading it. I would highly recommend listening to it. There are several different narrators, which really bring the characters to life. I know this is about books, but the movie version is fabulous also. One of my faves!

      The “Mortal Instruments” series by Cassandra Clare is really good YA fantasy. Couldn’t put them down.

      Happy reading!

    • Lucy says:

      Aaaahh, “She’s Come Undone….” That one gets my vote, too. He’s a great author and, as you say, you’d never know it was a man writing this.

  25. Kari C. says:

    Mark of the Lion Trilogy by Francine Rivers – I am not a Christian fiction reader at all, but this is one of my very favorite book series. So good!

    Girl With a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier

    Happy reading!

  26. Janet Evanovich is my favorite, I have all of them in HC and have converted a lot of friends. Sue Grafton (alphabet murders)use to be but, after Janet, not so much. Her latest books are getting better. Charlotte Vale Allen’s SOMEBODY’S BABY is excellent. Have only loaned it out once (to an ex librarian). Sdney Sheldon’s THE DOOMSDAY CONSPIRACY. John Grisham’s THE CLIENT was hooked from page one. Once you get past the first chapter books- THE COUNT OF MONTE CRISTO (when the oldest 2 boys complained of summer boredom I handed him TCOMC and said get past the first 2 chapters. It is now one of their favorites and are arguing who gets it after I die). There are so many but, so little space. I love my kindle but, love the feel of a book in my hands.

  27. burbhappy says:

    The Age of Miracles | Karen Thompson Walker

    I found this unsettling/disturbing, but am very glad I read it.

  28. Susan says:

    Don’t bother with 50 Shades of Drivel. Not worth the paper it’s written on. But great promotional work by the editors or there are a lot of bored women out there.
    Beach Strip, on the other hand is an excellent detective, sleuthy type of book. A can’t put it down til I’m finished kind of summer read. Set on Burlington Beach Strip it about a cop’s wife who finds him dead and proceeds to find his killer after his fellow officers claim it suicide. Excellently written by a very dear friend of mine, John Reynolds. An award winning author, John has captured my imagination and I can’t wait for the sequel. I hope there is one. You are welcome to borrow my copy. ;-)!

  29. Mary Kay says:

    I just finished reading The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo Triology – very good!

  30. Heather says:

    The Tent, the Bucket and Me

  31. Sherry (BTLover2) says:

    I love that you are an avid reader, Karen! I’m also drawn to WWII novels and have read a mountain of them. Of the stack you are about to read, I LOVED The Book Thief and A Tree Grows in Brooklyn!

    Some of my recs are:

    The Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer

    The Blood of Flowers by Anita Amirrezvani (right now the paperback is a bargain book on Amazon)

    Girl in Translation by Jean Kwok (right now the paperback is a bargain book on Amazon)

    Daughters of Witching Hill by Mary Sharratt (right now the paperback is a bargain book on Amazon)

    Claude & Camille: A Novel of Monet by Stephanie Cowell

    The Long Song by Andrea Levy

    The Nazi Officer’s Wife: How One Jewish Woman Survived the Holocaust by Edith H. Beer

    Perfect Peach by Daniel Black


  32. Diane says:

    I don’t recommend reading Steve Jobs biography. It has taken me 4 months and my Kindle tells me that I’m still only at 23%. Which is disappointing since I was looking forward to reading it for so long. He was a fascinatingly brilliant man….the book, however, is not. It’s long winded and every last detail of a kilobyte seems to be explained thoroughly. Which makes it more of a technical manual, if you’re into that sort of thing.
    But I will stand behind anything that Sophie Kinsella writes. If new to her novels I would recommend starting with the Shopaholic series. I never laughed out loud so hard because of a book. It is a really funny and easy read.

  33. Bonnie says:

    The Night Circus ( fantasy love storyish) and Gone Girl( mystery thriller).

  34. Lisa says:

    Thanks Karen! I am the person who orders one or two books at a time… I just ordered Animal, Vegetable, Miracle. Can’t wait to dive into it! ~ Lisa

  35. Samanatha says:

    Unbroken. by Hilldebrand I think…she wrote Seabuscuit…I think. Anyway..if you like WWII reads, this is hands down, best book I’ve ever read. True story and I’ve heard rumors it’s being made into a movie. And Life of Pi. Also a movie, this November I think. Oldie but a goodie.

    • Shannon says:

      Thanks, Unbroken looks really good! Loved Seabiscuit, and Hilldebrand is a good writer. Another good racehorse novel is Ruffian: Burning From the Start. Had me in tears.

  36. Kim says:

    I like Barbara Kingsolver, too, but was never able to get through The Poisonwood Bible. I DID love Prodigal Summer and the Bean Trees….both I found incredible! Same with Fanny Flagg…I keep reading, wanting more Fried Green Tomatoes…and as you said, they are close, but FGT is wonderful!

  37. Kelly S says:

    Diana Gabaldon’s The Outlander Series…starts out at the end of WWII so i know you won’t be disappointed…I fall hard into these and the family really has to pull to get me out of them….

  38. jen says:

    I also order books by the stack. I read The Guernsey book a couple years ago and enjoyed it. I could not get through the Book Thief and I tried multiple times.

    In my latest stack ordered from Amazon:
    How to Be a Woman by Caitlin Moran (non-fiction, collection of hilarious essays from British Moran)

    Broken Harbor by Tana French (I have her other 3 in this series and really love them)

    Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

    The Rules of Inheritance by Claire Bidwell Smith (memoir about author going through life after losing both parents by early 20’s). SO SO good.

    A Land More Kind than Home by Wiley Cash – set in the mountains of North Carolina, follows an event centered around a snack-handler church. Fascinating read and what I think would end up a really good movie.

  39. I too have read the Outlander Series by Diana Gabaldon. I love these books and count the main characters as 4 of my very best friends. The only problem was that I didn’t get to read another book for over a year. I loved the Guernsey book – and it does take a couple of chapters to get in to it. It is so sweet and I was sorry that it was over. My sister and I liked it better than The Help. Reading The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell right now and REALLY like it. It is good like Ender’s Game is good – when it is a genre you don’t generally read but it is worth it to cross the line. I’m a Kingsolver lover and am really behind on those so they are probably next on my list. I loved Lonesome Dove and stuck out the hard parts because the television series is perhaps the best thing I have ever seen on television. Wally Lamb books are always good. Read Water for Elephants recently, loved the book, then watched the sucky movie. A Girl Called Zippy by Haven Kimmel and She Got Up Off the Couch (the follow-up) are wonderful (true) books. They are memoirs written from a child’s perspective. Laugh out loud, read paragraph’s to your husband while he is driving (which I NEVER do) funny. Enjoy your reading.

  40. Karla Duell says:

    An oldie but still one of my favorites is Lost in the Barrens by Farley Mowat. I read it in public school and still recommend it. I also recommend Wildflower Hill by Kimberly Freeman, The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton, Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen, The Doomsday Conspiracy by Sydney Sheldon, Secret Daughter by Shilpi somaya gowda, Playing for Pizza and The Partner by John Grisham, and Ashes in the Wind by Kathleen E. Woodiwiss.

    I also recommend anything by Sohpie Kinsella. Hilarious!!!! She also writes under another name, Madeline Wickham, but is not as funny and much darker humor.


  41. Erika says:

    Have to re-recommend Venetian Masque by Rafael Sabatini

    Any of the Georgian romances by Georgette Heyer

    The Vampire Files, all volumes, by P.N. Elrod, who is also an extremely nice person and not at all snooty author. About a vampire private eye in 1930’s Chicago. Excellent attention to period detail.

    The Phoenix Guards by Steven Brust – my all-time favorite, hands down, first on the list of books to take to a desert island for the last 20 years, no book has bumped it off the top yet. The sequel is #2. Venetian Masque is #3.

    • Erika says:

      Oh, and At Home by Bill Bryson, which is a social history of how the house as we know it developed from mud hut to how we live today.

    • Shannon says:

      Vampires, and detectives, AND the 1930’s? How have I never heard of this series before?? Must read it!

      • Erika says:

        And his name is Jack, my favorite male name. In the first book he wakes up on the beach as a vampire, with amnesia, and has to solve his own murder.

  42. Oh yean, and Fair and Tender Ladies, by Lee Smith is one of my favorite books of all time.

  43. Amber says:

    A Tree Grows In Brooklyn is excellent, and very touching. I also recently read and enjoyed all of Sarah Addison Allen’s books, especially The Girl Who Chased the Moon. It’s a very quick read, light-hearted and indulgent.

  44. Elle says:

    I loved “The Help” (which you’ve probably read already) – I thought it was the best feel good book I’ve read in a very long time.
    If you’re also interested in WWI and its aftermath, I really like Jacqueline Winspear’s Maisie Dobbs series (she’s a female PI in post WWI London who was a nurse in the war)
    Other than that I mainly read about murdered Scandinavians (Jo Nesbo & Henning Mankell).

  45. Keelea says:

    I am an avid reader and to date, my favorite book ever remains to be “Prince of Tides”, by Pat Conroy. The book gets so much deeper into the story than its movie counterpart, which isn’t bad either actually. Besides that Conroy novel, my favorite author of all times is Carl Hiaasen. His books are all based in FL and have an underlying theme of environmentalism, but feature the BEST characters, villians, and story lines. Very smart writing!

    • Karen says:

      Keelea – The fella reads and loves Carl Hiaasen. And the Prince of Tides was excellent. ~ karen

      • Lucy says:

        I was going to give a shout out for Carl Hiaasen, too. All his books are fun and funny. I like the fella even more now…. Tee hee!

  46. Gigi says:

    I am a lurking fan, have been for a long time. Not a post goes by that hasn’t made me chortle (I’m not a chuckler) and secretly wish we were neighbors and have you over for a cuppa Jo and plot an adventure or discuss/marvel at our fellas. But, it was the book review that forced me to write. Have read all 5 of the books In your shipment, love both Plum and Detective series for happy reads. Stay away from the Evanovich collaborative series with another author. Too much silly romance, with a total absence of absurd , goofy situations for heroine to propel herself through.

  47. Brenda says:

    If you’ve read Jane Austen’s “Pride & Prejudice”, try the “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies”. I love the twist on the classics. Another current summer read favorite, “Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Slayer”.

    I read Emily Bronte’s “Wuthering Heights” for the first time this summer, and I have to say I hated it. It was a story of abuse (child & spouse) and hate, and I found it to be a horrible story. I could not believe that people have been calling this one of the best love stories of all times — yes, I know, it’s a tragic love story. Doesn’t help me like it any better. One thing I learned, I do NOT want someone to love me like Heathcliff loved Catherine.

    I just started the “Song of Ice and Fire” series (i.e., “Game of Thrones”, etc.). Looking forward to enjoying a long series. I hate the depression that comes on from finishing a book/series. It’s like breaking up. I’ll have to start looking for my rebound series.

    I seconded a vote above for the “Mark of the Lion” trilogy. Excellent read.

    Thanks for the recommendations.

  48. korrine says:

    When my sis first gave me The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society, I started it and stopped (I guess I wasn’t in the mood for letters), but recently my Kindle broke so I had to pick up an actual book and ….. it is one of my favorite books ever. An absolute joy to read. Sadly, I have no additional recommendations at this time. I have been reading mostly crap.

  49. gogothrift says:

    Middlemarch by George Eliot a classic
    if you love Downton Abbey you’ll love this book

    East of Eden by George Steinbeck another classic
    family saga….. love, murder jealousy the usual messiness but so good

    Mr Darcy Takes a Wife can’t remember author
    It’s a beach read, kinda silly, but I couldn’t put it down

  50. Kristen says:

    Are You There, Vodka? It’s Me, Chelsea

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