The Happy Camper

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This is the second book from the pile of rom-coms I got from the library last week and it was a delight. Dillon breaks up with her boyfriend on Friday night and then loses her job when she refuses to work on a Saturday.

So she makes a rash (but great) decision to pack up her stuff and move home to her grandfather’s farm in Oregon. It turns out to be the best decision.

While fixing up a vintage trailer she meets Jordan, the cute handyman from the hardware store. Brandon (the stupid ex) shows up a few too many times for me, but other than that it’s sweet.

The ending was a little too fast for me, but until then I loved it!!

“She knew they were just a pair of happy campers … getting ready for a brand-new adventure.”


Not That Kind of Guy

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When I walked in to the library to pick up some holds, they had a set of three books labeled “rom com” on the shelf as you walked in. Knowing this is my go-to pick for delightful reads, I picked them up for my trip this week. I’m gone ten days with just a few meetings, so I’ll have some time to read – and I can’t resist having a physical book.

This was sweet – not amazing, but find to continue reading. There were a few too many misunderstandings that kept breaking them up. If I’ve learned anything from reading romance novels it’s these two things: First, more often than not people are not being intentionally harmful to you – let them explain what’s going on rather than jump to conclusions – then believe them. Second, speak up for yourself and tell the truth about what’s going on with you.

There was this underlying Catholic story in the book that wasn’t quite a delight. I’m not sure how I feel about it – but it was odd enough that I don’t know that I recommend this book if misportrayal of the Church is a trigger for you. Also if the next in this series is about Father Patrick, I’ll lose my mind (not that I’m going to read more of this author any time soon).

“Matt actually made her feel less lonely than more. He made her feel more wanted than tolerated.”


The Last Thing He Told Me

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Anne Bogel recommended this in her Summer Reading Guide this year – the way she talks about books helps me know if I want to read them – and I wanted to read this. So I requested it and then devoured it in two days.

It’s a literary thriller (in my opinion) and begins with a strange note and hundreds of thousands of dollars alongside a missing husband. We find out his past is sordid, he knows how to disappear, and Hannah is the right person for Bailey to be protected by.

I can’t give you any more without spoiling the plot – and I’m afraid I’ve already spoiled it with that cryptic description!

“Maybe we’re all fools, one way or another, when it comes to seeing the totality of the people who love us – the people we try to love.”


Waiting for Tom Hanks

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I read her third book the other day and it reminded me how much I loved this first one that I just happened to have on my shelves. It’s delightful.

I love the connection to so many romantic comedies and the love she has for Tom Hanks. Who doesn’t love him? In movies and real life he’s just a delight!

“I wish I could meet my Tom Hanks now and we could have five kids, enough people that we would never be lonely. Maybe that’s pathetic. Maybe I should only care about my career – but the thing is, I want to family. I want love, and I don’t think it makes me a week or bad person to not want to be alone.”


The Alice Network

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I love a good historical fiction especially about a war. This one spans both World War I and II. The network referred to in the title was a group of female spies. Evelyn worked for them multiple times and it’s where she gained her hardened exterior along with a few physical bruises.

Charlotte has come to Europe for a different reason. It’s a few years after WW2 has ended and she’s searching for her cousin, Rose. She finds more than she bargained for when she hooks up with Evelyn and her driver.

There were a lot of great things about this book. I listened to it over the course of a few weeks and while the audio was well done, I don’t think audiobooks are my best way to read book club books. I have trouble remembering the plot and key points!

All in all it was quite good!!

“How a ring plus a premature baby demands respect ability.”


Cheat Day

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I’m really not sure why I picked up this book. I knew it was about a woman having an affair, my least favorite storyline. Seeing marriages fall apart in real life is hard enough, I don’t want to escape into a world where I’m supposed to like the character making that choice.

But Annie Jones recommended it and made enough comments about the diet culture aspect of it that I decided to try it out. It’s well written, has a bakery and a handsome carpenter, and does provide commentary on diet culture.

But the entire time she’s not cheating on her diet she’s cheating on her husband. I get why it resolves the way it does, but I don’t like it. I give it 4 stars for structure and 1 for character/story line theme. I knew what I was getting in to, and I read it anyway. I’ll round 2.5 to 3.

It’s not the authors fault I read a book I knew I wouldn’t really like for no good reason!

“I’m getting so old, waiting for you to realize you’re good enough. Your body is a good body – you have your health, you are attractive. Our life is good enough. I’m just waiting – hoping – you’ll get a grip and quit going on every new diet. You just do it to punish yourself. For what, I don’t know.”


The Beauty in Breaking

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“What we had just experienced had offered an opportunity for all of us to recognize that America bears not just scars, but many layers of racial wounds, both chronic and acute. In order to move beyond them, we need to look at them for what they are, diagnose them, treat them, heal them, and then take care not to pick at the scabs, reopening them old wounds and creating new ones.”

What You Wish For

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This is a reread for me. And honestly I could have started it over after finishing the last page. Duncan and Sam are a delight and I want to move to Galveston and be friends with them. Have babies that can attend their school. And learn how to choose joy in the moment and be brave.

“Joy is the antidote to fear. To anger. To boredom. To sorrow.” “But you can’t just decide to feel joyful.” “True. But you can decide to do something joyful.”


Very Sincerely Yours

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This is so good. A modern day Mister Rogers meets a delightful Teddy! I devoured this book and it was the perfect love story. Just delightful. I’m not even sure what else to say, just that it was amazing! I want to watch the movie (who will make it?)

“He remembers the her she was last night, not the her she was right now, and … Oh, this was all confusing. Having a secret identity was far more complicated than movies made it seem.”


The Real Thing

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I heard about this book on Anne Bogel’s podcast, What Should InRead Next awhile back. A fiancé had conspired with the woman’s wedding party to have her be a guest on the podcast as part of her bachelorette weekend. How sweet!

Anne recommended this book and I finically put it on hold to get from the library. It’s sweet and delightful. At times irritating, but overall great. I loved the stories of the married couples and the way the author relates them is sweet.

Her advice is great and often tongue-in-cheek which I really appreciated. It’s a quick read, I started it before work and finished before dinner.

“My life, you see, had recently been hijacked by a chick-lit novel. And a poorly conceived one at that. In a single day I was hired to be the full-time weddings reporter for The Washington Post and broke up with my boyfriend of eighteen months. Obviously I was thirty at the time.”