Readers' Favorite

July 16, 2018

4 Fantasy Novels for Teens #MondayBlogs

by MK French

Summer is winding down but there is still time to fit in some pleasure reading before school and mandatory reading lists begin. Here are 4 novels for fans of young adult fantasy.

July 15, 2018

Excellent Short Stories from Legendary Authors of Domestic Suspense

by Donna Huber

I discovered quite a great gem on my review shelf this summer, Troubled Daughter, Twisted Wives. I don't typically like short stories, but after reading this anthology edited by Sarah Weinman I'm starting to think that I was just reading the wrong type of short stories.

July 14, 2018

The Coffin Maker by Breeann Allison ~ A Review

by MK French

Jesse Burns lives in the town of Gregor's Hollow and builds coffins in the shop his father used to work in until his disappearance. It's a quaint little town with many Victorian and Gothic touches, which attracts tourists. Death himself orders eight coffins to be built for his victims, who will be citizens of Gregor's Hollow. In exchange, Death will tell Jesse what happened to his father.

July 13, 2018

Rainy Day Friends by @jillshalvis ~ A Review

by Susan Roberts

How it begins...

Most of the time karma was a bitch, but every once in a while she could be surprisingly nice, even kind. Lanie Jacobs, way past overdue for both of those things, told herself this was her time. Seize the day and all that. She drew a deep breath as she exited the highway at Wildstone.

RAINY DAY FRIENDS in the third book in the Wildstone series but I had no problems reading it as a stand-alone. I enjoyed it so much that I've just ordered the first two books in the series.

July 12, 2018

I Can Handle Him by @Debbie_K_Lum ~ A Review

by MK French

Quinn always loved Nick, who is seen as a troublemaker. It doesn't help that his last girlfriend Sienna had died in a car explosion. Most people in San Antonio think it was his fault and that he got away with murder, including Sienna's brother Reed. There are further circumstances that affect Nick, including resentment that he opened up a coffee shop to rival the one he, Quinn and their friend Tory used to work at. With her background in law, Tory starts looking into the problems affecting Nick to help him and avoid the creepy ex-boyfriend that continues to text her.

July 11, 2018

Mourning Dove by Claire Fullerton ~ A Review

by Susan Roberts

The Deep South in the 70s with its unwritten rules and slow-moving life is beautifully written about in MOURNING DOVE. The story is told in that languid, slow and relaxed pace that life in the upper echelons of Memphis society occupied during this time.

The Thousandth Floor by Katharine McGee - #BookReview #SummerReading

by Alison DeLuca

picture of a pair kissing, only their feet in sneakers visible
picture courtesy of isorepublic
I’m back from hiatus with a review of an addictive book: The Thousandth Floor. Our past few months have been packed with 8th-grade activities: school dances, parent breakfasts, and a big graduation ceremony. It’s been fun but intensely busy.

July 10, 2018

An Ocean of Minutes by Thea Lim ~ A Review

by Donna Huber

Thea Lim has created an emotionally engaging, character-driven story of what one will do for love in her sophomore novel An Ocean of Minutes.

July 9, 2018

Between You and Me by Susan Wiggs ~ A Review #MondayBlogs

by Susan Roberts

Between You and Me is another wonderful book by Susan Wiggs - her books never fail to deliver a wonderful story of family and love and this one is a definite winner and my new favorite book by her.

July 8, 2018

Mr. Hotshot CEO (Kwan Sisters #2) by Jackie Lau ~ A Review

by MK French

Julian Fong, the CEO of his family company, is such an intense workaholic that his family forces him to take a two-week vacation. With no idea how to spend that time, he impulsively hires the woman he meets at a coffee shop to teach him how to relax. Courtney Kwan is a biomedical researcher, but knows how to enjoy the little things and is up for the challenge. The problem comes when the vacation is up and Julian has to return to work.

July 7, 2018

Catwalk Fail by Jason Godfrey ~ A Review

by MK French

Colin Bryce Hamilton is a male model hooking up with models, flying around the world, nurturing his body and trying hard to be part of the Milan fashion scene. Everything seems to come grinding to halt: he has a sex injury, he's losing bookings to a former roommate, a new female model isn't into him at all, his agency abruptly drops him, and his younger sister isn't as discouraged from joining the modeling scene as he wants her to be. 

July 6, 2018

My Life as a Star by Ruth Kaufman ~ A Review

by Susan Roberts

My Life as a Star is a fun read - a funny romance that will have you laughing as Marla Goldberg tries to become a star. This is the second book about Marla - the first was My Life as an Extra. I haven't read it but enjoyed My Life as a Star so much that I plan to order it.

July 5, 2018

Lady Mechanika Vol. 4: Clockwork Assassin by Joe Benitez and M. M. Chen ~ A Review

by MK French

A series of brutal murders seems to link back to Mr. Lewis, as the victims are former coworkers. Detective Inspector Singh has to evaluate if Lady Mechanika is a hero or a cold-blooded killer, as she seems to be one of the few people physically capable of slicing people in half.

July 4, 2018

Celebrate Freedom With Free Reads

by Donna Huber

While not everything is rosy right now in the great U.S.A, we still have it better than a lot of the world. We enjoy a vast number of freedoms; freedoms we often take for granted. Today, as we (in the U.S.) celebrate our independence and freedoms that have been hard won, I want to focus on a freedom we somwtimes take for granted: the freedom to read and the free exchange of ideas.

July 2, 2018

Alpha by Jus Accardo ~ A Review #MondayBlogs

by MK French

Sera had no memory of her past before being experimented on. G was the boy in the cell next to hers, and having him to talk to kept her sane. He felt the same way about her and had once been an experiment called Alpha. They're on the run, but G needs an antidote to the poison that was released into his body, and Sera has a faulty chip implanted. As a result, both have an "expiration date" of sorts, as well as their own tangled feelings for each other.

July 1, 2018

3 New Summer Books To Read Now

by Susan Roberts

Are you still trying to find your perfect summer read? Here are 3 great books that came out earlier this summer that you need to try.

June 30, 2018

Micromium by David Gittlin ~ A Review

by Donna Huber

I was considering Micromium: Clean Energy from Mars for the post-apocalyptic book club I attend, but after reading it I don't think it would be a good fit as it is more science fiction than dystopia.

June 29, 2018

June 28, 2018

Faraday Files by Kate McIntyre ~ A Series Review

by MK French

The Faraday Files is a series of steampunk novels that involves a good deal of mystery. There are so far 3 books in the series.

June 27, 2018

The Lost Vintage by Ann Mah ~ A Review

by Susan Roberts

The Lost Vintage is the first book that I've read by Ann Mah and it definitely won't be the last. This was a fantastic well-written novel that takes place in France with a dual time line of present day and the 1940s during WWII. It had mystery, romance and took place in France - what can be better than that?

June 26, 2018

This I Know by Eldonna Edwards ~ A Review

by Susan Roberts

This is a wonderfully written coming of age novel with an added ingredient. Not only is Grace, an 11-year-old girl, trying to navigate life but she also has a special gift that she calls 'the knowing' that makes her able to see people's pasts and futures.

June 25, 2018

Donna's June Reading Round Up #MondayBlogs

by Donna Huber

This month has gone by really quickly. I had a 2-day conference at the beginning of the month and ending the month at a 3-day intensive science writing workshop. In between these work obligations, I've squeezed in a few books, including 2 audiobooks to celebrate Audio Book Month.

June 24, 2018

One for the Rogue by Manda Collins ~ A Review

by MK French

Gemma Hastings, one of the four scholars that Lady Celeste had bequeathed her estate to, is determined to further her studies into geology and fossils. She has no interest in marriage, and especially not with her brother-in-law, Lord Cameron Lisle. But rumors of a fantastic fossil skull on the grounds of the estate leads to death and danger for everyone involved.

June 23, 2018

The Beedog by Addie Broussard ~ A #KidLit Review & Giveaway

by Donna Huber

The Beedog Tour

Have you ever encountered something so fascinating that you had to tell everyone about it?

The Beedog introduces readers to an intriguing little insect that author Addie Broussard encountered while on a trip in Portugal.

But this is no ordinary bug.

Its uniqueness will capture the imagination of young ones while peaking their interest in scientific discovery.

June 22, 2018

3 Novels for Fantasy Fans

by MK French

Fantasy is a huge genre and today I have magical realism, paranormal and epic. Do you have a preferred subgenre of fantasy?

June 20, 2018

5 Books I Hope to Read by the Pool

by Donna Huber

Both MK and Susan have provided recommendations of books to read at the beach this summer. I'm not much of a beach fan (I love the ocean, but not the sand). Instead, I spend my weekends at my parents' pool. I have five books that I hope to read this summer.

June 19, 2018

A Demon In Silver by R. S. Ford ~ A Review

by MK French

If the opening paragraph doesn't quite catch your attention, there's a longer excerpt from A Demon in Silver after the review.

June 18, 2018

After Anna by Lisa Scottoline ~ A Review #MondayBlogs

by Donna Huber

If you only read one book this summer, After Anna should be it. It is such a good read; I didn't want to put it down.

June 17, 2018

2 Excellent Psychological Thrillers to Read Today

by Susan Roberts

Last Monday, MK French recommended some thrillers. I've also read two excellent psychological thrillers this month that I'd like to share with you.  If you enjoy this genre of books, you don't want to miss either of these.

June 15, 2018

Write What You Know ~ by guest @RuthKaufman

“Write what you know.” If all authors followed that supposedly sage advice, there’d be no historical or paranormal romance novels. No books set anywhere but the author’s hometown or places she’d lived. That is, unless some of us were reincarnated, have time-traveled or inhabited worlds the rest of us don’t know about.

June 14, 2018

Agent in Place by Mark Greaney ~ An @Audible_com Review

by Donna Huber

I will start off by saying you probably need to have read at least the first book in this series to understand what is going on, or maybe more of who the Gray Man is. Agent in Place is book 7 in the Gray Man series.

June 13, 2018

June 12, 2018

Breathless by Celeste Bradley and Susan Donovan ~ A Review & Giveaway

by MK French

excerpt from Breathless
First Chapter, First Paragraph (and a little more)

In the 1800's, the Swan was a celebrated courtesan until her fall led her to be shipwrecked in Catalan. In the present day, Dr. Brenna Anderson impulsively hops on a plane after a new painting in the Siren Series is found, hoping to determine its authenticity and finally put a name to the subject. That would help repair her reputation at Harvard, where donations are threatening to dry up if she continues to teach there despite her tenure. The only thing that throws a wrench in her plans is Fitch Wilder, the art hunter who is also following the trail of the paintings.

June 11, 2018

4 Thrillers To Lose Yourself In #MondayBlogs

by MK French

Thrillers evoke strong emotions of excitement, suspense, anxiety, and anticipation in the reader. Typically they get our blood pumping as we get wrapped up in what is happening to the characters. Here are four thrillers to lose yourself in.

June 10, 2018

Shelter in Place by Nora Roberts ~ A Review

by Susan Roberts

I used to read every word that Nora Roberts wrote.  I loved her romances and her trilogies and I didn't miss a book.  As my reading preferences have changed, I don't read much romance and I don't like the trilogies that she writes because most of them have a lot of fantasy and magic in them.  I do, however, like the new book that she publishes every spring in the Romantic Suspense category.  These are longer books and have lots more character development than many of her earlier books.  There is some romance in these books but it's definitely less than previous - the main focus is on character development and suspense.  Her new book, SHELTER IN PLACE, is a real page-turner.

June 9, 2018

4 Mysteries to Bring Out Your Inner Detective

by MK French

Mysteries can be fun reads as the reader tries to solve the crime before the characters in the story. Here are 4 mysteries to satisfy your inner detective.

June 8, 2018

3 New Books to Put on Your Summer Reading List

by Susan Roberts

girl outside

June is here and summer officially arrives this month.  The days get longer and there's more time to do things outside.  To me, longer days means more time to read!  There are plenty of new June books to talk about so this is part 1 of June reviews.

June 7, 2018

Sixth Prime by Dan O'Brien ~ A Review

by MK French

On Nyan, the artist Ale Euclid's death sparks off an investigation that ultimately spans the galaxy. The investigator works for the Sluga Mining Trust, a corporation built on the interests of the seven worlds making up the solar system that was ruled by a military without ties to either the Sovereignty or Commonwealth. Unwittingly, he stumbles upon a conspiracy, people known as Primes, and That Which Came Before.

June 6, 2018

2 Heartfelt Stories of Family Drama

by Susan Roberts

Drama Genre Definition – What’s the best definition for the drama fiction genre? The drama genre is strongly based in a character, or characters, that are in conflict at a crucial moment in their lives. Most dramas revolve around families and often have tragic or painful resolutions. Drama depends a lot on realistic characters dealing with emotional themes.

June 5, 2018

The Feather Thief by Kirk Wallace Johnson ~ Review

by Donna Huber
Excerpt from The Feather Thief
First Chapter, First Paragraph

When I received a copy of The Feather Thief, which I had won through a Goodreads giveaway, and saw it was true crime story, I wondered why I had wanted it. I don't typically care for true crime, upon a closer look I realized it had to do with a theft of birds from a natural history museum instead of some grisly murder spree. The scientist in me was intrigued. I love the cover, too!

June 4, 2018

Supergirl: Being Super by Mariko Tamaki and Joelle Jones ~ A Graphic Novel Review #MondayBlogs

by MK French

This volume collects issues one through four of the Being Super comic arc. It outlines Kara Danvers as a teenager in Midvale, trying to fit in and be ordinary. There is a series of events in her hometown that calls this into question so that she has the choice to remain anonymous or to rise to the occasion and be super.

June 3, 2018

#BookBlogExpo Wrap-up

by Donna Huber

The inaugural Book Blog Expo has ended. It was attended by a small but loyal group of bloggers. I hope everyone had fun and maybe got to know someone new.

June 2, 2018

Day 4: Blogging Tips #BookBlogExpo

by Donna Huber

Congratulations! You made it to the final day of the Book Blog Expo. We had a small group this year, but I hope you met someone new. We will have a Twitter chat to wrap things up at 10 am EDT today.  Tomorrow is an optional day if you want to do any kind of final thoughts on your blog.

Day 4's topic is Blogging Tips.

June 1, 2018

Judging Books (by their Covers)

by C.M. North

I remember the days of record stores. I remember browsing through records and CDs, trying to find new music that would inspire and connect with me emotionally. It’s very difficult to do that in the age of Spotify and Pandora—after all, these apps promise algorithms that will expand our tastes, but if they’re based on what we already listen to, then how can it truly veer too far from the beaten path?

No—the exquisite experience of visiting a record store was that you would flip through the albums with nothing but the artwork, and maybe the lyric insert, to catch and engage you. There was something magical about taking home an album that could have been electronic trance or Norwegian black metal, and you didn’t know until you put it on and cranked up the speakers. I got some absolute stinkers this way—but I also discovered some beautiful gems, music I would never in a million years have considered listening to.

All because of the cover art.

Art in any form requires some type of judgment; whether it be cursory or in-depth, it invites a critique of its merit, worth and value. When discussing visual art (e.g. painting or photography), that judgment can be fairly instantaneous—it only takes a glance to know whether you like a painting or not. There can certainly be more in-depth analyses of this type of artwork, but for most people, their gut tells them what they need to know almost before their brain can process what they’re seeing.

For other forms of art, however, it becomes more difficult. Other art—film, literature, music—requires time and investment. You can’t really know if you like a book until you’ve read a few pages; a film until you’ve watched a few minutes; a song until you’ve heard it. And we typically approach this investment with caution: no one wants to invest their hard-earned and precious time in something that isn’t going to be worth it for them.

So for these lengthier forms, we typically rely on something to give us an insight into what it’s going to be like—a preview of sorts. And while that can be a blurb, discussion or review, it’s more often, ironically, a piece of art: an image of some kind that purports to describe the contents at a glance, something that implies exactly what you’re in for should you choose to invest in this particular piece of work.

For movies, this is often represented by the poster. For music, the album art. And for books, the cover art. This has even spawned internet memes, with similar themes calling for similar artwork (find me a contemporary romance novel that doesn’t have a half-naked man on the cover), and even similar color themes for similar genres (I’m serious: Google action movie posters followed by romance movie posters). But for all the humor and cynicism, there is something to be learned from this: the cover of a book tells you a lot about what its contents are (or at least, it ought to).

Sometimes, publishers will even commission different covers for the same book with the intention of selling it to different audiences; consider the infinite variations of something as classic as Pride and Prejudice (my favorite is the faux 50s cover from Pulp! The Classics—“Lock Up Your Daughters … Darcy’s in Town!”).

When I came to publish my own books, the cover concerned me. I had neither the artistic merit nor the money to commission an illustrated cover for either my fantasy work, The Redemption of ErĂ¢th, or my Young Adult book, 22 Scars. I would have liked it, truly, but I had to work with what was available to me. In the end, this turned out to be photography, which is something I can do. And in the end, I found that a single, unaltered photo can speak volumes about the content of the book within. The best part is that I can often make do with my own personal photos, or at worst a stock photo from an online library.

In a way, the thought given to the cover—its simplicity or complexity—can tell you as much about a book as the content of the cover itself. I’m personally a fan of simpler designs, tailored with care; after all, it says something about the author and their publisher (assuming they aren’t one and the same) that they can summarize the entire story in a single image. A complex piece of illustration, with multiple characters and backgrounds, sometimes feels to me overly busy—as though the publisher couldn’t quite decide what the book is about.

What do you think? Do you prefer simple covers, well-illustrated covers … or do you believe that the cover should be independent from the story? Should you be able to judge a book by its cover, or should books go coverless? Let me know in the comments!

Get even more book news in your inbox, sign up today! Girl Who Reads is an Amazon advertising affiliate; a small commission is earned when purchases are made at Amazon using any Amazon links on this site. Thank you for supporting Girl Who Reads.

Day 3: Most Anticipated Books & Giveaway #BookBlogExpo

by Donna Huber

Here we are on Day 3 of the Book Blog Expo. I hope you are enjoying these discussion topics either by writing your own posts or by commenting. Check out the entire schedule for Book Blog Expo.

Today's topic: Most Anticipated Books & Giveaway

May 31, 2018

Day 2: Favorite Section in the Bookstore #BookBlogExpo

by Donna Huber

It's Day 2 of the Book Blog Expo. I hope you enjoyed the Twitter chat last night. Remember you can talk all day long at the Facebook party. We will have another Twitter on Saturday morning. See the whole schedule.

Let's get to today's topic: Favorite Section in the Bookstore

May 30, 2018

Ike and Kay by James MacManus ~ A Review

by Susan Roberts

Ike and Kay is a historical novel based on the time that they spent together in Europe during WWII. The author did a tremendous amount of research to write this book and it's apparent despite the fact that there are some historical inaccuracies. (I read an arc so am assuming that these will be cleaned up before the publish date). There is still no definitive answer on whether Ike and Kay had a sexual relationship but MacManus writes the book as if they had - which seems to be the prevailing belief of historians.

Day 1: Introduction & Networking #BookBlogExpo

by Donna Huber

Today, we kick off the inaugural Book Blog Expo. I'm excited to meet everyone participating. Be sure to check the daily schedule of topics, challenges, and chats.

Today's topic is Introductions & How to Network.

My name is Donna, and I founded Girl Who Reads in 2011. I manage a team of bloggers that includes 3 reviewers and 4 features writers. We are a daily publication that mostly features book reviews and recommendations in just about every genre. My features writers often discuss pop culture in relationship to literature and writing in general. We are open to guest posts from authors and other people in the publishing industry. You can read my team members' biographies on the About page.

I can be found blogging from my couch in the living room. If I'm being really good about my blogging I will get a full week's schedule of posts all set up over the weekend. If I'm not quite so disciplined, then it is the evenings while I watch television. I manage our Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram accounts as they started out as my personal accounts. I've been thinking of separating my personal from my blog accounts, but I'm not sure if I'll get around to that.

I started book blogging as a way to understand book bloggers. I was working for a publishing company at the time and was pitching books to reviewers. I fell in love with the community and decided to continue even though I don't do much book marketing as a professional anymore.

I use to spend much more time blogging and participating in the community. There were always Twitter chats, read-a-thons, and other book-related online events going on when I was establishing Girl Who Reads. I participated in a number memes each week. Then some stuff happened in real life (not related to the book world) and I didn't have the energy to do much more than get out a few reviews. My blog was pretty well established at the point and I didn't want to see it end so I took on a few reviewers to maintain a daily posting schedule. Life rebalanced itself and I found that I missed a lot of the early interactions I had with the community.

I always participated in ArmchairBEA, which is why I wanted to continue the tradition with this new networking event. I've also picked back up on a couple of memes - It's Monday! What are your reading? hosted by Book Date and First Chapter, First Paragraph hosted by I'd Rather be at the Beach. I only participate once a month in the Monday meme. At first, it was because I would be reading the same book for several weeks, but now it is more about the amount of time I have for blogging. I feel bad if I don't get to most of the blogs participating and to do it weekly is just too much. First Chapter, which is on Tuesdays, is a smaller meme so I do it most weeks. I rotate who's book review is being featured.

I recently participated in a book marketing event for authors with Bad Redhead Media, but that was mostly to promote my book - Secrets to a Successful Blog Tour.

Remember there is a Twitter chat at 8 pm EDT. Also, visit the Facebook event page for the ongoing party. Today's Instagram Challenge is Books + Other Interest(s).

Donna Huber is an avid reader and natural encourager. She is the founder of Girl Who Reads and the author of how-to marketing book Secrets to a Successful Blog Tour.

Get even more book news in your inbox, sign up today! Girl Who Reads is an Amazon advertising affiliate; a small commission is earned when purchases are made at Amazon using any Amazon links on this site. Thank you for supporting Girl Who Reads.

May 29, 2018

It's All About the Duke by Amelia Grey ~ A Review

by MK French

The Duke of Rathburne, one of the famous Rakes of St. James, has taken on Marlena Fast as his ward. It's a challenge to try to be a gentleman, especially when he's attracted to her and realizes that she is just as attracted to him.

May 28, 2018

What Donna Read in May #MondayBlogs

by Donna Huber

The return of warm weather means that my reading time is now being usurped by yard work. While I was 6 books ahead of schedule on my reading challenge, I'm not only 4 books ahead. That is still very good for me. I only read 7 books this month, though I guess with almost a week left in the month I might get another book in.

May 27, 2018

Daily Topics, Challenges, and Chats Announced - #BookBlogExpo

Since there won't be an Armchair Book Expo this year to coincide with the Book Expo of America, I'm organizing a smaller scale event for bloggers to get together to discuss various topics and to network with other bloggers and publishing industry people. You can do as little or as much as you want. The point is to have FUN!

There will be a link up each day for that day's topic (it will be live shortly after midnight EDT each day). Be sure to link up your daily post (if you do one) so we can all visit your blog. I encourage everyone to leave comments.

If you have questions, please leave a comment below as others may have the same question and it will help me by not having to answer the same question over and over.

Remember to include the hashtag #bookblogexpo on all your posts (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.) so we can find them.

Daily Topics:

Day 1 - May 30 - Introductions & How to Network. Since networking starts with an introduction, we will roll these topics into 1 post. Gives us the 411 on you - who, what, where, when, why and how. Who are you, What do you blog, Where do you blog (also share where to find you on social media), When did you start blogging, Why do you blog, How do you go about your blogging and being involved in the book community (how do you network).

Day 2 - May 31 - Favorite Section in the Bookstore. Do you head straight to the new releases or bargain rack? Do you spend hours perusing the mysteries or perhaps you can't drag yourself out of the young adult section? Or is there something unique about your local indie bookshop that makes it a must stop every time you pass it? Whether you shop in a brick and mortar or an online bookstore, what is your favorite section? Consider discussing the genre itself or providing a list of favorite (or recent) finds.

Day 3 - June 1 - Most Anticipated Books & Giveaway Day. Tells us all about the books you are most looking forward to this year (share even if your most anticipated book of the year has already come out). And since we are talking about anticipated books, what more anticipated than winning a great prize? If you are doing a giveaway, please include it in this day's post.

Day 4 - June 2 - Blogging Advice. Do you have tips to share or need help with some aspect of your blogging? Today is the day to give and ask! This is a time for the blogging community to shine by helping one another out.

Day 5 - June 3 - Catch up & Wrap up (optional). You can use this day to catch up on blogs you may have missed, announce your giveaway winners, or share any final thoughts. Or just catch your breath before going back to your regular blogging program.

Instagram Challenges:

Be creative with these challenges. I'm not going to give much direction here as to what to picture for each challenge.

Day 1 - May 30 - Books + other interest(s). Help us get to know you.

Day 2 - May 31 - Where are your books? Are they on a shelf, next to the bed, holding up one end of the coffee table?

Day 3 - June 1 - To Be Read. Is your pile towering? Which ones are you anxious to get to? Are there books you've forgotten you had?

Day 4 - June 2 - Beautiful Covers. I know we aren't supposed to judge a book by its cover, but some covers are works of art. Have you bought a book just because you loved its cover?

Day 5 - June 3 - Show off. Are you good at spine poetry or at taking an exceptional bookish photo? Show off your most coveted book or your awesome book organization. Toot your own horn!


Since only a small number of people have signed up so far to participate, we will only do two Twitter chats:
Wednesday, May 30 at 8:00 - 9:00 pm EDT.
Saturday, June 2 at 10:00 - 11:00 am EDT.
Please use the hashtag #BookBlogExpo. Feel free to chat with one another on Twitter throughout the event, use the hashtag so anyone else available can chat too.

There will be an ongoing Facebook party throughout the event. Jump in whenever you have a few moments to ask questions and share your thoughts. Join us on the event page:

Some Tips:

This event is very much about networking and connecting with others in the community. Blogging can be a lonely interest, but it doesn't have to be. I encourage to follow each other on social media, comment on posts, interact on social media this week and beyond.

Plan your posts in advance. If you can schedule your posts in early then you can just focus on visiting the other blogs. Also, don't get overwhelmed with the topics. A short post is fine. A list type post can keep me from rambling and are also easy for the reader to follow.

If you are doing a giveaway, I recommend keeping entries simple (no one really wants to do 10 different entries on 10 different blogs). You can use Rafflecopter or if you just want to draw a number, then I recommend (it will randomly generate the number). I also recommend keeping your giveaway open through Saturday at least to give more people time to get by your blog.

Remember to use the hashtag #BookBlogExpo!

Have Fun!

If you are planning to participate, link up below so we can start following one another. A daily linkup will be provided for the daily topics.

Get even more book news in your inbox, sign up today! Girl Who Reads is an Amazon advertising affiliate; a small commission is earned when purchases are made at Amazon using any Amazon links on this site. Thank you for supporting Girl Who Reads.

2 Books That Will Keep You Up Past Your Bedtime

by Susan Roberts

Psychological suspense is one of my favorite genres and I love reading a book that I can't put down until I get to the end.  Thankfully, I am retired and don't have to worry about getting up to go to work because both of these books kept me up long past my normal bedtime.

May 26, 2018

5 Fantastic Books to Keep Your Kids Reading All Summer

by MK French

School's out (or will be soon)! Studies have shown that when kids do not read during the summer, they can lose half a grade level or more in reading skills. This "summer slide" effects other academic areas as well. Beyond the educational benefits, instilling a life-long love of reading will benefit your kids throughout life. Here are 5 books to keep your kids reading all summer.

May 25, 2018

5 Books to Read at the Beach

by Susan Roberts

It's May and one of my favorite times of the year to go to the beach - in fact, I've already spent two weekends in the South Carolina low country.  Today, I have reviews of 5 new books that are about the East coast beaches from the Jersey shore to Florida.  Pick one of them up and let it help you think about a trip to the beach.

May 24, 2018

The Good Twin by Marti Green ~ A Review

by Donna Huber

When I started The Good Twin, I wasn't sure I could finish. The idea that a sibling could plot the murder of her twin just didn't sit right with me. But I'm glad I kept going. It is a great thriller.

May 23, 2018

From the YA Bookshelf - In Sight of Stars by Gae Polisner (sponsored by @JB_Lynn_author)

This post is sponsored by JB Lynn, author of The Hitwoman in a Pickle.

by Kathleen Barker

Life's wounds come at us from many directions.  They are William Shakespeare's "slings and arrows of outrageous fate".  Sometimes they are delivered by those closest to us.  Sometimes they aren't even true.  The wound is real, but not the perceived hurt behind the arrow.

May 22, 2018

Grumpy Fake Boyfriend by Jackie Lau ~ A Review

by MK French

Will is a scifi author that prefers to be alone or play board games with his family. His friend asks him for a favor - to pretend to be his little sister's boyfriend at a weekend getaway her ex and his new girlfriend will be attending. What could possibly go wrong with that plan?

Furyborn by Claire Legrand ~ A Review

by MK French

1st chapter, 1 paragraph (and a bit more)

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

May 21, 2018

By Invitation Only by Dorothea Benton Frank ~ A Review #MondayBlogs

by Susan Roberts

Dorothea Benton Frank has been publishing books since 1999 and I am happy to say that I've read every one of them. Her books are Southern Fiction at its best and are the first indication every year that summer is just around the corner. This book is a bit different for her because the South Carolina beach is not a 'character' in the book but it still has her signature style and is a fantastic read that will have you laughing out loud during parts of it.

May 20, 2018

WIlliam Wilde and the Necrosed by @DavisAshura ~ An @Audible_com Review

by Donna Huber

Schools out (or will soon be) and it is always difficult to keep the kids reading. William Wilde and the Necrosed by Davis Ashura will keep your tweens and teens entertained. Get the audiobook and share the experience as a family.

May 19, 2018

Now Available: Hitwoman in a Pickle by @JB_Lynn_author

Book 18 in the cozy mystery series Confessions of a Slightly Neurotic Hitwoman is now available where ever ebooks are sold. Get it today!

May 18, 2018

7 Tales of Romance to Take to the Beach

by MK French

It is finally warming up and soon it will be time to head to the beach and pool. Romance novels are great for escaping life while lounging in the sun. Whether you prefer humor, fantasy, historical, suspense, or just straight up romance, I have 7 novels for you to consider packing in your beach bag.

May 17, 2018

Becoming the Talbot Sisters by Rachel Linden @tnzfiction ~ A Review

by Susan Roberts

I love books about sisters and families and this fit that criteria but was so much more. Not only is it about twin sisters who took totally different paths in life but it is also about surrogacy and sex trafficking and the effect of the media on everyday lives. This is a book that you don't want to miss.

May 16, 2018

6 Books to Read this Spring

by Susan Roberts

With the longer days of spring, there's more time to spend outdoors with a good book in your hands.  Here are six books that you might consider reading.

May 15, 2018

Two New May Books for Your TBR Pile

by MK French

May is filled with so many new releases. Here are two more books that hit shelves today. First up is a literary novel set in rural Texas. Then I have a middle grades adventure perfect for summer reading.

How Did I Get Here? by Jane Marlow ~ A Review

by MK French

(1st Chapter, 1st Paragraph)
Medical student Andrey Rozhdestvensky volunteers as a surgeon for the Russian army during the Crimean War in 1854, and learns the hard way what war is really like. He tries to keep death and disease from decimating the troops and is worn down by the heartlessness and cruelty of war. Even after it ends, Andrey is left trying to piece his shattered soul back together.

May 14, 2018

The Moment Before by Jason Makansi ~ A Review #MondayBlogs

by Susan Roberts

The Moment Before is as much of a family drama as it is about politics and the prejudice against other cultures in America.  There are numerous plotlines and it's not a book that you can skim through because you need to be paying attention as the story jumps between characters and plots.  Overall, I found it very interesting and thought-provoking.

May 13, 2018

3 Historical Novels for Fans of WWII Fiction

by Susan Roberts

I seem to be reading lots of WWII books recently. I have reviews of three books for you today that look at the war from totally different perspectives. One is about a young girl who helps the resistance, one is about a man trying to survive inside a concentration camp and one is about the war from the perspective of the fighting in Croatia.

May 12, 2018

Key Largo Blues by Lynne M. Spreen ~ An @Audible_com Review

by Donna Huber

Usually, it is Susan who encounters the great women's fiction books with mature characters, but this time I got to recommend a book to her. Although this is book 2 in the Karen Grace series by Lynne M. Spreen, I didn't have much trouble connecting with the cast of Key Largo Blues.

May 11, 2018

The Last Straw by Ed Duncan ~ A Review

by MK French

A teenage girl named Sandra witnessed a carjacking gone wrong. The boy was an inner city kid with no priors, coaxed into it, yet somehow a hitman is after the girl. Paul Elliott is a lawyer and was a friend of the girl's father, and has some history with Rico, the enforcer that had refused to kill the girl. The two team up to protect her, especially once they find out that the boy's biological father is the crime boss trying to kill the girl.

May 10, 2018

Good Neighbors by Joanne Serling ~ A Review

by Susan Roberts

Good Neighbors is a novel about four families of neighbors in an upscale suburb. They all become friends due to their proximity to each other and probably wouldn't be friends for any other reason because they are all so different. This is a mainly a story of the women in this exclusive clique - the husbands are definitely part of the background and don't play much of a role in the neighborhood dramas and dynamics.

May 9, 2018

Crimson Ash by Haley Sulich ~ A Review

by MK French

In a future devastated by the virus the Devil's Dream, survivors are given a Choice: to die or to live in the government-run city where every moment is tightly regulated and observed for deviance. The Choice is given by soldiers, who are children stolen from families with their memories erased. They endure a harsh life in the City of Soldiers, and feel no emotion, which is considered a weakness. Sixteen-year-old Ember Lucille is one such soldier, stolen away eight years before the start of the book. She has no emotional connection to Solanine Lucille, who had found the leader of the rebels to try to help rescue Ember. Even getting her out of the government control isn't enough, because both sisters have secrets they are sure will devastate the other.

May 8, 2018

Everything She Lost by Alessandra Harris ~ A Review

by Susan Roberts

Everything She Lost is a story about family, friendship and mental illness. Family and friends should be able to help someone who has had a breakdown but in this book, you aren't sure if they are helping the main character's recovery or working to make her relapse.

May 7, 2018

Bookworm: A Memoir of Childhood Reading by Lucy Mangan ~ An @Audible_com Review

by Donna Huber

I remember curling up in my Mom's lap as we read together and the first book I 'read' because I had it memorized. Or how I created a little library between the wall and my bed with my Sesame Street books (those were mail days). As a pre-teen, I remember being excited to go to the mall because it meant a trip to B. Dalton bookstore and I could pick up two new Baby-Sitters Club books. Do you have memories connected to books?

Lucy Mangan shares her memories of childhood reading in her new memoir Bookworm.

May 6, 2018

Sword & Sorcery Novels for Each Age of Fantasy Readers

by MK French

Sword and sorcery literature was first coined for this subgenre of fantasy in 1961. As the name suggests, it features sword-wielding heroes with typically magic or elements of the supernatural present in the story. While there are similarities to other types of fantasy, it tends to fast-paced and action-packed. It is also considered to lend itself more to series format than say epic fantasy.

As sword and sorcery stories appeal to all age groups of readers, today I review three - one targeted towards middle grades, one that is more for teens, and one for adults.

May 5, 2018

Independent Bookstore Day

by Susan Roberts 

What is Independent Bookstore Day?
Independent Bookstore Day is a one-day national party that takes place at indie bookstores across the country on the last Saturday in April.  Every store is unique and independent, and every party is different. But in addition to authors, live music, cupcakes, scavenger hunts, kids events, art tables, readings, barbecues, contests, and other fun stuff, there are exclusive books and literary items that you can only get on that day. Not before. Not after. Not online.

We've missed it for 2018 but mark your calendar for April 27, 2019!

May 4, 2018

Jake, Lucid Dreamer by David J. Naiman

by MK French

Jake is twelve years old and in seventh grade, battling all the social minefields that it entails. He is also still dealing with his mother's death four years before, and now has some control of his dreams. That allows him to avoid a mean kangaroo in his dreams just as he avoids the bullies in school.

Writing with Purpose by @CMNorthauthor

by C. M. North

Something that comes to mind frequently when I look at the reactions to my writing is whether the idea, the core nugget of meaning that spawned the entire length of prose, is received by the reader. Did they get the point? Perhaps more importantly, did I successfully make the point? And, for that matter, did I even know what point I was trying to make?

May 3, 2018

Beautiful Music by Michael Zadoorian ~ A Review

by Susan Roberts

Every once in awhile, a book comes along that makes you happy as you read it. This new novel by Michael Zadoorian was that book for me. It's a fantastically written coming-of-age story by the author of The Leisure Seeker but it's also a book full of musical references and took my memory back to happy times in my youth when I listened to the same music. An added plus for me is that the book takes place in Detroit, where I grew up and there were numerous references to people and places that I have forgotten over the years. Even if you aren't from Detroit, Beautiful Music is still a fantastic book that needs to be added 'to your to be read' list.

May 2, 2018

Head to Marietta, MT Where Romance is Always in the Air

by Donna Huber

Last Christmas, when I go on a holiday fluffy romance binge, I discovered a series (well several series) set in the fictional town of Marietta, MT. Since then, I've been trying to sample the different series. Today, I review two recent releases from two different series: Marietta St. Claire's and Holiday at the Graff.

April 30, 2018

Between Earth and Sky by Amanda Skenandore (@ARShenandoah) ~ A Review #MondayBlogs

by Susan Roberts

I enjoy reading historical fiction and love it even more when I learn about events that I didn't know about while I am reading. Between Earth and Sky does just that and more. The book is about the treatment of Indian children in the late 1800s when many of them were taken from their homes and families and moved to boarding schools. Their language and their traditions were stripped away from them as they were being 'civilized'. In the second time period in the novel - 1906 - we are shown the ramifications of the changes that the children went through and how it affected the rest of their lives.

April 29, 2018

Donna's April Reading Round Up

by Donna Huber

Another great reading month. I've read 10 books so far this month and I hope to finish my book club read by the end of the month (we meet on May 3). I've also had a pretty big book haul this month as you can see above - 2 I bought, 2 were sent for review, and 1 I won through Goodreads. I've also been busy getting my yard ready for summer. I planted a bunch of beautiful blooms yesterday.

Let's get to what I've read, what I'm reading, and what might be next.

April 28, 2018

Susan's Round Up of April Books

by Susan Roberts

Now that spring is here and the days are getting longer, we should all have more time to read.  I have been able to read several books that are published in April that I highly recommend adding to your reading lists.

April 27, 2018

The Ghost Years by Mutch Katsonga ~ A Review & Excerpt

by MK French

Elsie was eighteen years old when she gave birth to her son, but the small family of three seemed to do fairly well. Injured in a terrible car accident, Elsie is ultimately committed to a psychiatric facility and her son is cast adrift. That gets worse over time until finally, he burns all his bridges with family members and fully descends into drugs and alcohol.

April 26, 2018

Hurricane Season by Lauren K. Denton ~ A Review by @SueDonaRoad

by Susan Roberts

I enjoyed Lauren Denton's debut novel, The Hideaway, and had high hopes for her second novel. I wasn't disappointed. This was a well-written novel that kept me turning the pages. It was all about love and family and relationships -not just the relationship between husband and wife but also between sisters who are very different from each other.

April 25, 2018

Arc of Triumph

by Ross M. Kitson

Image from MovieWeb
This week marks the release of Avengers 3: Infinity War, which I’m sure everyone with a social media account/ television/ eyes/ ears/ child is aware of. For those with only a passing interest in pumped-up actors fighting through a CGI saturated environment, you’d be forgiven for rolling your eyes and wondering what all the fuss is about. Yet beyond the likely movie profits that’ll rival the GDP of a small third world nation, I think the Avengers 3 marks a key moment in movie history—the culmination of a movie plot.

April 24, 2018

The Advice Column Murders by Leslie Nagel ~ A Cozy Mystery Review

by Donna Huber

Last summer I went through a cozy mystery phase and binged a whole bunch of cozies. I feel the craving for quirky characters and fun mysteries again. So I was happy to find The Advice Column Murders on Netgalley. I haven't read the previous two books in the Oakwood Mystery series, but I know for most cozies that's not necessary.

Here's the first paragraph of the first chapter. Would you keep reading?
She felt like death warmed over.
Charley Carpenter stood in the pretty green and white bedroom at her home on Hawthorn Boulevard, her eyes closed as she willed the pain relievers she'd taken to start tackling her insomia-induced headache. Yet another night of tossing and turning had left her dry-eyed and exhausted. She was currently nursing a pounding head, stiff neck, and a sour mood.

April 23, 2018

#Horror Reviews: Haunted by Heather Beck & Lake Silence by Anne Bishop

by MK French

Horror is one of my favorite genres. Today I review an anthology if you need some quick reads and a novel that is part of a larger series.

April 22, 2018

Dream Job, Wacky Adventures of an HR Manager by Janet Garner ~ An Excerpt

March 2016; 978-1483447476
ebook, print (178 pages); contemporary
There he was!  Ponytail Man/PTM. Melie spotted him through the window as she was running across the New Rochelle platform to the Metro North train.

The good thing about being a klutz, or at least a bit off balance, was that she didn’t have to fake falling into his lap.

“Sorry.  Sorry!” she said as she scrambled into the seat opposite his.

She had never been this close to him before—the lacquered nails, the pointy Italian leather shoes, the beautifully tailored suit that fit his tall, lean muscular frame like a second skin.  And of course the dirty blond hair, luxuriant, swept into a thick ponytail.   He looked to be in his late forties—he had a faint scent of the sixties, the strange and the hippie.  Her type.

She’d been watching him for over a year.  Now was her chance.

“What do you think of the book?” Melie, queen of pickup lines, asked. She smiled sweetly and tried not to let her chin tremble too much when she spoke.

“Oh, this?  Piece of crap!”

Succinct.  A man of few words.  The strong, silent type.

“I kinda liked it,” she ventured.

“Deviant. Dangerous. Dreadful.”

Alliterative critique.  He must be bright.  She stared at his forehead, longing to reach out to smooth the stray blond hairs from his perfect brow.  She watched as he pushed the hair back himself, catching the telltale glint on his finger.  Oh no!

Wedding rings on the train always struck her as a personal affront.  They hurt her eyes—solid gold bands, so boring really, thrust into her line of vision, folding the Times, whipping out the commuter ticket at the conductor’s voice, popping out of leather gloves like maladroit rabbits just when you least expected it, like a slap of cold water in the face.

“You’re not wanted here,” they seemed to scream out at her, a sound like spoons striking the sides of a stack of wineglasses:

We don’t want you.
We don’t need you.
You’re not wanted here.

The Ponytail Man seemed to register the change in the weather.  He took a long look—she fidgeted.  He leaned in so she did too.

“You know, you’re not a bad-looking chick.  What did you say your name was?”

“Melanie . . . Melie.”

“Seriously, Mel, the book is well crafted.  It held my interest.  But those sex scenes, huh?  Not too likely.  Not many girls will do those things—without being paid.”  He chuckled to himself.  Then, leaning in even closer (she could smell his cologne), he whispered, “Would you?”

Hmm.  Yep.  You bet.  Can’t wait.  Have been waiting so long. Too long. Forever.  I could cry. . .

She backed up, grabbed her coat, scarf, hat, gloves.

“My stop!  Bye now.”

Exiting, she knew she’d just have to wait for the next train.  She was one stop short.  If he’d ever even noticed her before, he’d know she got off at Grand Central Station, the same as everybody.

She walked to a bench and sat on the edge, miles away from a bleary-eyed drunk.

“You’re so pretty.”

“Oh, shoot me now,” she muttered to herself as she glared down the tracks, willing the next train to appear.

About the Book

Melanie Kohl is like a hamster on a treadmill, running in place and getting nowhere, starting with her mind-numbing commute to work, her job as Employee Relations Manager/Mrs. Fix-It/Emergency Rescue Team at the large out-of-control Medical Center in New York City, ending each day when she crawls into her basement apartment, bemoaning her sexless, uneventful private life, rocked by disturbing dreams of mayhem and murder.

Praise for Dream Job

"Janet Garber utilizes her keen sense of the HR world to create a funny glimpse into what might happen in a company run amok. Her writing style is a joy." Tony Lee, VP Editorial, SHRM

"This short novel has a promising premise with its flawed, endearing, and comical protagonist and her zany work environment." Publishers Weekly

"Dream Job” is hands down one of the most engaging and surprisingly good books I’ve read in a long time! I was completely drawn in from the opening pages, and absolutely loved the author’s use of description of the different characters and attention to detail on all fronts. We feel transported not only into Melie’s life, but her amazing life experiences inside and outside the office. . . .it felt like I was living through Melie’s life, from her professional, romantic and social experiences, and it was interesting to see how it all tied together in the end, which I loved! Wonderfully quirky but with serious points, I was really impressed and would recommend this book with the highest of praise." Sherri Warner

Buy Dream Job at Amazon

Get even more book news in your inbox, sign up today! Girl Who Reads is an Amazon advertising affiliate; a small commission is earned when purchases are made at Amazon using any Amazon links on this site. Thank you for supporting Girl Who Reads.

April 21, 2018

Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate ~ A Review

by Susan Roberts

I kept seeing great reviews for this book and finally decided to buy a copy to read. I am really glad that I did because the book was fantastic.

April 20, 2018

Swimming Between Worlds by Elaine Neil Orr ~ A Review

by Donna Huber

A couple of weeks ago Susan reviewed Swimming Between Worlds by Elaine Neil Orr. When she gave me her review I had just started the book. I have to agree with her, it is a great novel.

April 19, 2018

We Own the Sky by @LukeAllnutt ~ A Review

by Susan Roberts

We Own the Sky is a sensitive and beautifully written debut novel about the death of a child. Yes, it's sad and yes, you will shed some tears but the feeling after I finished the book was not sorrow but a feeling of love, forgiveness, and hope. This book shows how far parents will go to protect their children and it's a book that I won't soon forget.

April 18, 2018

Horror Edition: Jack Sparks and Head Full of Ghosts

by Alison DeLuca

I have a full-blown addiction to horror novels. In the movie theater I’m the baby who watches through her fingers and cries at the scary parts, but when it comes to reading I’m all about the scares

April 17, 2018

The Secret to Southern Charm by Kristy Woodson Harvey ~ A Review

by Susan Roberts

I can tell that it's finally Spring in NC. The trees and flowers are in bloom and there's a new Kristy Woodsen Harvey book to enjoy sitting outside in the perfect spring weather.

Here's the first paragraph of the first chapter. Would you keep reading?
Time had lost its meaning. I only realized it was night because the water outside my bedroom window at my monther's home in Peachtree Bluff, Georgia, wasn't blue anymore. It was black and shining like fresh-paved asphalt. Bust inside, in my room, on my TC, it wasn't night. It was Saturday morning, the third precious birthday of my son Adam, Jr., or AJ, as we called him. My strong, national hero of a husband, in his off-duty khaki shorts and collared shirt, was holding our other son, six-month-old Taylor, in one arm. I was behind the camera cooing, "Smile for Daddy one more time. Can you smile for Daddy?" Taylor smiled. Who wouldn't smile for the handsome man holding him?

Note - The Secret to Southern Charm is Book 2 in Kristy Woodson Harvey's Peachtree Bluff series. You need to read these books in order to get the most enjoyment out of them.

April 16, 2018

The Perfect Duchess by Erica Taylor ~ A Review #MondayBlogs

by MK French

Andrew Macalister stopped trusting women after his fiancee left him for the footman. There is an annual birthday ball, which he hates, but it's at one of these that he sees Lady Clara Masson, the twin sister of his former fiancee and a social outcast. Her brother Jonathan is threatening her, so Andrew proposes marriage to save her life.

April 15, 2018

The Tangled Lands by Paolo Bacigalupi and Tobias S. Buckell - An @Audible_com Review

by Donna Huber

The Tangled Lands is an epic fantasy told as 4 related short stories. I did not know that when I started listening to the audiobook and thought I must have missed part of the story which happens sometimes with audiobooks. But looking further at the comments on Goodreads I realized that I didn't miss anything. I loved Bacigalupi's The Water Knife when my book club read it and even though epic fantasy isn't a top genre for me I wanted to give this book a chance.

April 14, 2018

Reviews: Don't Forget Me, Bro by John Michael Cummings

by MK French

Mark Barr returns to West Virginia following the death of his mentally ill brother. He thought there would be a funeral for his older brother, but his estranged family really had no intentions of holding one. Mark discovers that there was more to Steve than his mental illness, and is determined to celebrate the life he had never gotten to know.

April 13, 2018

4 Excellent Books for Eclectic Readers

by Susan Roberts

I like to write review posts with several books on the same subject but there are some books that just don't fit into a category.  It isn't that they aren't fantastic books, they are just difficult to categorize.  Today, I have reviews of four excellent books that aren't listed in any real order.

April 12, 2018

Review: Dark Surrender by Erica Ridley

by MK French

Violet Whitechapel fled her teaching position when she killed in order to save a student from predation. Without anywhere else to go, she accepted the position of governess for a child that has "sun sickness," where any sunlight caused severe burns and blisters on the skin. The superstitious villagers had thought the girl was a monster, but Violet grows to love her and her taciturn father in spite of her determination not to be close to anyone ever again.

April 11, 2018

Of Scars & Courage: 10 Stories of Facing Life's Challenges (sponsored by @talkspace)

by Donna Huber

This post is sponsored by TalkSpace which offers on-demand therapy and counseling from licensed therapists on your Android device. Get private and anonymous help for depression, stress, and more.

We know reading can have a number of health benefits. It can help you unwind and de-stress after a long day at work or give you much needed "me time" from dealing with the pressures of taking care of a family. Turning off the television and picking up a book before bed can lead to a better night's sleep. Not to mention, getting lost in a good book can be like taking a mini-vacation.

Books can also be a safe way to explore issues that are difficult to talk about. Many authors have used their writing to share their own experiences with mental health, abuse, and other life challenges. I've selected 10 books that allow you to explore mental illness as well as read stories where authors share their personal experiences.

April 9, 2018

Review: The House on Harbor Hill by Shelly Stratton #MondayBlogs

by Susan Roberts

Set in the past and present, The House on Harbor Hill is a murder mystery that tackles the issues of racial prejudice and spousal abuse in the lives of two very different women...

April 8, 2018

Review: Finding Fisher by Dakota Madison

by MK French

Franklin Smith seemed to have everything going for him, and his fiancee Chloe Woodford thought life was perfect. When he died during spring break visiting family she never knew existed, she sets out to discover the truth about him and finds herself along the way.

April 7, 2018

Review: Swimming Between Worlds by Elaine Neil Orr

by Susan Roberts

Normally I try to write reviews as soon as I read a book but this one affected me to the point that I had to wait a few days and think about the book before I could review it. It's about integration in Winston Salem NC in the early 60s. Even though I didn't live in the South during that time period, I have lived in a town close to WS for 40 years and have heard stories about the sit-ins at the Woolworth stores in Greensboro and WS. This wonderful, well-written book gave those events a human perspective.

April 6, 2018

What to Do When Someone Already Wrote Your Book

by CM North

Around this time last year, I wrote about the value of derivative fiction, and how there is little true originality left in the world. This isn’t a bad thing, necessarily; after all, most stories follow similar plot lines (see virtually every one of Marvel’s superhero movies), which can provide a sense of comfort to the audience. It’s exhilarating to see the dangers faced by the hero, but safe to know they’ll survive at the end.

April 5, 2018

Double Review: Not That I Could Tell and Almost Missed You by Jessica Strawser

by Susan Roberts

Not That I Could Tell is Jessica Strawser's second book. Her first book, Almost Missed You, was really strong and this one is even better - it's a real page-turner.

April 4, 2018

Review: The Flight Attendant by Chris Bohjalian

by Donna Huber

The first book I reviewed on Girl Who Reads was by Chris Bohjalian. I loved that book so much that I had to start the blog. I felt the same way about his latest novel The Flight Attendant. It was so good.

April 3, 2018

Scarlett Hart: Monster Hunter by Marcus Sedgwick and Thomas Taylor ~ A Review

by MK French

Scarlett Hart is the orphaned daughter of two famous monster hunters. The Royal Academy for the Pursuit and Eradication of Zoological Eccentricities (TRAPEZE) feels she's too young to follow in her parents' footsteps, but she is determined to do it anyway.

April 2, 2018

Review: In the Shadow of 10,000 Hills by Jennifer Haupt #MondayBlogs

by Susan Roberts

In the Shadow of 10,000 Hills is a beautiful, well-written novel about a horrific event in world history - the genocide in Rwanda in the 1990s. It's about love and creating our families not just from blood but from the people who mean the most to us.

April 1, 2018

It's Raining New Releases

This is no joke. There is a bounty of new books coming to bookstores near you this month. Here's a look at just a few to be on the lookout for. What is on your radar for this month?

March 31, 2018

Virtual Networking Event #BookBlogExpo Participant Sign Up

Calling all book bloggers and other book industry people for a virtual networking event. Join us for daily topic discussions, Twitter chats, Facebook party and more!

March 30, 2018

Review: Risen by Cole Gibsen

by MK French

Charlie's aunt Rachel disappears, and it turns out that she was not only kidnapped by vampires but that she might have been turned into one. The three vampire clans of Mentis, Animus, and Corpus are close to war, and Sebastian is tasked with eliminating Charlie. She somehow is able to unlock memories of his life before he became a vampire, so now Sebastian has own agenda in keeping her alive.


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