Books

H is for Hawk

So thrilled to get to go to Author Helen Macdonald’s talk last night. It happened via a series of synchronicities. We had something else scheduled which got cancelled and then saw where someone had tickets he couldn’t use. Surprisingly, we were the first to request and got them. We had good seats. This was on Friday. The lecture was on Saturday. Someone on Wednesday gave me a bookstore gift card. Used that to buy the book on Friday night. I was the first in line to have it autographed.hisforhawkHer talk inspired me to be out in nature more, and to start using our trails once again. I found the audio version was available on Overdrive. Checked it out to listen to while out walking in the woods, where I’m sure I’ll see a hawk. My husband will be able to read the paperback.

Her talk was excellent. She took questions at the end. I’m always too shy to ask questions, feeling my question will be stupid, especially after every question, excellent question. Maybe if I had been brave enough, I would have raised my hand and asked, “This is not such an excellent question, but do you perhaps think you might have been a hawk in a past life?” This is the way I think.

Oh yes, and I got new glasses (need them for distance). My husband insisted I keep them on. They match his.

Books

Woke up to a Great Review

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase

The Color of Cold and Ice is a novel by J. Schlenker. This is her second novel. I read and reviewed her first novel Jessica Lost Her Wobble. She asked me to read her second novel and review it. I am so glad I said yes. This is a wonderful story of a group of strangers in New York City who come together because of a coffee shop called The Java Bean Factory. The characters are very realistic as are the incidents in the plot. The story is interspersed with chapters on colors. Colors are personified and each color tells about the attributes it has. Color plays an important part in the lives of the characters. The story mainly takes place in the winter, around Valentine’s Day, in New York City. It then expands to Amsterdam and Poland.
Sibyl had a vision to own a coffee shop and with the help of her lawyer husband, Clark, and her sister, Em (short for Emerald), she made her vision become a reality. When she purchased the shop, Em gave up a job she hated to come help her decorate the shop and get it running. It became a lifesaver for Em when her husband was killed in a freak accident. Sibyl also had dreams that foretold things, like Michael’s accident and 9/11. Some dreams were just dreams but all involved color and cold.
John Gray was a GP who had his own practice plus all his student loans and bills. He had worked ER and loved it; but it didn’t give him time for his family. His wife, Allison helped him start his practice but she was a stay-at-home mom with their two children, Molly and Little John. John stopped at The Java Bean Factory because the line at other coffee shops were too long. He thought he recognized Em; but wasn’t sure. Actually, he was the doctor who saved her son Chad’s life after the accident. John loves his job and his family; but something is missing.
Mark is Allison’s little brother. Where she is slightly OCD, he is the exact opposite. He is unmarried but has had several long term girlfriends who were all different and a little flaky. He loves music but hasn’t been able to make much of a living with it. He is still trying to find where he belongs in life.
Their lives collide in New York but one thing resounds with all of them- color. They also are fans of Van Gogh and his colorful paintings. All this is woven together in a lovely story that tears at your heart and makes you laugh at the same time. I totally recommend this book to everyone.
Books

Follow UP

Here is my review of Grind by Edward Vukovic which I posted on Goodreads and Amazon. A fantastic book!

The cover drew me in – so well designed. I’m not a coffee drinker, yet reading this book could almost make me become one. I was mesmerized by the poetic flow and rich descriptions in the book, so much so, that I almost lost track of the story. However, midway through, I was very much engrossed into the characters and found the book hard to put down. The reader is enriched by the subtle ritual of the coffee drinker, not much unlike a Japanese tea ceremony. The descriptions were so defined that at one point my mind drifted, thinking of the popcorn that we might have during a movie later that night. I read on only about three pages onward and found a popcorn scene. Was it intuitive? Did the smell of popcorn seep through to the surrounding pages? The author does a superb job. As a writer I was greatly inspired by his work. If this book would get in the right hands, I could see it as a bestseller.
Books

Grind

29233502._SY180_I chose this book to do a review of. Although I don’t drink coffee, don’t even like coffee, the cover drew me in. Tea drinker. The cover was a little reminiscent of a Japanese tea drinking ceremony.

I am not far into the book, perhaps fifteen percent. I’m savoring each word as the author, Edward Vukovic, is adept at showing, not telling.

The book can be found on Amazon.

 

Books · writing

Book Review: Jessica Lost Her Wobble by J. Schlenker

I was so happy to read this review of my book this morning. Tomorrow I will be doing my first book signing at Empire Books in Huntington, WV (a little nervous – glad that I’m not a lone author – there will be 15 plus in celebration of independent bookstores). And, I’m in the final rewrite before sending the second one off to the editor.

The Page Turner

Jessica Lost Her WobbleJessica Lost Her Wobble by J. Schlenker
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book, Jessica Lost Her Wobble is one of those books where you just want to know more and more about the main character. The book doesn’t disappoint. A full life of memories, regrets, pains and love all wrapped up into one amazing book.

Jessica is middle aged when she moves to the island. The same island that she had taken her children, Josh and Gina to for vacations and retreats when they were small. She has seen a lot in her life and she has survived with a subtle sense of humor that makes me smile. Perhaps it is her British sense of humor that is too dry, but when she finds someone that appreciates it she is so happy.

When she moves to the island to live a life of solitude and quiet, she surprises…

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