Thursday, July 7, 2022

Reading Recap

 People Like Her was a book that a friend gave me months ago and I kind of tabled it because it was a physical book and not on my kindle (I realize how dumb that sounds).  Well... I picked it up this summer and I'm so glad I did because I LOVED IT!!!!

"To her adoring fans, Emmy Jackson, aka @the_mamabare, is the honest “Instamum” who always tells it like it is.   To her skeptical husband, a washed-up novelist who knows just how creative Emmy can be with the truth, she is a breadwinning powerhouse chillingly brilliant at monetizing the intimate details of their family life.  To one of Emmy’s dangerously obsessive followers, she’s the woman that has everything—but deserves none of it.   As Emmy’s marriage begins to crack under the strain of her growing success and her moral compass veers wildly off course, the more vulnerable she becomes to a very real danger circling ever closer to her family."

This was a book that I couldn't put down and I found the authors observations about "influencers" to highlight the good, the bad and the ugly. It was an interesting read for me given that I share so much of my own life on the internet but I really really enjoyed it.  

WARNING! There's a storyline involving the death of a baby (I don't want to give too many details but i was accidental) so if that's not something you care to read I'd definitely steer clear.  This book would NOT have been a great read for me when my kids were newborns so take that for what it's worth!

I've been on a Sally Hepworth kick since meeting her this past spring (EEEK!) and DARE I SAY that this is my FAVORITE book of hers so far?!?! I finished it on the plane to NYC and openly wept in my middle seat when I finished it.  

"Three generations of women. Secrets in the present and from the past. A captivating tale of life, loss, and love...

Neva Bradley, a third-generation midwife, is determined to keep the details surrounding her own pregnancy - including the identity of the baby's father - hidden from her family and co-workers for as long as possible. Her mother Grace finds it impossible to let this secret rest. The more Grace prods, the tighter Neva holds to her story, and the more the lifelong differences between private, quiet Neva and open, gregarious Grace strain their relationship.

For Floss, Neva's grandmother and a retired midwife, Neva's situation thrusts her back 60 years in time to a secret that eerily mirrors her granddaughter's - one which, if revealed, will have life-changing consequences for them all. As Neva's pregnancy progresses and speculation makes it harder and harder to conceal the truth, Floss wonders if hiding her own truth is ultimately more harmful than telling it.

Will these women reveal their secrets and deal with the inevitable consequences? Or are some secrets best kept hidden?"

The book goes back and forth between past and present as it tells the three women's stories and while I didn't LOVE how it ended with Neva (I don't want to spoil too much) I really felt invested in all of their characters and enjoyed the midwife content A LOT.  

I absolutely adored The Most Fun We Ever Had and when trying to put my finger on "why" I loved it so much I figured it out - it gave me MAJOR Parenthood vibes.  So if you love those kind of angsty but also LOVELY familial stories this one is for you!

"In this “rich, complex family saga” (USA Today) full of long-buried family secrets, Marilyn Connolly and David Sorenson fall in love in the 1970s, blithely ignorant of all that awaits them. By 2016, they have four radically different daughters, each in a state of unrest. 

Wendy, widowed young, soothes herself with booze and younger men; Violet, a litigator turned stay-at-home-mom, battles anxiety and self-doubt; Liza, a neurotic and newly tenured professor, finds herself pregnant with a baby she's not sure she wants by a man she's not sure she loves; and Grace, the dawdling youngest daughter, begins living a lie that no one in her family even suspects.  

With the unexpected arrival of young Jonah Bendt - a child placed for adoption by one of the daughters fifteen years before - the Sorensons will be forced to reckon with the rich and varied tapestry of their past. As they grapple with years marred by adolescent angst, infidelity, and resentment, they also find the transcendent moments of joy that make everything else worthwhile."

It was emotionally engaging right from the get go and while there's no "mystery" aspect (which I am typically drawn to) and the book is LONG it was absolutely at the top of my list and I found myself thinking about the characters in the days after I finished the book.  

The Maid hooked me right from the beginning and I listened to it in like two days.

"Molly Gray is not like everyone else. She struggles with social skills and misreads the intentions of others. Her gran used to interpret the world for her, codifying it into simple rules that Molly could live by.

Since Gran died a few months ago, twenty-five-year-old Molly has been navigating life’s complexities all by herself. No matter—she throws herself with gusto into her work as a hotel maid. Her unique character, along with her obsessive love of cleaning and proper etiquette, make her an ideal fit for the job. She delights in donning her crisp uniform each morning, stocking her cart with miniature soaps and bottles, and returning guest rooms at the Regency Grand Hotel to a state of perfection.

But Molly’s orderly life is upended the day she enters the suite of the infamous and wealthy Charles Black, only to find it in a state of disarray and Mr. Black himself dead in his bed. Before she knows what’s happening, Molly’s unusual demeanor has the police targeting her as their lead suspect. She quickly finds herself caught in a web of deception, one she has no idea how to untangle. Fortunately for Molly, friends she never knew she had unite with her in a search for clues to what really happened to Mr. Black—but will they be able to find the real killer before it’s too late?"

I heard this book described as "Clue-like" and I couldn't agree more.  It was a perfect murder mystery and you can't help but fall in love with Molly Maid.  The characters are well-developed and endearing and I thought the setting was unique and fun.  HIGHLY recommend!!!

I'm a sucker for a "private school murder mystery" any day of the week and the drama in  The Lying Club did not disappoint.

"A tangled web of lies draws together three women in this explosive thriller of revenge, murder and shocking secrets

At an elite private school nestled in the Colorado mountains, Natalie, an office assistant, dreams of having a life like the school moms she deals with every day. Women like Brooke—a gorgeous heiress, ferociously loving mother and serial cheater—and Asha, an overprotective mom who suspects her husband of having an affair. Their fates are bound by the handsome assistant athletic director Nicholas, whom Natalie loves, Brooke wants and Asha needs.

But when two bodies are carried out of the school one morning, it seems the tension between mothers and daughters, rival lovers, and the haves and have-nots has shattered the surface of this isolated, affluent town—where people stop at nothing to get what they want."

This story of soccer moms (literally!) was twisty and fast-paced and was one that I couldn't put down (short chapters always do that to me!).  I didn't see the ending coming and enjoyed this book a lot!

This month I'm adding in a few of Luke' picks as well!  

This summer he's read Theodore Boone series (books 1-6) and then this past week finished Book 7, The Accomplice.  He devoured this series and I love that he's loving mysteries.  

I also ordered him the  Ali Cross books and he's finished those as well and was disappointed that there weren't more in the series quite yet.  

I hope you found a book or two to check out!  HAPPY Thursday, friends!

PS - this post contained affiliate links... thank you so much for reading and supporting my blog!


  1. So excited to see that Luke is enjoying the Theodore Boone series. My kids always loved those stories and every year when a new one came out we would listen together on a road trip. I think even now some of the adult kids in my house would like to know there is a new one :)
    Can't wait to dive into some of your recommendations -- I haven't read ANY of them!!! Yay!!!

  2. So many good ones! The Secrets of Midwives was my favorite book of the year in 2017. Loved it so much!

  3. LOVE your book suggestions! I often come back to your blog to find a new book to read. I usually only get to read about 2 books a month, but if you could put the book reviews as a side bar category, that would be so great!!!
    Just finished 'Before we were yours'.... and went down the rabbit hole to find out ALL the information on it!


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