Friday, August 19, 2016

Books, Movies, & TV

Hello, dear friends.  I hope that you had a great week.  Newsflash:  book readers live longer.  Read all about it here.

I haven't done any book or movie reviews for awhile.  As you will see, there are some good ones and some duds.

I think it is probably difficult for authors who have a hit with their first novel.  Everyone says the new ones are never as good as the first.  This is the case with this one. 

Ugh.  The Mister and I listened to this one in the car on a road trip.  The author couldn't say a nice thing about anyone except the Obama girls.  We turned it off midway. 

I thought this one was beautifully written, and the story definitely kept me captive until the bitter end.

I really had high hopes for this one, but it didn't hold up.  If you want to read about a narcissistic entitled couple in the 1960's who forget that they have kids, this is the book for you. 

This book is an exciting page-turner chock full of twists and turns.  There is one problem, though - the author drops the ending like a hot potato.  It was almost as if his editor told Hawley that he only could write so many pages so when he got there, he ended the story.  It's a shame because I loved the story.

Because I really enjoyed Hawley's writing, I gave him another chance.  This novel has an interesting premise and moves along fairly quickly most of the time but is a bit of a struggle at other times.

This book is basically an argument for Michael Skakel's innocence in the murder of Martha Moxley.  I've read almost all the books pertaining to this sad tragedy.  Kennedy spends the entire book pointing fingers at everyone, including the victim's mother and brother.  He paints Skakel as an average guy who went to daily Mass and performed many good samaritan acts.  Kennedy did no favors for Skakel with this ridiculous diatribe. 


purchase here
A terrorizing tale of the "perfect couple."  
It sizzles with tension. 
If you're a Gone Girl fan, you're going to love this one.
Doesn't get better than this one.  

This is one of Karen White's best.  Great storyline, likable characters, and a wonderful ending - the perfect recipe for a delicious summer read.

The following books are on my reading list.

The reviews are unbelievably good on this one and after reading reviews of this book, I am still at a loss as to its premise.  Some people consider it a love story and some don't.   My curiosity is piqued. 

This one has mixed reviews but it involves a woman being thrown off a luxury ship.  This sounds right up my alley.

This one centers around a picture-perfect neighborhood which harbors more issues than Vogue.  Good reviews so far.  Comes out Sept. 1.


Purchase here
I've had good luck reading books about bookshops.  This one looks charming.  Release date: Sept. 20th


Purchase here If you think I put this on my list because I like the title, you are one hundred percent correct. Release date:  September 2nd.

Speaking of reading, I gave the Mister a Kindle Oasis for our anniversary.  It took a month to get it because they are in high demand.  He absolutely loves it.  Evidently, it is smaller and has a much longer battery life.  Hopefully, he is not on the lookout for Wife #2 with the same qualities. So I just thought I'd mention it if you are looking for a gift for a reader or a student in your life.

Have you heard about Library Reads?  One of my favorite readers, Susan, sent me the link.  If you love to read, check out this site.

On to tv

The Mister and I finished watching Doctor Thorne.  The good news is the script is sharp, and each actor gives a stellar performance.  The bad news is that it is only three episodes, and it still is up in the air as to whether there will be a second season.  It has left us wanting more.

At the movies.

A sweet movie featuring Meryl Streep at her best.  
Side note:  Hugh Grant only gets better with age.
Move over, George Clooney, you're about to be replaced.


I was pleasantly surprised with this one.  I'm not a big fan of Woody Allen's or the Twilight chick, but I really enjoyed this movie.

Any recommendations for me?

Until next time...

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I'm Katie. Thanks for stopping by my blog. I am an empty nester meandering through my middle-aged years while entangled in the never-ending process of renovating an antique home on the South Shore of Massachusetts. I love to write about books, movies, TV, celebrities, decorating, and weekend adventures. My favorite writing material is derived from my family: the Mister, my girls, #1 and #2, and my two untrainable, rambunctious pups, Chowdah and Chili.


  1. Loved your comment about the Kindle Oasis! Yes, I wouldn't mind longer battery life, myself! Thanks for the wonderful reviews. It's great to get someone's opinions about books before you choose one to read. -Jenn

  2. This is fantastic!! I have read two of the books but clearly have many more to add to my list, just need more hours in my day! Have you read Truly Madly Guilty? I really enjoyed it, it was not my favorite of hers but though a little drawn out, it was entertaining...big fan of Woody Allen, not so much his personal side but he is a genius when behind the camera!

    1. EH, I could have written this reply. See my comment about Liane Moriarty below. And I love Woody's movies, although don't love him personally.

  3. Love your reviews, Katie. I'm reading the new Liane Moriarty book. Love all of her stuff.

  4. Good morning,

    Thank you for the great list of books! I just launched an online book club over at Dreams and Caffeine {} and I'm always looking for books to add to the list. We are currently reading The Husband's Secret by Liane Moriarty. Happy Friday!

    Lisa at Dreams and Caffeine

  5. Great tips for reading! Thank you!! Have a great weekend!

  6. Wonderful post! Several of the books you mentioned have peaked my interest & I am usually a biography gal. In a previous post you mentioned your days were spent trying to keep your plants alive during this east coast heatwave. I had to laugh because that is all I have been doing! Fall can't come soon enough. As far as movies DD recommends Finding Dory...very sweet. Be well! xoxo, Dawn

  7. As always, thank you for the wonderful recommendations. I've added many of these to my to-read list. I loved Beach Street Bakery by Jenny Colgan, so I'm looking forward to her next book. Have a wonderful weekend!

  8. Thanks for these recommendations! I think I saw your rec of the Karen White book on Instagram, I think, and based on that, I thought I'd try it, but didn't get around to buying it before we left for our annual beach week. We always go to St. George Island, and the nearest town is . . . Apalachicola! I was so happy to find the book there in the wonderful independent Downtown Books, and then to discover that Flight Patterns is actually set in Apalach! Thanks so much, Katie!

  9. You have been really busy!! I agree with you about Before the Fall and Sons and Daughters of Ease and Plenty. I'm too far into the latter not to finish, but ugh. I'm excited to add your recommendations to my list. I always like James Patterson's books. He has two new ones out now. They aren't literary works of art, but they are quick and enjoyable. I like Lisa Scottoline's books too. I met her, her daughter and puppies once at my vets so I became an instant fan.

  10. I really appreciate all of your recommendations and critiques! You have become my sole source for excellent recommendations, and your assessments are always right on target. Hope you have a wonderful weekend.

  11. So great to see book reviews without a promotion (I hope). I've seen a few at Barnes and Noble but I have a pile on my bedside table. I'll these soon. Movies sound good, too. Thanks!


  12. Thanks for sharing your book reviews.
    I put Behind Closed Doors on my to-read list.
    Before the Fall: Why do authors sometimes ruin a good book with an abrupt ending??

  13. I recently watched And So It Goes on Netflix. Diane Keaton is a favorite if mine.

  14. We loved Criminal with Kevin Costner at movies, so rented it when visiting daughter and son-in-law (who doesn't care for Costner) recently. SIL slowly came around and had to admit Costner was excellent in it and it was great movie. Love to read your reviews.

  15. I loved Dr. Thorne, and I do hope it comes back. I have Julian Fellowes novel BELGRAVIA sitting on my book table waiting to be read. I have been obsessed with an Australian "horse opera" this summer called "McLeod's Daughters" which has eight very long seasons, so I am behind in my reading. I am into season seven, and the show is definitely going downhill. I am determined to make it to the end, since I have come this far with these characters. Thanks for the reviews, because now I know what to avoid!

  16. Thanks for this list I read Gloria Vanderbilt/Anderson Coopers memoir it was very good and I am now reading Bobby Kennedy The Making Of A Liberal Icon. IO read a book about JFK Jr of the one that got away from me..
    XO K

  17. I don't know Doctor Thorne -- have to seek that one out! The First Family detail sounds interesting. Having just returned from the Vineyard where the Obamas were, I saw some of that firsthand. (Michelle has VERY cute protection detail -- I can't wait to post about that!) Both those movies are on my to-see list. Can't wait!


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