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review 2022-05-19 21:05
Carl's Summer Vacation by Alexandra Day
Carl's Summer Vacation - Alexandra Day

We love Carl and this book is another reason why we do.  Carl and his family have headed to their cabin for summer vacation and the parents don’t realize how lucky they are, that they brought Carl along with them.  With only a few pages containing actual words, the illustrations tell the story of what actually transpires in the story. 

 

My grandson (he’s almost 3-years-old) and I like to read stories about Carl as his stories give way to conversations, Carl sets a great example, and the stories are upbeat and cheerful.  Carl is a large, rottweiler who is mindful of his family’s young daughter, Madeleine.  In the series, the two of them have wonderful adventures together, for which the adults have no idea what, the two of them have been up to.  Carl is her protector.

 

While the parents get the cabin cleaned up, they set Madeleine and Carl down for a nap.  Immediately, they set off to see the sights. I love the way that Carl tends to Madeleine and how she follows his lead.  They do get into an empty boat which isn’t a good idea but she’s wearing a life vest, so she’s safe and this scenario brings up a good conversation for my grandson and I.  I’m surprised that her parents don’t check-in on the two “sleeping” youngsters, for Madeleine and Carl have quite the adventure while her parents clean and tidy up the cabin.  Their excursion finally comes to an end as they scramble back up onto the porch.  They arrived just in time, for Madeleine’s parent’s call out to them, supposedly waking them up.  Dinner is about to be served and the rest of the book is super cute.  

 

The illustrations in the Carl books remind me of some books I used to read from in the 1970’s.  The vivid colors, the way the faces are drawn, and how the illustrations just pop off the pages.  I like how the illustrator paid attention to some details while blending in others.  I highly recommend Carl books by Alexandra Day.     

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review 2021-08-17 06:59
Double Play
Winning With Him - Lauren Blakely

This is book # 2 in the Men Of Summer series.  This book can be read as a standalone novel.  To avoid spoilers, and to get full enjoyment - I recommend reading the series in the order intended.

 

Declan has a new team and its far away from the love of his life.  When he runs into Grant its almost like their strangers.  Will he give him a second chance?

 

Grant knows he must focus and be the best he can be for his team.  He makes a point to get to know his teammates and be a better friend.  At night he still longs for the man that makes him whole.  Is it worth it to try again?

 

Grant is moving on. Declan is moving on. Can they find the courage to be together again?  This is an amazing installment for their story.  I cannot wait for the next book that is coming out soon.  I give this a 5/5 Kitty's Paws UP!

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review 2020-12-13 00:20
STOLEN SUMMER by Anne Mather
Stolen Summer (Harlequin Presents, No 843) - Anne Mather

Ben has been in love with Shelly since he was a teenager. Though she is older than him, his feelings have not changed when he meets her as a man. Shelly, not knowing who he is at first, is powerfully attracted to him. When she learns who he is, she feels their relationship is inappropriate and tries to drive a wedge between them. Will it work?

 

This is very dated. The age gap is only six years and her friendship with his mother has nothing to do with what is between them. His fiancée is a horror and I knew she would not last. Others try to do damage to Shelly but she manages to free herself from all of that. I liked the kindly listening ear of the village doctor who helps her straighten herself out. Ben is aggressive. When he doesn't get his way, look out.

 

While I have always liked Anne Mather's books, this is not a keeper.

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review 2020-08-09 00:53
Complicated
The Summer Deal - Jill Shalvis

This is book #5 in the Wildstone series.  This book can be read as a standalone novel.  For reader enjoyment, and to understand the series, I recommend reading this series in order.

 

Brynn comes home after another boyfriend makes her feel less than herself.  The bright spot in her life is her Mom's.  They may be in her business but they bring the fun.  Also being at home she runs in to Eli.  The very Eli with whom she made the summer deal.

 

Eli has his hands full with Kinsey and her health.  With a breath of fresh air, Brynn comes  back to town and its like he can breathe again.  With his protective attitude, he enjoys being in both women's lives.  Even though he is only best friends with Kinsey, her friendship is more like family.

 

This story just kind of pounded into my head.  I felt like each chapter was a sock to the stomach and was like watching a very loud play.  So much action, so much to it, I felt a little overwhelmed.  I do not normally say this about this author's books.  This was a hard one to finish.  Honestly if it was not an author I love well, I would not have bothered.  I give this a 3/5 Kitty's Paws UP!

 

 

***This copy was given in exchange for an honest review by Edelweiss and its publishers.

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review 2020-07-19 00:55
28 Summers by Elin Hilderbrand
My Rating: 5 Stars
 
This book starts with the reader already knowing the ending. Some reviews I've seen state that it would've been better to save what Mallory's fate is until the end of the book, but I feel that the reason Elin disclosed her illness was so you could appreciate what a full life she led, although bittersweet.

This book is based on the play and movie, Same Time Next Year. Mallory Blessing and Jake McCloud come into one another's life via her brother Cooper Blessing and connect romantically almost instantly in 1993.  Although they have chemistry from the beginning, Jake is in a relationship with his childhood sweetheart and Mallory is starting her life over on Nantucket. They agree to spend Labor Day weekend together every year, no matter what is happening in their lives.  are not to contact one another throughout the year unless there's a marriage, pregnancy or death, which they abide by.
I loved how each chapter began with real life highlights of events that were happening in the specific year.  Another highlight was the mouth-watering details in the meals they prepared and ate!!! I need some recipes for these dishes Elin!!!  She also peppers characters and businesses from her other books throughout the story, which is very comforting; makes you feel like you've been here before (and if you've read any of her books before, you kind of have been!)

Dislikes:
- I did not enjoy the politics within the book. (Beach Read...trying to escape reality here!!) - At times I felt sad for both Mallory and Jake because their situation could've been different if they were just honest with themselves and others in their lives.  They could've had more time together during their lifetime (life is short!)  - Infidelity. It is bothersome that both characters so easily could drift back to one another for one weekend a year and then just return to the rest of their lives for the remainder of the year.  ( they did find it difficult to separate and thought of one another when not together...torturing themselves.)
If this is your very first Elin Hilderbrand read, please don't totally judge her on this book alone.  It was a bit more 'serious' and depressing than some of her other books. Checkout 'The Blue Bistro' to experience just one of my favorites of hers!
 
 
 
Click here to purchase your copy! 
 
 
Source: allaroundthecircle.blogspot.com/2020/07/book-review-28-summers.html
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