Posted in Book Bestie Approved

The Favorite Daughter by Patti Callahan Henry @pcallhenry @BerkleyPub #bookreview #thefavoritedaughter

Happy hump day all!

Excited to share with you today my review for this lovely story that completely captured my heart! Forgiveness seems to be the theme of the week, because this book was all about forgiveness and family!💕

My Thoughts

𝒮𝓉𝓇𝓊𝑔𝑔𝓁𝒾𝓃𝑔 𝓉𝑜 𝓇𝑒𝓂𝑒𝓂𝒷𝑒𝓇. 𝒯𝓇𝓎𝒾𝓃𝑔 𝓉𝑜 𝒻𝑜𝓇𝑔𝑒𝓉.

Patti Callahan Henry has written a beautiful story full of memories, family, and forgiveness. A decade ago Lena was devastatingly betrayed right before she was about to walk down the aisle. Completely destroyed and mortified Lena packs her bags and heads to New York to lick her wounds and start over. Lena gets a job as a travel journalist, traveling the country and the world, but rarely returning home to Water’s End South Carolina. After receiving a phone call from her brother Shane Lena realizes she needs to return home and face her past. Lena’s beloved father Gavin has been diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s and it is only a matter of time before he will lose all his memories. What transpires is a lovely story about the struggle to remember and the desire to forget.

This story completely captured my heart. These characters, this family, I was completely invested. Lena’s struggle to face her sister Hallie after 10 years of animosity was heartbreaking and uncomfortable. Some things are hard to forgive and even harder to forget and I am not certain if I would be capable myself. I really felt for Lena and understood her actions. HallieWas a bit of a hypocrite and really frustrated me. And poor Shane was so caught in the middle just trying to keep the peace between his sisters. Loved how the siblings were working together to create a book of memories for their dad, they really wanted to do just about anything to keep his memories alive. Gavin had a big personality and a big heart and it was heartbreaking to see his health and memories deteriorate.

So many pieces to the story that when put together were pure magic. The story was captivating, the setting was stunning, and the characters were authentic. The ending was so touching and it hit me right in the heart! Another remarkable story that you definitely need to add to your summer TVR!

*** Big thanks to Berkley for my copy of this book ***

About the Book

New York Times best-selling author Patti Callahan Henry returns to the beloved Lowcountry setting of The Bookshop at Water’s End with a novel of one woman’s homecoming. 
On her wedding day 10 years ago, Lena Donohue experienced a betrayal so painful that she fled the small town of Watersend, South Carolina, and reinvented herself in New York City. Though now a freelance travel writer, the one place she rarely goes is home – until she learns of her dad’s failing health. 
Returning to Watersend means seeing the sister she has avoided for a decade and the brother who runs their family’s Irish pub – and who has borne the burden of his sisters’ rift. While Alzheimer’s slowly steals their father’s memories, the siblings rush to preserve his life in stories and photographs. As his secret past brings Lena’s own childhood into focus, it sends her on a journey to discover the true meaning of home….
Praise for The Favorite Daughter 
“A satisfying read about family and forgiveness.” (
PopSugar
“Henry’s latest packs an emotional wallop, delving into the bonds and tragedies that make a family…. Readers of thoughtful family dramas will be drawn to the travails of the Donohue clan.” (
Booklist
“Readers will be immersed in this moving tale, hungry to learn whether love and family will overcome betrayal, secrets, and heartache.” (
Publishers Weekly)

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Berit☀️✨

Posted in Book Bestie Approved

The Friends We Keep by Jane Green @JaneGreen @BerkleyPub #bookreview #thefriendswekeep #pubday

Happy Tuesday all!

Today I have a review for a book about friendship and forgiveness. This was a wonderful story that I strongly encourage you to add to your summer TBR!📚🏖

My Thoughts

F҉r҉i҉e҉n҉d҉s҉h҉i҉p҉. F҉o҉r҉g҉i҉v҉e҉n҉e҉s҉s҉. L҉i҉f҉e҉.

Jane Green has crafted an engaging story full of friendship, forgiveness, and finding out who you really are. Evie, Maggie, and Topher met at University where they forged a strong friendship that they swore would never end. A friendship built on love, respect, and trust. After university they all go their separate ways. Evvie does something to betray Maggie’s trust, rather than telling Maggie she pulls herself even further away from the friendship. Evvie moves to New York where she becomes a supermodel, Maggie works at a PR company, and Topher becomes a soapstar. Years later they all reunite at Maggie’s wedding to an old crush. The reunion is short as they all have their lives to live and then Evvie does something that might end this friendship forever. Fast forward and the three of them are in their 40s and they are all at a point in their lives where it makes the most sense for them to all live together. But as the three begin to get closer again, secrets begin to come out. Secret that may not be forgivable.

I love stories about friendships and that this was a friendship between two women and a man was a bit of a different twist that I found refreshing. I really liked all three of these characters even though they weren’t terribly relatable and they sure did frustrated me at times. The story spanned many decades and I Love that. It is so amazing how much we change and grow through the years. How we let go of dreams and develop new ones. That really was evident in the lives of these characters. I probably was most sympathetic towards Maggie, because I could relate to her more than the other characters. I know what it’s like to have a spouse who is an alcoholic, and if I’m being honest Maggie is a much more forgiving person than me. In oh so many ways!

This was a great read that will resonate with many. I think we all have those friends that we thought would always be part of our lives that we don’t see much of any more. Although I have to say some of the characters in this book really push those friendship boundaries, and I am not sure if I would be so ready to forgive. Jane green has a engaging writing style that kept me completely invested in the story throughout. This was another wonderful read that I encourage you to add to your summer TBR!

*** Big thanks to Berkley for my gifted copy of this book ***

About the Book

 is the heartwarming and unforgettable new novel from Jane Green, the New York Times best-selling author of The Sunshine Sistersand The Beach House. 
Evvie, Maggie, and Topher have known one another since college. Their friendship was something they swore would last forever. Now years have passed, the friends have drifted apart, and they never found the lives they wanted – the lives they dreamed of when they were young and everything seemed possible. 
Evvie starved herself to become a supermodel but derailed her career by sleeping with a married man. 
Maggie married Ben, the boy she fell in love with in college, never imagining the heartbreak his drinking would cause. 
Topher became a successful actor, but the shame of a childhood secret shut him off from real intimacy. 
By their 30th reunion, these old friends have lost touch with one another and with the people they dreamed of becoming. Together again, they have a second chance at happiness…until a dark secret is revealed that changes everything. 
The Friends We Keep is about how despite disappointments we’ve had or mistakes we’ve made, it’s never too late to find a place to call home.

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Berit☀️✨

Posted in Blog Tour

My Ex-Best Friend’s Wedding by Wendy Wax @Wendy_Wax @BerkleyPub #bookreview #myexbestfriendswedding

Happy Tuesday everybody!

Delighted to share with you today my review for this engaging story about three strong likable women. Thank you so much to Lauren at Berkley for inviting me to the tour!💐

My Thoughts

Ⓕⓡⓘⓔⓝⓓⓢⓗⓘⓟ. Ⓕⓐⓜⓘⓛⓨ. Ⓕⓞⓡⓖⓘⓥⓔⓝⓔⓢⓢ.

This was a delightful story about family, friendship, and forgiveness. Wendy Wax write stories about strong dynamic women and their complex unbreakable bonds. Lauren and Bree were best friends until Lauren went off to New York and Bree didn’t come as originally planned, instead she stayed home and ended up marrying Lauren’s ex. What stings even more is that Kendra, Lauren’s mother, thinks of Bree as a daughter. 20 years have passed and Lauren returns home to introduce her mother to her fiancé and maybe even try on the family wedding dress. Kendra is so excited to see her daughter, she wants to try to repair things between Lauren and Bree. She also has a BIG secret she needs to tell, a Secret that will change everything. So will Lauren ever make it to the altar? and will it be in the family gown?

The story jumps between the perspectives of Lauren, Bree, and Kendra. All of these characters were so real, so relatable, and so likable. They all have made mistakes, they all have done questionable Things, but haven’t we all? Getting the story from the three different women’s perspectives really let you see the full picture and what everyone’s motivations were. Sometimes we do stupid things with the best of intentions. Throughout this book I kept putting myself in each of these characters positions and tried to figure out what I would do. And if I’m being honest I have no idea. So it’s a good thing I did not have to come up with a resolution to this story, which I thought was perfection! The setting of the story was the Outer Banks of North Carolina, sounds simply beautiful. I loved how we got to see this beautiful place through the eyes of Lauren‘s fiancé a lifelong New Yorker.

This is the perfect book to read at the beach or when you wish you were at the beach. The characters were colorful and compelling, the story was engaging and complex, and the setting was gorgeous. I love books about strong women and all the women in this story were strong, and I saw a little piece of myself in each of them. This story made me smile and crave Kendra’s chocolate cake!

*** Thank you so much to Berkley for my gifted copy of this book ***

About the Book

A wedding dress passed down through generations unravels the tangled threads of three women’s lives in a novel of friendship, family, and forgiveness from the USA Today best-selling author of Ten Beach Road.
Prized and stored away for safekeeping, the timeless ivory wedding dress, with its scooped neck and cleverly fitted bodice, sits gently folded in its box, whispering of happily ever afters. To Kendra, Brianna, and Lauren, it’s a reminder of what could have been, the promise of a fairy tale, and a friendship torn apart. But as Kendra knows firsthand: It wasn’t the dress’s fault.
Once closer than sisters, Lauren and Bree have grown up and grown apart, allowing broken promises and unfulfilled dreams to destroy their friendship. A successful author, Lauren returns home to the Outer Banks, fiancé in tow, to claim the dress she never thought she’d wear. Bree, a bookstore owner, grapples with the realities of life after you marry the handsome prince. As the former best friends wrestle with their uncertain futures, they are both certain of one thing: Some betrayals can never be forgiven. 
Now, on the eve of her daughter Lauren’s wedding, Kendra struggles with a secret she’s kept for far too long. She vows to make sure the dress will finally bring Lauren and Bree back together – knowing they’ll need each other to survive the coming storm.

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Berit☀️✨

Posted in Book Bestie Approved

The Bride Test by Helen Hoang @HHoangWrites @BerkleyPub #bookreview #thebridetest

Happy Hump Day!!!

So excited to share with you today my review for this delightful book that published yesterday! If you like sweet romances with fantastic characters and lots of heat this one is perfect for you!💕

My Thoughts

Sweet. Steamy. Diverse.

So over this past weekend I read both The Kiss Quotient and The Bride Test. Helen Hoang completely stole my heart with her delightful characters and enchanting storylines.The Bride Test was so charming it read like a fairytale, a more diverse much steamier fairytale. I like my romances with strong males and sassy females and this book checked both those boxes off. I also like my romances to be more than just a romance (if you know what I mean) and this one definitely was that! Miss Hoang has a new fan in me, I will absolutely read anything she writes.

Once upon a time… Khai, Who is on the autism spectrum was convinced he could not love. His mom was convinced he could, so she traveled to Vietnam to find her son a wife. Esme was a hard-working single mom. When Khai’s mother runs across Esme working as a maid in a hotel she knows that she is the ONE. So Esme boards a plane to America to seduce the prince, oh I mean Khai. BUT will Khai learn to love? And what will happen when Esme’s secrets come out? Will these two be able to conquer the cultural differences, the language barriers, Khai’s fears and live happily ever after? You’re going to need to read this to find out!

Both Khai and Esme were delightful characters that I completely adored.Esme was so spunky and sassy and I found her strength admirable. Khai, I really had a soft spot for him he was so vulnerable, it was tough to watch him struggle with certain things so much. The chemistry between these two was off the charts, they were definitely physically attracted to one another. This book has a lot of sizzle, steam,. and heat. If that’s not your thing I’d skim those parts, because this is a book not to be missed. I’d also suggest you read the authors note at the end it was so interesting how so much of this book related to her own life, a definite tribute to her mother. I like the trend toward more diverse books, but sometimes it seems a bit forced. This was a perfect example of a diverse book done extremely well. I cannot wait to see what Miss Hoang has in store for us next, might I suggest Quan’s story.😉

*** huge thanks to Berkley for my copy of this book ***

About the Book

Khai Diep has no feelings. Well, he feels irritation when people move his things or contentment when ledgers balance down to the penny‚ but not important emotions, like love. His family knows better – that his autism means he just processes emotions differently. When he steadfastly avoids relationships, his mother takes matters into her own hands and returns to Vietnam to find him the perfect bride. 
As a mixed-race girl living in the slums of Ho Chi Minh City, Esme Tran has always felt out of place. When the opportunity arises to come to America and meet a potential husband, she can’t turn it down. Seducing Khai, however, doesn’t go as planned. She’s hopelessly smitten with a man who’s convinced he can never return her affection.

The Besties

Mackenzie @ PhDiva

Jennifer @ Tarheel Reader

Holly @ Dressed to Read

Kendall @ Sunflower Book Lover

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Berit☀️✨

Posted in Book Bestie

The Missing Years By Lexie Eliot @BerkleyPub #bookreview #themisingyears

Happy Sunday all!

Thrilled to share with you today my review for this creepy and atmospheric story! This was a group read and I’m glad I had friends to discuss this one with!💀

My Thoughts

Creepy. Atmospheric. Haunting.

Lexie Elliot Will completely transport you to this Erie Scottish house with her descriptive writing. I could feel the cold and contempt seeping from the house. The house has a life of its own and is probably the most dynamic character in the book. This is a slow burner that combines mystery, suspense, and magical realism.

Ailsa inherits a house, well half a house. The other half belongs to her father who she has not seen for over 20 years. Unable to sell the house until her father is found, or pronounced dead; Ailsa moves into the house along with her half sister Carrie. It doesn’t take Ailsa Long to figure out the house has a mind and a heartbeat of its own. Not only that she discovers a intruder in the house her very first night there. Then things start appearing and disappearing, noises are heard and there is that feeling of being watched at all times. A dead fox at the door, fire alarms going off, and the flies… oh the flies! Just thinking about the flies gives me the heebie-jeebies! So is the house friend or foe? Is it warning her or scaring her off?

For the most part I really liked this book it was so atmospheric and evocative. However some parts were extremely slow. Also as much as I enjoyed the magical realism element of this book, I wish it had been explored a little more in depth. Time folding? I was left with a few questions I would have liked answered. I recommend this to people who enjoy descriptive writing, a slower burn, and a touch of magic.

*** many thanks to Berkley for my copy of this book ***

About the Book

An eerie, old Scottish manor in the middle of nowhere that’s now hers.

Ailsa Calder has inherited half of a house. The other half belongs to a man who disappeared without a trace twenty-seven years ago—her father.

Leaving London behind to settle the inheritance from her mother’s estate, Ailsa returns to her childhood home, nestled amongst the craggy peaks of the Scottish Highlands, joined by the half-sister who’s almost a stranger to her. 

Ailsa can’t escape the claustrophobic feeling that the house itself is watching her—as if her past hungers to consume her. She also can’t ignore how the neighborhood animals refuse to set one foot within the gates of the garden. 

When the first nighttime intruder shows up, Ailsa fears that the manor’s careless rugged beauty could cost her everything.

The Besties

Mackenzie @ PhDiva

Jennifer @ Tarheel Reader

Holly @ Dressed to Read

Kendall @ Sunflower Book Lover

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Berit☀️✨

Posted in Book Bestie Approved

The Great Pretenders by Laura Kalpakian @LauraKalpakian @BerkleyPub #bookreview #thegreatpretenders

Happy Monday all!

Excited to share with you today my review for this stunning story that truly exceeded my expectations! This was a group read and not everyone has finished yet but everyone is loving it so far!🎬

My Thoughts

an elegantly told exquisite tale of Old Hollywood and the girl who turned it on its head!

Laura Kalpakian stole my heart with this brilliant book! Have you ever finished a Book and thought, I need more and I need it now! That was me with this book. I was so invested in the story and these characters, I was seriously crushed when it was over. Kalpakian completely transported me to 1950s Old Hollywood with her riveting words.

Roxanne is Hollywood royalty, growing up on the back lots of her grandfather’s studio. Raised by her grandparents she is devastated when her grandmother passes away and is angry with her grandfather for leaving her beloved grandmother for a much younger woman. Not wanting to continue college and cut off (sort of) from her grandfather she finds herself living in a bungalow in Malibu. Realizing she knows Hollywood better than most she decides to pursue a career as an agent. After not being taken seriously and dealing with sexual harassment she decides to set out on her own. A huge risk, but Roxanne is all about risk. After a chance encounter (or two) Roxanne finds herself falling in love with Terrence an African-American reporter. BUT this is the 50s and multiracial relationships are a huge taboo even in liberal Hollywood. Will Roxanne‘s risks ultimately pay off? Will love conquer all or leave her heartbroken? You are definitely going to need to read this book and find out the answers to these questions and so much more!

Roxanne was so feisty, so fierce, and so ahead of her time. She was sassy with a vulnerable side and that made her even more endearing. This book took place during the “red scare, “the “blacklist,“ I found the politics of Hollywood fascinating. I also had absolutely no idea that Los Angeles was so segregated in the 50s. Growing up in southern California I guess I always like to think we are a little more enlightened than the rest of the country when it comes to racial relations, I guess not so much? Also fun fact… max one of the screen writers in the story who is blacklisted moves 60 miles south east of LA to the city where I live now(He was pretty much exiled to Riverside). I imagine it was quite rural here back in the day and seemed extremely far away from the hustle and bustle of LA. Now it is nonstop cities and freeways and traffic from LA to Riverside.

Such a magical story! I just loved everything the history, the characters, the setting, the tension, the romance. Roxanne was an amazing character who I won’t soon forget. Her relationship with Terrence was so raw, so intense, and so heart wrenching. I fell for these two so completely. This book had a Beautiful perfect ending, BUT I SO wanted more! A follow up would be great, I would really love to see what happens to these characters next. In case you can’t tell I strongly recommend this book!

*** A huge thank you to Berkley for my copy of this book ***

About the Book

The daughter of Hollywood royalty, Roxanne Granville is used to getting what she wants – even if she has to break the rules. But after a falling-out with her grandfather, a powerful movie mogul, she has to face life on her own for the first time….
Roxanne forges a career unique for women in the 1950s, becoming an agent for hungry young screenwriters. She struggles to be taken seriously by the men who rule Hollywood and who often assume that sexual favors are just a part of doing business. When she sells a script by a blacklisted writer under the name of a willing front man, more exiled writers seek her help. Roxanne wades into a world murky with duplicity and deception, and she can’t afford any more risks.
Then she meets Terrence Dexter, a compelling African American journalist unlike anyone she’s ever known. Roxanne again breaks the rules and is quickly swept up in a passionate relationship with very real dangers that could destroy everything she’s carefully built.
Roxanne Granville is a woman who bravely defies convention. She won’t let men make all the rules and won’t let skin color determine whom she can love. 
The Great Pretenders is a riveting, emotional novel that resonates in today’s world and reminds us that some things are worth fighting for.

The Besties

Mackenzie @ PhDiva

Jennifer @ Tarheel Reader

Holly @ Dressed to Read

Kendall @ Sunflower Book Lover

💕💕 Be sure to check out all the Besties’ reviews!

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Berit☀️✨

Posted in Book Bestie Approved

When We Left Cuba by Chanel Cleeton @chanelcleeton @BerkleyPub #bookreview #whenweleftcuba

Happy Thursday all!

Excited to share with you today my review for this Fantabulous follow up to “Next Year in Havana” a book I reviewed on Tuesday. Both these books are about strong smart women and rich with history.🇨🇺

My Thoughts

An exceptional story about an extraordinary woman! A book rich with love and steeped in history!

Beatriz Perez my queen! There was something about Beatriz that completely captured my heart from the very first page of this book. She was a smart, strong, and sassy woman with an unbreakable spirit and an unstoppable independence. This is a follow-up of sorts to, “Next Year in Havana”, although I’d say you could read this book independently. We do meet Beatriz in the first book (it is the story of her sister Elisa) however Beatrix is on the periphery of that story. Both books are exquisite, however I have to admit I like this book a teeny bit more.

Beatrix might live in the US now, but her heart is still in Cuba. Her family was exiled to the US after Fidel Castro took power in Cuba. Beatriz was the privileged daughter of a sugar barren, she lived a glamorous life filled with parties and glitz. Then her life was turned upside down, she lost her twin brother during the uprise, her family loses all their wealth, and her family is sent away from the land that they loved. Beatrix now has to start over in a new country. Consumed with revenge and a desire to return “home“ she finds herself entangled with the CIA. She also meets a man. A man who is off-limits, A man who will completely capture and consume her. We experience the US Cuba relationship during the 1960s through the pages of this book. We see the Bay of Pigs, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and the JFK assassination through Beatrix’s eyes. This book is a true love story, A woman’s love for a country and a man.

Chanel Cleeton’s vivid writing will transport you to the 1960s. The feel and the fear at the beginning of the Cold War seeps through the pages. The historical aspects of this book are compelling, but I have to say the romance wormed its way into my heart. Beatrix Nick’s Love story was so raw, I really can’t think of any other word to describe it. A forbidden love that broke them both and then built them up again. it’s all about Fate and timing and all that.

This was a spellbinding story packed with romance and history rat in a cloak of intrigue! Unequivocally recommend!

*** many thanks to Berkley for my copy of this book ***

About the Book

Publisher’s Summary

In 1960s Florida, a young Cuban exile will risk her life – and heart – to take back her country in this exhilarating historical novel from the author of Next Year in Havana. 
Beautiful. Daring. Deadly. 
The Cuban Revolution took everything from sugar heiress Beatriz Perez – her family, her people, her country. Recruited by the CIA to infiltrate Fidel Castro’s inner circle and pulled into the dangerous world of espionage, Beatriz is consumed by her quest for revenge and her desire to reclaim the life she lost. 
As the Cold War swells like a hurricane over the shores of the Florida Strait, Beatriz is caught between the clash of Cuban-American politics and the perils of a forbidden affair with a powerful man driven by ambitions of his own. When the ever-changing tides of history threaten everything she has fought for, she must make a choice between her past and future – but the wrong move could cost Beatriz everything – not just the island she loves, but also the man who has stolen her heart.

The Besties

Mackenzie @ PhDiva

Jennifer @ Tarheel Reader

Holly @ Dressed to Read

Kendall @ Sunflower Book Lover

💕💕 Be sure to check out all the Besties’ reviews!

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Berit☀️✨

Posted in Book Bestie Approved

Next Year in Havana by Chanel Cleeton @ChanelCleeton @BerkleyPub #bookreview #nextyearinhavana

Happy Tuesday bibliophiles!

Today is publication day for Chanel Cleeton’s When We Left Cuba(and I will have a review for that on Thursday). But I wanted to read this book before I started the second book and I’m sure glad I did! It was so beautifully told and so steeped in history… a brilliant read!🇨🇺

Happy

My Thoughts

An exquisitely told story steeped in history and Rich with love!

Chanel Cleeton has expertly woven together threads of the present and the past. This is the story of two strong women, grandmother and granddaughter, bonded by blood and a love for Cuba. A story of love for a boy, for a land, for a family, for a culture. Admittedly I know very little about Cuba and it’s history, and I found the history lesson I got from this book exceptional. Miss Cleeton skillfully brings Cuba to life with her words. The sights, the sounds, the vibe,in both 1958 and present day.

Cuba 1958, Elisa lives a privilege life as the daughter of a sugar Barron. She has been pretty sheltered from the political goings-on in Cuba, that is until she falls in love with a revolutionary. The problem is her family is in support of the president, on the other side of the issue. When the president falls and Fidel Castro takes over, Elisa and her family flee to the United States. Present day, Marisol is destroyed when her beloved grandmother who raised her passes away. Her grandmother’s last wish is to have her ashes spread in the country she loved, Cuba. This requires Marisol to travel to Cuba where she finds a land far different from that that her grandmother told her about. She was not expecting the poverty, the food shortages, the lines. Determined to find the perfect location to scatter her grandmothers ashes Marisol discovers her grandmother secrets. She also discovers the real Cuba and a love for a man.

This was a wonderful story that captured my attention and my heart. Both Elisa And Marisol were interesting and likable characters. I was slightly more drawn to Elisa’s story simply for the history. Although I like getting to know about present day Cuba as well. I think it just came down to the fact that I enjoyed one of the love stories over the other a little bit. It always comes down to the love!

Beautifully told… drenched in history, culture, family, and love! Absolutely recommend!

*** many thanks to Berkley for my copy of this book ***

About the Book

 A Reese’s Book Club x Hello Sunshine on Audible Pick 
“A beautiful novel full of passion, secrets, courage and sacrifice.” (Reese Witherspoon)
After the death of her beloved grandmother, a Cuban-American woman travels to Havana, where she discovers the roots of her identity – and unearths a family secret hidden since the revolution 
Havana, 1958. The daughter of a sugar baron, 19-year-old Elisa Perez is part of Cuba’s high society, where she is largely sheltered from the country’s growing political unrest – until she embarks on a clandestine affair with a passionate revolutionary…. 
Miami, 2017. Freelance writer Marisol Ferrera grew up hearing romantic stories of Cuba from her late grandmother Elisa, who was forced to flee with her family during the revolution. Elisa’s last wish was for Marisol to scatter her ashes in the country of her birth. Arriving in Havana, Marisol comes face-to-face with the contrast of Cuba’s tropical, timeless beauty and its perilous political climate. 
When more family history comes to light and Marisol finds herself attracted to a man with secrets of his own, she’ll need the lessons of her grandmother’s past to help her understand the true meaning of courage. 

The Besties

Mackenzie @ PhDiva

Jennifer @ Tarheel Reader

Holly @ Dressed to Read

Kendall @ Sunflower Book Lover

💕💕 Be sure to check out all the Besties’ reviews!

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Berit☀️✨

Posted in Book Bestie Approved

My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing @smariedowning @BerkleyPub #bookreview #bookbestiesmylovelywife #mylovelywife #pubday

Happy Tuesday bibliophiles!

Excited to share with you today my review for this wild and disturbing story, that I absolutely loved! This was a Bestie read and I am sure glad I had people to talk about this one with!🤯

My Thoughts

WOW WOW WOW this book was CRAZY WILD!!!

Samantha Downing has constructed a highly addictive, deeply disturbing debut. This book was simply brilliant! Truly the next level of crazy! Mind blowing and mesmerizing, I could not put this book down! Such an absorbing read that will completely suck you in from that very first page! Oh how can a book that is so very wrong be so very right!?!?

This is the “love story” of a couple who has been married for 15 years… in order to spice things up in the relationship they plan the unthinkable. The couple appears to be completely normal on the outside. They are hard-working people who are active in their community. They have two lovely children who they shuffle around to soccer Games and golf tournaments. BUT this couple has date nights like no other! Not going to say any more than that about the plot, this is a book Best gone into with little knowledge.

I seriously savored every second of the story. This book is told from the husband‘s point of view, I found him a sympathetic character. I am really not sure what that says about me? I had to remind myself of some of his actions throughout this book, but still I have to admit I liked the guy. Wifey on the other hand was a cold hearted b*tch. The two of them together were A match made in cray cray land. Just writing this review is making me jealous of all of you that still have this crazy ride ahead of you! This book is going straight to my favorites shelf, I cannot imagine it will not make my top of 2019 list! Simply stellar! Absolutely 100% recommend!

*** many thanks to Berkley for my copy of this book ***

About the Book

Dexter meets Mr. and Mrs. Smith in this wildly compulsive debut thriller about a couple whose 15-year marriage has finally gotten too interesting….
Our love story is simple. I met a gorgeous woman. We fell in love. We had kids. We moved to the suburbs. We told each other our biggest dreams and our darkest secrets. And then we got bored. 
We look like a normal couple. We’re your neighbors, the parents of your kid’s friend, the acquaintances you keep meaning to get dinner with. We all have our secrets to keeping a marriage alive. Ours just happens to be getting away with murder. 

The Besties

Mackenzie @ PhDiva

Jennifer @ Tarheel Reader

Holly @ Dressed to Read

Kendall @ Sunflower Book Lover

💕💕 Be sure to check out all the Besties’ reviews!

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Berit☀️✨

Posted in Book Bestie Approved

The Last Year of the War by Susan Meissner @SusanMeissner @BerkleyPub #bookreview #bookbestieslastyearofthewar #thelastyearofthewar

Happy hump day book lovers!

Excited to share with you today my review for this riveting story that definitely hurt my heart! Another wonderful group read with the Besties!🦋

My Thoughts

A heartbreaking tale about the atrocities of war, and one girl who never allowed the cruelty of war to break her spirit!

It never ceases to amaze me how tragic, horrifying, and devastating war is! This was my very first book from Susan Meissner, but will definitely not be my last! This book completely captivated me, I was fully invested in the lives of all these characters from first page to last. I did have prior knowledge of the Japanese internment camps during WWII, however I did not realize that we also sent Germans to these camps. I also did not realize that we sent German people living in America back to Germany in the midst of war, that is truly horrifying! This is really a part of our history that we as Americans seem to avoid acknowledging. It certainly does not appear to be in any history book I’ve ever seen? OK I just asked my kids and they do teach it now, however back in the day when I was in school this was not ever brought up, so that’s something. It is definitely a dark time in our country‘s history. This is one of the reasons why I love books so much, they always have something to teach you. More times than not they give you a little nugget of knowledge to walk away with that you didn’t already possess.

Elise is an American citizen, born in America and has lived in America her entire life. her parents are legal residence of the United States, however her father is falsely thought to be a Nazi sympathizer and ultimately the family is sent to an internment camp in Texas. While at the internment camp Elise befriends a Japanese American girl, Mariko. The girls form a tight bond and it is this friendship and the hopes and dreams that come from it that will help Elise through the toughest and darkest of days. When Elise‘s family is sent back to Germany to endure the last year of the war. It is the hope that she will one day be reunited with her friend in America that Elise clings to like a lifeline. And over 70 years later Elise still clings to the bond that ultimately leads to the friends reunion.

Elise really completely stole my heart in this book. She was a brave, smart, resourceful young lady, with a strong spirit. Her story was so disturbing and devastating, it definitely broke my spirit at times. I really loved the friendship between Elise and Mariko, but I have to say my one complaint about the book is that we did not see what happened to Mariko after the internment camp. Maybe this is in a future book? I guess I felt so much was made out of this friendship and then it just wasn’t there anymore? It was almost as though Elise was hanging onto a ghost. However this did not hinder my enjoyment of this book. Although it is hard to say I enjoyed a book that was so real and raw and at times depressing. War is brutal and this book really brought that to life.

A riveting story about an exceptional girl Who grows into a remarkable woman, who I will not soon forget! Absolutely recommend!

*** many thanks to Berkley for my copy of this book ***

About the Book

Elise Sontag is a typical Iowa fourteen-year-old in 1943–aware of the war but distanced from its reach. Then her father, a legal U.S. resident for nearly two decades, is suddenly arrested on suspicion of being a Nazi sympathizer. The family is sent to an internment camp in Texas, where, behind the armed guards and barbed wire, Elise feels stripped of everything beloved and familiar, including her own identity.

The only thing that makes the camp bearable is meeting fellow internee Mariko Inoue, a Japanese-American teen from Los Angeles, whose friendship empowers Elise to believe the life she knew before the war will again be hers. Together in the desert wilderness, Elise and Mariko hold tight the dream of being young American women with a future beyond the fences. 

The Besties

Mackenzie @ PhDiva

Jennifer @ Tarheel Reader

Holly @ Dressed to Read

💕💕 Be sure to check out all the Besties’ reviews!

Let’s Connect!

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Have a lovely day!🦋

Berit☀️✨