Monday, August 22, 2016

Late Fall - #TeaserTuesday and First Chapter / First Paragraph / Tuesday Intros

   In Late Fall, author Noelle Adams shows amazing insight into the feelings and concerns of her protagonist, a 71-year-old woman who moves from her long-time home to a retirement village. The author shows her character's introspection and reveals her personality in the ways she reacts to the experience of living with others after many years alone. Ellie is a strong, independent woman with lots of life left in her. Although the character seems much older than 71 to me (maybe that says something about my own age!), the result is a touching story that I won't soon forget.

Genre: Contemporary Women's Fiction
Book Length: 276 Pages
Amazon Link: Late Fall
Other Books by This Author: HERE

First Paragraph:
    Almost every morning for the last twenty-five years, I've walked a dirt path that leads from my backyard to a little graveyard in the woods.
    On this, my last morning, I do it one more time.

Teaser at 9% on my Kindle:
I don't want to be surrounded by a lot of annoying retired people and forced to participate in ridiculous activities I'm expected to enjoy just because I have gray hair.
    I didn't like games and ice cream socials when I was younger, and I sure don't want to put up with them now.

     This is life. After summer, the green leaves always change colors and fall off the trees. Dogs die, no matter how much you love them. Land is sold, even if you used to tell yourself you were going to die on the property. And people get old.
     Even me.
[Longer synopsis here]

Teaser Tuesday is hosted by Jenn of Books and A Beat. Post two sentences from somewhere in a book you're reading. No spoilers, please!

First Chapter/First Paragraph/Tuesday Intros is hosted by Bibliophile By The Sea. To participate, share the first paragraph (or a few) from a book you're reading or thinking about reading soon.

Twitter: @SandyNachlinger
Facebook: sandy.nachlinger

Friday, August 19, 2016

Jefferson Park, #Seattle - Saturday Snapshot

When my son asked if I'd like to spend a morning with him and my 5-year-old granddaughter at Jefferson Park, I jumped at the chance. My granddaughter has been raving about this park, so I couldn't wait to see it. It's a terrific facility, and we all had a fun time. (Click on photos to enlarge.)
This is just a portion of the playground
This huge park has something for everyone: basketball court, lawn bowling, skate park, tennis courts, spray park, soccer fields, baseball fields, golf driving range, ziplines, an indoor recreation center, walking paths, and more.

Not many kids at the spray park
on this cool morning
But then the sun came out and so did the children
We didn't bring a swimsuit but that
didn't matter. Thank heavens for
waterproof shoes!
Nice view of downtown Seattle to the north, too.
By the way, that red sculpture in the background is not only decorative, it can also be skated on by skateboarders! We didn't see any when we were there or I would have taken pictures.

More info and photos here: Jefferson Park

PS: I'm curious. Can you zoom in and zoom out on this map?

Saturday Snapshots is hosted by West Metro Mommy Reads.
To enjoy a variety of beautiful pictures from around the world, 
click HERE or on the box below.  

West Metro Mommy Reads
To participate in Saturday Snapshots: post a photo that you (or a friend or family member) 
have taken then leave a direct link to your post in the Mister Linky on the host blogsite. 
Photos can be old or new, and be of any subject as long as they are clean and appropriate for all eyes to see. How much detail you give in the caption is entirely up to you. 

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Chasing Charlie - #BookBeginnings on Friday and The #Friday56

     If you're in the mood for a sweet romance (sexual tension but no sex, no profanity) and enjoy a story with an entertaining plot, then you'll love Chasing Charlie. Librarian Charlotte Nelson ("Charlie") takes one tiny step outside her ultra-conservative existence, buys a stunning red dress, and before long she reluctantly agrees to masquerade as Davis Murphy's fiancée for one evening. As they say, trouble ensues.
     I liked the characters in this sweet love story and enjoyed escaping in the plot. The book was well written, and I saw no grammatical or other errors, which I always appreciate. Chasing Charlie is Book 1 in the Texas Two-Step Series, and it stands alone.

Genre: Texas Romance
Book Length: 162 Pages
Amazon Link: Chasing Charlie
Author Website: Kathy Carmichael
NOTE: The Lassoed Bride (A Novella), book two in the Texas Two-Step Series, is available HERE

Book Beginning:
It was love at first sight. Charlotte Nelson rocked back on her heels, closed her eyes a moment and then reopened them. There was no doubt about it. She'd fallen in love - with a dress.

The Friday 56 (from 56% on my Kindle):
Closing her eyes for a moment, she allowed the call of the water to wash over her, bathe her in its tranquil harmony. "No wonder your mom wanted to get married here. It's beautiful."

Synopsis (from Kathy Carmichael's website):
     Raised in a family of rodeo champions on a South Texas cattle ranch, Charlie wants only one thing: to avoid thrill-seeking cowboys.
     Davis Murphy, cowboy wannabe and one of Dallas's most eligible bachelors, needs a pretty and witty faux fiancée so his widowed mother will marry her longtime gentleman friend.
     Charlie, his local librarian, seems the perfect choice.
     Charlie's first reaction is to run, but she's promised herself to step out of her plain-jane routine.
     When Charlie accepts, Davis's plan is set. But now Charlie's sweet ways are challenging his bachelor heart.

Anyone can participate in Book Beginnings on Friday and The Friday 56.
Click HERE to connect to other Book Beginnings posts (sponsored by Rose City Reads) 
Click HERE to join other Friday 56 bloggers (sponsored by Freda's Voice)

Twitter: @SandyNachlinger
Facebook: sandy.nachlinger

Friday, August 12, 2016

The Real Mother - The Friday 56 and Book Beginnings on Friday

    What makes a family?
   Sara has given up her dream of medical school to take care of her orphaned brother and sisters. Then their other flaky brother shows up, after years of absence, and upsets the home Sara has created, making promises to his younger siblings to win their support. The plot shows Sara's challenge of dealing with a stressful job, acting as a parent to her siblings, dealing with a brother she doesn't trust, and balancing those responsibilities with creating a satisfying life for herself. Lots of drama but believable.
     The Real Mother was published in 2005, but it is still relevant. The plot kept me interested and I cared about the characters. I also enjoyed the writing. This is a book I'll read again.

Book Beginning:
Sara arrived at the airline terminal as the Corcorans walked out, trailed by a young man pushing a cart piled with luggage. She wedged her car between taxis and stepped out to open the trunk and the two passenger doors before extending her hand to Lew Corcoran. "Sara Elliott," she said. "Welcome to Chicago."

Friday 56 (from Page 156 in my hardback):
Her glance lingered on Sara, taking in her brown-and-ivory checked shirt and narrow khaki pants, sleeker and probably a lot more expensive than any clothes worn by the marchers, then came back to Reuben. "Organized it? I don't know...."

Genre: Women's Fiction
Book Length: 421 Pages
Amazon Link: The Real Mother
Author Website: Judith Michael (Judith Barnard & Michael Fain)

Synopsis (from Amazon):
Sara Elliott has been forced to give up the life she's dreamed of to return home to Chicago and take charge of her sisters and brother. She finds a job and settles into the house she grew up in, building a life for ten-year-old Doug and teenagers Carrie and Abby.
But Sara has another brother, Mack, now twenty, who left home three years earlier. Suddenly he reappears, cheerful and unconcerned, as if he had never broken his promise to stay and help Sara with the children and the house. With bewildering volatility, Mack swings from kindness to cruelty, affection to hostility, keeping the family always on edge, his past and present a mystery. But with expensive gifts, storytelling, and the excitement of his presence, he is winning over the children, and sometimes the four of them stand together against Sara.
Mack challenges all Sara has achieved in trying to be a mother and keep her family together. And he does it at a time when she is confronted by crises at work that spill over into her home. Suddenly, events seem to be speeding past and Sara feels she cannot slow them down to regain control.
And then, when she thinks her life has room only for work and family, she meets Reuben Lister, a client from New York. As Sara helps him find and furnish a house and explore the city, they discover a closeness neither has known before and share new ways of dealing with conflicts each has always faced alone. Together, Sara and Reuben find answers to the questions: What is a mother? What is a parent? What is a family?
This is Judith Michael's most poignant exploration of the pressures and joys facing modern adults and children, in a story that will resonate with everyone for its universal themes and discoveries.


Anyone can participate in Book Beginnings on Friday and The Friday 56.
Click HERE to connect to other Book Beginnings posts (sponsored by Rose City Reads) 
Click HERE to join other Friday 56 bloggers (sponsored by Freda's Voice)

Twitter: @SandyNachlinger
Facebook: sandy.nachlinger