Pat Wahler

Penning stories to savor.

Books, Books, Books

Its summertime, and people are scrabbling to find the perfect book to read while on vacation. If you choose books the way I do, this isn’t an easy process. I’ve got to look at the cover, review the blurb on the back, and read the first page. Something has to grab me, or its back on the shelf and I pull out the next one.

My tastes are pretty eclectic. Historical fiction, romantic comedy, and biography usually top the list for me. If any of these appeal to you, you’re in luck. I’m going to share some of my favorites from over the last few months. Favorites as in they kept me up late at night. Maybe you’ll find your perfect summer (or fall, or winter) read among them.

Are you in the mood for a book that makes you smile? On Second Thought, by Kristan Higgins will fit the bill nicely. Two sisters tell their stories in alternating chapters. One sister is ever-hopeful her long time wedding-reluctant boyfriend will finally pop the question. She envies her sister who’s already married the “perfect” man. But after the perfect man dies in a freak accident, secrets are bound to be uncovered. You might wonder how Ms. Higgins can add humor to such a story line. Don’t fret, she delivers. In fact, this book hooked me so thoroughly, I’ve read six of her other books.

Have you ever been curious about the author, F. Scott Fitzgerald and his wife Zelda? If so, I suggest reading Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald by Therese Anne Fowler. As a young girl, Zelda marries Scott and the two soon become the golden couple of the Jazz Age – until they’re each forced to confront their own demons. I devoured this book because I love imagining the stories wives could tell about their famous husbands. It feels a little bit like reading a diary. ๐Ÿ™‚

The last book I’ll mention today is the one I’m currently reading and loving enough to have contracted a bad case of insomnia over it.ย The Alice Networkย by Kate Quinn has destroyed my normal bedtime routine because I keep turning the pages to find out what happens next. It’s a split story – half of it takes place in 1947 and the other half in 1915, featuring the tales of two very different women that intertwine in an unforgettable way. I don’t know the ending yet, but if its like the rest of the book – well, I suggest you read it for yourself and find out.

I share more of my favorite books on Goodreads. If you’re on Goodreads too, I’d love it if we can connect. Click here toย find me.

BREAKING NEWS:ย Maybe you noticed I’ve tweaked my website pages. Please check them out and let me know what you think. I’m especially excited about my Easy-Peasy Recipes for Reluctant Cooks (like me). I’ll be adding to this page on a regular basis and hope you enjoy trying out something yummy that doesn’t require hours (or even very many minutes) of slaving in the kitchen. I’d rather be reading, wouldn’t you?

By the way, if you have an easy-peasy recipe you’d like to share, feel free to send it via my Contact Me page and I can add your contribution to the collection.

I’m also planning some cool giveaways in the near future for subscribers, so please sign up if you haven’t already done so (the form is located on the sidebar). I don’t want you to miss out on the fun.

Until next time, happy reading!

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  1. Your website looks fantastic, Pat! Love it!

    Kristan Higgins is amazing, isn’t she? And she is as warm and funny in person as her books suggest. My favorite is The Best Man, which is part of her Blue Heron series. I’m not sure what it is about that one that grabbed me, but it did.

    • Pat Wahler

      July 27, 2017 at 8:14 am

      Lisa, you met her? Squeeee! I like the Blue Heron series too. So funny, yet satisfying. Of course, your Firefly Series is also quite delightful! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Pat–I agree with Lisa. It looks great. Including easy recipes (so we have more time to write) is a wonderful idea.

    I’m reading Chris Cleave’s “Everyone Brave is Forgiven,” and I’m relishing it.

    • Pat Wahler

      July 27, 2017 at 8:16 am

      Sioux, the book you’re reading sounds interesting. I may have to add it to my TBR mountain (I’ve gone beyond a stack).

  3. Linda O'Connell

    July 26, 2017 at 10:23 pm

    I have a stack of books to get through. The Alice Network appeals to me.
    Your website looks great. I will definitely be back to check out those easy recipes.

    • Pat Wahler

      July 27, 2017 at 8:18 am

      Linda, there’s always another book to go on the stack, isn’t there? I’m almost afraid to enter a bookstore anymore.

  4. Yep, there’s nothing like a sparkly website with lots of good stuff! Are we friends on Goodreads, Pat? Give me a nudge if I haven’t accepted that request yet! My brain is like a sieve these days. Ugh.

    • Pat Wahler

      July 27, 2017 at 8:23 am

      Cathy, I think I sent you a friend request. If not, I’ll resend. I’ve only recently started participating in Goodreads in a meaningful way, so I’m not terribly proficient on it yet – but (as with everything else related to technology) I’m trying!

  5. Oh, I forgot to mention I just finished Margaret Atwood’s “The Handmaid’s Tale.” Really good.

  6. Love the look of your blog and the recipe section.

    I just finished “Show Me the Sinister Snowman” by Missouri author Carolyn Mulford. It’s the fifth book in Mulford’s “Show Me” cozy mystery series, with the main character a retired CIA agent living in rural Missouri. Reading a book with a setting in Missouri where the suspects are snowbound when the temperature outside was in the triple digits was quite refreshing.

    • Pat Wahler

      July 29, 2017 at 7:39 am

      Donna, I’ve never read any of her books. I’ll have to check them out. My TBR pile keeps getting taller.

  7. Lynn Obermoeller

    August 2, 2017 at 6:51 pm

    Okay, clearly I’ve not been around and I can’t wait to read all of your recommended books. And now I need to poke around on your website as I didn’t know there were recipes… hope to see you around soon!

    • Pat Wahler

      August 3, 2017 at 3:39 pm

      Hi Lynn! I just started the recipe page. I’m not much of a cook, so if I run across something easy and good, I like to share it. If you have anything super-simple and delicious, let me know and I’ll include it. I know what a fabulous cook you are!

  8. I really liked an earlier biography called Zelda, so I’ll have to read this one also!

    • Pat Wahler

      August 3, 2017 at 3:41 pm

      Mary, are you talking about Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald? If so, I read that one too, and really enjoyed it. Here’s few similar titles that I loved: The Paris Wife (Ernest Hemingway’s first wife) and The Aviator’s Wife (Charles Lindbergh’s wife).

  9. WOW! Easy peasy recipes how cool. ๐Ÿ™‚ I will definitely check that out, as I am not a cook. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Pat Wahler

      August 6, 2017 at 7:41 pm

      I’m searching far and wide for easy-peasy, Margo. If you have any suggestions, feel free to send. I’ve already received a couple from readers that look quite yummy!

  10. I’ve been hearing really good things about The Alice Network. I think this is the third blog that has recommended the book. I like the idea for easy recipes. I love to cook, but I haven’t had a ton of energy lately, so every day I ask myself “what’s the healthiest thing I can make that takes the least amount of energy.” So I can relate to wanted really easy recipes.

    • Pat Wahler

      August 15, 2017 at 2:10 pm

      Angela, in my view a simple recipe is the ticket. Especially in the summer when I don’t want to turn on the over. ๐Ÿ™‚

      I think you’ll really enjoy The Alice Network. It kept a nice pace through to the end, and did not disappoint.

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