Top Ten Tuesday: Character Names

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish and is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. The theme this week is books with character names in the title. This was a fun topic, although I definitely didn’t realize the number of books on my TBR that include a character name in the title.

  • Hetty Feather – Jacqueline Wilson (my review)
  • The Infinite Lives Of Maisie Day – Christopher Edge
  • The Surprising Days Of Isla Pembroke – Tamsin Keily
  • The Afterlife Of Holly Chase – Cynthia Hand
  • The First Fifteen Lives Of Harry August – Claire North
  • Get A Life, Chloe Brown – Talia Hibbert
  • Jessica Beam Is A Hot Mess – Kirsty Greenwood
  • Opal Plumstead – Jacqueline Wilson
  • Daisy Jones & The Six – Taylor Jenkins Reid
  • Peter Darling – Austin Chant

Have you read any of these books? Let me know your thoughts!


Book Blitz: The Liars Beneath


A romantically dark YA thriller set in the backdrop of Iowa’s suspenseful farmlands.

After a tragic accident ends her best friend’s life, 17-year-old Becca Thompson succumbs to grief the only way she knows how: by wallowing in it. She’s a fragment of the person she once was—far too broken to enjoy the summer before her senior year. But when Ben McCain, her best friend’s older brother, returns home, Becca must face her new reality head on.

She isn’t interested in Ben’s games, especially since he abandoned his sister during the months leading up to her death. But when he begs for her help in uncovering the truth about what really happened the night of his sister’s death, Becca finds herself agreeing, hoping to clear up rumors swirling in the wake of her best friend’s accident.

An unhinged ex-boyfriend, secret bucket lists, and garage parties in the place Becca calls home soon lead her to the answers she’s so desperate to unveil. But nobody is being honest, not even Ben. And the closer Becca gets to the truth—and to Ben—the more danger seems to surround her.

Clearing her best friend’s name was all she wanted to do, but Becca is quickly realizing that the truth she craves might be uglier than the lies her best friend kept.

Author’s Bio

Heather Van Fleet is a stay-at-home-mom turned book boyfriend connoisseur. She’s married to her high school sweetheart, a mom to three girls, and in her spare time you can find her with her head buried in her Kindle, guzzling down copious amounts of coffee.

Heather graduated from Black Hawk College in 2003 and currently writes Adult contemporary romance. She is published through Sourcebooks Casablanca with her Reckless Hearts series and Bookouture with her Red Dragon series.


Top Ten Tuesday: Contemporaries I Didn’t Get To In 2021

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish and is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. The theme this week is supposed to be new -to-me authors I discovered in 2021, but I decided instead to continue on from last weeks post (link) about 2021 releases I was excited for and didn’t actually read. Last week I made a list of the thrillers I had wanted to read but didn’t. This week it is the turn of the contemporary novels.

  • Second First Impressions – Sally Thorne
  • People We Meet On Vacation – Emily Henry
  • The Love Hypothesis – Ali Hazelwood
  • The Ex Talk – Rachel Lynn Solomon
  • One Last Stop – Casey McQuiston
  • Instructions For Dancing – Nicola Yoon
  • The Highland Fling – Meghan Quinn
  • The Road Trip – Beth O’Leary
  • The Layover – Lacie Waldon
  • Have We Met? – Camille Baker

Have you read any of these books? Let me know your thoughts!

Book Review: I Invited Her In

I Invited Her In – Adele Parks

Rating: 2 out of 5.

‘I invited her in… and she took everything.’

When Mel hears from a long-lost friend in need of help, she doesn’t hesitate to invite her to stay. Mel and Abi were best friends back in the day, sharing the highs and lows of student life, until Mel’s unplanned pregnancy made her drop out of her studies.
Now, seventeen years later, Mel and Abi’s lives couldn’t be more different. Mel is happily married, having raised her son on her own before meeting her husband, Ben. Now they share gorgeous girls and have a chaotic but happy family home, with three children.
Abi, meanwhile, followed her lover to LA for a glamorous life of parties, celebrity and indulgence. Everything was perfect, until she discovered her partner had been cheating on her. Seventeen years wasted, and nothing to show for it. So what Abi needs now is a true friend to lean on, to share her grief over a glass of wine, and to have some time to heal. And what better place than Mel’s house, with her lovely kids, and supportive husband…

I didn’t fully know where to begin when I started to talk about this one. It has taken me several days to figure out what I want to say.

The premise sounded promising enough, and the first few chapters seemed like it would be a decent book. But after those first few chapters it just kind of went downhill from there. First off, it was a rather long and drawn out story, a lot of unnecessary (at least to me) details and descriptions about things I didn’t really care about. I started out really liking protagonist Mel, but by the time I got about halfway in I was over it. And Abi (the friend) had absolutely zero redeeming qualities.

It was an okay storyline with several unlikable characters. Truthfully, both Mel and Abi annoyed me so much, I stopped caring what was going to happen to them. From the tagline “I invited her in and she took everything” I was hoping for a fun or unexpected twist, but there was none of that. I guess I had just hoped for something … more, and it just never delivered anything but a boring plot and equally boring characters.

Abi and Mel were both pretty flat as characters go. There wasn’t much to like about them. Mel was incredibly devoted to her family at the start of the book, but it was a quick slide into domestic chaos with the arrival of a friend she hadn’t seen or spoken to in 17 years, and copious amounts of alcohol.

I listened to the audiobook at the same time as reading the paperback version, and I have to say that I did enjoy Joanne Froggatt’s narration of it. To be honest, that is probably what made me persevere until the end.

Have you read I Invited Her In? Let me know your thoughts!

Book Series I Started But Haven’t Finished (2021 Edition)

Series. There were quite a few I started in 2021 with full intentions of reading the full series. Naturally, that didn’t actually happen. There are just so many books that I want to read and not enough hours in the day. It doesn’t help that 2021 just seemingly flew by, I always feel like I’m going to have more time to get everything done.

Nevertheless, I am hoping to pick up some more books from the series I did already start. By when? I have no idea. I am not a person that is great with timelines or deadlines.

Every single book on this list is the first in the series of each one I started. I never did actually make it to book 2 in any of them, despite enjoying the books.

A Stoneybrook Mystery – Eryn Scott. I read A Crafty Crime, and planned to jump straight into book 2 the next month.

Click – Kayla Miller.

Diary Of A 6th Grade Ninja – Marcus Emerson. I started reading this series with my daughter, but it didn’t particularly hold her interest. I would still like to try the second book, just to see if she likes it a bit better.

Olga – Elise Gravel. I really enjoyed Olga And The Smelly Thing From Nowhere, as did my daughter.

Hetty Feather – Jacqueline Wilson. I did actually start the sequel, Sapphire Battersea, but we got busy with other things and had to set it aside.

Reporter Roland Bean Cozy Mystery – Rachel Woods.

Outlander – Diana Gabaldon. I’ll be honest, I didn’t love the book, but I would still like to read Dragonfly In Amber.

Hereafter – Tara Hudson.

The Jumbies – Tracey Baptiste.

Are there any series you started in 2021 that you need to finish? Let me know!

Top Ten Tuesday: Thrillers I Didn’t Get To

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish and is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. The theme this week is 2021 releases I was excited for, but didn’t get to read. Let me tell you, there were quite a lot, so in order to narrow this list down just a little, I decided to focus on the thrillers and mysteries I didn’t get chance to read last year.

  • The Hunting Wives – May Cobb
  • Local Woman Missing – Mary Kubica
  • The Night She Disappeared – Lisa Jewell
  • The Sanatorium – Sarah Pearse
  • Shiver – Allie Reynolds
  • Such A Quiet Place – Megan Miranda
  • The Couple At No.9 – Claire Douglas
  • The Burning Girls – C.J. Tudor
  • Survive The Night – Riley Sager
  • Rock Paper Scissors – Alice Feeney

Have you read any of these books? What did you think of them? Let me know!

5 Star Reads In 2021

Looking back at my 2021 books, I thought it might be fun to take a look at the books I rated 5 stars. I have to say, there weren’t many. Of the 110 books I read last year, only 7 earned a 5 star rating. Lots of 4 stars, but not a lot of the 5 stars. Maybe I’m just particularly stingy or difficult to please, I’m not sure, but anyways.

3 of the books that I rated 5 stars last year were historical fiction, while 4 were mystery/thrillers.

The House By The Sea – Louise Douglas.

Other Words For Home – Jasmine Warga

Dear Mrs. Bird – A.J. Pearce

The Edelweiss Sisters – Kate Hewitt

Whisper Cottage – Anne Wyn Clark

The Clockmaker’s Wife – Daisy Wood

Bring Me Back – B.A. Paris

Have you read any of these books? What did you think? Let me know!


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2021 Reading Wrap Up

This is one post I have been looking forward to writing all year long. I’ve always enjoyed reading, but 2021 was the first year that I really started to keep track of my books, and I’ve been excited to see my final reading statistics.

The quick numbers:

My longest book read in 2021 was Outlander by Diana Gabaldon.
My first DNF of 2021 was #No Filter by Maxine Morrey.
First book read in 2021 was Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline.
The first 5 star book I read in 2021 was The House By The Sea by Louise Douglas.
My least favourite book of 2021 (not including any DNFs) was The Woman In Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware.

What was your favourite book in 2021? What was your least favourite? Let me know!

Top Ten Tuesday: New To Me Books

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish and is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. The theme this week is the most recent additions to my book collection. This list is a combinaton of books I received as gifts for Christmas, a few I bought from the local second-hand bookstore, and a few I bought on Kindle/Audible.

  • The Glass Castle – Jeannette Walls
  • Songs Of The Humpback Whale – Jodi Picoult
  • The Body In The Woods – April Henry
  • The One – John Marrs
  • Rips & Tears – Andrew Rivas
  • Her Perfect Family – Teresa Driscoll
  • The Paid Bridesmaid – Sariah Wilson
  • The Girl On The Platform – Ellie Midwood
  • Wylding Hall – Elizabeth Hand
  • My Best Friend’s Exorcism – Grady Hendrix

Have you read any of the books on this list? Let me know your thoughts!

It’s Monday – January 10 2022

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly meme that is currently being hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

It’s Monday, and after an extended Christmas break, the kiddo is back in school. All last week I was watching for updates as they decided whether or not school would be going back or going online. As a single mother with a full-time job that cannot be done at home, online school is not something I am ever hoping for. As much as in person school makes me nervous, online school just doesn’t work for us. Hopefully we can make it to the Easter holidays without any major issues.

The kid and I watched Encanto on Saturday night. I cried. Can’t get the songs out of my head now though, so that’s exciting. It warmed up enough for us to manage a short neighbourhood walk around the little libraries to drop off and pick up a few new books to read. I picked up Library Of The Dead by Glenn Cooper, Murder Of Innocence and Zoo by James Patterson, and Fever Pitch by Nick Hornby.

What I Read Last Week

Thirteen Reasons Why – Jay Asher. I’ve watched the first season of this on Netflix, and though I liked that, I do think that the book is much better.

In A Dark, Dark Wood – Ruth Ware. My full review is here (contains a few spoilers).

The Fault In Our Stars – John Green. This made me cry. A lot.

A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens. I listened to the audiobook of this. The version I found on audible was narrated by Hugh Grant and I very much enjoyed it.

What I’m Currently Reading

I Invited Her In – Adele Parks. I’m about halfway through this book and so far it is just okay. It started out pretty good, but has taken a weird turn and I’m not sure how I feel about that little piece. I will see where it takes me, I guess.

The Turn Of The Screw – Henry James. I’ve been wanting to read more classics, which are not entirely my genre of choice. So I have started with some of the shorter ones. I’m not very far into this yet, but it is decently creepy. I’m listening to the audiobook (narrated by Emma Thompson) as I read the paperback, and I am enjoying it.

What I’m Planning To Read Next

Every Heart A Doorway and Down Among The Sticks And Bones – Seanan McGuire. I’m going to be reading these as part of a readathon I’m participating in this month.

The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett. This is for a buddy read I’m participating in during January that I have to start reading this week.

What are you reading this week? Let me know!

*Some of the links on this page are affiliate links. Bookish Yarn is a participant in affiliate programs designed to provide a way for sites to earn a small commission by linking to products. If you purchase a product or service through an affiliate link, your cost will be the same but Bookish Yarn will automatically receive a small commission. Bookish Yarn will never use an affiliate link to a product that she has not tried or enjoyed. Thank you for the support, it is greatly appreciated!

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