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I love getting your book recaps. My sister has recommended Joshilyn Jackson, but I haven't read any yet. Maybe I'll start with these. I recommend Linda Ronstadt's memoir, Simple Dreams.

Heather Bensel

I LOVE Joshilyn Jackson. And her blog. I just read Backseat Saints.


I'm rereading The Cold Dish by Craig Johnson. It's the first in the Walt Longmire mysteries. (Also has a tv show on A&E based upon the books.) normally I'm. to a western book kind of gal, but there is something about these books that make it impossible for me to put down.


Have you read Those Who Save Us by Jenna Blume? Oh my.

Historically it's fascinating but after I read it I thought "Yeah nope. Never reading that one again."

I just reread Life After Life and found so many little nuances that I missed the first time. I'll be reading it again over Christmas break and honestly can't wait. It's one of my favorites.

Karen Z

I just finished A Different Kind of Christmas by Alex Haley - very short read but excellent.


I just took my 7th grader and a friend (both boys) to see The Book Thief movie, based on the book by Markus Zusak that my son absolutely loved (I did, too). It's a bit intense and has language (in German - they didn't bother to remove it in the movie, just left it in German). It went really well with his history classes studying WW1 and WW2 and enlightened the human factor. Really beautiful but not an upper. Read a profile of the author, too - his youth surprised me. We are also going to re-read The Fault in Our Stars by John Green before the movie comes out. Those are both considered YA novels but they are the really deep kind, not pablum, and I enjoyed sharing them with my kids. With my book club I read and enjoyed The Tender Bar (autobiographical), The Snow Child, and The Last Days of Ptolemy Gray. I also loved the Bloggess's book Let's Pretend This Never Happened (Jenny Lawson).

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  • Carmen Staicer is a whirlwind of energy and execution, who never sleeps and drinks way too much coffee. She works from home as Social Media Programs Manager for SheKnows, and is the mom to six kids, most of whom play instruments, sing or dance and all of whom are much smarter than she will ever be. In other words, her house is never ever quiet or still. A concentration of asthma, food allergies, spectrum disorders and learning disabilities means that she spends an awful lot of time second guessing herself and Dr. Googling, as well as learning to cook everything the family might like to eat. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, boxing (she has her Black Belt in Muay Thai), sleeping, exploring coffee shops, photography, ballet class and cooking. She excels in being a smart mouth and has her major in sarcasm, with a dual minor in BS studies and avoiding laundry.