Saturday, May 5, 2012

This Book Room

With Smitten Lumber closing, residents wonder if their town can stay afloat. Then four friends and local business owners decide the town is worth saving: they'll turn it into a honeymoon destination. Little do they know that love is already on the way.

Additional notes: This is the first book in the Smitten series. There will be a sequel released later this year title Secretly Smitten.

My thoughts: I was really intrigued by the idea that four authors came together to write one book. The concept worked fairly well, although it didn't end quite as I thought. I enjoyed it overall, but it was, at times, predictable.

A powerfully simple, must-have manifesto on money with more than 90 wealth-building rules from the Today show’s finance guru.In a time of great financial uncertainty, this is the book everyone must read. The bottom line: Money is simple—people make it complicated. Now, bestselling personal finance author Jean Chatzky has distilled this simplicity into a smart, immediate, and entertaining set of rules that will change readers’ financial lives. Chatzky removes the stress associated with all things money and says it clearly: Readers who follow these basic yet crucial approaches to spending, saving, investing, increasing their income, and most importantly, protecting what they have, will build the wealth and financial stability they’ve been dreaming of. Chatzky’s advice is reassuring, straightforward, and often counterintuitive.

My thoughts: Jean Chatzky is apparently some sort of financial expert, and while I had never heard of her before, this book seemed interesting. Boy, was it. Overall, I would say this was a great book. If you have soon-to-be-graduates in your lives, this would be a fantastic graduation present. My biggest issue is when she starts her segment on debt, she says (and I'm paraphrasing the beginning of this here) that while some view debt as evil, she knows she would never have been able to buy a car or a house without debt. I can kind of understand the house, but a car? A freaking car? You can't buy a car without debt? That's insane. And made me doubt her expertise on finances. Suffice it to say I don't think I'll be reading another one of her books on principle alone, but this book, overall, had good points.


At the elegant Mercy Falls masquerade ball, Olivia's hidden identity will be revealed. It is the dawn of a new century and Olivia Stewart is heiress to an empire. Her family numbers among the Four Hundred-those considered the wealthiest and most distinguished in America. Unfortunately their wealth has nearly disappeared, and now their security rests upon the Stewart daughters' marrying well. Olivia's sister, Eleanor, was engaged to Harrison Bennett, one of the nation's wealthiest men, but has since died. Now the pressure is on Olivia to take her place, despite her suspicions about Eleanor's fiance. Using her family's long-forgotten English title, Olivia travels to Mercy Falls, California, as Lady Devonworth, hoping to learn more before committing to marriage. There she finds that Eleanor's death was no accident. And Harrison is not the man she thought he would be. When Mercy Falls holds a charity masquerade ball to raise funds for the new lighthouse, secrets-and truths long hidden-will be revealed. But can Harrison really love Olivia when he finds her true identity? Can she live with the repercussions of failing her family, or will she finally realize that nothing-not money, family, or romance-will ever compare to God's unconditional love?

Additional notes: This is the third and final book in the Mercy Falls series. You can read my review of the first book here and the second book here.

My thoughts: It took me a little bit to get into this book, but Colleen delivered well on suspense and romance. And while this essentially has nothing {yet sometimes everything} to do with the book, I really loved the cover.

Fantastic Mr. Fox is on the run! The three meanest farmers around are out to get him. Fat Boggis, squat Bunce, and skinny Bean have joined forces, and they have Mr. Fox and his family surrounded. What they don’t know is that they’re not dealing with just any fox–Mr. Fox would never surrender. But only the most fantastic plan ever can save him now.

My thoughts: I don't know how appropriate this book is for young readers as the farmers are quite cruel to the woodland creatures, but the book was super cute and a quick read. I hadn't read this book before, but I really enjoyed it. It makes me wish more modern authors would write novels about animals.

In Hollywood, fame can be found on every corner and behind any door. You just have to know where to look for it. Nineteen-year-old Madison Parker made a name for herself as best frenemy of nice-girl-next-door Jane Roberts on the hot reality show L.A. Candy. Now Madison's ready for her turn in the spotlight and she'll stop at nothing to get it. Sure, she's the star of a new show, but with backstabbing friends and suspicious family members trying to bring her down, Madison has her work cut out for her. Plus, there's a new nice girl in "reality" town—aspiring actress Carmen Price, the daughter of Hollywood royalty—and she's a lot more experienced at playing the fame game... When the camera's start rolling, whose star will shine brighter?
Additional notes: This is the first book in the Fame Game series. The second book is scheduled for release later this year.

My thoughts: The writing style of this book is very simplistic, which works well for the plot. This series is very much a spin-off from Lauren Conrad's first series, L.A. Candy. I was kind of disappointed by that, but there are new twists to this book that were unexpected. Madison grows a lot as a new character, and the new characters are intriguing. Gaby is in this series, and I did find myself asking why. She's so blah. I hope Lauren does something with her character in the second book.

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