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July 31, 2017 / Leslie

Mailbox Monday ~ July 31st

Welcome to Mailbox Monday, created by Marcia of To Be Continued, a place where readers share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week.

After several years of being on tour with different blogs as the monthly host, the Mailbox Monday Blog is now the permanent home for the meme.


 
It was a lovely weekend here in Chicago, so I spent some time in my outdoor office, otherwise known as my backyard.

New Arrivals

Admissions: Life as a Brain Surgeon by Henry Marsh from St. Martin’s Press.
Marsh offers a thoughtful, perceptive consideration of medicine and the pursuit of a meaningful life.

All the Crooked Saints by Maggie Stiefvater from Scholastic Press.
Any visitor to Bicho Raro, Colorado is likely to find a landscape of dark saints, forbidden love, scientific dreams, miracle-mad owls, estranged affections, one or two orphans, and a sky full of watchful desert stars.

The World Is Great, and I Am Small: A Bug’s Prayer for Mindfulness by Bradley Trevor Greive from Andrews McMeel.
A thoughtful and uplifting reflection on modern life and the human condition, as well as a lighthearted celebration of some of the many truly amazing insects with whom we share our planet.

Digital Downloads

The Clockwork Dynasty by Daniel H. Wilson from Random House and NetGalley.
An epic new thriller about a race of ageless, human-like machines hiding among us for untold centuries.

The Address by Fiona Davis from Penguin Audio.
Fiona Davis, author of The Dollhouse, returns with a compelling novel about the thin lines between love and loss, success and ruin, passion and madness, all hidden behind the walls of The Dakota, New York City’s most famous residence.

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July 26, 2017 / Leslie

Wordless Wednesday: Garden Visitor

Almost wordless: I was taking photos of my flower gardens when this very young bunny popped out. They love to hide in the wildflower garden – and eat the plants!

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More Wordless Wednesday. © 2017 Under My Apple Tree. All rights reserved.
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July 24, 2017 / Leslie

Mailbox Monday ~ July 24th

Welcome to Mailbox Monday, created by Marcia of To Be Continued, a place where readers share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week.

After several years of being on tour with different blogs as the monthly host, the Mailbox Monday Blog is now the permanent home for the meme.


 
Last week, a couple of new arrivals in the mail and two ebook downloads. I am exceptionally excited to get approved for a copy of Artemis by Andy Weir. I loved The Martian, and his new book is a thriller set on the moon.

As much as I like the feel of a paper book in my hands, I’m finding it hard to resist the convenience of digital copies. I can synchronize my kindle to my phone, so now I am never without a book. Unexpectedly waiting in a long line, stuck waiting for a freight train to pass (a common occurrence in the Chicago suburbs), or just forgot to bring a book — problem solved, I can read using the phone app. Plus, I can make the text larger, something my aging eyes really appreciate.

New Arrivals

The Himalayan Codex by Bill Schutt from Wm Morrow.
In the wake of World War II, zoologist and adventurer Captain R. J. MacCready is sent to the frozen mountain valleys of Tibet to find a creature of legend that may hold the secret to humankind’s evolutionary future—or the key to its extinction.

The Indigo Girl by Natasha Boyd from Blackstone Audio.
This book is set between 1739 and 1744, with romance, intrigue, forbidden friendships, and political and financial threats weaving together to form the story of a remarkable young woman whose actions were before their time: the story of the indigo girl.

e-Books

Artemis by Andy Weir from Crown Books.
The bestselling author of The Martian returns with an irresistible new near-future thriller—a heist story set on the moon.

Emma in the Night by Wendy Walker from St. Martin’s Press.
“Both twisted and twisty, this smart psychological thriller sets a new standard for unreliable narrators.” –Booklist

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Still time to enter the giveaway for . . .

The Bookshop at Water’s End by Patti Callahan Henry

The women who spent their childhood summers in a small southern town discover it harbors secrets as lush as the marshes that surround it…

Enter on or before July 27th. US addresses only.

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July 20, 2017 / Leslie

Book Review and Giveaway

The Bookshop at Water’s End by Patti Callahan Henry

About the Book

Publisher: Berkley Books | July 11, 2017
Format: Paperback | 352 pages

The women who spent their childhood summers in a small southern town discover it harbors secrets as lush as the marshes that surround it…

Bonny Blankenship’s most treasured memories are of idyllic summers spent in Watersend, South Carolina, with her best friend, Lainey McKay. Amid the sand dunes and oak trees draped with Spanish moss, they swam and wished for happy-ever-afters, then escaped to the local bookshop to read and whisper in the glorious cool silence. Until the night that changed everything, the night that Lainey’s mother disappeared.

Now, in her early fifties, Bonny is desperate to clear her head after a tragic mistake threatens her career as an emergency room doctor, and her marriage crumbles around her. With her troubled teenage daughter, Piper, in tow, she goes back to the beloved river house, where she is soon joined by Lainey and her two young children. During lazy summer days and magical nights, they reunite with bookshop owner Mimi, who is tangled with the past and its mysteries. As the three women cling to a fragile peace, buried secrets and long ago loves return like the tide.

My Thoughts

This was an enjoyable, engaging novel about two childhood friends, Bonny and Lainey, who reunite in Watersend, the small southern town where they spent their summers many years ago. Using multiple narrators and occasional flashbacks, their story unfolds as Lainey solves a mystery from the past and Bonny resolves a crisis in the present.

This is the type of women’s fiction I enjoy. The plot was multi-layered and believable enough to hold my interest; an overall entertaining, easy read, and nice change of pace from my usual genres. The characters were realistic and by the end, I felt like I knew Bonny and Lainey. The secondary characters were not as highly developed, but that could leave room for a welcome sequel that I will be eager to read.

Giveaway

Courtesy of the publisher, I have one copy to give away to my readers. Fill out the form below on or before midnight, July 27th. I will draw one random winner (US only) and they will be notified by email.

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Source: Review copy from the publisher through TLC Book Tours.
© 2015 Under My Apple Tree. All rights reserved.
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July 19, 2017 / Leslie

Wordless Wednesday: Wildflower Garden

Almost wordless: The phlox and purple coneflower are putting on a spectacular show in the front yard wildflower garden after all the rain we’ve had the last few weeks.

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More Wordless Wednesday. © 2017 Under My Apple Tree. All rights reserved.
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July 17, 2017 / Leslie

Mailbox Monday ~ July 17th

Welcome to Mailbox Monday, created by Marcia of To Be Continued, a place where readers share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week.

After several years of being on tour with different blogs as the monthly host, the Mailbox Monday Blog is now the permanent home for the meme.


 
There was nothing in my physical mailbox last week, but I have plenty of books waiting to be read, so this is not a bad thing. I did receive a few more audio books.

Audio Downloads

Don’t Close Your Eyes by Holly Seddon from PRH Audio.
A gripping novel of psychological suspense centered on two sisters whose lives have taken them apart, and the shocking family secrets that bind them together.

The Confusion of Languages by Siobhan Fallon from PRH Audio.
A searing debut novel from the award-winning author of You Know When the Men are Gone, about jealousy, the unpredictable path of friendship, and the secrets kept in marriage, all set within the U.S. expat community of the Middle East during the rise of the Arab Spring.

The Body by Hanif Kureishi from PRH Audio.
A provocative story of an older man whose brain is surgically placed in a younger man’s body by a network of underground doctors.

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© 2017 Under My Apple Tree. All rights reserved.
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July 12, 2017 / Leslie

Wordless Wednesday: Eastern Kingbird

Almost wordless: Eastern Kingbirds are a summer migrant and spend their winters in South America. I saw this one while monitoring the prairie for the forest preserve’s breeding bird survey.

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More Wordless Wednesday. © 2017 Under My Apple Tree. All rights reserved.
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