Stacking The Shelves is a meme hosted by Tynga’s Reviews and ReadingReality all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts, and of course ebooks! And audiobooks. Don’t forget audiobooks!
I’m not sure how I got so many books while on vacation! But, these all sound good.
I loved her previous book, The Ballerinas, so I’m happy to get her newest book.
Synopsis: My Dark Vanessa meets The Queen’s Gambit in this new novel of suspense about the bonds of family, the limits of talent, the risks of ambition, and the rewards of revenge.
When former piano prodigy Saskia Kreis returns home to Milwaukee after her mother’s unexpected death, she expects to inherit the family estate, the Elf House. But with the discovery that her mother’s will bequeathed the Elf House to a man that Saskia shares a complicated history with, she is forced to reexamine her own past––and the romantic relationship that changed the course of her life––for answers. Can she find a way to claim her heritage while keeping her secrets buried, or will the fallout from digging too deep destroy her?
Set against a post #MeToo landscape, Rachel Kapelke-Dale’s The Ingenue delves into mother-daughter relationships, the expectations of talent, the stories we tell ourselves, and what happens when the things that once made you special are taken from you. Moving between Saskia’s childhood and the present day, this dark, contemporary fairy tale pulses with desire, longing, and uncertainty, as it builds to its spectacular, shocking climax.
This was a NetGalley wish that was granted. It looks cute.
Synopsis: An ambitious chief of staff risks her career and her heart when she falls hard for her new colleague in this steamy workplace romance from the author of Getting His Game Back.
After nearly a decade of experience in state politics, Isadora Maris is damn good at her job. Aggressive lobbyists and stonewalling senators are no match for her diplomacy and her unflappable commitment to her principles. If all goes according to her meticulous plan, she’ll soon be managing her boss’s successful campaign for U.S. representative and finally land her dream role: congressional aide in Washington, D.C., where she can really make a difference.
But Isadora’s cool professionalism is knocked off-kilter when she meets Karim Sarda. Karim is gorgeous and brilliant and seems to share many of her ideals. So why is he working for the California senate’s most detestable scumbag? Given their bosses’ fierce political rivalry, Isadora finds she can’t risk tarnishing her reputation by flirting with the enemy, and she’s been betrayed enough times to want to keep people at a distance. So she deems Karim off-limits—no matter how flustered she feels whenever he enters the room.
Karim knows that struggle all too well: Still processing the wounds from his failed marriage, he’s ready for a fresh start. But Karim can’t hide his attraction to Isadora’s commanding presence. Her strength is captivating, even as he recognizes something fragile beneath its surface.
When Karim and Isadora succumb to their undeniable chemistry, their initial desire blossoms into something more—something real. But if Karim’s boss takes control of the California senate, everything Isadora worked for could be destroyed. Will workplace politics shatter their chance at love?
I like bookish books, and this sounds good.
Synopsis: Love isn’t always by the book in this charming romantic comedy about a bookseller discovering how to be the main character in her story.
As a self-proclaimed book hater and a firm believer that the movie is always better, Drew Young didn’t anticipate inheriting her grandma’s bookstore, the Book Nook. She’s in way over her head even before the shop’s resident book club, comprising seven of the naughtiest old ladies ever, begin to do what they do best—meddle.
Bestselling author Jasper Williams is a hopeless romantic. When he meets Drew at his Book Nook signing event, he becomes determined to show her the beauty of reading. He curates a book bucket list in exchange for her help exploring the local Denver scene for his current manuscript. From going river rafting to trying local restaurants, Drew begins to connect with Jasper in a way she only thought happened in fiction.
When messy family ties jeopardize the future of the Book Nook, Drew is caught between a bookshelf and a hard place. She’s reminded that real life isn’t always big dreams and sweeping romance. But Jasper is the plot twist she never saw coming and he’s writing a happily ever after just for them.
I loved the cover, and the blurb.
Synopsis: For fans of Alison Hammer and Caroline Leavitt, Kalyn Fogarty weaves an emotionally rich tale in her powerfully moving novel Everything’s Still There, exploring postpartum depression, female friendship, and new motherhood.
Professional party planner turned stay-at-home-mom, Brynn Hallman always imagined she’d be the ideal mother for her little boy, Cody. But her plans go awry with a series of medical complications that send her into a tailspin. Fueled by bad reality TV and a growing obsession with an Instafamous mommy influencer, Brynn falls deeper into her growing depression and turns inward, shutting out her pre-baby friends and pretending to her husband, Kyle, that everything is just fine.
During the early morning hours, Brynn sees a flashing light from her back porch across the expanse of her yard. Is it a trick of her tired eyes? For the first time in months, she ventures out of the house to discover the source of the light. What she finds will draw her into the life of an eccentric new friend, forcing her to confront her changing identity and the pressures of motherhood.
Imbued with an emotional resonance that will draw in fans of Ann Napolitano—but cast in an utterly unique voice—Kalyn Fogarty’s Everything’s Still There is sure to take a welcome place in the literary pantheon.
I like books about sisters.
Synopsis: Known for her humor and genuine Southern voice, Susannah B. Lewis brings readers the heartwarming story of two sisters learning to love who they are and face the world—alongside their charming, wise grandmother.
Della and Darby Redd are twins, but they couldn’t be more different. Della is outspoken and eccentric, and Darby is introverted and avoids conversation when possible. As they approach their 30th birthday, they’re single and living with their grandmother, Birdie. Della wants nothing more than to find love and be accepted by her former schoolmates in Clay Station, Mississippi, but Darby couldn’t care less. She is content coming home from her factory job each day to curl up on the couch and watch Murder, She Wrote with Birdie and write poems in her journal.
Della falls in love with her boss, Dr. Brian Faulkner, and Darby finds unexpected friendship in her goofy coworker, Cliff Waters. Because of her friendship with Cliff, Darby uncovers terrible truths about Della’s crush. Will Dr. Brian Faulkner’s secrets push the different sisters even further apart or bring them closer together? The sisters will both need to face difficult questions about who they are . . . and who they want to be.
I read the previous book in this series, so I’m excited to get this next book.
Synopsis: The stunning sequel to Daughter of the Moon Goddess delves deeper into beloved Chinese mythology, concluding the epic story of Xingyin—the daughter of Chang’e and the mortal archer, Houyi—as she battles a grave new threat to the realm, in this powerful tale of love, sacrifice, and hope.
After winning her mother’s freedom from the Celestial Emperor, Xingyin thrives in the enchanting tranquility of her home. But her fragile peace is threatened by the discovery of a strange magic on the moon and the unsettling changes in the Celestial Kingdom as the emperor tightens his grip on power. While Xingyin is determined to keep clear of the rising danger, the discovery of a shocking truth spurs her into a perilous confrontation.
Forced to flee her home once more, Xingyin and her companions venture to unexplored lands of the Immortal Realm, encountering legendary creatures and shrewd monarchs, beloved friends and bitter adversaries. With alliances shifting quicker than the tides, Xingyin has to overcome past grudges and enmities to forge a new path forward, seeking aid where she never imagined she would. As an unspeakable terror sweeps across the realm, Xingyin must uncover the truth of her heart and claw her way through devastation—to rise against this evil before it destroys everything she holds dear, and the worlds she has grown to love . . . even if doing so demands the greatest price of all.
This just looked like fun. I loved the blurb.
Synopsis: Knives Out and Ocean’s 8 meets The Nest in this hilariously twisty novel by award-winning author HelenKay Dimon, about a woman who returns home from prison to her dysfunctional con artist family and tries to get them to go legit.
One day a con man met an heiress, wooed her, married her, had two kids…and kept on conning. Jillian Moorewood is the oldest child from that meet-cute-gone-wrong marriage. The stable one. The sensible and dependable one. The one who protects and fixes. The one who went to prison to save their sorry butts. Now, thirty-nine months later, she’s out and she’s more than a little pissed.
Finally home she finds the scheming clan in full family fleecing mode. They all claim they didn’t really agree to Jillian’s previous go-legit-or-else ultimatum before she went away. They viewed it as a “suggestion” then ignored it. So, business as usual. But Jillian is done with the lies and fakery. She demands the whole messed-up crew clean up its act, and this time she’s not kidding—she has the leverage to make it happen.
Problem is, her life is in shambles, but with the help of a great aunt (crooked but loveable), a bodyguard (who is a nice surprise after three years in prison), and a few allies (all working undercover), Jillian starts to put her life back together. She kicks out a few mooching relatives living under her roof, sets limits on everyone’s access to the money, ducks from their various attacks, and sees if that bodyguard is maybe interested in sticking around for a while. For the first time, she’s Jillian Moorewood, her own woman, and she’s ready to figure out who she is.
This just looks like fun! Plus, it’s about food!
Synopsis: A talented chef discovers how spices and scents can transport her—and, more importantly, how self-confidence can unlock the greatest magic of all: love—in this perfectly seasoned new novel by Samantha Vérant.
Kate Jenkins doesn’t believe in fate. She believes in a clear vision, meticulous planning, and hard work in order to achieve her culinary dreams. On the cusp of opening her own Parisian restaurant, Bistro Exotique, she isn’t even concerned when her standoffish—and annoyingly sexy—neighbor dismisses her as a crazy American tourist or when she meets the wildly eccentric Garrance, the self-proclaimed Spice Master of Paris, who ominously warns her of the previous owner’s failures.
Confident and optimistic, Kate keeps calm and cooks on. Until a series of unfortunate events derail her plans and her entire staff quits.
Kate is about to throw in the kitchen towel on her lifelong dream when Garrance offers to use her mastery of scents and spices to help her, but it comes at a price: Kate must work with Garrance’s son, Charles, a world-class chef and total jerk. After Kate hesitantly concedes to the deal, she slowly learns to open her heart and mind to new concepts, not quite sure if the magic she’s experiencing comes from Garrance’s spices, from within herself, or from the growing chemistry with Charles. One thing is certain, though: her kitchen is getting increasingly hot.
I like that this is set in Medieval times.
Synopsis: Two destined rivals fall desperately in love—but the fate of medieval Europe hangs in the balance.
“A pair of thrones between us, and my heart clutched like a rosary within his hands . . .”
Twelfth-century Europe. Newly-crowned King Philip of France is determined to restore his nation to its former empire and bring glory to his name. But when his greatest enemy, King Henry of England, threatens to end his reign before it can even begin, Philip is forced to make a precarious alliance with Henry’s volatile son—risking both his throne, and his heart.
Richard, Duke of Aquitaine, never thought he would be King. But when an unexpected tragedy makes him heir to England, he finally has an opportunity to overthrow the father he despises. At first, Philip is a useful tool in his quest for vengeance . . . until passion and politics collide, and Richard begins to question whether the crown is worth the cost.
When Philip and Richard find themselves staring down an impending war, they must choose between their desire for one another and their grand ambitions. Will their love prevail, if it calls to them from across the battlefield? Teeming with royal intrigue and betrayal, this epic romance reimagines two real-life kings ensnared by an impossible choice: Follow their hearts, or earn their place in history.
Another book for my Christmas Challenge!
Synopsis: With a name like Astra Noel Snow, holiday spirit isn’t just a seasonal specialty—it’s a way of life. But after a stinging divorce, Astra’s yearly trip to the Milwaukee Christmas market takes on a whole new meaning. She’s ready to eat, drink, and be merry, especially with the handsome stranger who saves the best kringle for her at his family bakery.
For Jack Clausen, the Julemarked with its snowy lights and charming shops stays the same, while the world outside the joyful street changes, magically leaping from one December to the next every four weeks. He’s never minded living this charmed existence until Astra shows him the life he’s been missing outside of the festive red brick alley.
After a swoon-worthy series of dates, some Yuletide magic, and the unexpected glow of new love, Astra and Jack must decide whether this relationship can weather all seasons, or if what they’re feeling is as ephemeral as marshmallows in a mug of hot cocoa.
Synopsis: The journey of a thousand miles begins with sequins and a beehive wig in this sharply funny and achingly tender debut novel about mothers, daughters, and the surprising power of Elvis.
Grace Johnson can’t escape the feeling that her life is on autopilot—until her husband announces he’s done with their marriage. Grace has a choice: wallow in humiliation . . . or reluctantly grant her outlandish mother’s seventieth birthday wish with a road trip Graceland. Buckle up, Elvis. We’re on our way.
Now the two are hightailing it from El Paso to Memphis, leaving a trail of sequins, false eyelashes, and difficult memories in their wake. Between spontaneous roadside stops to psychics, wig mishaps, and familiar passive-aggressive zingers, Grace is starting to better understand her Elvis-obsessed mama and their own fragile connection. She may even have another shot at love. Apparently the King really does work in mysterious ways. But after all these years, will it ever be possible for Grace and her mom to heal the hurts of the past?
I saw some good reviews when this released in the UK in June, so I was excited to get an invite for a tour of the US version.
Synopsis: A richly imagined novel inspired by the true story of Anne Sharp, a governess who became very close with Jane Austen and her family by the #1 International bestselling-author of Miss Austen.
On January 21, 1804, Anne Sharpe arrives at Godmersham Park in Kent to take up the position of governess. At thirty-one years old, she has no previous experience of either teaching or fine country houses. Her mother has died, and she has nowhere else to go. Anne is left with no choice. For her new charge—twelve-year-old Fanny Austen—Anne’s arrival is all novelty and excitement.
The governess role is a uniquely awkward one. Anne is neither one of the servants, nor one of the family, and to balance a position between the “upstairs” and “downstairs” members of the household is a diplomatic chess game. One wrong move may result in instant dismissal. Anne knows that she must never let down her guard.
When Mr. Edward Austen’s family comes to stay, Anne forms an immediate attachment to Jane. They write plays together, and enjoy long discussions. However, in the process, Anne reveals herself as not merely pretty, charming, and competent; she is clever too. Even her sleepy, complacent, mistress can hardly fail to notice.
Meanwhile Jane’s brother, Henry, begins to take an unusually strong interest in the lovely young governess. And from now on, Anne’s days at Godmersham Park are numbered.
That’s all I have for this week. Have you read any of these books? What’s on your list to read? Comment below!