Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Talking As Fast As I Can by Lauren Graham

* * *

In this collection of personal essays, the beloved star of Gilmore Girls and Parenthood reveals stories about life, love, and working as a woman in Hollywood—along with behind-the-scenes dispatches from the set of the new Gilmore Girls, where she plays the fast-talking Lorelai Gilmore once again.

In Talking as Fast as I Can, Lauren Graham hits pause for a moment and looks back on her life, sharing laugh-out-loud stories about growing up, starting out as an actress, and, years later, sitting in her trailer on the Parenthood set and asking herself, “Did you, um, make it?” She opens up about the challenges of being single in Hollywood (“Strangers were worried about me; that’s how long I was single!”), the time she was asked to audition her butt for a role, and her experience being a judge on Project Runway (“It’s like I had a fashion-induced blackout”).

In “What It Was Like, Part One,” Graham sits down for an epic Gilmore Girls marathon and reflects on being cast as the fast-talking Lorelai Gilmore. The essay “What It Was Like, Part Two” reveals how it felt to pick up the role again nine years later, and what doing so has meant to her.

Some more things you will learn about Lauren: She once tried to go vegan just to bond with Ellen DeGeneres, she’s aware that meeting guys at awards shows has its pitfalls (“If you’re meeting someone for the first time after three hours of hair, makeup, and styling, you’ve already set the bar too high”), and she’s a card-carrying REI shopper (“My bungee cords now earn points!”).

Including photos and excerpts from the diary Graham kept during the filming of the recent Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life, this book is like a cozy night in, catching up with your best friend, laughing and swapping stories, and—of course—talking as fast as you can.

Graham writes like she talks which makes reading the book fast and engaging. She talks about everything from her childhood to college days and the early years of struggling to find good acting parts before landing her iconic role as Lorelai Gilmore. She fills the pages with funny stories, embarrassing moments and also those teaching moments that stayed with her. Through it all, I got the sense that she maintained her upbeat attitude and was thankful for any opportunity that presented itself.

Most readers will eat up the part of the book where she binges on the entire Gilmore Girls series and reminisces on each season. She jokingly remarks upon the changes in technology, comparisons in wardrobes, hairstyles, storylines. Since my eldest had just recently finished bingeing on the show as well, some of the details Graham recalls were fresh in my mind. She ends the book by sharing excerpts from her diary she kept while filming the revival. I found that to be especially interesting as she writes about their out of sequence filming schedule and how certain aspects of the storyline kind of stumped her. But best of all is the impression that returning to the Gilmore Girls family was essentially returning home after a very long vacation.

I wasn't looking for any sort of lightening-strike-oh-wow moment - I just wanted to read a book by someone I adore. But then she went and offered up this piece of wisdom, really more of a reminder about life in general when faced with disappointment. It's so simple yet powerful and it's my favourite passage from the entire book:

"I still find that, in general, having a plan is, well, a good plan. But when my carefully laid plan laughed at me, rather than clutch at it too tightly I just made a new one, even if it was one that didn't immediately make sense. In blindly trying a different path, I accidentally found one that worked better." 
I'm a Gilmore Girls fan and lately I've gotten into memoirs, so combine these two things and I'm a happy camper. Through her humour and personable charm, Graham shows us just how resilient she has been and how enormously appreciative she is of her experiences. She's someone whom we would love to join us on Bibliojunkies BFF Island. I can only begin to imagine the stories she has tucked away. I'm so glad I picked this up. Talking As Fast As I Can -- all Gilmore Girls/Parenthood fans will find pure enjoyment in this!

~ Bel

Sunday, February 12, 2017

A Peek In The BiblioBin #231

Photo source: Bel/Bibliojunkies

Welcome to our Stacking the Shelves post! Stacking the Shelves (or as we like to call it, A Peek in the BiblioBin) has been created by the folks at Tynga's ReviewsIt's a way for bloggers to share what books they've won, received for review, purchased, borrowed from the library or friend, received as a gift, grabbed off the bookshelf, etc.

Valentine's Day is just around the corner. Love it or hate it, WE here at Bibliojunkies want to send a special shout out to all our fellow booklovers and authors. You rock and we love hanging out with you on the interwebs. 


So ... what's in your BiblioBin this week?

+  +  +  +  +  +  +  +  +  +  +  +  +  +  +

For Review:


What We Keep by Elizabeth Berg


Wild Pitch (Homeruns #1) by Sloan Johnson

Friday, February 10, 2017

My Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella


From Random House (Dial Press)

Part love story, part workplace drama, this sharply observed novel is a witty critique of the false judgments we make in a social-media-obsessed world. New York Times bestselling author Sophie Kinsella has written her most timely novel yet.
Everywhere Katie Brenner looks, someone else is living the life she longs for, particularly her boss, Demeter Farlowe. Demeter is brilliant and creative, lives with her perfect family in a posh townhouse, and wears the coolest clothes. Katie’s life, meanwhile, is a daily struggle—from her dismal rental to her oddball flatmates to the tense office politics she’s trying to negotiate. No wonder Katie takes refuge in not-quite-true Instagram posts, especially as she's desperate to make her dad proud.
Then, just as she’s finding her feet—not to mention a possible new romance—the worst happens. Demeter fires Katie. Shattered but determined to stay positive, Katie retreats to her family’s farm in Somerset to help them set up a vacation business. London has never seemed so far away—until Demeter unexpectedly turns up as a guest. Secrets are spilled and relationships rejiggered, and as the stakes for Katie’s future get higher, she must question her own assumptions about what makes for a truly meaningful life.
Sophie Kinsella is celebrated for her vibrant, relatable characters and her great storytelling gifts. Now she returns with all of the wit, warmth, and wisdom that are the hallmarks of her bestsellers to spin this fresh, modern story about presenting the perfect life when the reality is far from the truth.

Source:  Electronic Advance Copy in exchange for an honest review.

That moment when you are reading on the treadmill at the gym and start laughing uncontrollably at the standard Sophie Kinsella madness?  Yep.  That's me.  The woman on the treadmill laughing.  And for good reason.  If you've read a Sophie Kinsella book, then you know her trademark hilarity in awkwardness.  If you've not read Sophie Kinsella - what the heck are you waiting for?  

My all time favorite Sophie Kinsella book is Can You Keep a Secret?  Holy crap that book is funny.  My next favorite is Undomestic Goddess.  It makes me smile just thinking about it.  My third favorite is now My Not So Perfect Life, because Katie-Cat's life is sooo not perfect.  It's day-to-day drudgery - that kind when you have a crap job, a crap apartment, and no money to do anything fun.  But, she works in a field she loves, lives in a city she loves, and well, pretends everything is great.  

My Not So Perfect Life is all kinds of fun!  I won't give any spoilers, but there are twists and turns here that are unexpected and entertaining.  Revenge plots and "sunbathing" and a Dad who is a little bit crazy - it all comes together to bring you hours of fun and laughs.  Kinsella's writing is, as always, quick, witty, and hilarious.  Sometimes, you even get a good message out of the laughs, like the grass is always greener and don't believe everything you see on Instagram.  

My Not So Perfect Life is the perfect addition to your TBR.  For more information, visit Sophie Kinsella's website.


Thursday, February 9, 2017

Rise of Fire (Reign of Shadows #2) by Sophie Jordan

* * *

The richly suspenseful sequel to Sophie Jordan’s romantic fantasy Reign of Shadows.

Luna and Fowler have escaped the kingdom of Relhok, but they haven’t escaped the darkness. When a battle against the dark dwellers mortally injures Fowler, Luna is faced with a choice: put their fate in the hands of mysterious strangers or risk losing Fowler forever.

Desperate to keep the one bright part of her life alive, Luna accepts the help of soldiers from a nearby kingdom. Lagonia’s castle offers reprieve from the dangerous outside world—until the king discovers both Fowler's and Luna’s true ties to Relhok and their influence over the throne.

Now pawns in each kingdom’s political game, Luna and Fowler are more determined than ever to escape and build the life they’ve been dreaming of. But their own pasts have a tight hold on their hearts and their destinies. Luna must embrace the darkness and fire within her before she loses not only Fowler, but the power she was destined to inherit.

*Source: advance e-galley provided by publisher in exchange for a honest review

There's no break in the action as Rise of Fire kicks off where we last ended and that's Fowler having been taken underground by the ghastly dwellers and Luna going after him. We've come to know and admire Luna for the force that she is, therefore, it's no surprise that she heroically helps him escape. Unfortunately, Fowler is poisoned by the dwellers and she has to resort to trusting strangers they encounter for help during their escape. It's a precarious scenario but Fowler's life is on the line and Luna's not about to risk it. They end up in a neighbouring kingdom that has strained ties with Relhok. Once their identities are confirmed, they become pawns in a dangerous power grab that neither is interested in being a part of. Though their escape is thwarted, they may have found an unlikely ally in the process.

Only one thing stumped me here and that is the one element that I excited me in Reign of Shadows which became the one element that confounded me in this book. In Reign of Shadows, I was so impressed that Luna was blind yet accomplished at reading her surroundings through sound, smell and touch. She was trained well by her caretakers and it made sense to me that she was adept at taking care of herself in familiar terrain where she could easily decipher all those details. I felt it required much more of a suspension of disbelief this time when she's in foreign territory surrounded by strangers. I feel like I could have done with a little more detail from her perspective as to how she was reading and navigating her new, unfamiliar environment while keeping everyone from knowing the truth. That was the one piece that kept gnawing at me. I'd be curious to know what other readers feel about this.

I still enjoyed the book and above all I loved that Luna is a strong figure able to overcome her disability. We need to have more characters like her to cheer on. Rise of Fire is a fun fantasy, a classic good versus evil. By the way, there is a bit of a surprise towards the end, something rather unexpected! 

~ Bel

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Goodbye Paradise by Sarina Bowen Cover Reveal

OMG all!  Sarina Bowen is releasing a m/m book and we've got the cover to show you!  If you love Sarina as much as we do, you will join us in a happy dance!  Let's make Wednesday awesome!

The book is Goodbye Paradise and if you've read the True North Series, you may recognize Paradise.  Goodbye Paradise tells the story of Joshua and Caleb.  Check out the blurb:

Most people called it a cult. But for twenty years, Josh and Caleb called it home. 

In Paradise, there is no television. No fast food. Just long hours of farm work and prayer on a dusty Wyoming ranch, and nights in a crowded bunkhouse. The boys of the Compound are kept far from the sinners’ world. 
But Joshua doesn’t need temptation to sin. His whole life, he’s wanted his best friend, Caleb. By day they work side by side. Only when Josh closes his eyes at night can they be together the way he craves. 
It can never be. And his survival depends on keeping his terrible desires secret.
Caleb has always protected Josh against the worst of the bullying at the Compound. But he has secrets of his own, and a plan to get away — until it all backfires. 
Josh finds himself homeless in a world that doesn’t want him. Can Caleb find him in time? And will they find a place of safety, where he can admit to Josh how he really feels? 
Warning: Contains a hot male/male romance, copious instances of taking the Lord's name in vain, and love against the kitchen counterThis book was previously released under the title: In Front of God & Everyone.

Without further adieu, check out this awesome, awesome cover!

Book two is Hello Forever.

Seriously, I CANNOT wait to read these books.  There will be so many feels.  So many.

~ Shel

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

For Finlay by J. Nathan Blog Tour

For Finlay BT Ban

Today we have the blog tour for For Finlay by J. Nathan. Check out this fantastic new release and grab your copy today!

for finlay cover

Title: For Finlay

Author: J. Nathan

Genre: Contemporary Sports Romance

About For Finlay:

For Finlay Teaser 3
Finlay Thatcher is a lost soul, guilt-ridden after the death of her twin brother. When Alabama's football coach gives her the opportunity to work for him, she knows it's her chance to move on, even if it means living her brother's dream.   Caden Brooks is Alabama's star quarterback. He's got it all. The attention of adoring fans. A girlfriend who'd do anything to hold on to him. And a future in the pros. He's getting along just fine until Finlay steps into his life, despising him at first sight and pushing his buttons like no other.   Unfortunately for Finlay, and her attempt to keep Caden at arm's length, there's nothing Caden loves more than a challenge. The problem with this challenge is she comes with a secret that has the power to destroy everything.

Get Your Copy Today!


Amazon UK:

Amazon AU:



Barnes and Noble:

For Finlay Teaser 2

About J. Nathan:

Nathan is the author of the new adult novels For Finlay, Before Hadley, Until Alex, and Since Drew. When she's not writing, she's a total romance junkie! Add an alpha male who's unlikable in the beginning...even better. Happy endings are a must. Love triangles and negative people are the bane of her existence. Her family, friends, guys in backwards hats, and watermelon margaritas are the light…

Connect with the Author:

Subscribe to my newsletter:

For Finlay Teaser 1 

Enter J. Nathan’s Giveaway: a Rafflecopter giveaway    

Click here to read Bel's review of For Finlay