The Widow of Rose House by Diana Biller



The Widow of Rose House was written by Diana Biller. I’m a big fan of historical romance; I don’t read very much of American historical romance, but the premise piqued my interest.

Alva Webster has returned to New York after living abroad, accompanied by her scandalous reputation. She intends to renovate a Hyde Park mansion, detailing the process in an interior design book full of photographs, an innovative and creative venture that hasn’t been done before.

But the workers have abandoned the project because they say the house is haunted.

And then this pesky scientist keeps popping up because he wants to study the ghosts.

Alva doesn’t want to rely on anybody but herself, but Samuel Moore is sweet and kind and very earnest. Read more

Love and First Sight by Josh Sundquist


I received a copy of this book from Netgalley/the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

I have not had the time to read very many YA novels lately, so I was very excited about the opportunity to read Love and First Sight by Josh Sundquist. I am not familiar with Sundquist’s work on YouTube, but YA is one of my favorite genres, and the description piqued my interest.

Will Porter is a visually impaired teenager who is fulfilling his desire to attend a regular high school instead of the school for the blind that he has attended up until now. After some awkward encounters, Will makes some new friends, including a girl named Cecily who is in several of his classes. Read more

I Thee Wed by Celeste Bradley

517cudu1fqlI received a copy of this book from Netgalley/the publisher in exchange for an honest review

I have not read any of Celeste Bradley’s books before, but I enjoy historical romances set in the Regency era, so I was excited about reading I Thee Wed.

This is the fourth book in the Wicked Worthingtons series, which follows the exploits of the Worthingtons, a family with eight children. Each book is devoted to one of the siblings, and follows his/her love story.

The books function reasonably well as stand-alones. I did not have to read the previous books in the series to get the sense that Orion Worthington wants to distance himself from his family. He loves his family, of course, but he has chosen a career in science, and that is very different than their penchant for being free-spirited. Read more

Waylon! One Awesome Thing by Sara Pennypacker

41zdzi3puplI received a copy of this book from Netgalley/the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

My oldest daughter is almost nine years old, and she is an avid reader. She and I have read all of Sara Pennypacker’s Clementine books, so we were very excited about the opportunity to read Pennypacker’s latest book: Waylon! One Awesome Thing.

Waylon is not a sequel to the Clementine books, but they are definitely a spinoff. Waylon lives in Clementine’s world; the two children attend the same school, and they are both in the fourth grade. They are not close friends, but Waylon has a couple of interactions with her over the course of the book.

If you are not familiar with the Clementine books, that’s okay; you don’t have to have read them before reading Waylon. Waylon is a fourth grade boy who lives in Boston with his parents and sister. Waylon is a very intelligent boy, and he loves science. Read more

Of Better Blood by Susan Moger

51kh9wdtaylI received a copy of this book from Albert Whitman & Company/Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

I enjoy reading young adult historical fiction, so I was very excited about the opportunity to read Of Better Blood. Author Susan Moger has written several educational books and teaching materials, but this is her first novel.

Rowan Collier comes from a “good” family. She lives with her father and older sister in relative affluence, but that all changes when she contracts polio at the age of 11.   Five years later, Rowan has regained the strength in her paralyzed leg, and she can walk with a cane. She never returned home after her diagnosis, and has spent all that time living in various hospitals. When the story begins, she is spending the summer in the most humiliating way: playing the role of the “crippled” daughter in a traveling production about Fitter Families sponsored by a eugenics council. Read more

The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly

I received this book from Netgalley/the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

I enjoyed reading The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate a couple of years ago, so when I received an opportunity to read The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate, I was very excited.

The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate is a middle grade novel written by Jacqueline Kelly. The story begins in the spring of 1900, only a couple of months after the end of The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate. Callie is still determined to become a scientist, and she spends as much time as possible with her grandfather. When Callie is not working with her grandfather, she is playing with her younger brother Travis. Travis is gentler than the other boys, and cannot help put take pity on the foundling animals he finds. Callie knows that it cannot possibly be a good idea to bring home an armadillo or a baby raccoon, but she has trouble saying no to her kind brother. Travis is heartbroken when their attempts at domesticating the animals don’t work out, but Callie approaches things from a scientific perspective and tries to remain impartial. Read more