Hi; I’m happy you’re here!

Welcome to my travel, film, and wellness blog.

My 2018 Reading List

My 2018 Reading List

Midway through the year I joined a reading challenge on Goodreads. I challenged myself to read 8 books between then and the end of 2018. I ended up reading 12 books (reading 13 and 14 right now, but they likely won’t be finished by next week). I read some AMAZING books and a dud. Then I read a classic and didn’t understand why it was a a classic…


Paris for One

by Jojo Moyes

This is a very cute book. A simple love story that's not rated R for a change. Perfect summer read for anyone who loves Paris and/or loves love.
My rating: 4 stars

The Nightingale

by Kristin Hannah

This is a historical fiction book loosely based on the real-life story for Andrée de Jongh. Heartbreakingly beautiful. The Nightingale paints a vivid picture of what it was like in Nazi occupied France. Two sisters fighting for what they believe in while trying to survive. I have never felt so much emotion reading a book. You will cry - possibly ugly cry at times. But I believe that this is a must read…especially if you were too young to have lived through the war (WW2).
My rating: 5 stars

The Red Notebook

by Antoine Laurain

This book was originally written in French and translated by Jane Aitken and Emily Boyce. It’s a really sweet book that takes place in Paris. One thing after another falls into place perfectly. If you want something light-hearted and feel-good that’s also a quick read, I recommend this book.
My rating: 4 stars

The People in the Photo

by Hélène Gestern

This books was also originally written in French; translated by Emily Boyce and Ros Schwartz. Such an interesting read. I found myself wanting more and more information. What happened? How is this all connected? Probably a book one could read multiple times and pick up more clues. This was a wonderful book about family history and secrets told through photographs and letters.
My rating: 4 stars

Beach Rental

by Grace Greene

I hate saying anything bad about someone’s art, because I get it. It’s not for everyone. But this was a dud for me. Surprising because it has over 4 stars on Goodreads. Maybe it’s for you?
My rating: 1 star

The Little French Bistro

by Nina George

“Every second can mark a new beginning. Open your eyes and see: the world is out there and it wants you.” 
(Nina George, The Little French Bistro)

Oh this book! My husband bought it for me for my birthday. I want to read this book a thousand more times. Nina George is a beautiful writer. Her words are like poetry strung together in a story. You fall in love with the characters, the setting, and story. One of those books you wish would never end.
My rating: 5 stars

The Tuscan Child

by Rhys Bowen

Another World War 2 historical fiction book. One of those books that tells a story from two different characters in two different time-frames. I found that I couldn’t get enough of either character’s story. Completely unexpected plot in the best way. I highly recommend.
My rating: 5 stars

All the Breaking Waves

by Kerry Lonsdale

A very very good book. I almost didn't finish it, and want to encourage you to keep reading. About 10% through the book, I wasn't sure my heart was prepared to keep reading. But I did and I'm glad. It's beautiful. I've never read a book with this much mystery, suspense, love, and tenderness wrapped into one.
My rating: 4 stars

The Kiss Quotient

by Helen Hoang

I was not expecting this book. Hot damn! A love story between a woman with autism and a male escort. She hires him to teach her to be good in bed…and the rest is history. Definitely a rated R book, so if you’re not into that, don’t read. But when you break it down, it’s a beautiful book about love.
My rating: 5 stars

The Postwoman

by Michael Kenneth Smith

Easily one of the best books I've ever read (by far the best book I read in 2018). After reading The Nightingale, I learned that the book was based off the true story of Andrée (Deedee) de Jongh and started researching all the books about her and the Comet Line that she started. 

The Postwoman will leave you feeling heartbroken but encouraged. Deedee made her mark on this Earth and it is better for her living in it. While this book is historical *fiction*, the author clearly did his research about Deedee, the Comet Line, her friends that helped her, and life in the Resistance during WW2. It was an honor to read Andrée de Jongh's story. I wish that everyone would read this book.
My rating: all of the stars!

Paris Letters

by Janice Macleod

What a lovely book. I save 5 Stars for books that make me feel. This book made me feel in love. I have an obsession with Paris and dream of moving there. The author writes so beautifully about Paris. I recommend this book for anyone who’s ever been to Paris or wants to visit Paris. Paris is as magical as it appears. And the author shares this with us in her book.
My rating: 5 stars

Breakfast at Tiffany’s

by Truman Capote

Ok, here’s the classic that I just didn’t get. I bought this book at Shakespeare and Co. while I was in Paris this summer. My brain melted down and I couldn’t figure out which book to buy, so I bought this one…a classic…can’t go wrong! Wrong! I didn’t like it. If you love the book (I’ve never seen the movie), please tell me what you love about it. I really want to love it. But I didn’t.
My rating: 2 stars

If you’re on Goodreads and want to connect, let’s connect! I feel like I add 5 books to my “want to read” list before I cross of a “read” book - and it’s not because I’m not reading…it’s because I find SO MANY books that I want to read! For 2019, I think I’m going to try to read 15 books! What books are a must-read that you recommend?



Favorite Things to Do in Houston

Favorite Things to Do in Houston