Tuesday, April 2, 2019


What's up, readers? Spring has sprung. I know this because my eyes are watering, my nose is itching, and I'm stocking up on Kleenex. Usually Spring is one of my favorite parts of life. I love the color and warmth after winter, the slow prologue into a blistering hot summer here in the Central Valley of California. What I hate are the allergies. This year seems to be particularly irritating to my poor nose for some reason, and I have regrettably had to keep my windows closed despite the beautiful weather! 

Since giving birth in late January, I've been slowly getting into some semblance of a routine with my baby, just in time for me to enjoy the last two weeks of my official maternity leave before staring a second job (yes, I'm still running Writing Belle Publishing and this magazine - I will never give up writing!). I've finally been able to get back into the swing of reading, so I thought I would share the literary picks that are sitting on my shelf currently or twirling around on my Kindle carousal. Some I am in the process of reading, but most are what I'm going to be reading next! 

Wool, by Hugh Howey 
If you follow me in Instagram, you know I've been talking about this one a lot. It follows the story of a woman named Jules, who lives in a society built within a silo, deep beneath the earth. A post-apocalyptic novel of corruption, adventure, and deceit, you'll love this book from beginning to end. I am in love with it - and even more in love with the fact that our heroine, Jules, is a mechanic who can hold her own with the toughest. She's a tougher-than-usual protagonist, and that makes her special. 

Stillhouse Lake, by Rachel Caine
This one. I am itching to get into it. It's the first in a series of novels from Rachel Caine. In this first installment, Gina Royal discovers - quite unfortunately - that her husband is actually a serial killer. Talk about a major buzz kill. I snagged this USA Today and Amazon Charts Bestselling book on Kindle for just 2.99. 

Cole & Sav: Our Surprising Love Story, by Cole and Savannah LaBrant 
Okay, you may or may not know who this is, but I get a big kick out of watching this family vlog their life on YouTube. They're Christians, and they make videos that are safe for the whole family to watch - clean, decent, and cute as can be. You should go check out their channel if you haven't: The LaBrant Family. They have over 8 million subscribers! I'm excited to read this book about how they met and fell in love (I'm a sucker for a cute romance). I've especially been enjoying their videos lately, since they recently had a baby (Posie, who is about 3 months old), and I can relate!

Naked in Death, (Death #1), by J.D. Robb 
This is the first in a series of about 456 books (just kidding, there are FORTY-NINE), starting with the adventures of homicide detective Eve Dallas in the futuristic world of 2058. There's corruption, adventure, intrigue, romance - you name it. If this one hooks me, I'm stuck with reading the following 48 novels, because I just can't stop myself from devouring a good series. (I have a problem: send help immediately.) 

You Belong To Me, by Mark Tilbury 
Have I mentioned that I like books about crime investigations? No? Perhaps you have figured it out by now. *wink* This novel follows the story about the disappearance of two girls, and how one man, Danny, could change their fates. 

Crown of Midnight (Throne of Glass #2), by Sarah J. Maas
Disclaimer: I didn't like the first novel, despite the fact that the series is wildly popular. I thought the protagonist was overly emotional and incredibly naive for someone who is supposed to be a hardcore killing machine, but I digress. I'm going to try the second installment in the series and see if I can get into it. I like my assassin heroines to be tough as nails - not sure if I'm going to be satisfied with this story or not. We shall see! 

Sharp Objects, by Gillian Flynn 
Reporter Camilla has just returned from a stint at a mental hospital, and now she's supposed to cover a story about two missing, preteen girls. If this is anything like Gone Girl, Flynn has a way of writing psychological thrillers that make you 1) grip the edge of your seat and 2) throw up a little in your mouth, due to the outrageous graphic sexual violence. I don't mean that as an insult, it's just a fact. Flynn pulled no punches in Gone Girl, and I expect this book to be the same. I have a feeling I will be sucked in nevertheless. Flynn is a master of suspense, despite the craziness. 

Poison Study, by Maria B. Snyder
Yelena is about to be executed, but at the last moment, is granted a miraculous reprieve: she can be the official taste tester for the king. Hey, she might end up being poisoned but a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do to survive. This book was published in 2005, and I was actually surprised to stumble across it (and realize that I hadn't discovered it before!).

The Missing Years, by Lexie Elliot 
THIS BOOK. It's currently on pre-order and my expectations are high! This novel follow the story of a woman named Ailsa, who just to happens to inherit a beautiful yet insanely creepy Scottish manor. I mean, like one does. She has a feeling that something strange is going on - as if the house itself is watching her. Is it? What's going on? I can't wait for this one to come out, especially since I'm particularly fond of books set in Scotland. 

Stone Mothers, by Erin Kelly
Not releasing until April 23rd. From the same author of the bestselling He Said/She Said. Here's the official synopsis from GoodReads: 
You can't keep the secret.
You can't tell the truth.
You can't escape the past...

Marianne was seventeen when she fled her home in Nusstead – leaving behind her family, her boyfriend, Jesse, and the body they buried. Now, thirty years later, forced to return to in order to help care for her sick mother, she can feel the past closing around her. And Jesse, who never forgave her for leaving in the first place, is finally threatening to expose the truth.

My Non-Fiction Pick of the Month:
It's Not Supposed to be This Way, by Lysa TerKeurst 
If you know me personally, you'll know that Lysa is my favorite non-fiction Christian author and speaker. She's real. I love that. She doesn't preach a watered down, feel-good prosperity gospel. She preaches about the real pain of life, and how we can trust God to give us the strength to endure life's very real trials and tribulations, and how we can find joy nevertheless. Add to her life experiences the fact that she's an excellent writer, Lysa brings a unique voice and perspective to Christian non-fiction that I haven't seen in anyone else. I highly recommend this book. She talks about finding strength in God when life completely shatters you. Go pick it up - totally worth the read. 

So, this is just the cream of the crop from what's on my shelf. My literal book shelf (and drawer, and closet, and box, and second drawer) is actually stuffed full of dozens more. Do you have any recommendations for me to try this spring and upcoming summer season? Shoot me a message over Instagram or email me here! 

Thanks for stopping by and remember: all of the books here are featured for fun, to further than creative intent of the original author, and to encourage readers to go and buy the writer's work. I don't get any money out of promoting these. I simply enjoy sharing these books with you in hopes that you will all go out and buy them, because they are amazing! 

You can get all of these books on Amazon. 

Happy reading!

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