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Valentines Special Book Blind Date & Challenge

If you are reading this, I am betting that, like me, at some point in your life you have sworn that no matter what happens you will not get another book until you have reduced your current TBR pile to a manageable level. And, like me, you know you are doomed to fail. Full of good intentions, I went to the local library to return a book swearing I would not pick up another one (spoiler alert I failed). Just in the doorway I was greeted with this display — could you resist? I mean really? wpid-20150213_131209.jpg After careful consideration, I chose my blind date: “Fiction Victorian Supernatural Romp” wpid-20150210_135949-1.jpg When I got to work I had to share my excitement with the office and it was then that I discovered there are two meanings to ‘romp’…

1) What I thought my book would be an adventure (romp)

2) What everyone in the office thought my book would be sex (romp)

So what is my blind date book…

untitled Review to follow after I’ve read it.

Blind Date Challenge: We love the idea of book blind date so are offering you the chance to join us and enter to win a $25 gift card to Amazon. Take a risk and go on a blind book date. Below are a list of categories that you can pick. To participate, simply select a book category, read the book revealed, and write a review. Reviews must be at least 4 sentences long to qualify.

To pick a book, please write a comment selecting your category. We will reply to that comment with the book title and Amazon link. We will strike through categories as they are selected. You are responsible for finding your book. If we reveal a book you have already read, you can either reread the book or we will give you a back-up option that fits the category. You must read the book to qualify for the prize.

Reviews should be emailed to Jen (jenlane3@yahoo.com) no later than March 15th to qualify for the contest. $25 will be awarded to the person who writes the best review (as judged by a blind guest reviewer – a.k.a my journalist husband). $5 gift card will also be awarded to a randomly selected person who writes a review.

When the contest is over, we’ll put up a blog post with all the books that were selected along with your reviews and the contest winners.

Pick your date:

  1. Epic romance (FYI: should be a fast reader for this)
  2. Dinner date: The School of Essential Ingredients: Reader: Danielle
  3. Funny love: The Rosie Project: A Novel (Don Tillman Book 1) Reader: Daisy
  4. Love that makes you cry
  5. First love:  I’ll Give You the Sun Reader: Amie’s daughter
  6. Paranormal love
  7. Classic romance
  8. Twisted loveThe Woman Upstairs (Vintage Contemporaries). Reader: Sara
  9. Artistic loveI Always Loved You: A Novel. Reader: Andrea
  10. Magical love:The Girl Who Chased the Moon: A Novel. Reader: Jamie.
  11. Love overseas
  12. Contemporary love The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P.: A Novel. Reader: Tricia
  13. Historical love: The Secret Life of Violet Grant. Reader: Lynsey
  14. Steamy loveThe Proposition 1: The Ferro Family (The Proposition: The Ferro Family). Reader – Alli
  15. Star-crossed lovers
  16. Love like a cliche
  17. Graphic love
  18. Forbidden love:The Thorn Birds. Reader – Brandy H
  19. Adventurous love: The Princess Bride: S. Morgenstern’s Classic Tale of True Love and High Adventure Reader: Amie
  20. Let’s be friends
  21. Love in the titleA Tale of Love and Darkness. Reader – Kristel
  22. Realistic love:  This Is Between Us. Reader: Anita
  23. I hate romancePerfume: The Story of a Murderer. Reader – annapi
  24. Love Triangle
  25. Unrequited love

Disclaimer: we don’t guarantee you’ll like the book. Much like a real blind date there will be some duds and studs on this list. So, choose your category wisely.

83 Comments Post a comment
  1. I’m missing how to reveal a book. Should there be links? Fun game!

    Like

    February 14, 2015
    • If you tell me which category, I will reveal the book to you and will list it on the post here with a link. If it’s a book you’ve already read, I also have replacements for each category

      Like

      February 14, 2015
      • OH – Contemporary love 🙂

        Like

        February 25, 2015
      • great! You get…

        The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P by Adelle Waldman. I put the link above in the list. The synopsis is below. Let me know if you’ve already read it and I can give you a new title.

        In this sharply written first novel, Waldman homes in on a self-absorbed writer living in New York City. Nate Piven is still basking in the glow of having sold his first book after years of struggling to support himself with freelance work. His newfound success has given his love life a boost, and a number of women are pursuing him, including his beautiful ­ex-girlfriend Elisa and brainy Hannah, also a writer. As Hannah and Nate’s relationship gets more serious, Nate is quick to blame any communication snafus on Hannah, whose calm and self-­confidence begin to evaporate. Although Nate thinks of himself as enlightened, a product of a postfeminist, 1980s childhood and a politically correct, 1990s college education, his actions continually belie that self-image. Nate is constantly jockeying for status among his friends and critiquing women’s bodies, clothes, and looks even as he tries to figure out why his relationships never last. The novel is most likely to appeal to twentysomethings, who will no doubt recognize the preening male so thoroughly skewered here, but older readers may be put off by such an unlikable lead character.

        Liked by 1 person

        February 25, 2015
  2. Jamie (aka Sleekfeline) #

    This sounds like fun! I need a reading pick-me-up right now. Can I try magical love?

    Liked by 1 person

    February 14, 2015
    • Absolutely. I’m out at the moment but will send you the book when I get home -in about an hour

      Like

      February 14, 2015
    • Okay, so you should be all set with Sarah Addison Allen’s The Girl Who Chased the Moon. I’m glad it was a book on your TBR although I would have liked to have surprised you with a book outside your comfort zone :). I hope you enjoy. Here’s the synopsis:

      Emily Benedict has come to Mullaby, North Carolina, hoping to solve at least some of the riddles surrounding her mother’s life. But the moment Emily enters the house where her mother grew up and meets the grandfather she never knew, she realizes that mysteries aren’t solved in Mullaby, they’re a way of life: Here are rooms where the wallpaper changes to suit your mood. Unexplained lights skip across the yard at midnight. And a neighbor, Julia Winterson, bakes hope in the form of cakes, not only wishing to satisfy the town’s sweet tooth but also dreaming of rekindling the love she fears might be lost forever. Can a hummingbird cake really bring back a lost love? Is there really a ghost dancing in Emily’s backyard? The answers are never what you expect. But in this town of lovable misfits, the unexpected fits right in.

      Like

      February 14, 2015
    • Just a quick rule change: Since we got more entries than expected and the comments section is getting long… there are new rules.

      When you finish your book, send your review directly to me via email to jenlane3@yahoo.com.

      I’ll compile all the books and reviews and will post a new blog post with our results and all the books reviewed. This way the reviews don’t get buried in the comments section.

      Thanks! Hope you’re enjoying your books.

      Like

      February 21, 2015
  3. Daisy Mora #

    I think love should always make you laugh, so Il try funny love!

    Like

    February 14, 2015
    • You get… The Rosie Project by Graeme SImsion. Here’s the synopsis. The link is now in the list above.

      The international bestselling romantic comedy “bursting with warmth, emotional depth, and…humor,” (Entertainment Weekly) featuring the oddly charming, socially challenged genetics professor, Don, as he seeks true love.

      The art of love is never a science: Meet Don Tillman, a brilliant yet socially inept professor of genetics, who’s decided it’s time he found a wife. In the orderly, evidence-based manner with which Don approaches all things, he designs the Wife Project to find his perfect partner: a sixteen-page, scientifically valid survey to filter out the drinkers, the smokers, the late arrivers.

      Rosie Jarman possesses all these qualities. Don easily disqualifies her as a candidate for The Wife Project (even if she is “quite intelligent for a barmaid”). But Don is intrigued by Rosie’s own quest to identify her biological father. When an unlikely relationship develops as they collaborate on The Father Project, Don is forced to confront the spontaneous whirlwind that is Rosie―and the realization that, despite your best scientific efforts, you don’t find love, it finds you.

      Arrestingly endearing and entirely unconventional, Graeme Simsion’s distinctive debut “navigates the choppy waters of adult relationships, both romantic and platonic, with a fresh take (USA TODAY). “Filled with humor and plenty of heart, The Rosie Project is a delightful reminder that all of us, no matter how we’re wired, just want to fit in” (Chicago Tribune).

      Like

      February 14, 2015
    • Just a quick rule change: Since we got more entries than expected and the comments section is getting long… there are new rules.

      When you finish your book, send your review directly to me via email to jenlane3@yahoo.com.

      I’ll compile all the books and reviews and will post a new blog post with our results and all the books reviewed. This way the reviews don’t be buried in the comments section.

      Thanks! Hope you’re enjoying your books.

      Like

      February 21, 2015
  4. gooeylouie88 #

    Hey Jen! It’s Alli from over at pbt. I love this idea and thought I might try this with you guys. I’m going to pick steamy love

    Liked by 1 person

    February 15, 2015
    • Hi Alli! Nice to see a couple PBT folk here! You get…

      The Proposition: The Ferro Family by H.M. Ward. It’s the first of a serial. So, as a warning, this probably falls into the “erotic romance” category (if that’s not okay with you let me know and you can pick a different one. This will be the only category, i’ll let people switch if they don’t want it). I know nothing about this category. We picked based only on the fact that it made several “best of” lists. It gets 4.5 stars on Amazon & 4.2 on Good reads. I’ll post the link above in the list. And, if you don’t like it, it’s only about 100 pages. Here’s the synopsis.

      “Full of emotional angst, scorching love scenes, and a compelling storyline.”—Dear Author

      Gideon Cross came into my life like lightning in the darkness…

      He was beautiful and brilliant, jagged and white-hot. I was drawn to him as I’d never been to anything or anyone in my life. I craved his touch like a drug, even knowing it would weaken me. I was flawed and damaged, and he opened those cracks in me so easily…

      Gideon knew. He had demons of his own. And we would become the mirrors that reflected each other’s most private wounds…and desires.The bonds of his love transformed me, even as i prayed that the torment of our pasts didn’t tear us apart…

      Like

      February 15, 2015
      • gooeylouie88 #

        No that book is fine. I’ve just purchased it and will start it later today. Thanks!!

        Like

        February 15, 2015
    • Just a quick rule change: Since we got more entries than expected and the comments section is getting long… there are new rules.

      When you finish your book, send your review directly to me via email to jenlane3@yahoo.com.

      I’ll compile all the books and reviews and will post a new blog post with our results and all the books reviewed. This way the reviews don’t get buried in the comments section.

      Thanks! Hope you’re enjoying your books.

      Like

      February 21, 2015
    • Just a reminder. Don’t forget to get your reviews in by March 15th to qualify for the prize. send to me via email: jenlane3@yahoo.com

      Like

      March 10, 2015
  5. Hi Jen! I will try Artistic Love.

    Liked by 1 person

    February 15, 2015
    • yay! you get…

      I Always Loved you by Robin Oliveira. I put a link in the list above that will take you to more info about the book. Here’s the synopsis:

      The young Mary Cassatt never thought moving to Paris after the Civil War to be an artist was going to be easy, but when, after a decade of work, her submission to the Paris Salon is rejected, Mary’s fierce determination wavers. Her father is begging her to return to Philadelphia to find a husband before it is too late, her sister Lydia is falling mysteriously ill, and worse, Mary is beginning to doubt herself. Then one evening a friend introduces her to Edgar Degas and her life changes forever. Years later she will learn that he had begged for the introduction, but in that moment their meeting seems a miracle. So begins the defining period of her life and the most tempestuous of relationships.

      In I Always Loved You, Robin Oliveira brilliantly re-creates the irresistible world of Belle Époque Paris, writing with grace and uncommon insight into the passion and foibles of the human heart

      Like

      February 15, 2015
      • Sounds like I will enjoy this one very much, just love Paris and definitely in love with Degas and his paintings. Thanks!

        Like

        February 15, 2015
      • I hope so! I’m glad someone picked this category b/c it’s a book that sounds good to me (not all of them do) and that way I can decide if I want to read it when I see the review 🙂

        Like

        February 16, 2015
    • Just a quick rule change: Since we got more entries than expected and the comments section is getting long… there are new rules.

      When you finish your book, send your review directly to me via email to jenlane3@yahoo.com.

      I’ll compile all the books and reviews and will post a new blog post with our results and all the books reviewed. This way the reviews don’t get buried in the comments section.

      Thanks! Hope you’re enjoying your books.

      Like

      February 21, 2015
  6. Brandy H #

    Hello, I made my way over here from PBT. I love romance and love stories and am always looking for another to make it onto my re-read list. I’m going to try for something a little different and pick Forbidden Love.

    Like

    February 16, 2015
    • Hi Brandy! Okay, so there’s a good chance you’ve read the first option, but the book for this category is…

      The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough. If you have read this one already, you can either read it again, or I can give you another option. I have a back up list of 5 books for this particular category b/c the first few on the list are relatively well known (and widely read).

      So, let me know what you want to do. In case you haven’t read it, here’s the synopsis (and it’s a 100 books PBT members think you should read):

      Colleen McCullough’s sweeping saga of dreams, struggles, dark passions, and forbidden love in the Australian Outback has enthralled readers the world over. This is the chronicle of three generations of Clearys, ranchers carving lives from a beautiful, hard land while contending with the bitterness, frailty, and secrets that penetrate their family. Most of all, it is the story of only daughter Meggie and her lifelong relationship with the haunted priest Father Ralph de Bricassart—an intense joining of two hearts and souls that dangerously oversteps sacred boundaries of ethics and dogma.

      A poignant love story, a powerful epic of struggle and sacrifice, a celebration of individuality and spirit, Colleen McCullough’s acclaimed masterwork remains a monumental literary achievement—a landmark novel to be cherished and read again and again.

      Like

      February 16, 2015
      • Brandy H #

        I’ve never read Thorn Birds…….love how this knocks off one of the 100 book PBT members recommend. Thanks! BTW, I’m RomansGirl from PBT. Off to find my book!

        Liked by 1 person

        February 16, 2015
      • awesome and thanks for letting me know who are on PBT. I would have checked your shelf to see if you had read it, but wasn’t sure who you were. Yay, I’m so glad you haven’t read it. You and I are probably the only people over there who have yet to read this book. I can’t wait to read your review. I plan to get to it later this year.

        Like

        February 16, 2015
      • Brandy H #

        My library took it’s darn sweet time getting me a copy of The Thorn Birds. I’m reading like a mad woman to get done on time. I’m currently on page 149 and I just absolutely love this story so far. Thanks so much for initiating this game 🙂

        Like

        March 4, 2015
      • If you don’t quite finish it in time, you can always write the review based on what you’ve read so far and I’ll count it (especially since you’ve already read 149 pages. Glad you’re enjoying it! I plan to read it later this year

        Like

        March 4, 2015
    • Just a quick rule change: Since we got more entries than expected and the comments section is getting long… there are new rules.

      When you finish your book, send your review directly to me via email to jenlane3@yahoo.com.

      I’ll compile all the books and reviews and will post a new blog post with our results and all the books reviewed. This way the reviews don’t get buried in the comments section.

      Thanks! Hope you’re enjoying your books.

      Like

      February 21, 2015
  7. Hi, it’s annapi from PBT. I’ll take #23, I hate romance.

    Like

    February 16, 2015
    • Hi annapi! You got….

      Perfume: The Story of a Murderer by Patrick Suskind. People seem to either love or hate this book. I’ll be curious to see which camp you fall into. If you’re already read it, let me know and I’ll switch it out for another option. I put a link to the book on Amazon above in the list.

      An acclaimed bestseller and international sensation, Patrick Suskind’s classic novel provokes a terrifying examination of what happens when one man’s indulgence in his greatest passion—his sense of smell—leads to murder.

      In the slums of eighteenth-century France, the infant Jean-Baptiste Grenouille is born with one sublime gift—an absolute sense of smell. As a boy, he lives to decipher the odors of Paris, and apprentices himself to a prominent perfumer who teaches him the ancient art of mixing precious oils and herbs. But Grenouille’s genius is such that he is not satisfied to stop there, and he becomes obsessed with capturing the smells of objects such as brass doorknobs and fresh-cut wood. Then one day he catches a hint of a scent that will drive him on an ever-more-terrifying quest to create the “ultimate perfume”—the scent of a beautiful young virgin. Told with dazzling narrative brilliance, Perfume is a hauntingly powerful tale of murder and sensual depravity.

      Like

      February 16, 2015
      • Well, this has never been on my radar, but let’s see what it’s like!

        Like

        February 16, 2015
      • Yes, I can’t say it’s a book I’ve ever wanted to read but it does get good reviews from several people over at PBT and it’s certainly not romance. Hopefully, you are pleasantly surprised but judging from your shelf it may not be a good fit for you.

        Like

        February 16, 2015
    • Just a quick rule change: Since we got more entries than expected and the comments section is getting long… there are new rules.

      When you finish your book, send your review directly to me via email to jenlane3@yahoo.com.

      I’ll compile all the books and reviews and will post a new blog post with our results and all the books reviewed. This way the reviews don’t get buried in the comments section.

      Thanks! Hope you’re enjoying your books.

      Like

      February 21, 2015
  8. Lynsey #

    Hi Jen!

    Am I too late to sign up? I need another book to read like I need more winter. 🙂 Put me down for Historical Love. Lynn (aka Lynsey from 1001)

    Like

    February 19, 2015
    • Nope. Not too late. On my way to work now but will reveal the book in about an hour.

      Like

      February 19, 2015
    • You get… The Secret Life of Violet Grant by Beatriz Williams. I posted the link to the book on Amazon so you can read more about it. Here’s the synopsis:

      Manhattan, 1964. Vivian Schuyler, newly graduated from Bryn Mawr College, has recently defied the privilege of her storied old Fifth Avenue family to do the unthinkable for a budding Kennedy-era socialite: break into the Madison Avenue world of razor-stylish Metropolitan magazine. But when she receives a bulky overseas parcel in the mail, the unexpected contents draw her inexorably back into her family’s past, and the hushed-over crime passionnel of an aunt she never knew, whose existence has been wiped from the record of history.

      Berlin, 1914. Violet Schuyler Grant endures her marriage to the philandering and decades-older scientist Dr. Walter Grant for one reason: for all his faults, he provides the necessary support to her liminal position as a young American female physicist in prewar Germany. The arrival of Dr. Grant’s magnetic former student at the beginning of Europe’s fateful summer interrupts this delicate détente. Lionel Richardson, a captain in the British Army, challenges Violet to escape her husband’s perverse hold, and as the world edges into war and Lionel’s shocking true motives become evident, Violet is tempted to take the ultimate step to set herself free and seek a life of her own conviction with a man whose cause is as audacious as her own.

      As the iridescent and fractured Vivian digs deeper into her aunt’s past and the mystery of her ultimate fate, Violet’s story of determination and desire unfolds, shedding light on the darkness of her years abroad . . . and teaching Vivian to reach forward with grace for the ambitious future––and the love––she wants most.

      Like

      February 19, 2015
    • Just a quick rule change: Since we got more entries than expected and the comments section is getting long… there are new rules.

      When you finish your book, send your review directly to me via email to jenlane3@yahoo.com.

      I’ll compile all the books and reviews and will post a new blog post with our results and all the books reviewed. This way the reviews don’t get buried in the comments section.

      Thanks! Hope you’re enjoying your books.

      Like

      February 21, 2015
  9. Lynsey #

    Sounds great Jen! And I am doubly surprised that I have not heard of it. I am in the historical fiction group on Shelfari so I was expecting a title that I was familiar with so this is a pleasant surprise.

    Like

    February 19, 2015
    • Excellent. My guess is that books categorized as historical romance are actually quite different that what you’d typically see in the historical fiction group. That said, this book comes recommended by someone who doesn’t like romance novels so it will probably get a fairly good for for historical fiction category. I will be looking forward to your thoughts about the book!

      Like

      February 19, 2015
  10. Amie #

    Hi Jen! It’s Amie from 1001. My 17 yo daughter and I would like to sign up. I would like adventurous love. And my daughter would like unrequited love. This sounds like so much fun! 😀

    Like

    February 19, 2015
    • I sent you a private message on shelfari about it. Check it out and let me know before I reveal.

      Like

      February 19, 2015
    • Hi Amie!
      You get….
      The Princess Bride by Goldman. Probably don’t need a synopsis, but it is below just in case. Let me know if you’ve read it already and if so, I’ll give you another. I send you a private message about your daughter’s book. Let me know what you think. If you like, you can trade places with her and she can read this one and I’ll give you her category. I’ll post the links to them above a little later today.

      The Princess Bride is a true fantasy classic. William Goldman describes it as a “good parts version” of “S. Morgenstern’s Classic Tale of True Love and High Adventure.” Morgenstern’s original was filled with details of Florinese history, court etiquette, and Mrs. Morgenstern’s mostly complimentary views of the text. Much admired by academics, the “Classic Tale” nonetheless obscured what Mr. Goldman feels is a story that has everything: “Fencing. Fighting. Torture. Poison. True love. Hate. Revenge. Giants. Hunters. Bad men. Good men. Beautifulest ladies. Snakes. Spiders. Beasts of all natures and descriptions. Pain. Death. Brave men. Coward men. Strongest men. Chases. Escapes. Lies. Truths. Passion. Miracles.”
      Goldman frames the fairy tale with an “autobiographical” story: his father, who came from Florin, abridged the book as he read it to his son. Now, Goldman is publishing an abridged version, interspersed with comments on the parts he cut out.

      Is The Princess Bride a critique of classics like Ivanhoe and The Three Musketeers, that smother a ripping yarn under elaborate prose? A wry look at the differences between fairy tales and real life? Simply a funny, frenetic adventure? No matter how you read it, you’ll put it on your “keeper” shelf. –Nona Vero–This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

      Like

      February 19, 2015
      • Amie #

        Cool! I have seen the movie many times and love it, but have never read the book. It has been on my tbr for a long time. 🙂 I haven’t received your message about my daughter’s book….maybe lost in the shelfari wasteland….

        Like

        February 19, 2015
      • ok. So your daughter gets…

        Eleanor and Park by Rowell. Here’s the synopsis. If she’s read it let me know and i’ll give her a different book.

        An Amazon Best Book of the Month, March 2013: While Eleanor & Park is technically classified as YA lit and has a cutesy cover, don’t let the stigma of “books for teens” fool or deter you. It is written about teens, sure, but the themes are so universal that anyone who survived high school will relate to the lives of the two protagonists. Eleanor is the new girl in town and her wild red hair and patchwork outfits are not helping her blend in. She ends up sitting next to Park on the bus, whose tendencies towards comic books don’t jibe with the rest of his family’s love of sports. They sit in awkward silence every day until Park notices that Eleanor is reading his comics over his shoulder; he begins to slide them closer to her side of the seat and thus begins their love story. Their relationship grows gradually–making each other mixed tapes (it is 1986 after all) and discussing X-Men characters–until they both find themselves looking forward to the bus ride more than any other part of the day. Things aren’t easy: Eleanor is bullied at school and then goes home to a threatening family situation; Park’s parents do not approve of Eleanor’s awkward ways. Ultimately, though, this is a book about two people who just really, really like each other and who believe that they can overcome any obstacle standing in the way of their happiness. It’s a gem of a book. –Caley Anderson

        Like

        February 19, 2015
      • Amie #

        My daughter read and loved Eleanor and Park. I’m sorry for being a pain. :/

        Like

        February 20, 2015
      • Okay. so you daughter gets…

        I’ll Give you the Sun by Nelson. I put the link in the list above. The synopsis is:

        The New York Times Bestselling story of first love, family, loss, and betrayal for fans of John Green, David Levithan, and Rainbow Rowell

        Jude and her twin brother, Noah, are incredibly close. At thirteen, isolated Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude cliff-dives and wears red-red lipstick and does the talking for both of them. But three years later, Jude and Noah are barely speaking. Something has happened to wreck the twins in different and dramatic ways . . . until Jude meets a cocky, broken, beautiful boy, as well as someone else—an even more unpredictable new force in her life. The early years are Noah’s story to tell. The later years are Jude’s. What the twins don’t realize is that they each have only half the story, and if they could just find their way back to one another, they’d have a chance to remake their world.

        This radiant novel from the acclaimed, award-winning author of The Sky Is Everywhere will leave you breathless and teary and laughing—often all at once.

        “A wild, beautiful, and profoundly moving novel. Jandy Nelson’s writing is so electric, so alive, her pages practically glow in the dark.” —Ransom Riggs, New York Times bestselling author of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children and Hollow City

        “Jandy Nelson is a rare, explosive talent, and one of the best writers working today. Her prose is vivid, breathtaking, and drenched in passion, and her stories remind me why words can change the world.” —Tahereh Mafi, New York Times bestselling author of the Shatter Me series.

        “I love this book. Jandy Nelson is my new writing hero. Read this book. She’ll be your favorite author as well.” —Holly Goldberg Sloan, New York Times bestselling author of Counting by 7s

        “Jandy Nelson’s writing is poetic and mesmerizing. More importantly, Nelson weaves a novel that seeps into your bones like fire on a cold day . . . I’ll Give You the Sun is a novel that promises a story like nothing else and then delivers it.” —Garret Freymann-Weyr, author of Printz Honor book, My Heartbeat

        “This is a stunning, artfully woven story. My heart burst open at the blazing, unforgettable end. Magnificent.” —Nova Ren Suma, author of Imaginary Girls and 17 & Gone

        “An extraordinary book! I’ve never read anything like it. Lyrical-unique-passionate-magical-tragic-hopeful—Nelson’s characters will fly off the page and into your heart.” —Nancy Garden, author of Annie on my Mind

        Like

        February 20, 2015
    • Just a quick rule change: Since we got more entries than expected and the comments section is getting long… there are new rules.

      When you finish your book, send your review directly to me via email to jenlane3@yahoo.com.

      I’ll compile all the books and reviews and will post a new blog post with our results and all the books reviewed. This way the reviews don’t get buried in the comments section.

      Thanks! Hope you’re enjoying your books.

      Like

      February 21, 2015
    • Just a reminder. Don’t forget to get your reviews in by March 15th to qualify for the prize. send to me via email: jenlane3@yahoo.com

      Like

      March 10, 2015
  11. mootastic1 #

    I am very curious about twisted love. By the by, its Sara W from pbt and 1001. 🙂

    Like

    February 19, 2015
    • Just a reminder. Don’t forget to get your reviews in by March 15th to qualify for the prize. send to me via email: jenlane3@yahoo.com

      Like

      March 10, 2015
  12. mootastic1 #

    This is Sara from pbt and 1001. I am intrigued by Twisted Love.

    Like

    February 19, 2015
    • Hi Sara! I’m on my way home now but will reveal your book when I get home. If it’s a book you’ve read, I’ll replace it with a back up option

      Like

      February 19, 2015
    • Okay. I’m home now. Sara – you get…

      The Woman Upstairs by Claire Messud. Let me know if you’ve read it already and i’ll replace it. It gets mixed reviews so i’ll be curious if you like it. I’ll use your review to help me decide if I should read it :). The link to the book on amazon is in the list. You can check it out there for more. The synopsis is below:

      From the New York Times best-selling author of The Emperor’s Children, a masterly new novel: the riveting confession of a woman awakened, transformed and betrayed by a desire for a world beyond her own.

      Nora Eldridge, an elementary school teacher in Cambridge, Massachusetts, long ago compromised her dream to be a successful artist, mother and lover. She has instead become the “woman upstairs,” a reliable friend and neighbor always on the fringe of others’ achievements. Then into her life arrives the glamorous and cosmopolitan Shahids—her new student Reza Shahid, a child who enchants as if from a fairy tale, and his parents: Skandar, a dashing Lebanese professor who has come to Boston for a fellowship at Harvard, and Sirena, an effortlessly alluring Italian artist.

      When Reza is attacked by schoolyard bullies, Nora is drawn deep into the complex world of the Shahid family; she finds herself falling in love with them, separately and together. Nora’s happiness explodes her boundaries, and she discovers in herself an unprecedented ferocity—one that puts her beliefs and her sense of self at stake.

      Told with urgency, intimacy and piercing emotion, this brilliant novel of passion and artistic fulfillment explores the intensity, thrill—and the devastating cost—of embracing an authentic life.

      Like

      February 19, 2015
    • Just a quick rule change: Since we got more entries than expected and the comments section is getting long… there are new rules.

      When you finish your book, send your review directly to me via email to jenlane3@yahoo.com.

      I’ll compile all the books and reviews and will post a new blog post with our results and all the books reviewed. This way the reviews don’t get buried in the comments section.

      Thanks! Hope you’re enjoying your books.

      Like

      February 21, 2015
  13. Not sure if I’m too late, but if not I’ll take #22 – realistic love.

    Like

    February 19, 2015
    • Not too late! Will reveal the book when I get home.

      Like

      February 19, 2015
    • Anita – you get…

      This is Between Us by Kevin Sampsell. You can click on the link in the list above to take you to Amazon where you can read more about the book. Below is the synopsis. Let me know if you’ve read it already and I will switch it out for a different option. Hope you like it!

      Chronicling five years of a troubled romance, This Is Between Us offers an intimate view of one couple’s struggle—from the illicit beginnings of sexual obsession to the fragile architecture of a pieced-together family. Full of sweet moments, emotional time bombs, unexpected humor, and blunt sexuality, the daily life of this man and woman, both recently divorced, with children and baggage in tow, emerges in all of its complexity. In this utterly engrossing debut novel, Kevin Sampsell delivers a confessional tale of love between two resilient people who have staked their hearts on each other.

      “This Is Between Us is an utterly unsentimental and deeply nuanced portrait of a relationship. With great delicacy and compassion, Kevin Sampsell unflinchingly examines love from every angle– sacred and profane, transcendent and mundane. This is Between Us asserts that messy, terrifying, imperfect love is worth it, after all. After reading it, you’ll be a believer.
      —Jillian Lauren, author of NY Times bestselling memoir Some Girls and Pretty

      Like

      February 19, 2015
      • Wow, I have never heard of it, but it sounds intriguing! Thanks Jen! Now I just have to figure out how I’m going to get all the reading done that I need to do by mid March lol! It will happen ;).

        Like

        February 20, 2015
      • It’s a nice humane 242 pages so I think I’ll be in good shape!

        Like

        February 20, 2015
      • Oh good! It sounds kind of interesting. I look forward to your review

        Like

        February 20, 2015
    • Just a quick rule change: Since we got more entries than expected and the comments section is getting long… there are new rules.

      When you finish your book, send your review directly to me via email to jenlane3@yahoo.com.

      I’ll compile all the books and reviews and will post a new blog post with our results and all the books reviewed. This way the reviews don’t get buried in the comments section.

      Thanks! Hope you’re enjoying your books.

      Like

      February 21, 2015
  14. p.s. I love this idea!

    Like

    February 19, 2015
    • Thanks. I love it too. All the credit to Book Worm my co-blogger who saw the display in her local library. It has been fun to come up with the challenge!

      Like

      February 19, 2015
  15. Kristel #

    I will take # 21 love in a title,

    Like

    February 19, 2015
    • Yay! Okay, you get kind of a long one because you had read the first two on the list. It should be doable in a month’s time. It’s supposed to be really good and his other book “Black Box” is one of my all time favorites. A great author. I have to admit i’m kind of jealous of this one. I may have to read it with you :). I put a link in the list above for you to check it out.

      A Tale of Love and Darkness by Amos Oz

      A family saga and a magical self-portrait of a writer who witnessed the birth of a nation and lived through its turbulent history. A Tale of Love and Darkness is the story of a boy who grows up in war-torn Jerusalem, in a small apartment crowded with books in twelve languages and relatives speaking nearly as many. The story of an adolescent whose life has been changed forever by his mother’s suicide. The story of a man who leaves the constraints of his family and community to join a kibbutz, change his name, marry, have children. The story of a writer who becomes an active participant in the political life of his nation. “One of the most enchanting and deeply satisfying books that I have read in many years.” — New Republic

      Like

      February 19, 2015
      • Kristel #

        I have wanted to read an Oz book. Not sure if I can get it done but a good draw.

        Like

        February 20, 2015
    • Just a quick rule change: Since we got more entries than expected and the comments section is getting long… there are new rules.

      When you finish your book, send your review directly to me via email to jenlane3@yahoo.com.

      I’ll compile all the books and reviews and will post a new blog post with our results and all the books reviewed. This way the reviews don’t get buried in the comments section.

      Thanks! Hope you’re enjoying your books.

      Like

      February 21, 2015
    • Just a reminder. Don’t forget to get your reviews in by March 15th to qualify for the prize. send to me via email: jenlane3@yahoo.com

      Even if you haven’t finished your book, you can submit a partial review for what you’ve read so far 🙂

      Like

      March 10, 2015
  16. Finished my book and got my review in! Thanks for this fun game, Jen, I enjoyed it! We should do something similar in PBT. Would be cool to do this again next year.

    Like

    March 4, 2015
  17. Dani #

    I’d like to join. I’ll take dinner date. Hopefully I can get it in before the deadline. Dani (Danielle C from 1001)

    Like

    March 5, 2015
    • YAy! Let me get back to you in 30mins with the book. Putting daughter to bed

      Like

      March 5, 2015
    • Okay, you get…

      The school of Essential Ingredients by Bauermeister. The link to the book is in the list above, you can click on it to see more. The synopsis is:

      Reminiscent of Chocolat and Like Water for Chocolate, a gorgeously written novel about life, love, and the magic of food.

      The School of Essential Ingredients follows the lives of eight students who gather in Lillian’s Restaurant every Monday night for cooking class. It soon becomes clear, however, that each one seeks a recipe for something beyond the kitchen. Students include Claire, a young mother struggling with the demands of her family; Antonia, an Italian kitchen designer learning to adapt to life in America; and Tom, a widower mourning the loss of his wife to breast cancer. Chef Lillian, a woman whose connection with food is both soulful and exacting, helps them to create dishes whose flavor and techniques expand beyond the restaurant and into the secret corners of her students’ lives. One by one the students are transformed by the aromas, flavors, and textures of Lillian’s food, including a white-on-white cake that prompts wistful reflections on the sweet fragility of love and a peppery heirloom tomato sauce that seems to spark one romance but end another. Brought together by the power of food and companionship, the lives of the characters mingle and intertwine, united by the revealing nature of what can be created in the kitchen.

      Like

      March 5, 2015
      • Dani #

        Finished. I emailed my review to the address you posted before. I LOVED IT!

        Like

        March 8, 2015
      • I’m so glad! that was really fast. I got your review and replied to you by email.

        Like

        March 8, 2015
  18. It might be too late for me already, but nonetheless: “Paranormal love.”

    Like

    March 12, 2015
    • If you get it done in time, you deserve the prize! Okay, so you get….

      the Host by Stephanie Meyer. Have you read that one yet? If so I can give you a backup. If not, I”ll post the link and synopsis for you

      Like

      March 12, 2015
    • okay, never mind. I see (from your shelfari shelf) that you read it already. How about…

      Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion? It’s short so you may be able to finish it in time. Let me know if you’ve read this one.

      ‘R’ is a zombie. He has no name, no memories and no pulse, but he has dreams. He is a little different from his fellow Dead.

      Amongst the ruins of an abandoned city, R meets a girl. Her name is Julie and she is the opposite of everything he knows – warm and bright and very much alive, she is a blast of colour in a dreary grey landscape. For reasons he can’t understand, R chooses to save Julie instead of eating her, and a tense yet strangely tender relationship begins.

      This has never happened before. It breaks the rules and defies logic, but R is no longer content with life in the grave. He wants to breathe again, he wants to live, and Julie wants to help him. But their grim, rotting world won’t be changed without a fight…

      Like

      March 12, 2015
      • Super! They have it in MP3 in my library 🙂 I might be able to ‘read it/review it’ in time 🙂

        Thanks!

        P.S. About The Host, I wouldn’t mind re-reading it if I didn’t just do it this year 🙂

        Like

        March 12, 2015
      • All right, my review should be in your email 🙂 I hope it is ok. I’m really struggling with writing without spoilers 🙂

        Like

        March 16, 2015
  19. Kristel #

    I am still reading my date and hope to post tomorrow.

    Like

    March 14, 2015
    • Me too 🙂 I hope “by 15th” actually means we still can post on the 15th 🙂 If not, I’m all right either way 🙂 It was a nice ‘change of scenery’ for me 🙂

      Like

      March 15, 2015
      • Yes, you can post anytime today (actually, you should email it to me directly @jenlane3@yahoo.com). You have until midnight on the 15 or since I will likely be asleep at midnight, I need to receive it by the time I wake up on the 16 🙂

        Like

        March 15, 2015

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