What’s in my Bookish {Beauty} Bag? ~ Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen

Guys. OMG.  This book.  I could just leave it at this but I will give you a little more 🙂  The Wife Between Us by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen is the book you have to read.  It is everything you want in a book.  Suspense, thrills, fabulousness, twists- OH THE  TWISTS- it has it all.  No wonder it was optioned by the folks who brought Girl on the Train to the big screen!  I am over the moon that Greer and Sarah opened their bags and shared their must-have beauty products!

Wife Between Us

via Amazon ~

“A jaw-dropping psychological thriller.” ―Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Fiendishly clever…in the vein of Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train. This one will keep you guessing.” –Anita Shreve, New York Times bestselling author of The Stars are Fire

When you read this book, you will make many assumptions.
You will assume you are reading about a jealous ex-wife.
You will assume she is obsessed with her replacement – a beautiful, younger woman who is about to marry the man they both love.
You will assume you know the anatomy of this tangled love triangle.
Assume nothing.

Twisted and deliciously chilling, Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen’s The Wife Between Us exposes the secret complexities of an enviable marriage – and the dangerous truths we ignore in the name of love.

Read between the lies.

A 2018 Indie Next Pick

Praise for The Wife Between Us:

“A clever thriller with masterful twists.” – Karin Slaughter, New York Times bestselling author of The Kept Woman

The Wife Between Us delivers a whip smart, twisty plot in a taut, pacy narrative. It’s terrific and troubling. This is one scary love triangle where you won’t know who to trust. I loved it.” –Gilly Macmillan, New York Times bestselling author of What She Knew

“A twisty, mind-bending novel about marriage and betrayal. A gripping plot and fascinating characters; this book will keep you turning the pages and guessing until the very end. A must-read!” –Lauren Weisberger, New York Times bestselling author of The Devil Wears Prada

“This amazing story gallops along at breakneck speed, with an ending that smacks you between the eyes and takes your breath away. These authors are destined to become trail blazers in the field of psychological suspense books that explode in your hands!” ―Nancy Simpson-Brice, Book Vault

“Like a house of mirrors, The Wife Between Us kept me guessing around every corner, delving into the complexities of marriage, friendship, and obsession.” ―Javier Ramirez, The Book Table

Greer’s Bag ~

Greer Bag2

What is your bag of choice?

I have more bags than I can count and each one serves a different purpose. My current favorite is a Linde Gallery St. Barth Bag – it’s large enough to hold my laptop, but it’s also super lightweight.  I especially love it because it’s not the obvious choice. In fact, I’ve never seen anyone else with this brand.

What do you always carry in your bag/purse/carry-on for beauty products?  

I always carry three or four moisturizing lipsticks or glosses. My favorite right now is BeautyCounter Lip Sheer in Petal. I read about the brand on Goop and I really like it. It goes on smoothly and smells like summer.

What are you currently reading (can be books/magazines)

I am currently reading Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward.

Any other fun item/must-have that you always have with you 🙂

I always carry my phone because I’m obsessed with podcasts. Some of my favorites are Happier with Gretchen Rubin, Happier in Hollywood, By The Book, It’s Been a Minute and Fresh Air.

Sarah’s Bag ~

Sarah Bag

What is your bag of choice?

I alternate between a few, but I just bought a cute Free People hobo style bag that I can sling across my body or wear over my shoulder. I like the neutral color and the fact that it has a zillion pockets to store everything from my ever-present pen and notebook, to hair bands and earbuds for the gym!

What are your top favorite beauty picks?  

When Greer and I did our author photo shoot, the makeup artist introduced me to Make Up For Ever and I’ve used their water-based foundation ever since. It’s so sheer and light, and it’s nice knowing an expert chose my shade (Y305).

What do you always carry in your bag/purse/carry-on for beauty products?  

Trish McEvoy lip gloss in Berry, Nars Radiant Concealer in Custard, and the same mascara I’ve used since college – Maybelline Great Lash in the signature pink and green tube!

What are you currently reading (can be books/magazines)

Psychology Today magazine for inspiration for the new book Greer and I are writing!

And any other fun item/must-have that you always have with you 🙂

A pen and notebook, always. But if I’m caught without, I’ve been known to scribble down book ideas in eyeliner on my hand!

 

Follow Greer and Sarah:

Facebook ~ Greer , Sarah

Twitter ~ Greer , Sarah

Instagram ~ Greer, Sarah

 

*Thanks to St. Martins for the review copy and interview.

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Open Book ~ Allison Winn Scotch

I have been a huge fan of Allison Winn Scotch‘s forever.  She is one of those writers who never disappoints and has us waiting for her next book at the last page of her latest release.  Not only is she a wonderful author but she is (even though I do not know her personally, we can be Insta friends 😉 ) a fierce and fabulous woman.  Always posting possibility and kindness, you can tell she takes pride in her work and her job as a Mom, something I respect immensely.  I am thrilled to be able to have her on the blog today, the RELEASE day of her latest, Between Me and You.  This is the perfect choice for the winter doldrums or if like Scotch, the Cali sunshine.  Read below to learn a little more about Allison and her dream bookclub.  I am first on the guest list for that, her choices are the best of the best 🙂

BMAY final

via Amazon ~

From New York Times bestselling author Allison Winn Scotch comes an honest, touching, and funny exploration of falling in and out of love, told from two perspectives—one rewinding history, one moving it forward—and each with bias and regret.

When their paths first cross, Ben Livingston is a fledgling screenwriter on the brink of success; Tatum Connelly is a struggling actress tending bar in a New York City dive. They fall in love, they marry, they become parents, and they think only of the future. But as the years go by, Tatum’s stardom rises while Ben’s fades. In a marriage that bears the fallout of ambition and fame, Ben and Tatum are at a crossroads. Now all they can do is think back…

A life of passion, joy, tragedy, and loss—once shared—becomes one as shifting and unpredictable as a memory. As the pieces of their past come together, as they explore the ways love can bend and break, Ben and Tatum come to see how it all went wrong—and wonder what they can do now to make it all right.

 

AWS credit Kat Tuohy

1. What three celebrities/authors/figures- living or dead, would you want to have a bookclub with?

Oh gosh….there are so many to choose from!!! Eek. Ok, Nora Ephron (because she was the greatest), Reese Witherspoon (excellent taste in books, so she’d choose good ones), and…Hillary Clinton? (Because I bet she would bring a lot of snark to the table, especially after some wine.)

 

2. Current binge series?

Ok, this makes me sound totally non-edgy and is not my normal binge watch, but I am burning through The Goldbergs on HULU right now! I am into watching something silly and fun in bed at night these days, and after going through all my usual sitcoms, I ran out of options. I gave this a try, and honestly, every single episode cracks me up. I don’t watch a ton of network stuff anymore, so this is an unexpected delight.

 

3. Last favorite book?

Like everyone else, it has to be Little Fires Everywhere which I just finished this week.

 

4. What 3 things to you pack in your bag for your dream vacation?  Where is it?

A passport, my Converse (for walking), my kindle (for the long flight). Paris or Florence, both tied for my favorite cities in the world. Actually, I’m also really looking forward to an African safari one of these days, but those three items still work.

 

5. Sunday NYT or US Weekly?

…..uh….US Weekly?? (Shhhh.)

 

6. Last person you sent a text message to?

My husband.

 

7. Book you read that you wished you wrote?

I found Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine just so, so, so delightful. It was pitch-perfect in tone, plot and character development, and that’s something I always aspire to.

 

8. Do you have a teacher who encouraged you to become a writer?

Yes, my high school English teacher, Mr. Doelger. He always told me that I could do something more with it, but I never really believed it myself until at least a decade later.

 

9. Do you listen to music while you write? If so, who?

No, I listen to music before I write. While I’m writing, I need to be in my own head and hear my characters’ voices. But during the writing process, I take a lot of long walks and runs, and always listen to music exclusively to lose myself to my characters while doing so. I tend to make playlists that will spark emotional reactions for me and the characters. This time around, there was a lot of alternative and indie melancholy music playing. That said, the book takes its title from a Brandon Flowers song of the same name, and he was on my playlist non-stop.

 

10. Describe your writing space?

I have a home office that is lovely and light-filled and stacked with books. I can close the door and generally, my kids (and husband) know not to bother for me.

 

11. Coffee or tea?

Both! I have to have coffee in the morning, but I always run cold, so I drink a lot of herbal tea at night.

 

12. Do you have a favorite book that you gift?

No, not particularly. Books are so subjective that if I’m giving one, I try to match the book to the reader.

 

13. If you could have one song as the theme song of your life what would it be and why?

The Long Way Around by the Dixie Chicks. A) I just LOVE the song. But B) I love that it is about taking some time to figure yourself out and being ok with that, regardless of how other people perceive you.

 

14. What/Who inspires you?

So many people. Other authors who put out brilliant work. My kids who motivate me to set a good example. Every day people in the news…I feel like these days, there are so many incredible stories of regular folks who are speaking up or doing something extraordinary. I take a lot of inspiration from that.

 

15. Bravo reality TV- yes or no?

Nope. Never watched one of them!

 

16. Favorite Instagram account?

I have a few but none of them are celebrity accounts! One of my friends is a back-up singer for The Killers (my favorite band – see above!), and she’s on the road with them right now, so I love seeing her behind the scenes scoop. And I also love, Ashley Spivey’s account – she’s great about posting everything from recipes to workouts to great reads.

 

17. If you could name just one lipstick after a book, what would you call it and what shade would it be? 

Am I allowed to choose one of my books? If so, I’d call it Time of My Life, and it would be a perfect rich pink that you’d put on for the party of the year. (I am into pinks right now!)

18. Current #TBR pile?

So many, too many! Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate is up next, but my nightstand pile is a mile high.

 

19. Best advice you’ve ever received?

Be nice. There is almost never a downside.

 

Follow Allison!

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Open Book ~ Liv Constantine

Happy New Year BB&B readers!  I hope the holidays were fabulous and you received lots of books and beauty baubles.  I am beyond thrilled to kick 2018 with one of the hottest books and author duos- Liv Constantine authors of The Last Mrs’ Parrish.  Not only was their book getting high praise before it’s book birthday but it was chosen by Reese Witherspoon as her December Book Club pick!  Yes.  That Reese Witherspoon. Liv is made up of two sisters- Val and Lynne.  I can tell you I started this book the 1st of the year and it is completely unputdownable.  I am so happy to be able to take a glimpse into a few of their favorite things with our fist “Open Book” of the year!

LastMrsParrish hc final cover

via Amazon ~

THE DECEMBER PICK FOR REESE WITHERSPOON’S HELLO SUNSHINE BOOK CLUB

“Filled with envy, deception, and power, it’s a great reading escape. And there is a thrilling twist at the end!!” —Reese Witherspoon

“Will keep you up. In a ‘can’t put it down’ way. It’s ‘The Talented Mr. Ripley’ with XX chromosomes.”—The Skimm

“Deliciously duplicitous. . . . equally as twisty, spellbinding, and addictive as Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl or Paula Hawkins’s The Girl on the Train.”—Library Journal (starred review)

Some women get everything. Some women get everything they deserve.

Amber Patterson is fed up. She’s tired of being a nobody: a plain, invisible woman who blends into the background. She deserves more—a life of money and power like the one blond-haired, blue-eyed goddess Daphne Parrish takes for granted.

To everyone in the exclusive town of Bishops Harbor, Connecticut, Daphne—a socialite and philanthropist—and her real-estate mogul husband, Jackson, are a couple straight out of a fairy tale.

Amber’s envy could eat her alive . . . if she didn’t have a plan. Amber uses Daphne’s compassion and caring to insinuate herself into the family’s life—the first step in a meticulous scheme to undermine her. Before long, Amber is Daphne’s closest confidante, traveling to Europe with the Parrishes and their lovely young daughters, and growing closer to Jackson. But a skeleton from her past may undermine everything that Amber has worked towards, and if it is discovered, her well-laid plan may fall to pieces.

With shocking turns and dark secrets that will keep you guessing until the very end, The Last Mrs. Parrish is a fresh, juicy, and utterly addictive thriller from a diabolically imaginative talent.

Liv Constantine two together, cr Erika Livingston

What three celebrities/authors/figures- living or dead, would you want to have a book club with? 

Lynne ~ Socrates, Ellen DeGeneres, and Princess Diana. That would be a fascinating and fun discussion.

Val ~ Eleanor Roosevelt, Edna Ferber and Jane Austen.

 

Current binge series? 

Lynne ~ Scandal – late to the game but loving it

Val ~ The Crown on Netflix

 

Last favorite book? 

Lynne ~ What Alice Forgot by Lianne Moriarty

Val ~ Nutshell by Ian McEwan

 

What 3 things to you pack in your bag for your dream vacation?  Where is it? 

Lynne ~ E-reader full of books, bathing suit, and iPhone loaded with music for a three-month cruise of the Mediterranean

Val ~ Bathing suit, sunscreen, and good book. Any beach.

 

Sunday NYT or US Weekly

Lynne ~ Sunday NYT

Val ~ Sunday NYT

 

Last person you sent a text message to?  

Lynne ~ My sister

Val ~ My son in the US while I am visiting in the UK

 

Book you read that you wished you wrote? 

Lynne ~ Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier

Val ~ Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

 

Do you have a teacher who encouraged you to become a writer? 

Lynne ~ No, but I had a terrific writing teacher and mentor who helped me to hone my craft and become a better writer.

Val ~ I didn’t. But I had a few who taught me to be a better writer.

 

Do you listen to music while you write? If so, who?

Lynne ~ Yes, Mozart

Val ~ Sometimes. When I do, it’s classical – mostly the big three – Bach, Beethoven and Mozart and lots of Rachmaninoff too.

 

Describe your writing space?

Lynne ~ Over the years, I’ve learned to write wherever I am, I simply put in my earphones, and pull out my laptop. When I’m home, I work in my office which is painted a bright blue and white with bookshelves surrounding my desk.

Val ~ A desk and chair that sits in front of floor to ceiling glass and overlooks a pond and small creek. Directly in front of me is a small garden that has become a gathering place for birds. It’s idyllic.

 

Coffee or tea?  

 Lynne ~  Coffee first thing in the morning, then tea throughout the day.

Val ~ Both

 

Do you have a favorite book that you gift? 

Lynne ~The Element by Ken Robinson. It’s about finding your true passion in life. I’m so lucky to have found mine and feel so strongly that a major key to happiness is finding work that you love.

Val ~ This year I gave copies of The Paper Bag Princess to both of my young granddaughters and to two of my nieces. Otherwise, I don’t really have a favorite book to gift. I try to match the book to the person.

 

Book that you wished they would make a movie out of? 

Lynne ~ The Art of Racing in Rain

Val ~ Americana by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

 

If you could have one song as the theme song of your life what would it be and why? 

Lynne ~ Break My Stride, by Matthew Wilder because I try to live my life going after my passion, and I try not to let anything get in my way. I also have crazy dreams! And, it’s a great song to work out to.

Val ~ Climb Every Mountain by Jordan Smith

 

What/Who inspires you? 

Lynne ~ Stories about individuals who persevere against all odds to achieve their dreams.

Val ~ My husband, Colin, inspires me. He is committed, disciplined, curious and a lifelong learner.

 

Bravo reality TV- yes or no? 

Lynne ~ No – well sometimes when I’m on the elliptical at the gym

Val ~ A big NO

 

Favorite Instagram account? 

Lynne ~ Golden-Retriever-Lover

Val ~ My daughter in law’s – with photos of my granddaughter

 

If you could name just one lipstick after a book, what would you call it and what shade would it be?

Lynne ~ A Color You Can’t Refuse – inspired by The Godfather, blood red

Val ~ Smoldering Red Passion after Portrait Of A Lady, by Henry James. It would be deep purple/red.

 

Best advice you’ve ever received? 

Lynne ~ Happiness is a choice – my wise mother

Val ~ Two things: 1) Forgive yourself and don’t look back. It is not the direction you’re going in. 2) Be kind to everyone you meet, because you never know the battles people are fighting.

 

Current TBR List:

Lynne ~

Magpie Murders, Anthony Horowitz

The Blackbird Season, Kate Moretti

The Ex, Alafair Burke

Bad Feminist, Roxane Gay

The Child Finder, Rene Denfield

The Second Sister, Claire Kendal

House of Spies, Daniel Silva

The Emotional Craft of Fiction, Donald Maass

Val ~

Look Homeward Angel by Thomas Wolfe

Why We Sleep by Matthew Walker

Before We Were Yours, by Lisa Wingate

Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes

Sleep No More by P.D.James

Self Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself by Kristin Neff

Rosalind: A Biography of Shakespeare’s Immortal Heroine by Angela Thirlwell

The Odyssey, a new translation by Emily Wilson, which I am eyeing with some trepidation.

 

Follow Liv:

Website

Facebook

Instagram

Twitter

 

What’s in my Bookish {Beauty} Bag? ~ Barbara Taylor Bradford

She is one of the best selling authors around.  Her latest novel to hit her Cavendon Hall series is out now, Secrets of Cavendon.  Barbara Taylor Bradford is British writing royalty and I am thrilled to have her on the blog today.  Her taste in bags is as regal and stunning as she.  Hello Hermes!  I can promise you if love a sweeping, British saga then you will adore the Cavendon Hall series.

SECRETS OF CAVENDON hi res jacket

via Amazon ~

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Barbara Taylor Bradford, comes a striking, breathtaking saga featuring the aristocratic Inghams and the Swann family, who have loyally served them for generations.

It’s the summer of 1949, and things have run smoothly at Cavendon Hall for years, with very few quarrels, dramas, or upsets between the two families. But since the end of World War II, changes have arrived at Cavendon. A new generation is at the helm, and also at the forefront of new scandal and intrigue. With romance, betrayal, heartbreak, and possible murder threatening to tear them apart, the Inghams and Swanns will have to find a way to come together and protect each other in the face of threats they never could have predicted.

Told with Bradford’s inimitable deftness of prose and a beloved cast of characters, Secrets of Cavendon is a captivating novel that will draw readers in and grip them until the very last page.

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  • What is your bag of choice?- purse/tote/backpack and brand that you have?

 

I definitely prefer a handbag although I do carry a tote from time to time when I travel. Currently, I’m carrying an Hermès Kelly bag that’s about 15 years old and is burgundy, green, and navy. I have about 12 Kelly bags. I’ve been carrying a Kelly bag long before anyone paid attention.

 

  • What are your top favorite beauty picks?  

 

For perfumes, I love Fracas by Robert Piguet and 24, Faubourg by Hermès.

 

In terms of skincare, Deborah Mitchell Black Bee Venom Mask is great for small wrinkles. I also like Eucerin’s Hyaluron Filler.

 

I like Clinique’s Take the Day Off Cleanser. I also prefer their eye makeup and eye makeup remover.

 

For lipstick, Guerlain.

 

I used Estée Lauder pressed power.

 

I keep a scarf around the handle of my bag like the French.

  • What do you always carry in your bag/purse/carry-on for beauty products?  

 

Always dark sunglasses (Gucci) and red lipstick (Guerlain)—my armor against the world. The Guerlain lipstick has a mirror, which is great. My Taurus zodiac compact powder by Estée Lauder, which was given to me as a gift by Hollywood journalist Jeanne Wolf (not pictured as it’s with my other makeup currently).

 

A notecard holder with custom stationary and some pens—one is mini Louis Vuitton pen given to me by Kathie Lee Gifford.

 

A leather heart keychain given to me by my husband Bob Bradfrod.

 

Kleenex.

 

A business card holder.

 

Two pouches—one with credit cards and one with money.

 

Reading glasses.

 

I don’t carry any books with me. I do most of my reading at home.

 

My iPhone (not pictured as it’s being charged!)

 

  • What are you currently reading (can be books/magazines)?

I’m currently reading Jack the Ripper by Gyles Brandreth and How to Be a Victorian: A Dawn-to-Dusk Guide of Victorian Life by Ruth Goodman. This is for research. My new series takes place in Victorian London.

Back to the Workhouse-Barbara Taylor Bradford

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

BARBARA TAYLOR BRADFORD was born and raised in England where she began her writing career as a journalist. She has written thirty international bestsellers. Secrets of Cavendon is her thirty-second novel. In 2007 Queen Elizabeth awarded her the OBE (Order of the British Empire) for her literary achievements. A Woman of Substance, her first book, has sold more than 32 million copies. She lives in New York with her husband of 54 years, TV and film producer Robert Bradford. Visit barbarataylorbradford.com.  

 

Follow Barbara:

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What’s in my Bookish {Beauty} Bag? ~ 2017 Wrap edition feat. Melissa Pimentel, Karma Brown, Stacey Ballis and Alyssa Palombo

This year I had a fabulous time on the blog with so many amazing authors and the “What’s in your {Bookish} Beauty Bag? feature!  I am excited to bring you today a collection of 4 wonderful authors and their bags, all of their books a definite for your winter reading list!  Comment below with your favorite author’s bag of 2017 🙂

Melissa Pimentel

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  • What is your bag of choice?- purse/tote/backpack and brand that you have?

Enormous tote bag! I used to be obsessed with  buying cute bags but have now resigned myself to being a crazy bag lady who lugs three books, her gym kit and a snack around with her all the time. Not very glamorous but very practical!

  • What are your top favorite beauty picks?  

I absolutely love this brand called The Ordinary. It was founded by a guy who’d worked in the industry for years and noticed that beauty companies were charging huge amounts for products that were actually cheap to make, so he decided to take matters into his own hands and create an affordable beauty line using the most effective ingredients. I’ve been using a few of the products for about a year now and my skin (which has always been a tricky, fickle beast) has never been better.

  • What do you always carry in your bag/purse/carry-on for beauty products?  

About sixteen lip balms plus a bold lipstick that I never actually wear (I’ve always wanted to be a bold lipstick person, but I never quite feel like I’m pulling it off).

  • What are you currently reading (can be books/magazines)?

I’ve just finished Tony & Susan, the book that Tom Ford’s film Nocturnal Animals is based on. It’s sooooooo good! I also just bought the September of Elle Magazine in the UK – this is the first issue under the new editor so I’m curious to see what it’s like!

  • And any other fun item/must-have that you always have with you?

I’ve got into this habit of giving myself weekly facials using Korean face masks and am really loving it. It’s nice to carve out a little time every week to just sit back and take care of my skin.

Melissa Pimentel_Credit Ryan Bowman.jpg

Karma Brown

Karmapurse

  • What is your bag of choice?- purse/tote/backpack and brand that you have?

I prefer a purse (it’s nice to feel like a grown up) but it has to be big enough to fit my MacBook, which goes nearly everywhere with me. I love my Matt & Nat bag because it’s cruelty free AND holds everything I need – including Bandaids and hand sanitizer (I am a mom first), along with multiple lip balms, notepads, gum, earphones (for those loud coffee shops I write in) and everything else I find myself lugging around.

  • What are your top favorite beauty picks?

I’m quite honestly low maintenance when it comes to beauty products (in fact, some might suggest I could try harder), but I do have a small obsession with my Rosebud salve balms and Caudalie Divine Oil.

  • What do you always carry in your bag/purse/carry-on for beauty products?

Lipbalm. I have a genuine lipbalm problem.

  • What are you currently reading (can be books/magazines)

Right now I’m reading THE MOTHERS by Brit Bennett (amazing, amazing, amazing).

  • And any other fun item/must-have that you always have with you 🙂

I almost always have a granola bag in my purse. It’s for hangry emergencies, which happen often when you have a kid

Stacey Ballis

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  • What is your bag of choice?- purse/tote/backpack and brand that you have?

 I’m a Fendi baguette girl all the way.  I hate a big purse, I’ll just fill it with heavy crap.  But the baguettes can be fancy or casual, tuck perfectly under the armpit, making them an ideal party bag, since it leaves hands free for eating and drinking!  I’ve been collecting them for years, I think I have six…

  • What are your top favorite beauty picks?  

 I swear by a bunch of stuff that I got addicted to in France, thank goodness a lot of them are now available stateside through Amazon!  Botot toothpaste and mouthwash, BioTherm deodorant, Biafine emulsion for redness and small breakouts, and Nuxe Reve de Miel honey lip balm.  I don’t wear much makeup except for very special fancy occasions, but 95% of my makeup products are Trish McEvoy, I just love their stuff especially brushes, but I always use MAC mascara.

  • What do you always carry in your bag/purse/carry-on for beauty products?  

I always have lip balm or aquaphor, and I always have hand lotion.  At the moment I’m in love with Tokyo Milk Light hand creme in the Awaken Within scent, which is a lovely blend of citrus and jasmine.

  • What are you currently reading (can be books/magazines)?

I’m currently re-reading the collected works of Jane Austen, both in honor of the 200th anniversary of her death, and for a new project.  I’m also reading Give a Girl a Knife by Amy Thielen.

  • And any other fun item/must-have that you always have with you?

I always have doTerra peppermint beadlets with me.  They are tiny little balls of peppermint essential oil.  You can pop them in your mouth for instant freshening or swallow them whole to settle an upset tummy.  People either love them or hate them…they are very powerful!  Sort of like the punch of two Altoids with no sweetness.  I’m addicted to them, I feel like they are the best at making sure my breath is fresh!

Alyssa Palombo

Cover.TheMostBeautifulWomanInFlorence

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  • What is your bag of choice?- purse/tote/backpack and brand that you have?
I never go anywhere without a purse – and I certainly have far too many! I’m not picky about brand, as long as it’s a nice leather (or leather and cloth) bag. I do like Coach and The Sak a lot, and I have a bright pink Kate Spade I carry in the summer.
  • What are your top favorite beauty picks?  
I have naturally (very) curly hair, so I swear by John Frieda’s Frizz-Ease. I recently bought a Revlon Colorstay Crème eye shadow, which stays on much longer, and I really love it.
  • What do you always carry in your bag/purse/carry-on for beauty products?  
Do Chapstick and a hair tie count as beauty products? 🙂 I always have one of each in my bag. I’m not someone who wears makeup every day – just if I’m going out or have an event – so otherwise there’s nothing that I carry with me on a regular basis.
  • What are you currently reading (can be books/magazines)
I just started re-reading The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood – I wanted to re-read it before watching the new show. I haven’t read it since high school, so I’m excited to get into it with the deeper appreciation I’m sure I’ll have as an adult for the issues it presents.
  • And any other fun item/must-have that you always have with you 🙂
I always have either a book or my e-reader with me. You never know when you’ll be stuck somewhere and need a book! And I have a Moleskine notebook I carry everywhere, just in case inspiration strikes. I also always have either my big headphones with me, or at least a pair of earbuds. Other than books, music is my big addiction.

Alyssa Palombo_Credit Elizabeth Snyder Photography, LLC

Open Book ~ Brenda Janowitz

 

open book graphic - white background-13Happy December!  This is a month of bliss with the holidays and spreading cheer!  I am so excited to launch my new feature, “Open Book” on the blog TODAY.  I am always working to create new things for my readers as well as find a way to showcase authors and books in a cool and fun way.  “Open Book” is another way like “What’s in my Bookish {Beauty} Bag?” to learn about authors and the fun stuff we want to know about them.  To me they are celebrities so I am always just as excited as you to read about them and connect.  First up is one of my favorite authors and people.  She is basically the Academy for Books, sharing her book “nominations” lists every season on Popsugar.  Not only does she have amazing taste in books but she is an even more AH-mazing author.  I am so thrilled to have the one, the only ~ BRENDA JANOWITZ kick off my “Open Book” series and believe me you will be dying to have her in your bestie rolodex at the end 😉

 

1. What three celebrities/authors/figures- living or dead, would you want to have a bookclub with?

If you’re going to have a celebrity bookclub, the first person you need to invite is Oprah, of course, because she has great taste in books. I’d also love to have Sheryl Sandberg, because I was obsessed with Option B and I just love the way she looks at the world. And speaking of wonderful outlooks on the world, I’d have to have Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. I love her books,  I love her worldview, and I’m just crazy about her TED talks. 
Fawning all over each of your guests is totally allowed at this bookclub, right?!
 
2. Current binge series?
Just finished Stranger Things 2 and it was even better than the first season!
 
3. Last favorite book?
 
There are just too many to name! I recently put out my PopSugar Best Winter Reads, so that’s a start:
4. What 3 things do you pack in your bag for your dream vacation?  Where is it?
It’s usually three books! 
But I also like to have lip balm and sunscreen with me wherever I go. I’d love to fly to Hawaii again— it’s where my husband and I had our honeymoon and I can’t wait to return.
 
5. Sunday NYT or US Weekly?

Both! Does a girl have to choose?!
 
6. Last person you sent a text message to?
My mom.
 
7. Book you read that you wished you wrote?
Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng. 
8. Do you have a teacher who encouraged you to become a writer?
I’m not sure if there was just one, but I was always fortunate to have wonderful teachers throughout my education who inspired me, and encouraged me to do the things I dreamed about.
 
9. Do you listen to music while you write? If so, who?
 
I don’t. I can’t. I get so into the lyrics of the music I’m listening to that I can’t do both.
10. Describe your writing space?
I usually work in my office, on my desktop computer. Writers are always posting pictures of their desks on Instagram, and I always die of jealousy, because mine is a mess. I’d like to say it’s controlled chaos, but it’s not. It’s honestly just a mess! I’ve got notebooks with notes and book ideas, I’ve got advanced copies of books that I’m reading for various PopSugar lists, and I’ve got piles of kid stuff that needs attending to. Not ideal, but it works!
11. Coffee or tea?
Coffee.
 
12. Do you have a favorite book that you gift?
I love giving books as a gift! I tend to gift whatever books have just come out, and I try very hard to fit the right book with the right person.
 
13. Book that you wished they would make a movie out of?
The Inn at Lake Devine by Elinor Lipman. That book is an all time favorite of mine.
 
14. If you could have one song as the theme song of your life what would it be and why?
Run the World (Girls) by Beyonce 
It’s inspiring, it’s empowering, and it motivates you to tackle your day like a boss. After all, who runs the world? Girls!
 
15. What/Who inspires you?
Everyone I meet and everything I see inspires me in some way. What I write truly reflects what I see in the world, what I think of the world, so nearly everything I touch and that touches me has an effect.
 
16. Bravo reality TV- yes or no?
Is there an option for: HELL YEAH!?
 
17. Favorite Instagram account?
I love bookstagram accounts (obvs!) and yours is the best! (Also obvious!)
 
18. If you could name just one lipstick after a book, what would you call it and what shade would it be? 
Ooh! I’m such a sucker for a good lipstick shade. I’m presently obsessed with neutrals, hot pink, and glitter. So, my shade would be a nude base with a shimmer of hot pink. Throw in a touch of glittery shine, and I think we’ve got something special! I’d have to call it: Brave New World. Was there ever a better book title than that?!
19. Current #TBR pile?
Right now, I’m working on my PopSugar Spring Reads list, so it’s all about spring over here!
 
20. Best advice you’ve ever received?
“You fail only if you stop writing.” — Ray Bradbury.
I love this quote because it’s a quote about writing, but it’s also a quote about life.
Brenda Janowitz_credit Hy Goldberg
Dinner Party, The

Bliss Pick: The Universe Has Your Back by Gabrielle Bernstein

With the highly anticipated release of her upcoming book, Judgement Detox, Gabrielle Bernstein’s books are pure bliss and a game changer in your inspirational reads.  I wanted to showcase her last release, The Universe Has Your Back , because it’s a book I am constantly referencing and revisiting- much like all her books.  She speaks from truth and experience making it that much easier to relate and apply to our own lives.  She is also a friend and soul speaker to Oprah.  So if O loves her, its an automatic YES for me!  Read below for a Q&A with Gabby and make sure to grab Judgement Detox in January 2018!

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What inspired you to write The Universe Has Your Back?

 

I’m inspired to write about what I feel my readers need. We’re living in divisive times that call us to rely on faith in the midst of uncertainty. Navigating through life without a faithful path can be scary, especially when there’s so much turmoil in the world. This book is designed to help readers reclaim their power when they’re feeling powerless. Each story and lesson in the book guides readers to release the blocks to what they long for most: happiness, security and clear direction. The lessons help readers relinquish the need to control so they can relax into a sense of certainty and freedom. Readers will learn to stop chasing life and truly live.  

 

What can people expect from this book?

 

When you read this book, you can expect to wake up to your connection to faith and joy. When you understand this connection and recognize it, you’ll  be guided to your true purpose: to be love and spread love. These words can no longer be cute buzz phrases that we post on social media and print on tote bags. These words must be our mission. The happiness, safety and security we long for lies in our commitment to our happiness and joy.

 

How does fear hold us back?

 

Fear creates resistance in our energy. When we are stuck in fear, that resistance blocks us from the natural support of love that is available to us all the time. Throughout the book I refer to this loving support as the energy of the Universe. When we block the energy of the Universe we feel stuck, depressed, sick, weak and alone. When you read the book, the lessons within it will help you release that resistance and surrender your fears so that you can reconnect to the ever-present flow of love and support that is within you.

 

What does faith mean to you?

 

Making the shift from fear to faith gives us a sense of power in a world that all too often makes us feel utterly powerless. When the tragedies of the world seem overwhelming, this book helps guide us back to our power. We need faith now more than ever. When you live with faith you’re trusting in the power of your thoughts and energy to support your experiences. In a faithful state you can suspend disbelief and surrender your fear.

 

What will the reader find in this book that will guide them away from fear and into faith?

 

Each story, meditation and lesson in the book guides readers to release the blocks to the things we all long for most — happiness, security and clear direction. The lessons help readers relinquish the need to control so they can relax into a sense of certainty and freedom.

 

When readers follow this path, they’ll begin to feel a swell of energy move through them. They will find strength when they’re down, synchronicity and support when they’re lost, safety in the face of uncertainty and joy when they are otherwise in pain.

 

What are the lessons you hope readers take away from The Universe Has Your Back?

 

There are many universal lessons throughout the book, but the most important is to choose love. When you learn to lean toward thoughts and feelings of love, then you release all the resistance that blocks the flow of the Universe. The practices in the book will help readers weaken the resistance of fear and strengthen their faith in love. I give clear direction on how to heal fear-based beliefs and transcend limitation and doubt. Most importantly they’ll learn to feel supported and certain no matter what.

 

What was the catalyst for your journey from fear to faith?

 

Throughout my life I’ve experienced trauma, addiction and depression. But I was never willing to stay stuck in suffering. I knew at a very young age that there was a spiritual solution to all my problems. I’ve committed my life to seeking those solutions and strengthening my faith in love. My deepest desire is to be free of fear and dwell in joy. Because I’ve been on my own path of personal growth and spiritual recovery, I can speak to the lessons and healing from a very authentic place. I hope readers will recognize their own stories in mine.

 

How is The Universe Has Your Back different from your previous books?

 

This book is different in that it’s more philosophical. I push the spiritual envelope even more than I have in the past and I’m unapologetic about my faith. I believe we’re living in a time when we must have a spiritual path to survive. That’s why I didn’t hold back. I shared openly about how I transformed my fear and suffering through my spiritual faith so that readers can feel empowered and inspired to dive into their own practice.

 

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Biography

Gabrielle Bernstein has been named “a new thought leader” by Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday. She appears regularly as an expert on The Dr. Oz Show, and was named “a new role model” by the New York Times. Gabrielle is the New York Times best-selling author of the books May Cause Miracles and Miracles Now. Her other titles include Add More ~ing to Your Life and Spirit Junkie. In the fall of 2016 she will release her fifth book, The Universe Has Your Back. Gabrielle teamed up with Deepak Chopra to co-host the Guinness Book of World Records largest group meditation.

 

YouTube named Gabrielle one of its 16 YouTube Next Video Bloggers, Mashable named her one of the 11 Must-Follow Twitter Accounts for Inspiration and she’s featured on the Forbes list of 20 Best Branded Women. The Oprah Winfrey Network chose Gabrielle to be part of the “Super Soul 100” list, a dynamic group of 100 trailblazers whose vision and life’s work are bringing a higher level of consciousness to the world. She’s been featured in media outlets such as ELLE, OWN, Kathie Lee & Hoda, The Today Show, Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday, The Queen Latifah Show, Anderson Live, Access Hollywood, Marie Claire, Health, SELF, Women’s Health, Cosmopolitan, New York Times, Glamour, Help Desk, the cover of Experience Life Magazine and more. For more on Gabrielle’s work visit GabbyBernstein.com.

 

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*Thanks to Gabrielle’s publicist and publisher who provided the Q&A and assets.