Open Book with Rochelle B. Weinstein

I am back in 2020 with new ideas and new books!  To kick off the UPDATED and FRESH “Open Book” we have Rochelle B. Weinstein.  Her latest, out now, This is Not How is Ends is the perfect love story to being your 2020 reading!  This is a must read for your TBR pile or Goodreads challenge.  I am thrilled Rochelle is my first of the year!

Weinstein-ThisIsNotHowItEnds-CV-FT-v6

via Amazon~

From USA Today bestselling author Rochelle B. Weinstein comes a moving novel of hearts lost and found, and of one woman torn between two love stories.

When Charlotte and Philip meet, the pair form a deep and instant connection. Soon they’re settled in the Florida Keys with plans to marry. But just as they should be getting closer, Charlotte feels Philip slipping away.

Second-guessing their love is something Charlotte never imagined, but with Philip’s excessive absences, she finds herself yearning for more. When she meets Ben, she ignores the pull, but the supportive single dad is there for her in ways she never knew she desired. Soon Charlotte finds herself torn between the love she thought she wanted and the one she knows she needs.

As a hurricane passes through Islamorada, stunning revelations challenge Charlotte’s loyalties and upend her life. Forced to reexamine the choices she’s made, and has yet to make, Charlotte embarks on an emotional journey of friendship, love, and sacrifice—knowing that forgiveness is a gift, and the best-laid plans can change in a heartbeat.

This Is Not How It Ends is a tender, moving story of heartbreak and healing that asks the question: Which takes more courage—holding on or letting go?

 

HES_0986 cropped (1) (1)

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

Judy Blume

Kevin Costner

Anderson Cooper

 

Current binge series?

Mrs. Fletcher

 

Last favorite book?

The Storyteller’s Secret by Sejal Badani

 

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

Tahiti/Bora Bora

Books!

Sunscreen

My family

 

Sunday NYT or US Weekly?

Sunday NYT

 

Last movie you saw?

Art Of Racing In The Rain

 

Book you read that you wished you wrote?

The Heart’s Invisible Furies. Reading right now and WOW!

 

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

YES, my mother, Ruth Berger.

 

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

Rarely. 

 

Describe your writing space?

While I have a home office complete with a standing desk, I tend to write in my kitchen or family room surrounded by my dogs. One on each side of me.

 

Tell me your coffee/tea order?

I have never had either. 

 

Do you have a favorite book that you gift?

The Alchemist

 

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

Daisy Jones & The Six! And they are!

What a visual book. It should translate to screen beautifully.

 

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

Ain’t No Mountain High Enough

For every curve ball I’ve been thrown, for every challenge, I just keep on keeping on.  There’s no other option.

 

Must have beauty product?

CE Ferulic by Skinceuticals

But I can’t leave the house without Estee Lauder black eyeliner and Dr. Hauschka Lip Balm

 

Royals- yes or no?  If so, who is your favorite? 

No🙈

 

Favorite Instagram account?

@ElyssaFriedland

She ALWAYS makes me laugh. Not at her, of course. 

 

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

The Kiss Quotient

SIZZLING HOT PINK

 

Current #TBR pile?

Camille Di Maio -The First Emma

Samantha Bailey – Woman On The Edge

M.J. Rose – Cartier’s Hope

Mary Beth Keane – Ask Again, Yes

Kaira Rouda – The Favorite Daughter

Therese Anne Fowler – A Good Neighborhood

To name a few…..my stack is high!

 

 Best advice you’ve ever received?

Listen when others are talking. Really listen. Trust your instincts. Be patient. Give back. Always support others. Choose kind. And never give up. 

 

Follow Rochelle:

Facebook

Instagram

Twitter

 

 

Double Feature ~ Hannah Orenstein

Another summer DOUBLE feature this time with Hannah Orenstein!  Her latest Love at First Like is out now and the perfect summer rom com read!  I love a gal who loves lipstick, Bravo and Reese!  Read below for her fun, fabulous responses ❤

Love at First Like Cover

via Amazon ~

Named a Best Book of Summer by Glamour, BuzzFeed, Cosmopolitan, and many more!

From the author of Playing with Matches, the rollicking tale of a young jewelry shop owner who accidentally leads her Instagram followers to believe that she’s engaged—and then decides to keep up the ruse.

Eliza Roth and her sister Sophie co-own a jewelry shop in Brooklyn. One night, after learning of an ex’s engagement, Eliza accidentally posts a photo of herself wearing a diamond ring on that finger to her Instagram account beloved by 100,000 followers. Sales skyrocket, press rolls in, and Eliza learns that her personal life is good for business. So she has a choice: continue the ruse or clear up the misunderstanding. With mounting financial pressure, Eliza sets off to find a fake fiancé.

Fellow entrepreneur Blake seems like the perfect match on paper. And in real life he shows promise, too. He would be perfect, if only Eliza didn’t feel also drawn to someone else. But Blake doesn’t know Eliza is “engaged”; Sophie asks Eliza for an impossible sum of money; and Eliza’s lies start to spiral out of control. She can either stay engaged online or fall in love in real life.

Written with singular charm and style, Love at First Like is for anyone growing up and settling down in the digital age.

Hannah Orenstein Author Photo by Elyssa Maxx Goodman

 

What’s in my Bookish {Beauty} Bag? ~

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

Currently, I’m carrying a bright turquoise, quilted leather bag that I bought while on vacation with two of my best friends in Venice. It always reminds me of that trip and I love that it matches the cover of Love at First Like!

What are your top favorite beauty picks?  

I’m obsessed with Bite lipstick. The color is so saturated and the formula never dries out your skin. Sour Cherry is a really fun, punchy red, and Sweet Cream is my go-to for a neutral with pink undertones. 

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

Chapstick and two tubes of Bite lipstick!

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

The Roxy Letters by Mary Pauline Lowry, out in 2020. The narrator has more voice and personality than the last 30 people I’ve spoken to combined. I love Roxy. 

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

I try to travel super light (who likes to lug around a million things?). But I always have sentimental jewelry on me: the diamond pendant I bought myself to celebrate my first book, a ruby ring that belonged to my great-grandmother, a silver ring that my sister and I both wear daily, and a bracelet I made earlier this summer at Brooklyn Charm — it has a charm in the shape of Maine, which is where I spend time with my family. Clearly, my love of jewelry inspired Eliza’s profession in Love at First Like

Open Book ~

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

Reese Witherspoon, Jasmine Guillory, and Dana Schwartz!

Current binge series?

I’m finally catching up on Suits in a Meghan Markle-inspired binge.  

 Last favorite book?

I had to put down Red, White, and Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston every few pages to internally fangirl over the flirty banter between the son of the first female president and the prince of England. Such a charming, swoonworthy, uplifting story with so many memorable characters!

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

I’d head to Greece to sunbathe on the beach, explore ancient sites, and of course, eat well! I’d want a stack of books, a leopard-print bikini, and WiFi… so my cat-sitter can send me photos of my cat, Eloise. 

Sunday NYT or US Weekly?

One of my favorite weekend routines is catching up on the New York Times‘ Real Estate section on Saturdays and Styles section on Sundays.  

Last person you sent a text message to?

I sent my boyfriend two photos of an adorable baby cow I spotted on Twitter — the cow is lounging in a bathtub in one and wrapped in a fluffy towel in the other. We’ll see if I can convince him to let us get one. 

Book you read that you wished you wrote?

I’d want to time-travel back to 1973 and write Erica Jong’s Fear of Flying 

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

Yes! Thank you to Rob Flaggert at Needham High School, who encouraged me to pursue journalism.  

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

Music with lyrics trips me up, so I tend to go for ambient electronic playlists or really intense classical symphonies, depending on the scene. 

Describe your writing space?

 My kitchen table or couch, surrounded by 100 cups of coffee. I have to hide my phone to avoid distractions. 

Coffee or tea?

 Coffee! 

Do you have a favorite book that you gift?

 No, but that sounds like a lovely idea! The last book I gave as a gift was Educated by Tara Westover. 

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

 Andrea Dunlop’s She Regrets Nothing and We Came Here To Forget would be ridiculously excellent movies. 

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

I’ve always listened to KT Tunstall’s “Suddenly I See” from The Devil Wears Prada during major moments in my career as a writer and editor. It still gives me butterflies. 

What/Who inspires you?

I’ve met so many wonderful people through the book world — authors, readers, and more — and I find their energy inspiring. It’s hard to leave a book signing or author support group (they exist!) and not want to scribble down another idea. 

Bravo reality TV- yes or no?

 Let me say this as a girl who has eaten goat cheese balls in the alley behind SUR: Yes.

Favorite Instagram account?

@moomoi makes the most gorgeous art that combines fashion illustration and actual flowers. Definitely a fave!

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

Sex and the City would be fun, right? I’m picturing it as a soft pink — perfect to pair with a naked dress and Manolos. 

Current #TBR pile?

Next up: Breathe In, Cash Out by Madeleine Henry. 

Best advice you’ve ever received?

From my first boss, E. Jean Carroll: “Fortune favors the bold.” It inspires me to take risks. 

 

Follow Hannah:

Twitter

Instagram

 

Madeleine Henry ~ Double Feature

We have a debut double feature that is the quintessential Bliss, Beauty and Books theme! Bliss- Madeleine Henry, debut author, Yogini.  Beauty- she is my latest Bookish {Beauty} Bag, sharing her love for Bobbi Brown corrector- it’s the bomb.  Books- her debut novel, Breathe in, Cash Out is the latest “it” book of the summer and she also is my latest Open Book so lucky us!  Double feature of the best kind!!! ❤

Breathe In, Cash Out cover

via Amazon ~

In this sizzling debut for fans of The Devil Wears Prada, Wall Street banking analyst Allegra Cobb plans to quit the minute her year-end bonus hits her account, finally pursuing her yoga career full-time. But when she forms an intense relationship with the #InstaFamous guru who may hold the ticket to the life Allegra’s always wanted—she’s not sure if she’ll be able to keep her sanity intact (and her chakras aligned) until bonus day.

Allegra Cobb’s resume: Straight-A Princeton grad, second-year analyst at a top-tier bank, one-time American Yoga National Competition Champion. Allegra Cobb’s reality: Spends twenty-four hours a day changing the colors on bar charts, overusing the word “team,” and daydreaming about quitting the minute her year-end bonus hits her account. She has no interest in the cutthroat banking world—she’s going to launch her very own yoga practice.

But her plan isn’t quite as perfect as the beachfront yoga pictures she double-taps on Instagram. On top of the 100 emails an hour and coworkers already suspicious of her escape plan, Allegra’s hard-driving single father has always expected fiercely high achievement above all else. That his daughter works on Wall Street means everything to him. Still, she marches on, taking it day by extremely caffeinated day.

But after (1) unknowingly sleeping with the man now leading her banking cohort on one of their biggest deals to date and (2) meeting the #blessed yoga guru who might just be her ticket to the life she’s always wanted, it really hits her: her happy-ever-after will be harder to manifest than she thought.

Fast-paced, laugh-out-loud funny, and totally irresistible, this is the story of a fearless young woman determined to center herself in the life she truly wants.

Madeleine Henry Author Photo by Lucy Brown Armstrong

 

What’s in My Bookish {Beauty} Bag?

 

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

I LOVE my Coach crossbody purse. 

What are your top favorite beauty picks?  

  • Bisque corrector by Bobbi Brown (to hide undereye circles)
  • Flynn lip color by Tom Ford (bright pink lipstick)

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

  • Corrector & Flynn lip color
  • Extended Play Lash mascara by MAC in black
  • Lip gloss by Bobbi Brown

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

Mrs. Everything by Jennifer Weiner

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

  • AirPods 
  • Whole Earth Sweetener packets

 

Open Book

  1. What three celebrities/authors/figures, living or dead, would you want to have a book club with?
  • Sjana Elise Earp (yogi)
  • Ocean Vuong
  • Paulo Coelho 

 

  1. Current binge series?

“Portlandia” on Netflix: “The dream of the 90s is alive in Portland… Portland… Portland…”

 

  1. Last favorite book?

The Alchemist 

 

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

Peony sunsuit from LoveShackFancy

Alexia dress from LoveShackFancy

Espadrilles

To the Bahamas  

 

  1. Sunday NYT or US Weekly?

NYT for the crossword!

 

  1. Last person you sent a text message to?

My boyfriend

 

  1. Book you read that you wished you wrote?

The Bridges of Madison County

 

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

All of my English teachers! Especially Professor Alfred Guy at Yale 

 

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

No way! Writing takes all of my focus.

 

  1. Describe your writing space?

Three main spaces:

1 – At the kitchen island in my apartment, on a counter-height chair, on my lap top

2 – Lying down on the sofa in my apartment, on my lap top

3 – On walks outside, or in transit on the subway, on my phone

 

  1. Coffee or tea?

 Coffee in the morning, tea at night 

 

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

The Magic Path of Intuition by Florence Scovel Shinn, Introduction by Louise Hay

 

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

Infinite Jest… So I could find out how it ends  

 

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

“I’m Good” by The Mowgli’s because it’s happy!

 

  1. What/Who inspires you?

Being the best version of myself

 

  1. Bravo reality TV- yes or no?

No, sorry :/

 

  1. Favorite Instagram account?

@DylanWernerYoga

 

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

Me Before You – bubblegum pink

 

  1. Current #TBR pile?

 Where the Crawdads Sing

Hotbox: Inside Catering, the Food World’s Riskiest Business by Matt Lee and Ted Lee

32 Yolks: From my Mother’s Table to Working the Line by Eric Ripert

 

  1. Best advice you’ve ever received?

“Never give up.” 

 

Follow Madeline:

Instagram

 

 

Open Book with Kristy Woodson Harvey

The sun is out and beach reads are here!  One of my all time-favorite poolside writing queens, Kristy Harvey Woodson, has a new book out and her back catalog always should be mandatory summer reading.  Her latest is the third installment in her Peachtree Bluff Series and at its core is the continuation of Ansley and her three daughters with that deeply woven thread of southern charm that makes it so magical.  I am thrilled to have Kristy on the blog today talking ALL of my favorite things- Bravo, Reese, Oprah, Mindy, the beach and Daisy Jones!  If she wasn’t my spirit friend then I don’t know who is?! ❤

image001-6.jpg

via Amazon ~

From internationally bestselling author and “rising star of Southern fiction” (Mary Alice Monroe, New York Times bestselling author) Kristy Woodson Harvey comes the third novel in her Peachtree Bluff series, in which a secret threatens the tight-knit bond between a trio of sisters and their mother.

With the man of her dreams back in her life and all three of her daughters happy, Ansley Murphy should be content. But she can’t help but feel like it’s all a little too good to be true.

Meanwhile, youngest daughter and actress Emerson, who is recently engaged and has just landed the role of a lifetime, seemingly has the world by the tail. Only, something she can’t quite put her finger on is worrying her—and it has nothing to do with her recent health scare.

When two new women arrive in Peachtree Bluff—one who has the potential to wreck Ansley’s happiness and one who could tear Emerson’s world apart—everything is put in perspective. And after secrets that were never meant to be told come to light, the powerful bond between the Murphy sisters and their mother comes crumbling down, testing their devotion to each other and forcing them to evaluate the meaning of family.

With Kristy Woodson Harvey’s signature charm, wit, and heart, The Southern Side of Paradise is another masterful Peachtree Bluff novel that proves she is a “Southern writer with staying power” (Booklist).

 

Kristy Woodson Harvey (c) Jay Ackerman

1. What three celebrities/authors/figures- living or dead, would you want to have a bookclub with? Reese Witherspoon, Oprah and Jennifer Weiner

 

2. Current binge series? The Mindy Project

 

3. Last favorite book? I’m Fine and Neither are You, Camille Pagán

 

4. What 3 things to you pack in your bag for your dream vacation?  Where is it? Bikini, sunscreen, book! The British Virgin Islands. It is my most favorite vacation spot and I am so hoping it has recovered from all the hurricane devastation by next winter. 

 

5. Sunday NYT or US Weekly? Both!

 

6. Last person you sent a text message to? Group text about a friend’s birthday party!

 

7. Book you read that you wished you wrote? DAISY JONES AND THE SIX, Taylor Jenkins Reid. 

 

8. Do you have a teacher who encouraged you to become a writer? Yes! Two. Michelle Reinhardt-Cline and Chris Myers, my high school English and history teachers. They both influenced my writing but, really, they were the kind of teachers that encouraged students to go for their dreams. And that is huge!

 

9. Do you listen to music while you write? If so, who? Not usually but if I do I listen to either James Taylor or Jason Mraz because I know all their songs so well they don’t distract me!

 

10. Describe your writing space? I am building a new one right now and am SO EXCITED. As for right now, I write in the corner of my bedroom on this gorgeous mirrored desk I was pining for that my husband surprised me with. It has the most beautiful water view and is all-around relaxing and lovely.

 

11. Coffee or tea? Tea. 

 

12. Do you have a favorite book that you gift? A TREE GROWS IN BROOKLYN. It is my all-time favorite book.

 

13. Book that you wished they would make a movie out of? Can I say mine? Just kidding! I just finished COURTING MR. LINCOLN and I loved it so much. I’m kind of a history nerd, and I would love to see the tension in Lincoln’s relationships with Mary Todd and Joshua Speed play out on the big screen. 

 

14. If you could have one song as the theme song of your life what would it be and why? Carolina in my Mind by James Taylor. I am, ironically, a huge homebody. I am leaving tomorrow for a five-week book tour as I type this, but I love being at home, on the Carolina coast, more than most anyone I know! Don’t get me wrong, I love being out meeting readers. It fulfills me big time. But I travel a ton now, all year long, which is not something I ever would have imagined. 

 

15. What/Who inspires you? The water. My son. Free time, which is perhaps the largest luxury in my life right now! (As in, it is scarce!)

 

16. Bravo reality TV- yes or no? Obviously. Real Housewives of New York is my favorite! And I know it isn’t Bravo, but I have watched The Bachelor since its first season. I am a huge reader, of course, but sometimes I need that totally mindless time.

 

17. Favorite Instagram account? @jeannemckayhartmann  Jeanne is an artist and illustrator who has painted several of my book covers and other pretty illustrations. Her art is gorgeous and she paints something new almost every day. It’s super inspiring.

 

18. If you could name just one lipstick after a book, what would you call it and what shade would it be? I’d name it “Slightly South” and it would be a very avant-garde haint blue. People could wear it to UNC games and have Carolina blue lips. (This is why no one has asked me to create a make-up line…)

19. Current #TBR pile? THE TWO LILA BENNETTS, Liz Fenton & Lisa Steinke, HOW COULD SHE, Lauren Mechling, UNDER CURRENTS, Nora Roberts, TIDELANDS, Philippa Gregory 

 

20. Best advice you’ve ever received? It has to be someone. It might as well be you. My husband used to say that to me all the time when I was too scared to go for getting an agent, getting published etc. I think about that all the time now, instead of that it couldn’t be me, why not me? I mean, really. Why not you, too?

 

Follow Kristy:

Twitter

Facebook

Instagram

 

 

Open Book with Janna King

The follow-up to Janna King’s The Seasonaires, Malibu Bluff,  takes readers back to the fashionable and scandalous world of Lyndon Wyld’s clothing line with a new group of seasonaires.  If you love Gossip Girl or The OC, then you will fall in love with this world that King has created.  I am thrilled she joins me again to talk all things Open Book.  I have to say her dream book club is one of my all time favorites and her bookish lipstick should be a reality in a perfect world 🙂  Malibu Buff is the perfect segue into sunny weather and beachy reads.

41OJV4eAtCL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_

 

via Amazon ~

A fresh crew of seasonaires hit the California coast and make Malibu their playground in the sizzling and suspenseful follow-up to last summer’s must-read debut.

Every summer is designed as a dream for six twenty-something seasonaires chosen by Lyndon Wyld, the founder of her namesake clothing line. This summer takes these influential brand ambassadors to the West Coast, led by last season’s Mia, who has been roped back in after her mother’s death by a sweeter deal and the hope to leave her grief behind for the California sun.

Mia is thankful that she won’t have to live with another former seasonaire, Presley, who is now handling Lyndon Wyld’s public relations in Los Angeles. In Malibu, Mia will share a stunning modern manse with Eve, an outspoken activist; Alex, a gorgeous boundary pusher; Chase, a professional surfer; Oliver, a preppy charmer; and Brandon, the son of Lyndon’s business partner, and the young producer of the brand’s new digital channel, which will up the seasonaires’ social media game.

Lyndon still pays well for her flock to loll on Malibu’s beaches, hobnob at Hollywood parties, and live the “planned casual” SoCal lifestyle. Their antics are juicy entertainment for their throngs of fans and followers. But detractors from Mia’s past come back to haunt her. And when the line between what’s real and what’s staged gets blurred, the results could be deadly.

 

JannaKingMB_PhotoFin

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

Jonathan Van Ness, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Frida Kahlo

 

  1. Current binge series?

I recently binged “Russian Doll” on Netflix. It’s an intriguing and compelling series on so many levels, and it really resonated with me. I also got through all four seasons of “Outlander” in record time. I’ve never had to catch up like that on a series, but it was worth it!

 

  1. Last favorite book?

My Year of Rest and Relaxation by Ottessa Moshfegh – a unique and fearless work that mesmerized me from Page One.

 

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

My iPhone with earbuds so I can listen to music, my Kindle so I can read my growing TBR pile, and my laptop so I can write. Ugh – I’m hopelessly plugged in. I would return to Scotland, because I traveled there with my son last year and it was magical.

 

  1. Sunday NYT or US Weekly?

Sunday NYT online.

 

  1. Last person you sent a text message to?

My daughter, and it was “I just took a sip of coffee and burped at the same time. Not a good combo.” To which I got a facepalm emoji.

 

  1. Book you read that you wished you wrote?

The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion. Really, anything by Joan Didion.

 

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

I had two teachers in high school who motivated me to become a writer. Miss O’Brien was kind of scary and very strict, but instilled a work ethic that I still follow today. She told us to always get dressed and sit at a desk when we write. I can count the times on one hand that I’ve worked in bed in my pajamas. Rose Gilbert, (aka “Mama G” to all who knew and loved her) was the most enthusiastic English teacher ever. She was so passionate about literature and had a very memorable way of discussing themes and characters. Crazy props were often used. Plus, she rewarded us with Mother’s Circus Animal Cookies – still my favorites.

 

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

No. I can’t. I love it too much and I concentrate on the lyrics. If a song is happy or angry, I sing, bounce around and throw my arms in the air (which makes it difficult to type). If it’s sad, I cry.

 

  1. Describe your writing space?

Right now, I write at a hutch desk in my den that I’m supposed to close when I’m not working. However, I’m always writing so it’s never closed. I have been toying with the idea of turning my daughter’s bedroom into an office since she’s now out of the house. That way, I can create a healthy separation between my work space and my “relax” space, but I can’t bring myself to commandeer her room yet (or relax).

 

  1. Coffee or tea?

Coffee. I want to love tea, but I’m stuck on my two latte a day habit. Almond milk, lots of sugar.

 

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

I like to gift blank books and journals so that the recipients can write their own stories.

 

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

Harley and Me: Embracing Risk on the Road to a More Authentic Life by Bernadette Murphy. It’s a spirited memoir about transformation after challenges. Bernadette is badass.

 

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

“Dream On” by Aerosmith. Even though it’s a rock song, it’s about the fragility of life and how we need to make the most out of every day.

 

  1. What/Who inspires you?

My two kids are my inspiration. My 22-year-old daughter is a strong, opinionated, self-assured young woman. My 19-year-old son is a warm-hearted, funny, good guy. Both are thoughtful and creative. I’m in awe of them.

 

  1. Bravo reality TV- yes or no?

I’ve been watching “Project Runway” since the first season (including its shift to Lifetime for a bit). I can’t believe the looks that these talented designers create in such little time.

 

  1. Favorite Instagram account?

I love any account with cute dogs – boopmynose is a favorite.

 

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

Malibu Blush. It would be a rosy lip balm with SPF, worn with zero other makeup – just a natural summer glow.

 

  1. Current #TBR pile?

A Matter of Chance by Julie Maloney, The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls by Anissa Gray, Shrill by Lindy West (I also binged the Hulu series starring Aidy Bryant, who is amazing). I’m looking forward to The Two Lila Bennetts by Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke.

 

  1. Best advice you’ve ever received?

“Don’t sweat the small stuff.” I have been absolutely unable to follow that advice, but it’s still the best.

 

Follow Janna:

Twitter

Instagram

 

Open Book with Kimmery Martin

To celebrate the paperback release of The Queen of Hearts, Kimmery Martin chatted all things Open Book!  If you love Grey’s Anatomy then you will love this book as it definitely has all the ingredients of Seattle Grace 🙂 She shares her bookish lipstick shade (it’s fabulous), current reads and her AH-mazing writing space!  Read below to learn more about this fantastic book and wonderful author ❤

 

0

via Amazon ~

One of Real Simple‘s “Best Books of 2018”
Named a Most Anticipated Book of 2018 by Southern Living, Elite Daily, and Writer’s Digest

A powerful debut novel, praised by The New York Times, Bustle, and Hypable, that pulses with humor and empathy as it explores the heart’s capacity for forgiveness…

Zadie Anson and Emma Colley have been best friends since their early twenties, when they first began navigating serious romantic relationships amid the intensity of medical school. Now they’re happily married wives and mothers with successful careers–Zadie as a pediatric cardiologist and Emma as a trauma surgeon. Their lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, are chaotic but fulfilling, until the return of a former colleague unearths a secret one of them has been harboring for years.

As chief resident, Nick Xenokostas was the center of Zadie’s life–both professionally and personally–throughout a tragic chain of events during her third year of medical school that she has long since put behind her. Nick’s unexpected reappearance at a time of new professional crisis shocks both women into a deeper look at the difficult choices they made at the beginning of their careers. As it becomes evident that Emma must have known more than she revealed about circumstances that nearly derailed both their lives, Zadie starts to question everything she thought she knew about her closest friend.

 

0-1

 

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

Leonardo Da Vinci, Cleopatra, and Hunter S. Thompson. That should make for a pretty lively discussion.

 

  1. Current binge series?

The Americans. It’s incredible.

 

  1. Last favorite book?

The Glitch, by Elisabeth Cohen. It’s about a type-A female Silicon valley executive whose carefully curated existence is upended when a younger version of herself suddenly appears. It’s snarky and clever—my favorite kind of read.

 

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

My cell phone (for camera purposes, and also because I am always lost), stylish but comfortable shoes for walking—I like Donald Pliner— and my laptop, so I can write and post for my travel series. (Sample here from a recent trip to Costa Rica). I’d like to visit Asia next; probably Hong Kong.

 

  1. Last person you sent a text message to?

I’m going to be honest: my babysitter.

 

  1. Book you read that you wished you wrote?

Anything by Bill Bryson, especially A Walk in the Woods. Also wish I’d written Eloise by Kay Thompson.

 

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

No, but after I wrote a high school English paper on creative ways to get out of writing high school English papers, my teacher called me in for a talk and advised me to use my powers for good in the future. Does that count?

 

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

Not while I write. But I’m fond of a genre called Ganstagrass— it’s a mixture of bluegrass and rap. I like mixing things up.

 

  1. Describe your writing space?

I commandeered the playroom, because it’s the best room in our house. I added a desk, a gorgeous light fixture, and gold wallpaper and now I practically live in there.

unnamed

 

  1. Coffee or tea?

COFFEE

 

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

I’m an evangelist for a science writer named Michio Kaku—I’ve given his books to lots of people.

 

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

Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine, by Gail Honeyman. But it’s a crapshoot when you really love a book specifically because you love the writing; a lot of the language and interior monologue gets lost in translation to film. So maybe it’s better to go with something high-concept and action-y. I thought The Salt Line by Holly Goddard Jones was excellent; it’s about a dystopian future where the United States has been ravaged by killer ticks (and no, they’re not giant, so it’s not like a bad remake of Starship Troopers or anything.) It was super-suspenseful. I also just read a thriller that’s coming out in early 2019 that I’m certain will be a movie someday: My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing. It’s about a murderous suburban couple and it’s chilling.

 

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

Possibly it would be Take Me Home Country Roads. I grew up in the rural Kentucky mountains and even though I’m all urbanized and decadent now, some part of my soul eternally yearns for the peace and beauty and privacy of my childhood home.

 

  1. What/Who inspires you?

My mother, who spent 40 years working for a non-profit she founded to bring literacy and job skills and community organization to the Appalachian mountains. And my father, a literal genius, who taught me critical thinking skills. Or he attempted to teach me critical thinking skills, anyway. The result is debatable.

 

  1. Bravo reality TV- yes or no?

Noooooo. I have plenty of drama in my own life. Someone even approached me about being in a reality show about southern women doctors and I didn’t pursue it for obvious reasons. I mean, no one wants to watch a show where everyone is functional, am I right?

 

  1. Favorite Instagram account?

Oh, I love Instagram! Elizabeth Sagan. She makes these absolutely insane book tableaus.

 

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

Obviously it would be The Queen of Hearts and it would be dark red.

 

  1. Current #TBR pile?

Margaret Atwood has a sequel coming out in 2019 to The Handmaid’s Tale and I can’t wait to read it.

 

  1. Best advice you’ve ever received?

Read every day.

 

Follow Kimmery:

Facebook

Twitter

Instagram

 

 

What’s in my Bookish {Beauty} Bag? ~ Jane Healey

I love a fabulous local author and love even more when they write about the Ah-mazing city of Boston!  The Beantown Girls, by Jane Healey, is about three best friends who volunteer for the Red Cross during WWll.  Out now, this historical fiction gem is a must for your reading list!  Read below to see what is on Jane’s Must-Have beauty list with a sneak peek into her timeless Rebecca Minkoff bag 🙂

0-1

via Amazon ~

A novel of love, courage, and danger unfolds as World War II’s brightest heroines—the best of friends—take on the front lines.

1944: Fiona Denning has her entire future planned out. She’ll work in city hall, marry her fiancé when he returns from the war, and settle down in the Boston suburbs. But when her fiancé is reported missing after being shot down in Germany, Fiona’s long-held plans are shattered.

Determined to learn her fiancé’s fate, Fiona leaves Boston to volunteer overseas as a Red Cross Clubmobile girl, recruiting her two best friends to come along. There’s the outspoken Viviana, who is more than happy to quit her secretarial job for a taste of adventure. Then there’s Dottie, a shy music teacher whose melodious talents are sure to bring heart and hope to the boys on the front lines.

Chosen for their inner strength and outer charm, the trio isn’t prepared for the daunting challenges of war. But through it all come new friendships and romances, unforeseen dangers, and unexpected dreams. As the three friends begin to understand the real reasons they all came to the front, their courage and camaraderie will see them through some of the best and worst times of their lives.

 

0-2

What is your bag of choice?

I love my Rebecca Minkoff Mini Julian Backpack. It’s really versatile and has a bunch
of pockets.

What are your top favorite beauty picks?

I live in New England and in the winter my face needs all the moisture it can get. I
can’t live without Olehenriksen’s Truth Serum and Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream. And I
love Bareminerals Complexion Rescue tinted moisturizer with SPF and use that year
round.  I’m not a big lipstick person but I love a good lip gloss and my favorite Buxom Full-On Plumping Lip Polish Gloss. I have it in multiple shades.  My eyes are really sensitive and I have to be careful what I use. I’ve found the eyeliner and mascara combo that works best for me is Clinique’s Quickliner for Eyes Intense in Chocolate, and LOC Love of Color One and Done Shadow Stick in Champagne Problems.

What do you always carry on for beauty products for travel?

I always carry a good eye cream and concealer, especially for long flights. My
favorite eye cream is Origins GinZing Refreshing Eye Cream and my tried and true
concealer is MAC’s Mineralize Concealer. I also bring an exfoliator, Olehenriksen
Transforming Walnut Scrub, because air travel can do such a number on your skin.

What are you currently reading?

My 12yo daughter is a total introvert, so I’m currently reading Quiet Power: The
Secret Strengths of Introverts. It’s a guide for kids and teens from Susan Cain, the
author who wrote of the worldwide bestselling book Quiet: The Power of Introverts
in a World that Can’t Stop Talking. It’s really fascinating and it’s given me such a
great perspective on my daughter’s personality.

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

I have a small vintage compact mirror that I bought in London with a picture of a
cartoon cat on the front. I also always have an ultrafine black Sharpie pen and sticky
notes – sometimes I write story ideas that come to me when I’m driving, etc. but
often it’s just reminders to pick up the dry cleaning or something!

0

 

Follow Jane:

Facebook

Instagram

Twitter

 

What’s in my Bookish {Beauty} Bag? ~ Ashley and Leslie Saunders

I was thrilled to chat with Ashley and Leslie Saunders, the fantastic sister writing duo whose debut book, The Rule of One is out now!  They opened their bag for us and shared their beauty favorites and current reads.  If you love a futuristic setting and the unbreakable  bond of sisterhood then their book is a must!

theruleofonecover-1ddd88ae

via Amazon ~

n their world, telling the truth has become the most dangerous crime of all.

In the near-future United States, a one-child policy is ruthlessly enforced. Everyone follows the Rule of One. But Ava Goodwin, daughter of the head of the Texas Family Planning Division, has a secret—one her mother died to keep and her father has helped to hide for her entire life.

She has an identical twin sister, Mira.

For eighteen years Ava and Mira have lived as one, trading places day after day, maintaining an interchangeable existence down to the most telling detail. But when their charade is exposed, their worst nightmare begins. Now they must leave behind the father they love and fight for their lives.

Branded as traitors, hunted as fugitives, and pushed to discover just how far they’ll go in order to stay alive, Ava and Mira rush headlong into a terrifying unknown.

 

unnamed

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

Backpack. We’ve used the same Herschel backpack for years. It’s great for hiking, which we do a lot of, as well as traveling. Perfect for carrying our laptops (a writer’s best friend) and jackets for ice-cold plane cabins (why is it always so cold in planes?!)

2. What are your top favorite beauty picks?  

We love a good moisturizer, Ole Henriksen is our go to. Glam Glow’s mud masks are a favorite of ours. And definitely probiotics for that natural glow and overall skin health.

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

In our carry-on we always have with us chapstick, eyeliner and a light perfecting skin tint from Glossier that we love!

4. What are you currently reading?

Ashley: I’m currently reading a super interesting post-apocalyptic novel called Happy Doomsday by David Sosnowski and Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi. I used to be a strictly one-book-at-a-time girl but this year there are just so many books I want to read that I now read multiple at once!

Leslie: I’m currently reading The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt and The Hundredth Queen by Emily R. King. I love walking around Los Angeles with a mix of literary Pulitzers and fantasy adventure sagas swirling around in my head, waiting for me on my nightstand until I wind down for the night.

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

We always, and we mean always, have Burt’s Bees in our back pocket. Peppermint, of course.

Saunders-Photo-ShayanAsgharnia-2017

 

Follow The Saunders’ Sisters:

Instagram

Facebook

Twitter

 

 

What’s in my Bookish {Beauty} Bag? ~ Elyssa Friedland

Books are basically the chicest accessory you can have and its even better when the author writing these books is just as chic.  Elyssa Friedland is just that author.  She first graced our TBR’s with her debut novel, Love and Miss Communication and her latest, The Intermission has been getting high praise and making all the “Best of Summer” lists.  The Intermission takes on the subject of how well do we really know the person we are sleeping next to?  Elyssa was so kind to share her fabulous bag and accessories with me as well as introducing me to a beauty line I had never heard of!  Oh be still my books and beauty heart ❤

Intermission cover jpg

via Amazon ~

A HelloGiggles Best New Release
A PopSugar Best Book of July
A BookBub Editor’s Pick
A SheReads Best Book of Summer
A GoodReads Buzzy New Release
A Mind Body Green Best Book of July
A PureWow Best Beach Read of Summer 2018

Have you ever had a secret so gut-wrenching you couldn’t tell anyone, not even the person who shares your bed?

Told from the alternating perspectives of a husband and wife who both have something to hide, this incisive novel pulls back the curtain on a seemingly-happy marriage, posing the question: how much do we really know–and how much should we want to know–about the people we love the most?

After five long years, the unshakable confidence Cass Coyne felt as a bride is gone. Her husband, Jonathan, on the other hand, is still smitten. It’s true that the quirks he once found charming in his wife–her high standards, her refusal to clean the dishes–are beginning to grate. But for him, these are minor challenges in a healthy relationship.

So it comes as a complete shock to Jonathan when Cass suddenly requests a marital “intermission”: a six-month separation during which they’ll decide if the comfortable life they’ve built is still the one they both want.

Aside from a monthly custodial exchange of their beloved dog, contact will be limited. But as the months pass, they begin to see that calculated silences just like these have helped to drive them apart–and that it may finally be time to confront the blistering secrets they’ve been avoiding.

IMG_2495

What is your bag of choice?

The Mansur Gavriel leather bucket bag. I have it in black and tan. It can be worn cross body, on one shoulder and sometimes I tie the strap to make it shorter and wear it in the crook of my elbow. I hate bags with lots of compartments and zippers. I just want one big receptacle for my stuff.

What are your top favorite beauty picks?  

Youngblood is my favorite makeup brand. It’s organic and the color selection is very cool. The lipstick is long-lasting and I swear by the shade Just Pink. I also love Laura Geller black mascara. It thickens and lengthens but doesn’t make me look like a stripper. Giorgio Armani is my brand of choice for foundation. 

 

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

Wallet, phone and sunglasses are typically all I take with me. Sometimes a lipstick if I remember. I’m a relatively no frills person and am totally comfortable going out during the day without makeup. That will probably change as I get older but I’m hoping to ride this au natural thing through my thirties. The sunglasses are an absolute requirement, even in the winter. I think I have light sensitivity (or maybe I just like being able to pretend I don’t see people on the street I don’t feel like talking to!). 

 

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

The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang on my Kindle and I’m listening to The Perfect Couple by Elin Hilderbrand. Both are excellent and I’m not just saying that. 

 

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

My ear buds for my iPhone because I am always listening to a book on Audible. If I forget them, I’m one unhappy camper. 

Elyssa.Friedland. credit Lucia Engstrom

Follow Elyssa:

Facebook

Twitter

Instagram

 

 

Open Book and a Beauty Bonus Round ~ with Jenna Blum

We have an extra special, extra fabulous guest today who is a sparkly Boston gal whose latest gem of a read is out now!!!!  Drumroll and marquis lights please….Jenna Blum is in the house and we have a special “Open Book” today!  The Lost Family is a non-negotiable for your summer reading list.  It is set over 3 decades, told from multiple perspectives and filled with love, loss and hope.  I am so thrilled to have Jenna on the blog and to support such a wonderful local author ❤

y648

via Amazon ~

The Lost Family is an extraordinary read, the kind of book that makes you sob and smile, the kind that gives you hope…. It is compassionate, masterful and disturbingly contemporary.”—Tatiana de Rosnay, bestselling author of Sarah’s Key

The New York Times bestselling author of Those Who Save Us creates a vivid portrait of marriage, family, and the haunting grief of World War II in this emotionally charged, beautifully rendered story that spans a generation, from the 1960s to the 1980s.

In 1965 Manhattan, patrons flock to Masha’s to savor its brisket bourguignon and impeccable service and to admire its dashing owner and head chef Peter Rashkin. With his movie-star good looks and tragic past, Peter, a survivor of Auschwitz, is the most eligible bachelor in town. But Peter does not care for the parade of eligible women who come to the restaurant hoping to catch his eye. He has resigned himself to a solitary life. Running Masha’s consumes him, as does his terrible guilt over surviving the horrors of the Nazi death camp while his wife, Masha—the restaurant’s namesake—and two young daughters perished.

Then exquisitely beautiful June Bouquet, an up-and-coming young model, appears at the restaurant, piercing Peter’s guard. Though she is twenty years his junior, the two begin a passionate, whirlwind courtship. When June unexpectedly becomes pregnant, Peter proposes, believing that beginning a new family with the woman he loves will allow him to let go of the horror of the past. But over the next twenty years, the indelible sadness of those memories will overshadow Peter, June, and their daughter Elsbeth, transforming them in shocking, heartbreaking, and unexpected ways.

Jenna Blum artfully brings to the page a husband devastated by a grief he cannot name, a frustrated wife struggling to compete with a ghost she cannot banish, and a daughter sensitive to the pain of both her own family and another lost before she was born. Spanning three cinematic decades, The Lost Family is a charming, funny, and elegantly bittersweet study of the repercussions of loss and love.

x300

 

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

Hemingway, Frederick Douglass, Obama.

 

2. Current binge series?

The Handmaid’s Tale. I wish Season 3 would begin way before April 2019–we may be living in Gilead by then.

 

3. Last favorite book?

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead.

 

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

Book, iPad, snacks. A beach anywhere!

 

5. Sunday NYT or US Weekly?

NYT always.

 

6. Last person you sent a text message to?

My dear friend Stephanie Ebbert at the Boston Globe, who writes on gender issues.

 

7. Book you read that you wished you wrote?

The Stand by Stephen King.

 

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

Yes! Mr. Laskowich at Watchung School in Montclair, NJ, who read to us each day for 1/2 hour before lunch. Mr. Phillip Stern at Glenfield Middle School in Montclair, who didn’t mind when I wrote a whole novel about him in 7th grade (I had a major crush).

 

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

Never. Music to me is a language and it competes with the language in my head.

 

10. Describe your writing space?

It’s usually covered with images from the book I’m working on. Black Lab Woodrow snoring on bed because he finds writing very boring.

 

11. Coffee or tea?

COFFEE

 

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

I generally give newly published books by friends to help them get out into the world.

 

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

Mine! 🙂 (Those Who Save Us, my first book, is under option. I’d love The Lost Family to become a movie as well—or a series on HBO, SHOWTIME, Hulu, Amazon Prime….)

 

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

Free To Be You & Me, because I believe in the sanctity of personal choice and respect.

 

15. What/Who inspires you?

Injustice inspires me to try & do something about it. Also the Obamas.

 

16. Bravo reality TV- yes or no?

Nope!

 

17. Favorite Instagram account?

My dear friend writer/ yoga guru Sara DiVello. Selma Blair. Reese Witherspoon’s book club.

 

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

Those Who Save Us and it’d be blood red.

 

19. Current #TBR pile?

So much! I actually have a TBR ottoman. I’m traveling on book tour for The Lost Family right now so I’ll have to do this from memory. Many chef memoirs, continuing research for my next book. Anthony Bourdain. Curtis Sittenfeld short stories. Julian Barnes.

 

20. Best advice you’ve ever received?

“Jen, do your best.” My dad.

 
 
BONUS SECTION*
 
1. Favorite place to shop in Boston? Anthropologie!
2. Biggest fashion splurge? Anthropologie! 
3. Beauty must-haves? Anthropologie! Also concealer, waterproof mascara & eyeliner. I wear cat-eyes to the gym because I’m from Jersey originally and that’s what we do.
4. What do you carry in your purse for beauty products? Matte lipstick from Revlon that would stay on during a nuclear winter.
5. What type of purse/bag do you carry? Normally, I don’t—I have a Coach wristlet but I like to travel light. When traveling for book events, a Coach tote bag. 
FOLLOW Jenna: