Open Book ~ Leslie Cohen

Happy blissful Monday!  I am thrilled to be able to share my next “Open Book” author, Leslie Cohen.  Her debut novel, This Love Story Will Self-Destruct is getting high praise as a People Magazine pick of the week, fabulous write-ups from Bustle and Hello Giggles and Cohen being hailed as a young Nora Ephron- well I am sold.  Read below to learn a few fun tidbits about Cohen.  All I needed to know was she was  Jay-Z fan and Cher Horowitz is an inspiration 😉 #friendgoals.

Cover Image - THIS LOVE STORY WILL SELF DESTRUCT

via Amazon ~

This is the classic tale of boy meets girl: Girl…goes home with someone else.

Meet Eve. She’s a dreamer, a feeler, a careening well of sensitivities who can’t quite keep her feet on the ground, or steer clear of trouble. She’s a laugher, a crier, a quirky and quick-witted bleeding-heart-worrier.

Meet Ben. He’s an engineer, an expert at leveling floors who likes order, structure, and straight lines. He doesn’t opine, he doesn’t ruminate, he doesn’t simmer until he boils over.

So naturally, when the two first cross paths, sparks don’t exactly fly. But then they meet again. And again. And then, finally, they find themselves with a deep yet fragile connection that will change the course of their relationship—possibly forever.

Follow Eve and Ben as they navigate their twenties on a winding journey through first jobs, first dates, and first breakups; through first reunions, first betrayals and, maybe, first love. This is When Harry Met Sally reimagined; a charming tale told from two unapologetically original points of view. With an acerbic edge and heartwarming humor, debut novelist Leslie Cohen takes us on a tour of what life looks like when it doesn’t go according to plan, and explores the complexity, chaos, and comedy in finding a relationship built to last.

Author Photo - Leslie Cohen credit to David Verbitsky

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

Elena Ferrante, whoever that may be

Mindy Kaling

Novak Djokovic

 

Current binge series?

Mad Men

 

Last favorite book?

The Lesser Bohemians by Eimear McBride

 

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

Bathing suit

Sunblock

Xanax

Somewhere coastal

 

Sunday NYT or US Weekly?

Sunday NYT. US Weekly is too much drama for me.

 

Last person you sent a text message to?

My friend, Monica. She’s an ER doctor, so I like to text her random questions and keep her on her toes re: imaginary illnesses.

 

Book you read that you wished you wrote?

Us by David Nicholls

 

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

Yes! She was also named Leslie and she was the head of the undergraduate creative writing program at Columbia, where I went to college. She gave me the very special gift of telling me that I had a voice and should become a writer and I gave her the gift of asking 493 follow up questions.

 

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

Yes. Especially when I need to get into a very emotional and somewhat rebellious state of mind. So, Rihanna. Obviously.

 

Describe your writing space?

Desk. Chair. Laptop. No funny business. Mo’ plants mo’ problems.

 

Coffee or tea?

Tea! But I’m in it mainly for the accompanying cookies.

 

Do you have a favorite book that you gift?

I’ve given my friends Vaclav and Lena by Haley Tanner and Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell. They are both the sweetest love stories ever.

 

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

Rules of Civility by Amor Towles

 

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

Dirt Off Your Shoulder by Jay Z because it’s about being cool and letting things slide and I have absolutely no idea how to do that. It’s strictly aspirational.

 

What/Who inspires you?

My friends. My husband. They’re pretty cute. Oh! And Cher from Clueless.

 

Bravo reality TV- yes or no?

I’m more of a Kardashians/ Bachelor type of girl.

 

Favorite Instagram account?

I follow a puppy in Japan named Ernie and he’s just a small, white fluffball that naps and plays with stuffed animals but I really dig his vibe.

 

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

I think I may be unqualified to answer this question. I may have worn ChapStick at my wedding. Plain ChapStick. Not even Cherry. Don’t tell anyone.

 

Current #TBR pile?

The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin

Her Body and Other Parties by Carmen Maria Machado

Letters to Vera by Vladimir Nabokov

 

Best advice you’ve ever received?

“You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” I didn’t receive this advice, personally, as it was said by Wayne Gretzky, but I acquire most of my wisdom from sports. And the rest from my mother.

 

Follow Leslie!

Twitter

Instagram

 

 

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What’s in my Bookish {Beauty} Bag? ~ Kristy Woodson Harvey

Beach reading is right around the corner, although I am a fan of a beach read all year long, but the time is coming for gorgeous, bright covers and dishy, delicious reads.  One that I have added to my “Must-Haves” for the beach is Slightly South of Simple by the lovely Kristy Woodson Harvey.  I have been a BIG fan of Harvey since day one and this being her third novel, its getting wonderful reviews.  I was so excited Kristy was willing to share her beautiful nude tote filled with all kinds of goodies and basically everything you think a Mom/Author would carry ❤

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via Amazon

From the next “major voice in Southern fiction” (New York Times bestselling author Elin Hilderbrand) comes the first in an all-new series chronicling the journeys of three sisters and their mother—and a secret from their past that has the potential to tear them apart and reshape their very definition of what it means to be a family.

Caroline Murphy swore she’d never set foot back in the small Southern town of Peachtree Bluff; she was a New York girl born and bred and the worst day of her life was when, in the wake of her father’s death, her mother selfishly forced her to move—during her senior year of high school, no less—back to that hick-infested rat trap where she’d spent her childhood summers. But now that her marriage to a New York high society heir has fallen apart in a very public, very embarrassing fashion, a pregnant Caroline decides to escape the gossipmongers with her nine-year-old daughter and head home to her mother, Ansley.

Ansley has always put her three daughters first, especially when she found out that her late husband, despite what he had always promised, left her with next to nothing. Now the proud owner of a charming waterfront design business and finally standing on her own two feet, Ansley welcomes Caroline and her brood back with open arms. But when her second daughter Sloane, whose military husband is overseas, and youngest daughter and successful actress Emerson join the fray, Ansley begins to feel like the piece of herself she had finally found might be slipping from her grasp. Even more discomfiting, when someone from her past reappears in Ansley’s life, the secret she’s harbored from her daughters their entire lives might finally be forced into the open.

Exploring the powerful bonds between sisters and mothers and daughters, this engaging novel is filled with Southern charm, emotional drama, and plenty of heart.

 

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From Kristy:  Thank you so, so much, Courtney, for having me to wonderful Bliss, Beauty & Books to share what’s in my bag. I am so grateful for all of your support of my writing career. I’d be nowhere without book lovers! I can’t wait to share with your readers a peek inside my inner sanctum aka my purse. (Can you still call it that when it’s the size of a small child?) Now I want to know from Bliss, Beauty & Books readers: If you could only have three things in your bag, what would they be? 
What is your bag of choice?
Tote all the way although, seriously, with all the stuff I have, I may have to switch over to a backpack any day now! Right now I have a Saint Laurent tote that I love. The best thing about it is that it’s reversible, and I can’t believe it but I managed to carry it all winter on the black side side without ruining the tan leather side. But miracles happen, so now I can carry it this spring too! 
What are your top favorite beauty picks?
I love Bare Minerals foundation in the summer, but, in the winter, I switch to Origins foundation because my skin is too dry for powder. I use Mineral Fusion bronzer and blush that I pick up at Whole Foods. I love organic Argan oil and, now that summer is here, Kiss My Face spray sunscreen. I also really love Emi Jay hair ties. They are amazing and actually allow me to wear my hair in a ponytail and then take it down. 
What do you always carry in your bag/purse/carry-on for beauty products?
I’ve always wanted to be that girl who touches up her face in the bathroom, but, alas, I’m just not. In my purse I usually just carry chapstick and a lipgloss or two, which I rarely use. Burt’s Bees and Origins are my favorite brands for all of the above. In the summer I also carry a mineral powder sunscreen stick. 
What are you currently reading?
I read every magazine. Well not every magazine, but most of them. My favorites are Yoga Journal, Traditional Home, Town and Country, Vogue, Women’s Health, Our State, Garden & Gun… I could go on! I’m actually finally reading Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty, which I am LOVING. I know. I’m the only person on the planet who hasn’t read it yet… But I have to read the book before I watch the show!
Any other fun item/must-have that you always carry with you 🙂
I always have bookmarks in my bag and a copy of my latest book just in case I need to give one out at a moment’s notice. My hubby is a dentist, so I carry around toothbrushes for my son and me and I chew lots of cinnamon xylitol gum. I’m a gum addict, and this one is actually supposed to be good for your teeth. I always have crayons and some books for my kiddo. Hearing him read is the greatest thing that’s ever happened!  And I am a big fan of a simple, Moleskine planner. That’s where I keep all my important dates. Also, hand sanitizer, usually a few varieties. I am on airplanes a lot so I always use the real live Purell when I’m traveling. Otherwise, I try to use an organic/herbal substitute. And OF COURSE, I always have the beautiful bag that my fabulous friend Courtney Marzilli made for me! It is one of my most favorite accessories, and I get so many comments about it because I’m always pulling it out to retrieve my pens, hair ties, lip gloss, hand sanitizer (san hanitizer, as my preschooler says) or some other essential. I love, love, love it!
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Follow Kristy:
*Thanks to the beautiful Kristy for sharing her bag and giving us the gift of her wonderful books!

The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware ~ “Beach Bites”

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Another quick post from me about an absolutely creepy thriller that kept me turning the pages even though I am completely sleep deprived 🙂  Ruth Ware, author of In a Dark, Dark Wood, took me to sea in The Woman In Cabin 10.  A cruise trip gone wrong for the main character Lo.  She is sent on assignment onto a gorgeous cruise ship.  While aboard she meets a young woman who is in the cabin next door.  She needs a quick beauty rescue and has quite an abrupt interaction with this woman which seemed odd to Lo.  That evening she hears a thud and sees a blood stain on the side of the boat.  When she goes to see if everything is ok with her neighbor she discovers she is gone.  As the book develops Lo is tested as the rest of the ship never recalls seeing this women making Lo as well as everyone else question her sanity.  But she is sure she this woman exists and will stop at nothing to prove it.

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This book, like Ware’s debut, is a phenomenal thriller.  Ware is excellent at what she does and how she captures the essence of a good mystery is on point.  I highly suggest both novels as you will become an instant fan of hers.  What’s even more exciting is In a Dark, Dark Wood is coming to the big screen!  Not only do I love a good thriller but I love a thriller motion picture even more!

*Thanks to Gallery Books for sending a copy for review.

Will You Accept this Rose? Bachelorette “Poolside Picks”

The Bachelorette is in full swing and #TeamJojo is on the hunt for the perfect guy.  I hadn’t watched The Bachelorette in years and decided I would pick it back up again this season as I am 32 weeks pregnant and the couch is my new BFF.  What a season it has been!  I decided to compile a little list of some fabulous #Bachelorette books, written by former contestants who tell all and dish the juicy tidbits we want to hear.  Not only are they a fun read, they too are the perfect poolside companions, and therefore are my “Poolside Picks” this week!  An summer ode to The Bachelorette ❤

It’s Not Okay by Andi Dorfman

9781501132469

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via Goodreads

Andi Dorfman, the beloved finalist of season eighteen of The Bachelor who infamously rejected Juan Pablo and went on to star on season ten of The Bachelorette, dishes about what it’s like to live out a love story—and its collapse—in front of the cameras, offering hard-won advice for moving on after a break-up, public or not.

Andi Dorfman, star of The Bachelor and The Bachelorette, talks candidly about what it’s like to be courted by twenty-five handsome, single men in this juicy, insider’s peek at dating—and breaking up—on national TV. She shares entertaining and heartfelt stories about her fellow Bachelor alums—many of whom are still close friends—comes clean about calling out Bachelor #18 Juan Pablo for bad behavior, and reflects on her personal challenges and uplifting experiences in love that she hopes will help you get through your own break-ups with grace and style!

 

I Said Yes by Emily Maynard

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via Goodreads

When her high-profile search for romance led Emily Maynard to dead end after dead end, real love finally found her.

Millions know Emily Maynard Johnson from her unprecedented double appearances on The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. Millions also know that neither of the relationships from those shows lasted much longer than a commercial break.

Overcome with embarrassment following her nationally televised failures at romance, Emily finally committed her heart to the only one she knew would never leave her empty and alone. Abandoning her desire to be chosen by men and finding peace in the fact that she was already chosen by God, Emily found the joy she had been looking for in serving God.

In I Said Yes, Emily tells the story of her life before and after reality TV fame, describing the profound new reality she discovered when she forsook fame in favor of the Lord. At the end of a long, fruitless search for a man, this courageous young woman found the truest love of all waiting right in front of her. To that love, Emily said yes.

I Didn’t Come Here to Make Friends: Confessions of a Reality Show Villain by Courtney Robertson

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via Goodreads

Courtney Robertson joined season 16 of The Bachelor looking for love. A working model and newly single, Courtney fit the casting call: She was young, beautiful, and a natural in front of the cameras. Although she may have been there for all the right reasons, as the season unfolded and sparks began to fly something else was clear: She was not there to make friends.

Courtney quickly became one of the biggest villains in Bachelorfranchise history. She unapologetically pursued her man, steamrolled her competition, and broke the rules—including partaking in an illicit skinny-dip that sealed her proposal. Now, after a very public breakup with her Bachelor, Ben Flajnik, Courtney opens up and tells her own story—from her first loves to her first moments in the limo. She dishes on life before, during, and after the Bachelor, including Ben’s romantic proposal to her on a Swiss mountaintop and the tabloid frenzy that continued after the cameras stopped rolling.

For the first time ever, a former Bachelor contestant takes us along on her journey to find love and reveals that “happily ever after” isn’t always what it seems. Complete with stories, tips, tricks, and advice from your favorite Bachelor alumni, and filled with all the juicy details Courtney fans and foes alike want to know, I Didn’t Come Here to Make Friends is a must-read for every member of Bachelor nation.

*Thanks to Gallery, Thomas Nelson and Dey Street Books for sending review copies.

Summer of Gallery Books!

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Over the past year I have been sent some amazing titles from Gallery books.  From fantastic fiction to juicy memoirs they never seem to disappoint.  To show my love for them I have decided to post some fabulous titles that are coming up!  It’s basically the summer of Gallery books!  All the perfect reads to throw in your beach bag or pool tote.  I assure you, you will NOT be disappointed 🙂

Coming June 7, 2016

A Dangerous Age by Kelly Killeen Benisom

Cover Image - A Dangerous AgeAuthor Photo - Kelly Killoren credit to Matt Albiani

via Goodreads:

“Couture royalty meets downtown grit and heady artists mingle with freewheeling socialites in A Dangerous Age, a sophisticated, indulgent, and delicious novel of contemporary New York City that women of all ages will devour.

It’s the dog days of a sweltering Manhattan summer, and four sophisticated best friends who once took New York by storm are secretly falling apart at the seams. Lucy’s marriage to a renowned artist is slowly crumbling, with an explosive secret that threatens them both. Sarah, in the middle of auditioning for an auspicious new television show, realizes that her socialite standing is in jeopardy after countless disastrous events. Billy—a queen in the kitchen—has finally left her former life behind to become a highbrow cuisine artist. And Lotta, a knockout downtown art dealer, spends her free time guzzling cocktails in both the grittiest and most expensive clubs around town—but now, she’s taken it a little too far.

In this addicting and refreshing comedy of manners reminiscent of Edith Wharton, Lucy, Sarah, Billy, and Lotta go to all ends to hide their troubles in a city that worships only the young, twentysomething it-girl. But in the end, there’s no denying that these women have all entered a very dangerous age…and who knows how they’ll emerge on the other side.”

 

 

Coming May 17, 2016

It’s Not Okay: Turning Heartbreak into Happily Never After by Andi Dorfman

9781501132469

via Goodreads:

“Andi Dorfman, the beloved finalist of season eighteen of The Bachelor who infamously rejected Juan Pablo and went on to star on season ten of The Bachelorette, dishes about what it’s like to live out a love story—and its collapse—in front of the cameras, offering hard-won advice for moving on after a break-up, public or not.

Andi Dorfman, star of The Bachelor and The Bachelorette, talks candidly about what it’s like to be courted by twenty-five handsome, single men in this juicy, insider’s peek at dating—and breaking up—on national TV. She shares entertaining and heartfelt stories about her fellow Bachelor alums—many of whom are still close friends—comes clean about calling out Bachelor #18 Juan Pablo for bad behavior, and reflects on her personal challenges and uplifting experiences in love that she hopes will help you get through your own break-ups with grace and style!”

 

Just release in paperback!  Featured in People and O Magazine

After Perfect by Christina McDowell

Cover Image - PBK After Perfect

 

 

CHRISTINA MCDOWELL

CHRISTINA MCDOWELL

via Goodreads:

“In the tradition of New York Times bestsellers What Remains by Carole Radziwill and Oh the Glory of It All by Sean Wilsey, Christina McDowell’s unflinching memoir is a brutally honest, cautionary tale about one family’s destruction in the wake of the Wall Street implosion.

Christina McDowell was born Christina Prousalis. She had to change her name to be legally extricated from the trail of chaos her father, Tom Prousalis, left in the wake of his arrest and subsequent imprisonment as one of the guilty players sucked into the collateral fallout of Jordan Belfort (the Wolf of Wall Street). Christina worshipped her father and the seemingly perfect life they lived…a life she finds out was built on lies. Christina’s family, as is typically the case, had no idea what was going on. Nineteen-year-old Christina drove her father to jail while her mother dissolved in denial.

Since then, Christina’s life has been decimated. As her family floundered in rehab, depression, homelessness, and loss, Christina succumbed to the grip of alcohol, drugs, and promiscuity before finding catharsis in the most unlikely of places. From the bucolic affluence of suburban Washington, DC, to the A-list clubs and seedy underbelly of Los Angeles, this provocative memoir unflinchingly describes the harsh realities of a fall from grace. Full of nineties nostalgia and access to the inner circles of the Washingtonian societal elite, Christina McDowell’s beautiful memoir is a Blue Jasmine story from a daughter’s perspective.”

 

Out NOW in hardcover!

Good Mourning by Elizabeth Meyer

9781476783611Author photo credit to Calvin Aurand

via Goodreads:

“In this funny, insightful memoir, a young socialite risks social suicide when she takes a job at a legendary funeral chapel on New York Citys Upper East Side.Good Mourning offers a behind-the-scenes look at one of the most famous funeral homes in the country where not even big money can protect you from the universal experience of grieving. 
It’s Gossip Girl meets Six Feet Under, told from the unique perspective of a fashionista turned funeral planner.

Elizabeth Meyer stumbled upon a career in the midst of planning her own father’s funeral, which she turned into an upbeat party with Rolling Stones music, thousands of dollars worth of her mother’s favorite flowers, and a personalized eulogy. Starting out as a receptionist, Meyer quickly found she had a knack for helping people cope with their grief, as well as creating fitting send-offs for some of the city’s most high-powered residents.
Meyer has seen it all: two women who found out their deceased husband (yes, singular) was living a double life, a famous corpse with a missing brain, and funerals that cost more than most weddings. By turns illuminating, emotional, and darkly humorous, Good Mourning is a lesson in how the human heart grieves and grows, whether you’re wearing this season’s couture or drug-store flip-flops.”

 

Out NOW in hardcover and paperback release July 5, 2016 ~ New York Times Bestseller

Turning the Tables: From Housewife to Inmate and Back Again by Teresa Giudice

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via Goodreads:

“The star of The Real Housewives of New Jersey and three-time New York Times bestselling author offers a behind-the-scenes look at life in prison, her marriage, her rise to fame, the importance of her family, and the reality TV franchise that made her a household name in her explosive and ultimately uplifting first-ever memoir.

“People think they know everything about me…but they don’t. Not even close.” 

Teresa Giudice, star of The Real Housewives of New Jersey, has seen it all, but nothing—not even Real Housewives scandals—could compare to the media firestorm that ensued after she was convicted on federal fraud charges.

The infamous, fun-loving Jersey mom of four was sentenced to fifteen months in the same prison where Piper Kerman—the real-life inspiration behind Orange Is the New Black—did her time. Her tiny prison cubicle in Connecticut felt so far removed from the glamorous world portrayed on The Real Housewives of New Jersey. What was a skinny Italian to do? Keep a diary, of course…

In her very first tell-all memoir, Teresa comes clean on all things Giudice: growing up as an Italian-American, meeting the love of her life and starting a family, dealing with chaos and catfights on national television, and eventually, coming to terms with the reality of life in prison. Featuring never-before-seen scans of her prison diary, Turning the Tables captures some of the most memorable moments of her prison stay, including the cringe-inducing fights she witnessed, the awkward conundrum of being trapped when a fellow inmate had a…guest…over, and the strength she found while confined between four concrete walls.

Even at her lowest of lows, Teresa was able to live la bella vita by staying positive and realizing her purpose. Friends, foes, and fans have speculated about Teresa’s prison experience, but nothing will prepare you for the revelations she makes in this entertaining and heartwarming memoir.

“The world will see a new Teresa. A different Teresa. Well, actually, the Teresa I always was.””

 

Coming August 16, 2016

The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo by Amy Schumer

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via Goodreads:

“From award-winning comedian, writer, producer, and actress Amy Schumer comes The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo, a thoughtful, honest, and hysterical collection of (very) personal essays.

Never one to shy away from the uproarious, challenging, and remarkable moments that make up life, this exceptionally candid book will have readers wincing with recognition, nodding their head in solidarity, and laughing out loud.

Written with Amy’s signature candor, she reflects on her often raucous childhood antics, her hard won and incomparable rise to comedic stardom, and the courage it takes to approach the world with astounding honesty every single day.

Surely the most anticipated collection of the year, Amy shines bright as a friend, daughter, and sister, unforgettable comedian, and most notably, a masterful (and always entertaining) storyteller.”

Coming June 28, 2016

American Babe: A White Girl Problems Book by Babe Walker

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via Goodreads:

“Author of the New York Times bestseller White Girl Problems and Psychos, Babe Walker, faces her most daunting challenge yet—suburbia—in the third caustically witty White Girl Problems book.

Babe Walker thought she had done it all. After all, she’s survived the highly exclusive social hierarchies of Bel Air, traipsed around Europe in true white-girl fashion, and left her mark on several of the best rehab facilities in the United States. But now Babe is about to enter a terrifying new world: Middle America.

After a freak accident that was definitely not Babe’s fault, her estranged mother offers her the perfect escape from LA: an invite to her grandfather’s eightieth birthday party in Maryland, of all places. Babe’s journey throws her headlong into elementary school classrooms full of small, unfashionable people and pizza buffet restaurants that will haunt her nightmares and eventually back to Los Angeles, thank goodness. Tossed together with her cousins—basic preteen Cara and mature and preternaturally stylish Knox—Babe learns that connecting with someone on an intimate, familial level might be the most rewarding experience there is…

Besides being thin, of course.

Hysterical, unapologetic, and as unfiltered as ever, Babe Walker proves again to be the “urban socialite you love to hate” (Time), and she can only hope the population is ready for American Babe.”

 

Be on the lookout this summer for full reviews from Bliss, Beauty and Books!  To visit Gallery and see all their upcoming titles please visit: Facebook , Twitter and their Instagram.

*Thanks to Gallery Books for sending review copies to Bliss, Beauty and Books.

 

 

 

*Happy Anniversary Will and Kate!*

Prince-William

In honor of Will and Kate’s 5th wedding anniversary today, I have decided to pay homage to a few fabulous books about the duo.  I am royally obsessed and have been since I purchased a heart donut at Dunkin’ Donuts on the day of their wedding.  Since their nuptials I have been collecting different memorabilia as well as books and magazines.  One day I hope to visit London but for now I can live vicariously through the amazing photos and travels that the duke and duchess take.  See below for some of my “royal favorites”!

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  1. Game of Crowns Elizabeth, Camilla, Kate, and the Throne by Christopher Andersen is the most recent release and addition to my royal favorites.  Andersen, a seasoned writer with multiple New York Times bestsellers takes on the story of  the relationship between Elizabeth, Camilla and Kate.

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From Simon and Schuster:

“The #1 New York Times bestselling author of William and Kate and The Day Diana Died takes a compulsively readable look into the relationships and rivalries of Queen Elizabeth, Camilla Parker Bowles, and Kate Middleton.

One has been famous longer than anyone on the planet—a wily stateswoman and an enduring symbol of a fading institution. One is the great-granddaughter of a king’s mistress and a celebrated homewrecker who survived a firestorm of scorn to marry her lover and replace her arch rival, a beloved twentieth-century figure. One is a beautiful commoner, the university-educated daughter of a self-made entrepreneur, a fashion idol, and wife and mother to two future kings.

Master biographer Christopher Andersen takes readers behind palace walls to examine the surprising similarities and stark differences among three remarkable women—Queen Elizabeth; Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall; and Princess Kate. Andersen reveals what transpires within the royal family away from the public’s prying eyes; how the women actually feel about each other; how they differ as lovers, wives, and mothers; and how they are reshaping the landscape of the monarchy in this addictive read that will shock even those who are spellbound by the royal palace.” 

 

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2. People Magazine Princess Kate: Royal Mom, Future Queen

A fabulous collection of all things Kate with updated photos and articles.  Out on newsstands now!

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3. Kate The Future Queen by Katie Nicholl

Nicholl is a royal expert and this book is on the top of my list for favorites.  It recently was updated with new information and cover!

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From Weinstein books:

“From the bestselling author of William and Harry and renowned Royal Family news correspondent Katie Nicholl, comes the timely trade paperback edition of Kate: The Future Queen, the first in-depth biography of Kate Middleton, Duchess of Cambridge, now updated with more behind-the-scenes details on Kate’s first year as a mother, and her second pregnancy.

Katie Nicholl, bestselling author and royal correspondent for The Mail on Sunday, gives an inside look into the life of the future Queen of England, Kate Middleton. Since becoming Duchess Catherine of Cambridge in 2011, Middleton has captivated royals fans around the world and now, Nicholl delivers the story of her early life, first romances, and love with Prince William. Nicholl will reveal new details on Middleton’s initiation into royal life and, of course, her first pregnancy.”

 

4. Kate’s Style by Caroline Jones

A beautiful compilation of photos of the Duchess and her elegant and fabulous style.

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From Barrons Educational Books:

“The moment Kate Middleton stepped in front of the camera with her then fiancé Prince William to announce their engagement, a style icon was born. The electric blue Issa dress she wore on that day sold out in just 24 hours and sparked an international trend in “little blue dresses.” Classic and ladylike, yet fresh and youthful, the Duchess of Cambridge’s style has been like a breath of fresh air in a world that seemed to have forgotten the undeniable appeal of dressing like a lady. 

Now, author and lifestyle writer Caroline Jones captures that elusive style and tells us just how to create it in our own wardrobes. In Kate’s Style, Jones offers a range of tools for achieving the Duchess’s celebrated look. Readers will find—

  • A visual timeline of Kate’s outfits—from her days at university to recent royal tours and red carpet appearances
  • A directory of her favorite retailers and designers
  • A fabulous collection of full page photos showcasing Kate’s most iconic outfits, complete with pointers on how to recreate the look. 

Kate’s Style, is the essential guide for Kate addicts and fashion lovers alike.” 

 

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5. The Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan

A fun, dishy read by the “fuggirls” who are royal obsessed and literally have the best royal Instagram posts here and here!

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From Hachette Book Group:

“Now in paperback, the beloved novel and New York Times Summer Reading List pick hailed as “hysterical” by Entertainment Weekly‘s Must List, and “so fun and dishy” by People.

American Bex Porter was never one for fairy tales. Her twin sister Lacey was always the romantic, the one who daydreamed of being a princess, but it’s adventure-seeking Bex who goes to Oxford and meets dreamy Nick across the hall-and Bex who finds herself accidentally in love with the heir to the British throne. Nick is wonderful, but he comes with unimaginable baggage: a complicated family, hysterical tabloids tracking his every move, and a public that expected its future king to marry a Brit. On the eve of the most talked-about wedding of the century, Bex looks back on how much she’s had to give up for true love… and exactly whose heart she may yet have to break.”

 

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  • Thanks to Gallery books for sending Game of Thrones for a spotlight feature.

 

 

 

What Was Mine by Helen Klein Ross

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There is nothing I love more than a good thriller and What Was Mine by Helen Klein Ross did not disappoint.  Part thriller, part drama this novel has many layers but centers around  a women who is unable to have children and kidnaps an infant who she initially thinks is abandoned.  At first glance, as a mother, I was disturbed by this storyline but Ross creates a novel that kept the pages turning, the reader in wonder and then ultimately questioning everything you thought you had your mind made up about.  What is wrong and what is right?

The story centers around Lucy who finds out she is unable to have a baby.  After this devastating news and  the demise of her marriage she is in a bad place.  One day while on assignment for work she travels into an Ikea.  There she comes upon a baby in a carriage who is all alone.  Lucy looks around and sees no parent in site.  The baby is hot and from what Lucy can see a little distressed.  Lucy decides that the best idea would be to take the baby outside for some fresh air and then go back into the store to look for the parents.  Once she is outside the wheels start to turn fast and Lucy does the unthinkable.  She takes the baby into her car and drives back to her house.  All the while this is happening she is fighting the inner struggle of taking the baby back or the idea of keeping her . She eventually decides to keep her and raise her on her own.

As the story develops the baby wasn’t abandoned and the search for her kidnapper begins.  Lucy basically creates a whole new life for the baby, changing her name from Natalie to Mia and moving their home from the suburbs into the city.  As the years go on they form a bond of mother and daughter much like biological parents.  As each year passes Lucy, still high on anxiety knowing this isn’t her baby, can’t believe she has made it this far.  Eventually Mia reaches adulthood and Lucy makes a bold move in her career writing a novel that will change everything.

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This book is the perfect compliment to a cold winters night.  As I mentioned before I was left so conflicted and with so many questions.  For me this would be a great book for a sequel, where are they now?  Ross depicts motherhood so beautifully in a situation that is so devastating.  This book would be an excellent book club pick as you are questioning ethical decisions in the end.  I highly recommend What Was Mine and if you do read it I would love to start a discussion in the comments below.  Happy Reading!

 

*Thanks to Gallery Books for sending a review copy.