What’s in my Bookish (Beauty) Bag? ~ Maria Murnane

One thing I love about book blogging is discovering new, fabulous authors like Maria Murnane.  We connected via email and she sent her AH-mazing books my way.  Her latest, Bridges, is out now and is the quintessential female fiction as well as her already popular Waverly Bryson Series.  (Psst, if you have Prime and the Kindle App, the first book is free- you’re welcome.)  Read below to see Maria’s funky tote filled with a fave beauty product of mine- MAC lipstick!

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via Amazon~

From the bestselling author of the Waverly Bryson series.

It’s a piece of news Daphne never expected to hear: Her globe-trotting friend Skylar, who vowed never to get married, is engaged! Time to celebrate in Manhattan—Skylar’s treat, of course. After years scaling the corporate ladder, she can more than afford it.

Daphne arrives in NYC with news of her own—the novel she’s finally finished appears to be going nowhere but the trash bin of every publishing house around. She’s devastated but plans to keep her disappointment under wraps, something that becomes trickier when she sees Skylar’s spectacular apartment. Could her life have been like this if she’d chosen a different path?

What Daphne doesn’t know is she’s not the only one with a secret. Skylar and their friend KC are also holding something back, but what? As the trip unfolds, the truth about each woman emerges, along with tears.

And laughter. And love.

The fun-loving trio readers fell for in Wait for the Rain is together once more. Here’s to the power of friendship!

My purse

What is your bag of choice?
I love tote bags because they are so easy. I don’t care about brands– I bought the one in this photo at a street fair in Vietnam for $7!
 
What are your top favorite beauty picks?  
I love Mac lipstick– my favorite color is Midimauve
 
What do you always carry in your bag/purse/carry-on for beauty products?  
The two products I have with me at all times are lipstick and hand lotion. I have the dryest hands– it is so annoying!
 
What are you currently reading (can be books/magazines)
I’m currently reading a novella called Broken Bay. My friend Andrea Dunlop wrote it!
 
And any other fun item/must-have that you always have with you 🙂
This photo shows my staples: my Kindle, my lipstick, my hand lotion, my sunglasses, my business cards, my Altoids, and my mini-purse for money, etc. The only thing missing is my phone, which I needed to take the picture. 🙂

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*Thanks Maria for sharing your bag and the gift of your books!

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What’s in my Bookish (Beauty) Bag? ~ Jenny Patinkin

I posted earlier this week about my favorite products to achieve a summer glow.  One key piece to achieving ANY look are GREAT brushes.  They are the tool to get a perfect application.  Good brushes can really be the key to getting what you want.  When I saw that make-up brush maven Jenny Patinkin had a how-to make guide coming out called Lazy Perfection,The Art of Looking Great Without Really Trying, I knew it was a must read for me.  Yes I am a trained make-up artist but she is the creme de la creme and any tips she wants to give I am ready to listen 🙂  To be absolutely honest I couldn’t love this book more.  Why?  Because Jenny has tapped into the key piece of advice anyone should know- make-up should be fun and easy and not scary and impossible.  She breaks it down into a user friendly way that anyone can become their own professional make-up artist.  I was thrilled to chat with Jenny and have her share her breathtaking CELINE bag.  Seriously I can’t stop looking at this bag!

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via Amazon ~

Could you use a little Lazy Perfection in Your Life?
Every woman wants to look like the best version of herself-natural, radiant, and confident. But who has the time to master complicated makeup steps or the patience to sift through the glut of choices at the beauty counters? Celebrated makeup artist Jenny Patinkin cuts through the confusion and clutter with her “lazy perfection” approach to beauty, replacing complex techniques and hard-to-wear trends with a streamlined, sophisticated approach to makeup.
Here you’ll find guidance on finding a beauty routine that works for you-without a lot of involved steps or overpriced products. Guiding you through an initial makeup drawer purge, through setting beauty priorities, to crafting a finished look, Jenny gives you real-life tips for spending your limited time (and budget) to achieve the results you want. With Lazy Perfection you’ll know that you’re putting your best face forward-minus the fuss!

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

I used to be a devoted shoulder bag person, but now I prefer a tote because what I carry is often too much of a strain to keep on my shoulder all day.   Plus, I travel so much that I need a very sturdy bag that won’t show what a beating it takes.  Celine and Hermes are my go-to’s since the leather is thick and pretty much indestructible.  My new summer bag is a gigantic Celine tote.

What are your top favorite beauty picks?  

Glossier Haloscope highlighter in Quartz has been in daily use lately (personally and professionally) because it’s so subtle and flattering, and their Boy Brow is great for a quick fluff and fill.  It’s a very millennial brand, but these products are surprisingly good for more mature skin as well.

 

I have also been enjoying Beautycounter Skin Tint foundation, W3ll People Bio Bronzer stick and Juice Beauty cream blush in Seashell.  Mac Technakohl Eyeliner in Uniform is the one I always go back to – I just love the khaki/gray color on blue, green and hazel eyes – and I am super impressed by Wander Beauty’s Unlashed Mascara.

 

In skincare, I am obsessed by the Vintner’s Daughter Serum and Marie Veronique C, E & Ferulic.  Other C, E Ferulics were too rough on my skin – one of them even stained my skin orange – but this one is incredible to use.

Products

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

I always need to be ready to touch up before going on-camera, so I keep a few essentials with me.  Amazing Cosmetics Hydrate Concealer pretty much doubles as foundation; RCMA translucent powder to control shine; Urban Decay Naked Matte 2 eye shadow palette because it’s so versatile; Chanel Rouge Coco Shine in Boy; and my set of Petites makeup brushes.  And I always have a copy of my book with me as well, just in case.

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

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

I always have a bkr water bottle with me, the giant 1-liter size, which is another reason I need a big, sturdy purse — it weighs a ton, but I don’t like to drink out of plastic.  I mix in a Mestrength electrolyte supplement to keep me extra hydrated and to reduce bloat, which is especially helpful after a salty meal or a glass of wine.  I also keep some roasted almonds with me as a little pick me up snack.

As for reading, I actually got my latest book recommendation from you!  I have According to a Source all ready to take on my vacation!

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*Thanks to Jenny for sharing your gorgeous bag!

What’s in my Bookish {Beauty} Bag? ~ Hannah McKinnon

Who is getting ready for the 4th of July?!?!  I am excited to have the next week off and plan on finishing up some books and jumping into some fabulous beach reads.  I am thrilled to be able to feature Hannah McKinnon’s latest, The Summer House and have her share her BEACH BAG!  Hello.  Quintessential beach read and fabulous author’s beach bag?  Can we say perfect 4th weekend kick off 🙂

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via Amazon ~

When Flossy Merrill summons her children to the beloved family beach house to celebrate their father’s eightieth birthday, both cherished memories and long-kept secrets come to light in this charming and lyrical novel from the author of The Lake Season and Mystic Summer. 

Flossy Merrill has managed to—somewhat begrudgingly—gather her three ungrateful grown children from their dysfunctional lives for a summer reunion at the family’s Rhode Island beach house. Clementine, her youngest child and a young mother of two small children, has caused Flossy the most worry after enduring a tragically life-altering year. But Samuel and his partner Evan are not far behind in their ability to alarm: their prospective adoption search has just taken a heart-wrenching turn. Only Paige, the eldest of the headstrong Merrill clan, is her usual self: arriving precisely on time with her well-adapted teens. Little does her family know that she, too, is facing personal struggles of her own.

No matter. With her family finally congregated under one seaside roof, Flossy is determined to steer her family back on course even as she prepares to reveal the fate of the summer house that everyone has thus far taken for granted: she’s selling it. The Merrill children are both shocked and outraged and each returns to memories of their childhoods at their once beloved summer house—the house where they have not only grown up, but from which they have grown away. With each lost in their respective heartaches, Clementine, Samuel, and Paige will be forced to reconsider what really matters before they all say goodbye to a house that not only defined their summers, but, ultimately, the ways in which they define themselves. Featuring McKinnon’s “sharp and evocative” (Kirkus Reviews) voice, this warm-hearted novel is perfect for fans of Elin Hilderbrand and Mary Alice Monroe.

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What is your bag of choice?

With summer upon us and beach reads on the brain, my go-to beach bag is my Mar Y Sol valencia beach tote. I love the raffia, I love the fact that I can fit everything in it from sunscreen and snacks to books and a beach towel. And for a girl who trends toward earth tones and neutrals, the Madagascar orange color is such a fun pop!

What are your top favorite beauty picks?  

Cruelty-free and paraben-free products are important to me. I love to shop Sephora, but as a working mom of two little girls, the local drugstore often has to do. Moisturizer is my number one beauty pick: its amazing what a good one can do. I love Alba Botanica moisturizers with sunscreen. A beauty favorite that I discovered on Cape Cod one summer is Kiss Me in the Garden. I adore their No 04 Lemongrass & Verbena shea butter balm. Locally made, and all natural, it feels indulgent and it smells divine; I use it all over! You can find them online, and they offer a custom blending bar, too.

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

As a fair-haired and sensitive skinned-girl, little blemishes or tired eyes stand out. I love Bobbi Brown Corrector in Porcelain Bisque. A swipe of sheer e.l.f. lipgloss and I’m good to go.

What are you currently reading?

I’m currently reading Wally Lamb’s ‘I’ll Take You There’. I’ve always been a big Wally fan. For summer, nothing beats an Elin Hilderbrand book.

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

My RayBan’s go everywhere with me! Polarized protection for blue eyes and a quick fix to pull your look together. As a mom, my two other must-haves are sunscreen and snacks. Babyganics is a great mineral-based sunscreen for sports and outdoor play. I also keep my bag flush with food- my girls love Annie’s and Honest Kids. We make a solid organic effort, but you’ll find Doritos in there, too! Well, at least the crumbs.

Much as I’m loathe to admit it, the first day of summer is probably the ONLY time my beach bag actually looks this put together! By day two- with kids, pets, and beaches- it’s full of sticky juice containers, sandy granola bar wrappers, and who knows what else. My younger daughter has been known to pop one of our pet chickens in there to carry around. Even she knows the value of a good sized tote!

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What’s in my Bookish {Beauty} Bag? National Rose’ Day Edition featuring: Colleen Oakley, Holly Brown and Orly Konig

Well it’s summer and the season of Rose’!  What better than to celebrate with crisp wine and a refreshing read.  I have three amazing authors today in celebration and I think their latest books will pair perfectly with this pink summer water.  We have a little something for everyone- suspense, drama, love- it’s all here today.  There is nothing better than a beautiful summer evening, relaxing on the deck with a glass wine and great book.  These three authors- Colleen Oakley, Holly Brown and Orly Konig, have written something for everyone and do not disappoint.  I loved being able to take a peak into their bags!

Colleen Oakley ~ Close Enough to Touch

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via Amazon ~

Can you miss something you never had?

Jubilee Jenkins is no ordinary librarian. With a rare allergy to human touch, any skin-to-skin contact could literally kill her. But after retreating into solitude for nearly ten years, Jubilee’s decided to brave the world again, despite the risks. Armed with a pair of gloves, long sleeves, and her trusty bicycle, she finally ventures out the front door—and into her future.

Eric Keegan has troubles of his own. With his daughter from a failed marriage no longer speaking to him, and his brilliant, if psychologically troubled, adopted son attempting telekinesis, Eric’s struggling to figure out how his life got so off course, and how to be the dad—and man—he wants so desperately to be. So when an encounter over the check-out desk at the local library entangles his life with that of a beautiful—albeit eccentric—woman, he finds himself wanting nothing more than to be near her.

A “heart-wrenching and humorous” (Publishers Weekly) love story for anyone who’s ever wanted something—or someone—just out of reach, Colleen Oakley’s Close Enough to Touch will delight fans of Jojo Moyes’s One Plus One and Graeme Simsion’s The Rosie Project.

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What is your bag of choice?

It’s a huge NY&Co. leather tote that I grabbed as a last-minute purchase before a flight to, coincidentally, New York. Being a mom of four, it fits everything I could possibly need, and I don’t worry about it getting banged up because it was on sale, for like, $20.

What are your top favorite beauty picks?

Neutrogena Naturals Multi-Vitamin Nourishing Night Cream

Great Lash mascara

Victoria Secret Satin lip gloss (color: Indulgence)

Avon Ultra Luxury Brow Liner in Blonde

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

Lip gloss— I have about 586402986821 tubes in my purse at any given time.

What are you currently reading?

The Mind at Night— research for the novel I’m working on.

And I just finished Lincoln in the Bardo. I didn’t think it could possibly live up to the hype, but it did. Funny, poignant, touching— I loved it.

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

Well, they’re not fun items, but they are must-haves— diapers and tissues. #momlife

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Holly Brown ~ This is Not Over

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via Amazon ~

You’ll have your deposit within seven business days, just like it says on Getaway.com. I’ve put through a refund to your credit card for the full amount, minus $200 to replace the stained sheets…

Miranda

When 30-year-old Dawn reads Miranda’s email, she sees red. People have always told Dawn she’s beautiful, and she just hopes they don’t see beneath—to how she grew up, to what she’s always tried to outrun. She revels in her getaways with her perfect (maybe too perfect) husband, the occasional long weekend in luxurious homes, temporarily inhabiting other people’s privileged lives. Miranda’s email strikes a nerve, with its lying intimation that Dawn is so dirty you need to throw out her sheets.

Beware of your “host”

I wouldn’t have left a review at all, if I didn’t feel it was my civic duty to warn others…

57-year-old Miranda thought she’d seen it all, but she can’t believe her eyes when she reads Dawn’s review. She’s a doctor’s wife but she needs that rental money, desperately. People might think her life is privileged, but they don’t know what’s really going on. They don’t know about her son. She won’t take this threat to her livelihood—to her very life—lying down.

Two very different women with this in common: Each harbors her own secret, her own reason why she can’t just let this go. Neither can yield, not before they’ve dredged up all that’s hidden, even if it has the power to shatter all they’ve built.

This is not over.

This is so not over.

 

 

My backpack

What is your bag of choice?

This is the laptop backpack that came with my trusty Lenovo ThinkPad. I take my Targus everywhere with me. It’s far from fancy but has those wide straps so my back never hurts. Let’s just say it gets the job done.

What are your top favorite beauty picks?

I love Burt’s Bees tinted lip balm. That’s Red Dahlia in the picture, though I also love Hibiscus and Rose. It’s like your lip color on steroids (but organic, all natural steroids.) I don’t really carry any other beauty products with me on an ordinary day, except for my travel-sized toothbrush and Tom’s Maine toothpaste. Fresh breath is beautiful, in my opinion.

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

I just got back from the fantastic Southwest Florida Reading Festival so the contents of my carry-on are fresh in my mind. (You’ll note the logo on the note pad in the picture. Yes, I’m old school–lots of paper in my backpack, including the schedule book that I would be lost without.) My carry-on had Neova Day Therapy, which has copper peptides to beat back aging; Meladerm cream, which has been working wonders on some hyper pigmentation and sun damage; Josie Maran Argan Matchmaker foundation, which goes on white and then turns, chameleon-like, into your exact skin color; Lavilin deodorant, the only all-natural product I’ve found that actually keeps you smelling sweet, even in the Florida humidity; and Living Proof products to tame my frizz.

What are you currently reading?

That’s my e-reader, in the picture, which is Barnes & Noble’s Nook. (My five-year-old daughter did the decorating on its case, with a sticker from the oh-so-chic Doc McStuffins collections.) My Nook’s always got at least ten options to choose from, since I like to jump around from fiction to non. Right now, I’m tearing through Maria Semple’s “Today Will Be Different.” She’s a comedy master, as anyone who’s read “Where’d You Go, Bernadette?” knows. Next up will be a memoir, though I haven’t yet decided which one.
And any other fun item/must-have that you always have with you 🙂

I’m addicted to Think Thin bars. The creamy peanut butter flavor’s the best, and they have a ton of protein. They’re my salvation when I don’t have time for an actual meal.

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Orly König ~ The Distance Home

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via Amazon ~

Sixteen years ago, a tragic accident cost Emma Metz her two best friends―one human and one equine. Now, following her father’s death, Emma has reluctantly returned to the Maryland hometown she’d left under a cloud of guilt.

Sorting through her father’s affairs, Emma uncovers a history of lies tying her broken family to the one place she thought she could never return―her girlhood sanctuary, Jumping Frog Farm.

Emma finds herself drawn back to the stable after all these years. It’s easy to win forgiveness from a horse, but less so from her former friend Jillian, their once strong bond destroyed by secrets and betrayals. But despite Jillian’s cold reception, for the first time in years, Emma feels at home.

To exorcise the past, Emma will have to release her guilt, embrace an uncertain future, and trust again in the healing power of horses.

Orly Konig’s The Distance Home is a powerful and sparkling women’s fiction debut novel of second chances, friendship, and healing.

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What is your bag of choice?

My spring go-to bag is this Tory Burch tote. It’s large enough to carry most of what I need or think I’ll need, but small enough to manage my tendency for schlepping far more than I actually need.

What are your top favorite beauty picks?

Years ago while visiting my in-laws in the south of France, I was introduced to the Vichy products. Now every time I use one of the creams, I’m transported back to that amazing trip. It’s my daily vacation in a jar. ☺

What do you always carry in your bag for beauty products?

Lipstick is the one beauty product I always have with me. I’ve never been a huge make-up gal and since making the switch to working from home, I’m even worse. But I feel naked without my Dior lipstick!

And Climber’s Hand Repair Balm. It’s non-greasy and does wonders on calluses.

What are you currently reading?

I’m judging the Women’s Fiction Writers Association Star contest so those three books (all published in 2016) are at the top of my reading priority list at the moment. I’m also reading an ARC of Becoming Bonnie (releasing May 9) by fellow debut and Forge author Jenni L. Walsh.

Any other fun items/must-haves that you always have with you?

Must haves – my dateplanner because I’m old fashioned with my lists. It’s got plenty of extra pages to jot down book notes and keep my various writing projects organized. My coffee addiction is well known. I’ve recently discovered these coffee candies and I can’t imagine how I’ve lived without them.

I always have a Kleenex packet or three handy, and some sort of hair clip or band. Eye glass cleaning sheets are a must because I’m horrible at putting my fingers on the lenses and, at least once a day, I end up with a kitty nose print smudge as well.

I finally learned to carry cards about my book with me. Now when someone asks, I feel like a legit author. ☺

Orly Konig_Lauren Ackil Photography

 

*Thanks to all the ladies for taking the time to chat with us today!

 

What’s in my Bookish {Beauty} Bag? ~ ‘Must-Reads for Vacation Edition’ with Kimberly McCreight, Sadeqa Johnson and Amy E. Reichert

To get us started for the summer season what better than a few picks that are perfect to pack into your carry on and crack open while vacationing!  Today I have three fabulous authors with books that have a little something for everyone.  Craving some secrets and betrayal then Kimberly McCreight‘s, The Scattering is a perfect choice.  Looking for some drama with a sprinkle of friendship and love then grab Sadeqa Johnson‘s, And Then There Was Me.  And last, if you love a heartwarming novel that has all the feels then Amy E. Reichert‘s, The Simplicity of Cider is a winner.  All three authors are on the blog today opening up their bags and chatting all things beauty and books.

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via Amazon ~

New York Times bestselling author Kimberly McCreight raises the stakes in the second book of the heart-pounding Outliers trilogy, a uniquely speculative story about secrets, betrayal, and a world where one small group of people are blessed—or cursed—with an incredible power.

Wylie may have escaped the camp in Maine, but she is far from safe. The best way for her to protect herself is to understand her ability, fast. But after spending a lifetime trying to ignore her own feelings, giving in to her ability to read other peoples’ emotions is as difficult as it is dangerous.

And Wylie isn’t the only one at risk. Ever since they returned home, Jasper has been spiraling, wracked with guilt over what happened to Cassie. After all they’ve been through together, Wylie and Jasper would do anything for each other, but she doesn’t know if their bond is strong enough to overcome demons from the past.

It is amid this uncertainty and fear that Wylie finds herself confronted with a choice. She was willing to do whatever it took to help Cassie, but is she prepared to go to the same extremes to help complete strangers . . . even if they are just like her?

BBB bag

What is your bag of choice?

In fairness (to myself), I really have two. Because I live in Brooklyn and daily walk a long distance to the Brooklyn Writers Space with my computer, I wear a backpack (don’t judge me, my children already do). It’s from Brooklyn Industries. But when I go out, my favorite bag is a silver clutch handmade out of pull-tabs from soda cans that I bought at an outdoor market in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, which is a town in the South of France.

Writers live a very extreme public-private dichotomy. We are underworld mole people for months on end, where our hair goes unbrushed and we no longer recall what makeup is, only to suddenly find ourselves out on a book tour trying to remember how to walk in high heels. The good news is the novelty makes getting dressed up a lot more fun.

As for all my makeup recommendations below, my dark secret is that I am CLUELESS about such things. But I have my very dear friend Elena, from college, who has always been my personal makeup consultant. Without her, I wouldn’t know anything.

What are your top favorite beauty picks?  

I am obsessed with all masks and other facial products. Everyone should go run and buy Perricone MD Chloro Plasma Purifying Mask, Jurlique Rose Moisture Plus Moisturizing Cream Mask, and the Sephora Collection Eye Masks (all kinds are great). You can do it all in fifteen minutes once a week and it is amazing. Also, Dior Flash Luminizer Radiance Booster Pen makes all dark circles vanish in two seconds.

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

I always carry Laura Mercier Kohl Eye Pencil in Black Violet and YSL Gloss Volupté (in a color I will never find again because the label is gone), plus Bliss High Intensity Hand Cream. Also, spare earrings and hairbands. That way if I need to go somewhere unexpectedly, I can put my hair up, throw some earrings and lip gloss on, and maybe look halfway presentable.

What are you currently reading?

I always have a New Yorker with me and it is always old because I have a subscription and I am always behind on reading. I am also reading Girls & Sex by Peggy Orenstein (because, yes, I have a thirteen-year-old) and The Gypsy Moth Summer by Julia Fierro, a stunningly gorgeous novel which is out in June.

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

I always have sunglasses, glasses, wireless headphones, and every charger known to man, as well as gum (usually in five varieties) and countless, countless Band-Aids (I am not sure why). I also have two dozen pens: I think I live in fear of wanting to write something down and not being able to. Oh yes, and my computer. My beloved (and lightweight) MacBook Air that I never leave home without. And last but not least I have a significant collection of lucky charms: a small box of lucky pennies I found, a magic lantern and frog—almost all courtesy of my daughters. Except the pennies. I will dive over people to pick one up. Heads only, of course.

Kimberly McCreight by Beowulf Sheehan

 

And Then There Was Me_COVER

via Amazon ~

Bea and Awilda have been best friends from the moment Awilda threw her fourteen year-old self across Bea’s twin-sized bed as if they had known each other forever. Bubbly, adventurous Awilda taught sheltered, shy Bea how to dress, wear her hair and what to do with boys. She even introduced Bea to her husband, Lonnie, in college, who pledged to take good care of her for the rest of their lives. But philanderer Lonnie breaks that promise over and over again, leaving Bea to wrestle with her self-esteem and long time secret addiction.

Recently Lonnie has plopped the family in a New Jersey upper class suburb, which lacks the diversity that Bea craves but has the school district and zip code envy that Lonnie wants. The demands of carrying a third child and fitting into this new environment while pretending that her husband is not cheating on her again, is more than she can handle. And just when she thinks things can’t get any worst, the ultimate deception snaps the little thread that was holding her life together and all comes tumbling down.

Sadeqa Johnson’s And Then There Was Me is the story of love and friendship, heartache and betrayal. It’s the journey of a woman stripped down to her lowest point and needing to find the will to press on.

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What is your bag of choice?

I carry a Celine tote that is tough and durable. I can drop things in it and if something spills it wipes out easily. It was a Christmas gift from my husband. He buys all of my bags because he has way better taste than me. It’s a big bag so things are always sloshing around. Of course I carry the basics, keys (sometimes), a wallet that has a magnet so that I can attach my phone, a gratitude journal that dubs as a place to jot notes of any kind, Tic Tacs, phone charger, lip gloss, lots of loose change, Petco gift card (we just rescued a pit bull named Penny who has become the love of my life), and snacks. Always a granola bar, nuts and goldfish. With three kids someone is always hungry. When I’m on my A game I have a sharpie for those impromptu books I get to sign but I never have the stuff I need like postcards, book marks or business cards. I need to do better.

 

What are your top favorite beauty picks?  

I love natural care products. I often wear my hair in a wash and go style, so my must have leave-in conditioner is Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castrol Oil. That stuff is the truth! It leaves my hair shiny and full of body. I also like the Shea Moisture 100% Pure Argan Oil for a shine boost and to help control my frizz. I am the low-maintenance mom who runs around town barefaced with just a little lip gloss, the Sephora brand works fine. When I take the ten minutes to put on my face it is with a Nars Seychelles tinted moisturizer. It gives me that sun-kissed, just been to the beach, healthy look that I love. I top that with a liquid eye liner and Nars blush in Orgasm. When I am really painting the town pink, it’s all about the Ruby Woo matte lipstick from MAC. Fiery red lips always make it look like it’s my birthday even when it’s not. I’ve tried several high end mascaras but I always end up going back to Maybelline Great Lash in the pink and green bottle. Can’t help what works.

 

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

Baby wipes are a staple in my bag. They are the best invention since sliced bread and work for every situation. My little one needs her mouth cleaned before she gets on the school bus, the middle Diva needs a wipe down in between school and gymnastics practice, and my son always needs food dabbed from his shirt. Baby wipes are my lifeline. I personally need lip gloss. My lip gloss is popping for every occasion; the grocery story, school functions, the gym, and even when I’m running a half marathon — lip gloss is a must. I’m so obsessed that I keep a tube in every bag. When I was little my mother never let me leave the house without putting on my earrings so as a grown woman I never do. If by chance I forget, there is an extra pair of oversized silver hoops stashed in my bag because they go with everything.

 

What are you currently reading?

I am reading Anita Shreves’ The Pilot’s Wife. I know I’m late but it’s been on my list forever. I also just finished Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi, man talk about a book I wished I had written. On the go I like to flip through Runner and Yoga magazine, the articles motivate me to step up my workout game.

 

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

I’ve taken to carrying my laptop in my bag because with three busy kids I am an unpaid chauffer. I spend hours in the car waiting so I’ve just recently started writing in the car. Don’t judge me. It gets the job done, and you be surprised at where the imagination can travel sitting in front of a soccer field.

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via Amazon~

Fall in love with The Simplicity of Cider, the charming new novel about a prickly but gifted cider-maker whose quiet life is interrupted by the arrival of a handsome man and his young son at her family’s careworn orchard by the author of The Coincidence of Coconut Cake and Luck, Love & Lemon Pie.

Focused and unassuming fifth generation cider-maker Sanna Lund has one desire: to live a simple, quiet life on her family’s apple orchard in Door County, Wisconsin. Although her business is struggling, Sanna remains fiercely devoted to the orchard, despite her brother’s attempts to convince their aging father to sell the land.

Single dad Isaac Banks has spent years trying to shield his son Sebastian from his troubled mother. Fleeing heartbreak at home, Isaac packed up their lives and the two headed out on an adventure, driving across the country. Chance—or fate—led them straight to Sanna’s orchard.

Isaac’s helping hands are much appreciated at the apple farm, even more when Sanna’s father is injured in an accident. As Sanna’s formerly simple life becomes increasingly complicated, she finds solace in unexpected places—friendship with young Sebastian and something more deliciously complex with Isaac—until an outside threat infiltrates the farm.

From the warm and funny Amy E. Reichert, The Simplicity of Cider is a charming love story with a touch of magic, perfect for fans of Sarah Addison Allen and Gayle Forman.

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What is your bag of choice?

I received a gorgeous Kate Spade purse as a gift for my debut from a very dear friend. I use it everyday. Ever since, I love Kate Spade bags, though I have yet to buy one—though I do have my eye on a few.

What are your top favorite beauty picks?  

I swear by Jeffree Star’s matte liquid lip. I get more compliments when I wear it. My favorite shade is Gemini, with All Shook as a close second.

I love my Beauty Blender. I’ve tried a few knock offs, but they never give the same finish. I’m still searching for a less expensive option, so if you have a recommendation, I’m all ears.

Eucerin’s Aquaphor—I feel like this solves all my cracked lip/heel/elbow problems.

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

I don’t do a lot of touch ups on the road, but I always have a lip gloss of some kind. Currently, I have an IT lip stick and a Manna lip gloss. I also keep a pack of hair bands in my purse because I will eventually put my hair up and I need to be prepared since I always lose them.

What are you currently reading?

Every week I read Entertainment Weekly and The Week magazine—they keep me up-to-date on everything important from politics and pop culture. Plus The Week has a crossword and sudoku puzzle in each issue that I always try to complete. This time of year, I keep a few magazines in my purse to page through while at my son’s baseball games or my daughter’s lacrosse games. As for books, I’m currently reading THE ORPHAN’S TALE by Pam Jenoff—it’s amazing!

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

I always have my Costco card—you never know when you’re going to need 20 pounds of potatoes. Then there is the stack of Scoopie tokens from Culver’s, a Midwestern fast food restaurant. They come on kids meals and you turn them in for free scoops of frozen custard or more free kids meals. I have an embarrassing number of them.

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*Thanks to the ladies for taking the time to open their bags and for the gift of their books.

What’s in my Bookish {Beauty} Bag? ~ Camille Di Maio

A long weekend is coming and what better to celebrate than lots of fun authors sharing their gorgeous bags!  To kick off this celebration I have the lovely Camille Di Maio, author of Before the Rain Falls, out now.  Di Maio, not only a beautiful fiction author, was a former real estate agent who left her career in the field to write full time, a choice that is so wonderful for us as readers 🙂  This latest novel intertwines the past, the present, family and love  so perfectly.  It’s sure to be a 2017 hit!

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via Amazon ~

After serving seventy years in prison for the murder of her sister, Eula, Della Lee has finally returned home to the Texas town of Puerto Pesar. She’s free from confinement—and ready to tell her secrets before it’s too late.

She finds a willing audience in journalist Mick Anders, who is reeling after his suspension from a Boston newspaper and in town, reluctantly, to investigate a mysterious portrait of Eula that reportedly sheds tears. He crosses paths with Dr. Paloma Vega, who’s visiting Puerto Pesar with her own mission: to take care of her ailing grandmother and to rescue her rebellious younger sister before something terrible happens. Paloma and Mick have their reasons to be in the hot, parched border town whose name translates as “Port of Regret.” But they don’t anticipate how their lives will be changed forever.

Moving and engrossing, this dual story alternates between Della’s dark ordeals of the 1940s and Paloma and Mick’s present-day search for answers―about roots, family, love, and what is truly important in life.

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

I have been gravitating toward backpacks for a few reasons. They keep my hands free for the all-important tasks of holding hot coffee and wrangling children. I can also carry my laptop in them so that I can write at a moment’s notice. My favorite one is by Orla Kiely. I found it at an airport shop in Belfast Northern Ireland as I waited for a flight to Liverpool. I love its coated canvas material, it’s striking colors, and its ideal size. It’s not a brand often seen in the US, so I also love how unique it is!

What are your top favorite beauty picks?

If I had to choose only one kind of makeup for the rest of my life, it would be mascara.  Loreal is my favorite brand – I get so many compliments on my lashes!  I like Kat Von D liquid eyeliner in blue, which makes my eyes stand out. Erase Paste by Benefit is awesome for the inevitable dark circles and blemishes.  My daughter recently introduced me to beauty blenders and I’m wondering how I went so long without them!  I also keep a spare pare of contact lenses just in case I lose one – I would be lost without them!

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

I have a great little Longchamp bag that is ideal for carrying around mints, lipstick, hair ties, and lipstick. I also like to include one of those round pop-up hair brushes for quick touch-ups.  I have long hair, so it’s a must!

What are you currently reading?

I’m currently reading an early copy of THE WEIGHT OF LIES by Emily Carpenter on my Kindle. It’s amazing Southern Gothic suspense.  I don’t normally read that genre, but this book might make me a convert.  My Kindle is a must-have piece in my bag.  I use ever spare minute to read. A five-minute wait in a grocery store line can get me through several pages!

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

I always carry pens, business cards with pictures of my books on them, and chocolate lollipops from See’s Candies.  The lollipops are long-lasting and satisfy frequent chocolate cravings!  Of course, my cell phone might as well be surgically attached.  My favorite feature is the camera and I’m amazed at the picture quality that can come from such a small device!  In another life, I would have been a photographer, so I love always having that at the ready.  I do have a super-ugly, utilitarian case, because I broke the glass too many times with the cute ones.

 

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*Many thanks to Camille for chatting with us today!

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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*Thanks to the beautiful Kristy for sharing her bag and giving us the gift of her wonderful books!