Tag Archives: Reading

Five Books-August 2020

Claire asks “Why read when you can pet me?”

Books Read-August 2020

  1. Mrs. Whaley and Her Charleston Garden-Emily Whaley (Non-fiction)
    This book is about more than gardening. It is a memoir of southern living. At first it put me off with some of its outdated views. It made up for it with charming insights into certain facets of life.
  2. The Ark’s Anniversary-Gerald Durrell (Non-fiction)
    Gerry tells humorous tales about some of the zoos animals as well their captive breeding efforts and releases. A funny read. The author is the youngest child from the television series “The Durrell’s of Corfu”.
  3. Dear John-Nicholas Sparks
    John and Savannah have a true love. Sometimes, you never expect what true love is. Sparks is always a good read.
  4. Death by Chocolate Frosted Donut-Sarah Graves
    Paints a nice picture of northern coastal Maine along with an explosive murder mystery. Enjoyable.
  5. My Italian Bulldozer-Alexander McCall Smith
    Although I was not a fan of the author’s No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency books, I do enjoy the Paul Stuart novels, of which this is one. They are a nice taste of the Italian village and provide food for thought on daily life.

I don’t have a number one pick from this month’s books because they are all so different. It just depends what you are in the mood for. I find that as the weather cools and my gardening chores taper off, I am reading more. I am already on my fifth book for September with nearly two weeks to go!


  1. Yankee Magazine

What To Write?

Hello Dear Readers,

My brain has been working overtime on new ideas and I have not been able to make a decision, so I am asking for feedback and opinions. I plan to write a book, but I keep changing my mind as to what I should focus on. It will be non-fiction since my thought processes tend toward the technical. All those years as an environmental scientist served me well. I have started some books, but need to pick one and follow through. My choices for you are as follows:

  1. An autobiography focusing on the animals I have encountered in my life and how they have affected it.
  2. My country lifestyle and day to day happenings including animals, gardening, cooking, and more.
  3. Views From the Patio. This would consist of my thoughts and interpretations of anything, from foster dogs to nature to current events.
  4. A cookbook. It would be vegetarian based and give occasional ways to add meat into a basically vegetarian meal since that is how we eat, with one vegetarian/pescatarian and one omnivore in the household.
  5. A book centered on the animals I have rescued over the years.
  6. My blog posts bound into a book, by category. ie. Rescue Happenings, Gardening, etc.

I am interested to know which of these subjects is most appealing to you since I seem to be equally attached to all of them. And I may write about all of them but I have to start some where. If you have other ideas, feel free to mention those too!

Thanks for the input.

Books Read-May & June 2020

I’m publishing my lists of books read for May and June together in this post. Since summer is here and there is lots of gardening to do and keep up with, I don’t have nearly as much time to read, so the lists are shorter.

If you could only read one of these books, I would recommend A Country Year by Sue Hubbell. She was a resourceful woman and a beautiful writer. I put this book back on my shelf, because I will want to read it again one day.

Books Read May 2020

1. Molly-Colin Butcher (Non-fiction)

The pet detective dog who searches for lost cats, and occasionally dogs and other animals.

2. Morning Comes Softly-Debbie Macomber

Southern librarian Mary answers an ad for a Montana rancher seeking a wife to help raise 3 orphaned children in his custody.

3. Table For Five-Susan Wiggs

School teacher Lily ends up helping raise her best friend’s three children after a tragic accident. The children’s uncle has custody and things turn interesting.

4. The Spirit of Covington-Joan Medlicott

Made it too page 79 and stopped. Not my cup of tea.


  1. Country Living- May 2017

Books Read-June 2020

1. Killer Crab Cakes-Livia J. Washburn

Phyllis agrees to look after her cousin’s Texas B & B, and the murders start taking place.

2. Fool For Love-Beth Ciotta

Chloe heads to Vermont after a breakup with her cheating boyfriend. She makes a new life with her new free spirit boss and finds unexpected love.

3. A Country Year-Sue Hubbell (Non-fiction)

The author makes her own life as a beekeeper in the Missouri Ozarks. She lives in a rustic wood heated cabin with her two dogs and enjoys nature and the seasons. Beautiful insights into the natural world.


Country Living-2 isssues

Books Read-March 2020

I’m a little late in publishing my list for March, but here it is. And don’t worry, I’m still reading lots and will have a list ready for next month.

1. Hero Dogs-Wilma Melville (Audio Book)

Story told by the founder of the Search Dog Rescue group. Tells of working various tragedies with the dogs. Also, the story of finding the dogs for the program, as well as the story behind the dogs.

2. Wrapped Up In You-Jill Shalvis

A romance, as only Jill Shalvis can tell it. Ivy overcomes her rough childhood to establish her own business, overcoming her past and finding someone to share her new life with.

3. The Art of Racing In the Rain-Garth Stein

This is a good book, especially if you like a tearjerker with a happy ending. I found the book to be rather painful, as it deals with brain cancer and a custody fight. Definitely well written. It tells things from the dog’s point of view.

4. No Judgments-Meg Cabot

Bree escaped to a Florida island to escape a past relationship. She ends up taking care of the animals that people left behind after a Category 5 hurricane and finds a new relationship along the way. It was actually a light-hearted read.

5. The Girl Who Lived Twice-David Lagercrantz

This is a book in The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo series. You must pay attention to the details. It is another intriguing story with lots of action. Definitely not a light-hearted read.

6. The Dog I Loved-Susan Wilson

Rosie trains service dogs while in prison. She and the person for her first service dog become friends. Rosie is released and we follow the two on the journey through a part of their lives.

7. The Book of Gutsy Women-Hillary & Chelsea Clinton (Non-fiction)

Kind of like a history book about brave women who have the world a better place for women, as well as the rest of humanity.


Yankee-January/February 2020

Yankee-March/April 2020

It’s hard for me to pick a favorite from this list. They all offer something different. If I went with my gut, I would recommend #6. It covers subject matter close to my heart- the power of dogs to change our world for the better.

Books I Read in February 2020

1. Christmas at Rosie Hopkins’ Sweetshop-Jenny Colgan

Rosie & the village of Lipton have many adventures and discoveries over the holiday season.

2. How To Give Up Plastic-Will McCallum (Non-Fiction)

The many ways that plastic affects our planet, particularly our oceans, and ways to lessen its impact.

3. So You Want To Start a Podcast-Kristen Meinzer (Non-Fiction)

After reading this, I know that I do not want to start a podcast. So, worth the read.

4. Window On The Bay-Debbie Macomber

Friends Jenna & Maureen are life-time best friends. Single women who support each other over the years and each finds a new love.

5. The Guest Book-Sarah Blake

A saga of three generations of the Milton family in New York & summering in Maine. This book was a little hard for me to follow. I found it to be more trouble than it was worth. Not a bad book if you’re up for a challenge.

6. Dying for Devil’s Food-Jenn McKinley

Cupcake shop owners Mel & Angie have to figure who killed the mean girl at their class reunion.

7. Winter at the Beach-Sheila Roberts

Jenna, manager of the Driftwood Inn, is in charge of the winter festival by the sea. Mayhem ensues as a winter storm hits at the time of the festival.


  1. Issue of Woman’s Day-Fall 2019
  2. Bark-Summer 2019
  3. Bark-Spring 2019

If you needed to pick only one of these books to read, I would recommend #2 How To Give Up Plastic. I learned so much from this book, and I think I am fairly environmentally conscious. Did you know that micro plastics that cause harm are not just microbeads and plastics that are small to start with? Larger plastics can break down into smaller and smaller pieces, becoming micro plastics. I also learned that people with certain disabilities require straws to be able to drink. They need straws that are more environmentally friendly.

Check back at the beginning of April to see what my March reads were

Books Read in January

I enjoy seeing what other people are reading so thought I would start my own reading list for 2020. I will comment on what I have read at the end of each month this year. Below is my list of books and magazines read for January 2020. I will also share with you a recommendation of which book was my favorite and why.

Books Read January 2020:

1. Noel Street-Richard Paul Evans

A struggling young mother of a biracial child helps a Vietnam Veteran overcome his emotional troubles after the war.

2. Everybody Has a Book Inside of Them-Ann Marie Sabth (Non-fiction)

The author coaches you through deciding what your book is and gives inspiration and advice to write it.

3. Midnight at The Blackbird Café-Heather Webber

A young woman inherits her grandmother’s café and learns about her family, herself, and the legend of the blackbirds.

4. The Oysterville Sewing Circle-Susan Wiggs

The main character takes in her friend’s two orphaned children. This book is only peripherally about sewing. The scope covers a much larger issue.

5. The Enlightenment of Bees-Rachel Linden

The main character breaks up with her boyfriend and travels to foreign lands as a volunteer, having many adventures along the way.

6. Aussie Rules-Jill Shalvis

Love and a mystery with an Australian sidekick.

7. The Second Worst Restaurant in France-Alexander McCall Smith

The main character goes to a small town in the French countryside and has numerous unlikely adventures.


  1. O Magazine (Oprah)- December 2019
  2. Magnolia Journal-Fall 2018
  3. National Geographic December 2019

And the winner is…The Oysterville Sewing Circle-Susan Wiggs! I found this to be a thoroughly enjoyable book. It has a social message and awareness for us all to benefit from. The characters were also realistic and I found myself rooting for them. The main theme of the book took me by surprise and was much more than I expected.

In the spirit of brevity, I did not give in depth descriptions or summaries of the books. If this is something that you would like to hear about, leave me a comment and I will offer more details in the future. Thanks for reading!