The Lost for Words Bookshop by Stephanie Butland #travelingsistersread #BookReview


The Lost for Words Bookshop by Stephanie Butland

Norma’s review & rating: 4 of 5 stars

Well what is better than reading a book that speaks to you like a book and has so many references of books that is so easily relatable to? THE LOST FOR WORDS BOOKSHOP!

THE LOST FOR WORDS BOOKSHOP by STEPHANIE BUTLAND is a wonderfully charming, light, moving, and endearing tale that is set in the greatest place ever, a bookshop.

Any books that have any indication that it is going to be about a bookstore or books, I’m in, no questions asked. They are by far one of my favourite settings! Also, I have to mention that beautiful cover!

STEPHANIE BUTLAND delivers an absolutely lovely, appealing, and well-written read here that was more character-driven than plot-driven with wonderful, relatable and likeable characters. Our quirky and snarky main character is Loveday (adorable name right?) and she is known to love her books more than people. My husband has accused me of that many a times! LOL

This isn’t a fast-paced read by no means, it’s slow-moving and might have lost me a few times but as we follow along Loveday’s journey and learning the mystery behind her traumatic past, I found myself totally intrigued and couldn’t help but fall in love and identify with Loveday’s character.

This book made me smile and was an absolute comfort for me to read! I truly enjoyed the escape into Loveday’s life and found this to be an entertaining, quick and easy read. Would recommend!

*~* This was a Sister Read that I read along with my dear friend, Kris. Thank you so much, Kris for reading and discussing this one with me. You made it that much more fun!

Thank you so much to NetGalley, St. Martin’s Press, and Stephanie Butland for the opportunity to read an advanced copy of this book in exchange for a review.


Kris’s review

*3.85 stars* <– (Don’t judge, book-nerd struggles are REAL)

A delicate rendering of heartache and forgiveness, and the healing power of a bookshop!

Give me a cozy bookshop setting, a quirky cast of sarcastic bibliophiles, and a shake of mystery to pepper my pages and I’ll be a happy reader every time.

LOST FOR WORDS was a lovely read, even if it wasn’t a particularly lively one. This author has a unique writing style that shines as though it’s been freshly polished—sophisticated, sharp, and witty without trying too hard.

Loveday, (cute name, right?) is quite a lovable, one-of-a kind protagonist. For reasons warranted she’s generally sad, but she has a quiet spunk that’ll make you smirk when you’re least expecting to.

Her defensive tone is almost perpetual and certainly predictable, and peeks through her internal chatter as though she suspects even the reader of judging her.

She’s fragile in a way that makes you want to hold her together, but straightforward and honest in a way that’ll make you wish you had a pinch of her gumption.

She tells her broken story directly to the reader, as though she considers you her confidant. She’s stronger than she feels, and her gradual character growth is both impressive and believable.

Loveday works at a bookshop—the owner, a kind older man who looks after Loveday, keeps her grounded and cared for. There’s a touching love story entwined that becomes a driving point, but doesn’t absorb all the focus. Heartache, forgiveness, and inner-strength remain at the core.

This plot moves slowly and sort of coasts in a soothing motion that felt akin to the gentle swaying of a boat—rocking over ripples with few waves in sight. There were moments I wanted more of a pulse and grew slightly tired, but the beautiful writing and heartwarming connections kept me afloat.

I appreciated and looked forward to the element of poetry, which was also a gentle but lovely addition. The fractured relationship between Loveday and her parents, along with its residual effects, was executed wonderfully and dominated the pages.

The Mars Room by Rachel Kushner @SimonSchusterCA @goodreads #travelingsistersread #goodreadsgiveaway #BookReview


The Mars Room
by Rachel Kushner

Norma’s review & rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

I received an ARC from a Goodreads Giveaway of THE MARS ROOM by RACHEL KUSHNER. Thank you so much! I thought this was a very good read and I’m glad that I read it! I think it’s definitely worth the read!

Even though this book was a little structurally & mentally challenging for me to read there was something about it that had me glued to those pages. When I wasn’t reading this one, I was thinking about it. It got under my skin, I was interested in Romy and the details behind her incarceration in a women’s prison.

I thought that the author did a great job here at showing us the reality of Romy’s life in prison. Some parts were definitely cringeworthy, the harshness and vivid portrayal wasn’t sugarcoated.

The ending is where this book lost stars from me. I thought it was a little too dramatic and to be totally honest I wasn’t exactly sure why it ended the way it did. Maybe I just didn’t get it and missed the point?

I would love to discuss that ending if anyone so wishes to comment! 🙂

Three Days Missing by Kimberly Belle #travelingsistersread @KimberlySBelle @HarlequinBooks


Three Days Missing
by Kimberly Belle

Brenda’s Traveling Sisters Review and her rating:  4 of 5 stars

Norma and I read Three Days Missing with four of our Traveling Sisters and we all were pretty much left lost in the same coulee feeling a little chilled after finishing with that chilling and unsettling final twist.

Kimberly Belle does a great job here setting the tension and the anxiety with sending your child off to camp. The tension soars when Ethan goes missing and Kat along with us all are left with questions as to how a child can go missing from camp. We soon learn more is involved here when another mother and her son become involved in the mystery of Ethan disappearing.

Three Day Missing is an entertaining and suspenseful thriller that takes us on a fast-paced, clock ticking race through the coulee to find where Ethan is.

Kimberly Belle creates two strong mothers here with Kat and Stephanie who live very different lives from each other yet similar in many ways as Mothers. We found both interesting and our hearts went out to each as they struggled with finding the truth to Ethan’s disappearance.

And that ending things got a little chilly in the Coulee after finishing this story and some of us were feeling a little uneasy with that well-done ending.


Norma’s Review

THREE DAYS MISSING by KIMBERLY BELLE is a gripping, suspenseful, and a fast-paced domestic thriller novel about a nine-year-old boy named Ethan who goes missing on a school field trip.  That alone makes this book so scary and disturbing to read about (with no disturbing scenes though) and is something that no parent should ever have to experience in their lifetime.

I was totally intrigued and immersed in this storyline and had me flipping those pages as fast as I could desperately searching for answers to what happened and transpired in those three missing days.  

Although, I figured out some of this story quite early on it didn’t take away any of the suspense or tension that I felt for this story or the characters.  I especially enjoyed and loved Ethan’s character!

KIMBERLY BELLE delivers a well-written and tension-filled story here that is both character and plot driven.  The story was told from two different perspectives that of Kat (Ethan’s Mom) and Stephanie (the mother of another nine-year-old boy in Ethan’s class). I really enjoyed the perspective and individual stories from both of these mothers and really had me rooting for a positive outcome for both of them.

Both stories came together so nicely and were very satisfying to make this another entertaining, quick, easy and enjoyable read!  Would recommend!


Lindsay’s Review

3.5 stars.   This was a quick and suspenseful read that kept my curiosity piqued throughout.  

This book revolves around every parents’ worst nightmare.  Kat Jenkins wakes up in the middle of the night to over twenty missed phone calls and the police knocking on her door.  They inform her that her eight-year-old son, Ethan, has disappeared from the campground where he and his classmates were staying.  Told from the perspective of Kat and a fellow classmates’ mother, the chapters switch between the narrators. I felt for these mothers and enjoyed what each of their perspectives brought to the story.   

The suspense gripped me quickly from the first chapter.  The novel had me guessing throughout, however, the intensity of the suspense and thrill started to slightly fizzle out around the halfway mark.   I was still intrigued to find out how it would all end, but the story lost some of its spark for me. Additionally, toward the end of the book, there were a few situations that seemed implausible which took away from my enjoyment.

Overall, I enjoyed this quick, easy and entertaining book and would recommend it to thriller and suspense fans.

Thank you so much from all of us to NetGalley, Harlequin, and Kimberly Belle for the opportunity to read and review an advanced copy of this book.


Mary Beth’s Review

Ethan goes on a camping trip with his classmates and they stay at a YMCA summer camp facility. Ethan’s Mom, Kat Jenkin’s, is nervous and uptight about it and asks the teacher why she is taking a boatload of second graders on an overnight
trip. Miss Erma assures her that they do it every year and there is one chaperone for every five students and it’s perfectly safe.

Ethan has an I.Q of 158 and is a genius. He has been at Cambridge for two years and has never brought any friends home, he doesn’t have any play dates or any sleepovers. Ethan is right years old and looks like he is six.

His Mom received a phone call and the voice on the other end asks her if her son Ethan Maddox is with her. She replied that her son is away on a camping trip. Then the person who calls her tells her that her son is missing from Camp Crosby. The teacher did a head count around 2:30 am and found Ethan missing. After searching the area and not finding him they called the authorities at 3:02 am. The Lumpkin County sheriff ‘s office arrived and initiated an organized search of the camp and didn’t t have any luck finding him. They think he might be lost in the woods and he is afraid of the dark. Well trained search and rescue dogs weren’t able to catch his scent. Ethan has vanished without a trace. Ethan’s Mom is divorced and had a terrible relationship with Andrew, Ethan ‘s father. He drank too much and was under a lot of stress and took it out on her and Ethan.

Another mother, Steph Huntington, from the school, seems like she has it all: money, a popular son and a loving husband. She hardly knows Kat. But as the police investigation upholds, Ethan’s disappearance will have earth-shattering consequences in Steph’s own life- and the paths of these two mother’s are about to cross in ways no one could have anticipated.

This story is every parent’s nightmare. It is not dark or graphic.  I think it’s a book for everyone, not just thriller fans. This is a fast-paced read but it is a slow burner in the beginning but it then turns out to be a page-turner. I really loved this book. I also was not able to guess what happened to Ethan and was shocked when I found out.
I didn’t find this to be predictable at all.
I did have some disbelief in apart of the story, but other than that it was great.

I thought that the author did a great job with her characters. I really thought that I got to know them. I liked reading about Kay’s and Steph’s point of views, and that was when I felt like it got really suspenseful. I loved Ethan and my heart went out to him and Sammy’s character shocked me.

I want to thank Edelweiss, Park Row/Harlequin and Kimberly Belle for the copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Available Now!

Do you agree with the Sisters and Mary Beth or Lindsay or think something different? Drop us comments!


Two Sisters have added The Traveling Friends to A Coulee!

Two Sisters Lost in a Coulee has added another coulee and invited friends to travel to our imaginary coulee with us.  We have started another Goodreads reading group called The Traveling Friends.

The Traveling Friends is a private Goodreads reading group. The Traveling Friends read and discuss released books only.  The group includes The Traveling Sisters.

The Traveling Friends is open by request or invite to anyone who likes to read and discuss books in a group and can be found on Goodreads to request to join.

Our First Traveling Friends Reads are off to a great start.

What The Traveling Friends are reading and discussing.

Don't Believe ItDon’t Believe It by Charlie Donlea

One of our favorite reads and we have been quite vocal about that is Don’t Believe It by Charlie Donlea and it’s off to a great start with our discussion amongst The Traveling Friends.

For our reviews

Bring Me BackBring Me Back by B.A. Paris

Norma read Bring Me Back with our Traveling Sisters a while back.  Lindsay, Jan and I caught up by reading this one with our Traveling Friends.

Norma’s Review

Beasts of Extraordinary CircumstanceBeasts of Extraordinary Circumstance by Ruth Emmie Lang

This one was read by two of our Traveling Sisters leaving some of us wanting to read it.  It’s off to a really good start for us.



Summit LakeSummit Lake by Charlie Donlea

Because we loved both The Girl Who Was Taken and Don’t Believe It we have decided to read Summit Lake.  Norma and I have just started it with our Traveling Friends.

Our Review for The Girl Who Was Taken

Have you read any of these titles? Drop us a comment.

Want to read and discuss these books with the Traveling Friends? Find us on Goodreads to join in.

Last Week / This Week In A Coulee #travelingsistersread

What We Finished

The Summer ListThe Summer List by Amy Mason Doan

Norma and I read The Summer List with two of our Traveling Sisters and two more joined in on our discussion.  This one starts off with a nice light read, however, these reunited estranged friends have secrets.


We really enjoyed some elements to this story.   The lazy summer on the lake, scenic small town, scavenger hunt and a secret to add some mystery to the story that brought back memories for some of us.  We appreciated Amy Mason Doan keeps the teen drama low here and still pulls off great dynamics between our main characters.


We recommend this to anyone looking for a nice light read with a dark twist.  With a few more weeks left in Summer, this makes for a great summer read but also with that descriptive atmosphere.  It also would make a great winter read to stir up some warmer summer memories.

For our reviews

For our Traveling Sisters reviews:

Kris’s review   Suzy’s review  Berit’s review  Debra’s review


A Constellation of Vital PhenomenaA Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra

A Constellation of Vital Phenomena really highlights what a master writer can do but it takes some time and focus and might not become clear to the end of the story.


This was a story we really appreciated reading and were so glad to of had the opportunity to share our thoughts with each other.


We recommend to anyone wanting to delve deep into a vividly dense extraordinary story like you have never read before.  We highly recommend for group reads and especially for book clubs who meet in person.  So much to talk about with this one.

For my review

For Marialyce’s stunning review


GhostedGhosted by Rosie Walsh

Ghosted is an interesting read that explores a few different things that you might not expect.  The title and cover really do this story justice.


We had a few very strong views on this one and well I think maybe reading our different reviews might be easier.


We highly recommend Ghosted to readers who are looking for a story that digs a little deeper into the emotional side with a twist that might leave you surprised. If you are looking to connect to these characters based on their relationship and love story alone this might not be the one for you. As always we recommend you give it a try to find out where you might land with this story.

For Norma, Kris and my review’s

For our Traveling Sisters reviews:

For Carol’s review

For our Traveling Sisters that had different views from us:

Angela’s review

and you can find more of our Traveling Sisters reviews who left the Coulee on Goodreads.

What we are starting this week

The Ruin (Cormac Reilly, #1)The Ruin by Dervla McTiernan




Beasts of Extraordinary CircumstanceBeasts of Extraordinary Circumstance by Ruth Emmie Lang




Believe MeBelieve Me by J.P. Delaney


Ghosted by Rosie Walsh #BookReview #travelingsistersread


Ghosted by Rosie Walsh

Norma’s review & rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

GHOSTED by ROSIE WALSH was such a beautifully written love story that had a hint of mystery to it and a few surprising twists, that I absolutely adored! This book was extremely gripping, intense, and a heartwarming story that had me totally engaged and interested right from the very first chapter to the very last page. I was totally intrigued and emotionally invested in this whole story and I really appreciated that I went into this one blind. Some parts of this novel I had an intimate and emotional connection to.

ROSIE WALSH delivers an original, well-paced and well-written read here with believable and convincing characters. I could totally relate to Sarah & Eddie’s characters and their short and intense relationship. My relationship with my husband was so similar to the love story in this book. So for that very reason I found this story both intense and beautiful and had me choked up quite a few times. I was totally entertained and flew through those pages!

Publishing Date: July 24, 2018

This was another extremely compulsive read for me as I was emotionally invested and gripped right from the beginning which followed through to that extremely touching and stunning conclusion. Would highly recommend!

Thank you so much to Edelweiss, Pamela Dorman Books / Penguin Publishing Group and Rosie Walsh for the opportunity to read an advanced copy of this book in exchange for a review.

Brenda’s Traveling Sisters Review

Norma and I read Ghosted with seven of our Traveling Sisters and we had some very strong views on this one that not only split us into two different Coulees but two Coulees nowhere near each other.

Ghosted starts off a bit slow and weighted down a bit as we are introduced to a story that seems like boy meets girl and they fall in love, but there is much more going on in this story than meets the eye though. For some of us started to see a different story here hidden in the coincidences of this love story that really isn’t a love story. This is where we started to split as some of us did not buy into the love story and wanted to see more into the relationship between our two main characters Sarah and Eddie. Sarah blinded by love and what started off as an intense happy feeling of love and bliss soon turns into an obsession of thoughts as Sarah tries to find out the truth.

Rosie Walsh explores something deeper here and it really isn’t a love story but a story hidden deep within the relationship of Sarah and Eddie. She explores something common but not something often talked about or something we were aware of before reading this story as well as exploring pain, loss and family drama and dynamics, which at times does feel a bit too dramatic.

Ghosted does start off slow and sometimes does become repetitive and I with a couple other sisters made my way up to the top of the coulee looking for a way to escape but just as I was ready to jump out I left two of my sisters there and Rosie Walsh pulled me back into the coulee with Norma and three of our other TS and we couldn’t put this book down until we were finished. In the end, the four of us were looking for a tissue and felt quite satisfied with this heartwarming ending.

I highly recommend Ghosted to readers who are looking for a story that digs a little deeper into the emotional side with a twist that might leave you surprised. If you are looking to connect to these characters based on their relationship and love story alone this might not be the one for you. As always we recommend you give it a try to find out where you might land with this story.

Thank you so much to Edelweiss, Pamela Dorman Books / Penguin Publishing Group and Rosie Walsh for the opportunity to read and review an advanced copy of this book.


Kristin’s Review

*3.5 Stars*

GHOSTED: (Verb) When someone you love disappears without explanation…Then your friends and family act like you’re crazy. (Urban dictionary knows how it feels.)

Sarah Mackey has been Ghosted—and she is not okay. After almost a full week of pure bliss, Sarah and Eddie have fallen hopelessly in love with one another despite having only just met.

Yes, it’s a shameless bout of insta-love, and I, for once, didn’t hate it.

When life finally pulls these two lovebirds out of their romantic cocoon, Eddie promises Sarah he’ll call…BUT…he never does.

Convinced this is the real deal, Sarah becomes desperate for answers and will stop at almost nothing to obtain them, even if this quest includes compulsive phone calls and incessant messaging, until it gradually devolves into the self-depreciating task of flat out googling “why didn’t he call?”…

This plot is focused, and squeezes its reader into the manic grip of Sarah’s growing insanity, dragging us on a journey that is both obsessive and dryly comical.

She’s kind of unraveling, and it’s kind of ridiculous, but I also kind of loved it because who hasn’t been on the receiving end of being *ghosted* at least once in their lives, convinced that death-by-rejection might in fact be a thing?

What I enjoyed most about this book was the writing and originality, especially that of the first half. Sure, the plot itself is, at times, redundant and tends to have some dragging points, but woven into this prolonged cycle of Sarah-finding-Eddie are heartbreaking side stories with extremely touching outcomes.

For me, this was good storytelling, and even though there are elements I wish had more focus and some that could have been a bit less pronounced, I had fun with this one and would recommend it not necessarily as a love story, but a tale of the lengths people will go to in order to find some happiness. And, of course, to witness firsthand the art of being ghosted.


For Carol’s review and for Nikki’s review who were lost in the same Coulee as us and for the different views from the rest, you can find our Traveling Sister’s Angela, Melissa and Haley’s reviews on Goodreads.

A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra #BookReview #travelingsistersread


A Constellation of Vital Phenomena
by Anthony Marra

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I started off lost in a coulee reading A Constellation of Vital Phenomena with seven of my Traveling Sisters and some of us really got lost with this story. We all found our comfy spot to read this and were drawn into this densely vivid heavy in-depth plot that demanded our full attention. As life pulled some of the sisters away from the story they became really lost with their focus and had to leave the coulee and return back to read this at another time. Leaving three sisters and myself in a coulee continuing to read this story together.

A Constellation of Vital Phenomena has a complicated plot with many side plots and characters and we found it easy to get lost in the plot and at times felt we missed some connections between characters in this delicate web of connections. It takes some patience but in the end, it was really worth it as it all comes brilliantly together and things become clear just how extraordinary this story really is.

In the background to this web of interesting and complex characters are the Chechen wars and we see how some horrific events unfold around our characters. In the center of the story we meet and come to care for Havaa. Our main characters, a village doctor Akhmed and another doctor who runs the hospital on her own, Sonja both try to hide Haraa and protect her after her father is abducted by Russian soldiers.

Anthony Marra brilliantly adds layers and depth to the plot and characters and then as the end nears gradually peels them back, revealing more and more and only, in the end, we can see the connections to the story. The ending so brilliantly done led to an interesting final discussion where we shared our feelings and appreciation for reading this phenomenal story.

We highly recommend for everyone and especially for book clubs. Loads to discuss with this one and we also recommend not to be missed for book clubs who come together in person to discuss the plot and characters. We suggest taking this book and really hiding or locking yourself away with your favorite beverage and really taking some time to yourself to focus on this dense plot. It’s worth the focus.


The Summer List by Amy Mason Doan #travelingsistersread


The Summer List
by Amy Mason Doan

Norma’s rating and review:  3.5 out of 5 stars

THE SUMMER LIST by AMY MASON DOAN is an interesting, charming and heartwarming story about the friendship between two childhood friends who had a falling out and then come together again in adulthood by the help of a scavenger hunt.  I was totally entranced and captivated with the storyline in the first half of this book, then the latter part lost my attention a little bit and seemed to drag but then came together again for me in the end.

AMY MASON DOAN delivers a multi-layered and complex story here with interesting and wonderful characters that were easy to connect with.  I really enjoyed how the two friends reconnected, the descriptive setting, the scavenger hunt, and the bond that these two friends had with one another.  The past and present timelines were seamlessly interwoven to make this a fun, entertaining, and easy summer read!


Brenda’s Traveling Sisters Review

3.5 Stars

Norma and I read The Summer List with two of our Traveling Sisters and two more joined us in our discussion.   We all started off very comfortable in our lush coulee looking over our calm and inviting lake (really there are no lakes in coulees)  however it sure felt like we were by a lake with the feel of this atmospheric setting Amy Mason Doan has created for us.

The Summer List started off as a tender and enduring story between two friends Laura and Casey and we really enjoyed some elements to this story.   The lazy summer on the lake, scenic small town, scavenger hunt and a secret to add some mystery to the story.

Amy Mason Doan takes us back to the friends teenage years and we really get a good feel for their bond and it brought back some memories of our past friendships for us.  We appreciated that she keeps the teen drama low and focuses on the bond here with our characters.

Things did start to go a little sideways for us and our sunny summer day turned a little dark for us when the pacing changed in the story for us.  Some of us were caught a little off guard with this one and some gloomy clouds had us hiding in our coulee. For our TS who joined us in our discussion, they enjoyed this one from start to finish.

With a few more weeks left in Summer, this makes for a great summer read but also with that descriptive atmosphere.  It also would make a great winter read to stir up some warmer summer memories. We recommend.

Thank you so much from both of us to NetGalley, Harlequin – Graydon House Books and Amy Mason Doan for the opportunity to read and review an advanced copy of this book.

Last Week / This Week In A Coulee #travelingsistersread

What We Finished

The NeighborsThe Neighbors by Hannah Mary McKinnon

Norma and I read The Neighbors with Lindsay.  This was a jaw-dropping fast-paced read that we all enjoyed.  A little different twist to The Neighbor than your average neighbor living next door type of book.


The Neighbors took us by surprise and we were not expecting some of those clever twists.  We all raced through this one, once we started it. We started at different times, with Norma finishing first and she couldn’t wait to discuss this one.  She had to have some patience and soon Lindsay and I were done and this story really made for a great discussion for all of us.


We recommend to everyone.  This is a fast easy read with a little dark to it.  We also recommend for group reads and there are some twists to this that could spark an interesting discussion with some different views to it.

Norma and Lindsay’s reviews

The DateThe Date by Louise Jensen

Norma and I read The Date with two of our Traveling Sisters, Berit and Mackenzie.  Debra our TS joined in on our conversation.  We all enjoyed this different twist to a psychological thriller, however, there was something frantic about this one that left Norma jumping out of a coulee and into her own.


The Date left us feeling a little frightened reading this one in a good thriller way though.  It’s a fast-paced interesting story with something a little different to it.


We recommend it to thriller lovers, especially to anyone who might be looking for something a little different twist to it rather than being terrorized by someone out to destroy you.

For our review

For Mackenzie’s review

Berit’s review to come and can be found on her Blog

Berit’s Blog

The Boy at the DoorThe Boy at the Door by Alex Dahl

I read The Boy at the Door with Lindsay and three of our Traveling Sisters and we all really enjoyed this one.


The characters had us twisted up in knots and we were surprised with how much we felt for these characters.  The story digs deep into the reality of two women who live very different lives from each other


We recommend to everyone looking but especially for someone looking for a realistic and believable thriller that explores some realistic thought-provoking subjects.

For Lindsay and Brenda’s review

Our Traveling Sisters Mary Beth, Diane and Melisa’s reviews they can be found on Goodreads

What we are starting this week

GhostedGhosted by Rosie Walsh




Little Big LoveLittle Big Love by Katy Regan




Sold on a MondaySold on a Monday by Kristina McMorris





Drop us a comment and let us know if you read any of these titles.

Blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: