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TWO SISTERS LOST IN A COULEE READING

Home of the Traveling Sisters! Two sisters coming together and sharing their love of books and reviews with their Traveling Sisters!

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Sister Read Reviews

Come From Away by Genevieve Graham #BookReview #travelingsistersread @SimonSchusterCA @GenGrahamAuthor

Come from AwayCome from Away by Genevieve Graham

Norma’s rating: 4 of 5 stars

I have never read a Genevieve Graham book before and when I was given the opportunity to read this one I was absolutely thrilled! I have always been quite partial to reading books with themes surrounding our Canadian history and with the setting and the different perspective of World War II that was written here was quite the welcome and refreshing read for me. I suspected that I was in for a treat while reading Come From Away and I most definitely was!

COME FROM AWAY by GENEVIEVE GRAHAM was an emotional, heart-warming and interesting Canadian Historical Romance novel that I found quite the fascinating read. The story captured the setting, time period, heartbreak and the difficulties surrounding the war perfectly and with the romance that develops we see a different side to the enemy.

GENEVIEVE GRAHAM delivers a well-paced and beautifully written story here with interesting, compelling, and believable characters that I found quite compassionate to read about. The story was told in alternating perspectives between Rudi and Grace and through Rudi’s story we really got a different understanding and look into the war. I really enjoyed the romance between our two main characters, Rudi and Grace.

In the end I thought this was a beautiful love story, vividly descriptive and really appreciated reading a part of our Canadian history! Would recommend!

Published on April 24, 2018

Thank you so much to NetGalley, Simon & Schuster Canada and Genevieve Graham for the opportunity to read an advanced copy of this book in exchange for a review.

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Brenda’s Review

Come From Away is connected to Tides of Honor but can be read as a standalone. It was my first book by Genevieve Graham and I look forward to reading more.  In Come From Away the lives of The Baker children are the focus here and we meet our main character Grace Baker.

Come From Away is an interesting and engaging story of love and war seen from a different angle with some Canadian history here. The angle and setting were very refreshing and I really enjoyed seeing a different perspective to WWII set in Canada.  I loved the feeling we got from the setting and it really set the tone for the story.

Genevieve Graham does a good job weaving romance, war and Canadian history here with more focus on the romance that at times did feel a little melodramatic.  She creates strong, likable and interesting characters and I enjoyed the dynamics between them all. I recommend for historical fiction lovers who like some romance to their stories.

Thank you NetGalley, Simon & Schuster Canada and Genevieve Graham for a copy to read and review.

 

 

 

 

Things To Do When It’s Raining by Marissa Stapley @marissastapley #travelingsistersread #bookreview

Things to Do When It's RainingThings to Do When It’s Raining by Marissa Stapley

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Sisters were lost in the rainy, windy, lush coulee by themselves reading Things to Do When It’s Raining. It was just Norma and I walking in the coulee finding cover and then sitting under the lush trees with the wonderful rain pouring down on us looking at that list of recommendations for what to do when it is raining. We both really enjoyed the “Things To Do When It’s Raining” recommendations that started off each chapter throughout the book and thought that it really contributed to the theme of the story.

THINGS TO DO WHEN IT’S RAINING by MARISSA STAPLEY is an easy, simple, and fast read that explores families secret pasts and ghosts that don’t stay buried. The characters are flawed and interesting with their own demons, secrets and conflict.

MARISSA STAPLEY delivers a well-written, engaging, and character-driven multi-generational family drama story here that was enjoyable, moving and an entertaining read.

MARISSA STAPLEY does a great job creating a vivid atmosphere here with the descriptions of the St. Lawrence River and really set the tone for us with this story. We could feel the magic, the danger and the mystery to the river that carries a lot of history.

The ending was satisfying and pleasant! Would recommend!

Thank you so much to NetGalley, HARLEQUIN – Graydon House Books (U.S. & Canada), and Marissa Stapley for the opportunity to read an advanced copy of this book in exchange for a review.

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Norma’s Thoughts:

Brenda and I were once again ‘Lost in a Coulee Reading’ together! It has been a little while for the two of us reading a book together. We have done a lot of group reads together but not just the two of us. I love our group reads but it is always pretty special reading with my sister!

THINGS TO DO WHEN IT’S RAINING by MARISSA STAPLEY is a character-driven story that was an enjoyable, entertaining, and fast read! It’s an interesting, moving, and engaging multi-generational family drama that was well-written with flawed and interesting characters. The ending was satisfying and pleasant! Would recommend!

I also really enjoyed the “Things To Do When It’s Raining” recommendations that started off each chapter throughout the book. I thought that it really contributed to the theme of the story.

Thank you so much to NetGalley, Simon & Schuster Canada, and Marissa Stapley for the opportunity to read an advanced copy of this book in exchange for a review.

The Other Girl by Erica Spindler @EricaSpindler

The Other GirlThe Other Girl by Erica Spindler

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Norma’s review

3.5 stars rounded up to 4! This was my very first time reading an ERICA SPINDLER novel and I must say that I quite enjoyed it! I will definitely be reading more of her books in the future!

THE OTHER GIRL by ERICA SPINDLER was an entertaining, suspenseful, and an engaging whodunit mystery thriller novel that was slightly predictable but clipped along quickly and held my interest right to the satisfying ending.

ERICA SPINDLER delivers an extremely fast-paced and quick read here with well-developed characters that is told between the present and with flashbacks of events from Miranda’s past when she was 15 years old. I really enjoyed the main character Miranda and as the story unfolds I could really feel her frustration and angst as her world was unraveling.

The story is filled with secrets, lies, and corruption that has a few good twists that even has a little bit of romantic suspense that added another layer to this story for me.

In addition to reading this book, I purchased myself a copy of the audiobook and I must say that I thoroughly enjoyed TAVIA GILBERT’S performance and thought she delivered the perfect voice for all the characters.

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

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Brenda’s Review

I squeezed The Other Girl in between my Traveling Sister group reads.  It’s a nice short fast-paced read that is easy to fit in if you are short on time.

The story started off with a bang for me and shocked me with a whoa moment that left me gasping right away with the somewhat disturbing scene. Credit to Erica Spindler for that whoa moment.  After catching my breath and continuing on with reading I was hooked and intrigued to find out more about our main character Miranda and the other girl.

There is a little romance going on here with this one and normally this non-romantic likes to stay away from that as the eye-rolling begins.  This one really surprised me and I enjoyed the relationshiThe Other Girl was an entertaining, suspenseful and an enjoyable read with a satisfying ending. I highly recommend for readers looking for a fast-paced intriguing read with a little romance on the side.

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

 

Sister Read Review: Bird Box by Josh Malerman

Bird BoxBird Box by Josh Malerman

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Sister Read Review by Norma & Brenda

Holy Sh*tty Balls this was one heck of a creepy book!

5 creeped out Stars for Norma & 4 freaking out Stars for Brenda
So for the purpose of this Sister Read it gets a combined rating of 4.5 Stars!

BIRD BOX by JOSH MALERMAN is a wonderfully creepy, scary, eerie, and downright terrifying tale that grabbed our attention right from the very start to the heart-pounding finish.  This book was extremely hard to put down!

BIRD BOX made us both feel fearful of the unknown and we could definitely feel the eerie presence of the mysterious creatures in all of the surroundings while we were totally engrossed in this novel.  We couldn’t even imagine living and carrying on everyday life blindfolded or with our eyes closed.

To sum it all up it was an extremely entertaining, unsettling, interesting, and fast-paced read that left us both a little fearful of leaving the house without a blindfold. Highly recommend!!

 

Sister Reads Review: Never Let You Go by Chevy Stevens

Never Let You GoNever Let You Go by Chevy Stevens

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Sister Reads Review by BRENDA and NORMA

Date read:  April 8 to 11, 2017

4.5 stars rounded up!

Norma didn’t need to use her twisted mind as much with this one but she still managed to shock Brenda with figuring out the reveal and the details before she did. It adds a shocking twist to a thriller for Brenda that she normally wouldn’t of experienced if reading it on her own.

NEVER LET YOU GO by CHEVY STEVENS is an angst driven, chilling, gripping, and suspenseful domestic psychological thriller novel that explores the darkness of love, manipulation, and obsession.

CHEVY STEVENS delivers a well-written and believable story here, with the way that she weaves the story together. We found it to be a refreshing change of pace from your typical story of domestic violence that really stood out for the both of us.

The story is told from shifting points of view from skeptical and struggling Lindsey who is trying to keep herself and her daughter safe and vulnerable Sophie who is too young to understand obsession, fear, and betrayal. What made this story really standout for us was Lindsey’s knowledge of what her husband is capable of and Sophie’s desire to find some good in her father. Lindsey’s fear and Sophie’s determination added tension and fear to the story for us.

Brenda was too impatient to wait for the print copy and listened to the audio version of this story. Overall she enjoyed the narrators but has to admit the voice of Sophie did annoy her at times. She would’ve preferred to have read the book like I did.

We love CHEVY STEVENS novels and the references she makes within her books to places that are both familiar to us. It adds a little extra enjoyment when you recognize the names and places that she has referred to in the story.

NEVER LET YOU GO is an action-packed, fast-paced, and adrenaline pumping read with just the right amount of tension, shocking events, and twist and turns that will keep you guessing right to the very impressive conclusion!! Would recommend!!

Sister Reads Review: Redemption Road by John Hart

Redemption RoadRedemption Road by John Hart

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Date read:  April 6th – 9th, 2017

Sister Reads Review by BRENDA and NORMA

Norma’s little twisted mind figured out whodunit way before Brenda did and this had Brenda thinking that I had to be wrong or was slightly confused. Hahaha sister dear!!

REDEMPTION ROAD by JOHN HART is a gritty, dark, gripping, and a suspenseful thriller/police procedural novel that has a literary fiction feel to it. The road to redemption is a road filled with compassion and emotionally troubled relationships that will have you totally engaged to the surprising and gratifying ending.

JOHN HART delivers an extremely well-written read here that takes you on an emotional and bumpy road of trust and betrayals that tests the beliefs and the personal strengths of our two main characters, Elizabeth and Adrian throughout their complicated relationship.

We loved the unique relationships and understanding Elizabeth had with troubled, flawed and damaged Gideon and Channing which added some backbone to the storyline. The relationships added contrast to Elizabeth’s strained relationship with someone close to her.

REDEMPTION ROAD has just the right amount of grit and shocking events with twist and turns that every thriller reader craves!!

We suggest catching a ride along with Elizabeth on her road to redemption. It’s a thrilling and electrifying ride! Definitely recommend!!

 

Sister Reads Review: Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders

Lincoln in the BardoLincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Date listened:  April 4 to 6, 2017

Sister Read Review by Norma and Brenda

We both listened to the audio version of LINCOLN IN THE BARDO by GEORGE SANDERS and found it to be quite the entertaining, compelling, and unique listening experience. It’s a performance with a 166-person full cast with actors, musicians, and a number of Saunders’ family, friends, and members of his publishing team.

To name a few:

Nick Offerman
David Sedaris
Ben Stiller
Julianne Moore
Susan Sarandon
Megan Mullally

This story does take a little bit of work and having some background information on the story, how it is written, and how the audio version is performed will make the story less confusing.  The payoff is worth it!

Norma’s thoughts:  Normally I go into a book completely blind but under Brenda’s suggestion I did not do that this time.  Although, I still found it a little confusing and was lost at times, it did make it a little better knowing what to expect. We suggest not going into this one blind as a little bit of the books knowledge will make this a better read.  This time around for our “Sister Read” Brenda enjoyed this book a little bit more than I did.

LINCOLN IN THE BARDO is not your typical story it is confusing and complicated but yet it is a simple story about family, loss, duty, acceptance, understanding, and perseverance in the face of excruciating circumstances. Voices of the ghosts talk on top of each other creating a colourful mixture of the different characters perspectives while in the “Bardo”.  (Definition:  a state of existence between death and rebirth, varying in length according to a person’s conduct in life and manner of, or age at, death.)

We both listened to the audiobook and followed along with the Ebook and this really enhanced the experience and also made it less confusing.

Sister Read Review: Our Souls At Night by Kent Haruf

Our Souls at NightOur Souls at Night by Kent Haruf

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Brenda listened from March 21-23, 2017 / Norma listened from March 29 – 31, 2017

Well I guess we should have done this little gem of a book as a “sister read” as my thoughts are very similar to that of Brenda’s!

I listened to the audio version of OUR SOULS AT NIGHT by KENT HARUF and the narrator was absolutely wonderful! His voice was so gentle and soothing!

I don’t think I can say anymore or anything better than Brenda……so let’s just call it a “sister read”.

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After reading a review from a Goodreads friend who found Our Souls At Night the perfect first audiobook for her. I decided to listen to the audiobook myself. It’s not my first but it was a perfect one for me and an excellent choice to listen too.

Our Souls at Night is a simple, graceful and tender story of elderly Louis and Addie who while seeking companionship share a touching relationship, quietly at night, sharing their stories of their past, happiness, missed opportunities, mistakes and grief. I love their quiet acceptance of each other and how they start to enjoy the quiet and simple pleasures in life until the noise and judgment of others threaten it.

Listening to this was a special one for me and I became emerged into their lives that left me feeling peaceful and hopeful with the possibility that with change and growth there is quiet later in life.

Our Souls at Night is a beautiful novella, short and quick that will have me thinking of the beauty in it for a long time. I highly recommend, especially the audio version.

 

Sister Read Review: All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

All the Bright PlacesAll the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Sister Read Review by Norma & Brenda
3.5 stars

Brenda’s Thoughts: I was interested in reading All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven because I was curious about how a character with a mental illness was going to be portrayed in this story. I am not even really sure if that was what the story was even about. I think different life experiences and exposure to mental illness will have some people like Norma and I feeling different ways towards this book.

Norma’s Thoughts: As usual I went into this book blind so I didn’t have any preconceptions or idea on the subject matter of this book. I wanted to listen to another audiobook so I chose this one as it was available on Overdrive. I really liked the narrators and I found it was another enjoyable audiobook that was easy for me to stay focused while listening to.

For both of us we read mostly for the pure enjoyment of it and love feeling many emotions as we read so with that being said we both really enjoyed this book. If we were to look at it that way All the Bright Places is a heartbreaking, charming, tragic love story between two young people with themes of mental illness, suicide, loss, grief, bullying and abuse. Which we both believe was what this story was about. Both of our hearts broke for Theodore Finch and at times Brenda wasn’t sure she could finish reading as seeing his darkness was very real to her. For me I just accepted the story for what it was and felt for Finch and Violet throughout both of their struggles and Violet’s recovery with the help of Finch’s love for her.

Some Quotes from Finch that were very real to us:

“The thing is, they were all perfect days.” At the end of the day all the perfect days don’t change anything when you are dealing with the darkness within yourself.

“I am not a compilation of symptoms. Not a casualty of shitty parents and even shittier chemical makeup. Not a problem. Not a diagnosis. Not an illness. Not something to be rescued. I am a person.”

If we were looking at it solely on a book about a character with a mental illness we wanted a little bit more from the story here. We wanted to see some type of hope and more depth in how someone can be treated with a mental illness. We won’t get too much more into this as we don’t want to reveal too much.

We often hear people say that this subject matter is a difficult subject and that we need to hear more about it and we agree we definitely need to hear more but are not sure like this. We need to know that there is hope for mental illness and it can be treated.

To sum it all up it was an enjoyable, at times amusing, heartbreaking, and an emotional read with a bittersweet ending. Would recommend.

 

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