Book Review: “Meet Me at the Cupcake Café” by Jenny Colgan (At the Cupcake Café #1)



Title:  Meet me at the Cupcake Café

Author:  Jenny Colgan

Series:  At the Cupcake Café #1

Synopsis (from

A sweet and satisfying novel of how delicious it is to discover your dreams

Issy Randall can bake. No, Issy can create stunning, mouthwateringly divine cakes. After a childhood spent in her beloved Grampa Joe’s bakery, she has undoubtedly inherited his talent. She’s much better at baking than she is a filing so when she’s laid off from her desk job, Issy decides to open her own little café. But she soon learns that her piece-of-cake plan will take all of her courage and confectionary talent to avert disaster.

Funny and sharp, Meet Me at the Cupcake Café is about how life might not always taste like you expect, but there’s always room for dessert!


My thoughts:  This book was very much outside of my normal reading choice . . . I don’t read much chick lit, and I don’t normally read British authors.  All that being said, this was a cute, nice, warm-hearted read.  The characters were engaging, fun, and quirky.

The overall story was a nice, simple story of following ones dreams, growth, learning from mistakes, and redemption!

I will say that the end of the book felt a bit abrupt and blah to me, kind of that type of ending where you keep turning the pages and find yourself wondering … is that it. .. really?

Overall, a nice simple read . . . not a fabulous book by any means . . . but good enough for a nice read,

And remember,

Books Are Life,


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Filed under Book Reviews, Chick Lit, Fiction

Book Review: “Error in Diagnosis” by Mason Lucas



Title:  Error in Diagnosis

Author:  Mason Lucas

Synopsis (from

Innocent lives are put in jeopardy in this terrifying new thriller that asks the question: Are we prepared for the next epidemic?

A mysterious illness with disturbing symptoms is plaguing women across the United States. It begins with memory loss and confusion and ends with the patient falling into a coma. Medical professionals are at a loss for the cause, but one thing remains constant: All of the victims are pregnant.

Called in to consult on the case of his best friend’s wife, neurologist Jack Wyatt has never seen anything like it. Now, with the nation on the brink of panic, Jack and his colleagues are in race against time to find a cure.

The disease they are calling Gestational Neuropathic Syndrome (GNS) is spreading. Patients are dying—and no one can guess what will happen next…



My thoughts:  Finally I found another good medical drama on the market.  Back in the day I remember medical dramas being much more prevalent in the book world and they seem to have disappeared.. . hmmm.

I really love a good medical drama and “Error in Diagnosis” certainly fit the bill.   A good story, fast paced, and medical excitement.

Overall a great read, and highly recommended if you love the medical drama genre.

And remember,

Books Are Life


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Filed under Book Reviews, Fiction, Medical Drama

Book Review: “Inferno” by Dan Brown



Title:  Inferno

Author: Dan Brown

Series:  Robert Langdon

Summary (from  Harvard professor of symbology Robert Langdon awakens in an Italian hospital, disoriented and with no recollection of the past thirty-six hours, including the origin of the macabre object hidden in his belongings. With a relentless female assassin trailing them through Florence, he and his resourceful doctor, Sienna Brooks, are forced to flee. Embarking on a harrowing journey, they must unravel a series of codes, which are the work of a brilliant scientist whose obsession with the end of the world is matched only by his passion for one of the most influential masterpieces ever written, Dante Alighieri’s The Inferno.

Dan Brown has raised the bar yet again, combining classical Italian art, history, and literature with cutting-edge science in this sumptuously entertaining thriller.


My thoughts:  Hmmmm, I wanted to love this book, but it definitely wasn’t my favorite Dan Brown book – Angels and Demons still wins that title for me.

I started the book while on a flight from Hawaii and was surprised I got into it so quickly, pages were flying by.  Then somehow the second half of the book just fell flat or me.

It was a pretty stereotypical Dan Brown book, Langdon and a pretty girl find themselves trapped in a foreign country and are chased throughout the museums and other important architectural places in that country.

This latest Dan Brown just didn’t offer enough suspense and drama for me.  I found that the chases through town just felt more like a history lesson of famous places rather than a mystery full of drama and suspense.

Overall, just alright, not my favorite Dan Brown book . . . just ok for me.

And remember,

Books Are Life,


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Filed under Book Reviews, Fiction, Mystery

“Entombed” by Linda Fairstein (Alexandra Cooper #7)


Title:  Entombed

Author:  Linda Fairstein

Series:  Alexandra Cooper #7

Synopsis (from  From New York Times bestselling author and famed former Manhattan prosecutor Linda Fairstein comes a chilling new Alexandra Cooper novel, Entombed, in which Alex matches wits with the master of detective fiction himself-Edgar Allan Poe…

Workers demolishing a nineteenth-century brownstone where Edgar Allan Poe once lived discover a human skeleton entombed — standing — behind a brick wall. When sex crimes prosecutor Alexandra Cooper hears about the case, it strikes her as a classic Poe scene…except that forensic evidence shows that this young woman died within the last twenty-five years. Meanwhile, Alex’s old nemesis the Silk Stocking Rapist is once again terrorizing Manhattan’s Upper East Side. The attacks soon escalate to murder, and the search leads Alex and detectives Mercer Wallace and Mike Chapman to the city’s stunning Bronx Botanical Gardens. There, an enigmatic librarian presides over the Raven Society, a group devoted to the work of Poe. In exploring the fabled writer’s tormented life for clues, Alex will cross paths with a cunning killer and face some of the greatest challenges of her career. Entombed is masterful, exhilarating crime fiction from one of crime writing’s most dazzling stars.


My thoughts:  I really, really want to love this series, and I just can’t identify exactly what about it I don’t fully like!

Overall, I enjoyed this book.  The overall storyline, detective piece, investigation and all were enjoyable, however I did find the book a bit sluggish, slow paced, repetitive, and long at times.  Granted, I read the book on a long plane ride which can be quite distracting, but there were times that I just couldn’t follow the storyline and it felt disjointed to me.

As any good series reader, I will keep up with the series though – I am not a quitter!

Overall, a decent mystery series with great characters and police work, just not a series that I run right to.

And remember,

Books Are Life,


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Filed under Book Reviews, Detective/Police, Fiction, Mystery

“A Holiday Yarn” by Sally Goldenbaum (Seaside Knitters Mystery #4)


Title:  A Holiday Yarn

Author:  Sally Goldenbaum

Series:  Seaside Knitters Mystery #4

Synopsis (from  In Sea Harbor the scent of snow fills the salty air, and at Izzy’s Seaside Studio, the Seaside Knitters feast on cookies, knit their gifts, and plan their gatherings. And Mary Pisano is transforming the estate she inherited from her grandfather into a bed-and-breakfast. But then Mary’s cousin Pamela is found dead on the B and B’s snowy back porch, and as the holiday draws nigh, the four friends will need all their crafty know-how to solve the crime.


My thoughts:  Alas, I finally got my hands on the 4th book in the lovely Seaside Knitters Mystery series through   I have the rest of the books in the series on my shelf waiting to be read, but I am one of those series readers who has to read all the books in order!  I know, I know  . . . :)

Anyway, I truly enjoy this wonderful cozy series.  It offers all of the necessary pieces of a great cozy mystery . . . an amazing cozy location on the seashore, a group of kind, loving characters, and warm fuzzies throughout!

If you are a fan of cozies, I highly suggest this series!  You won’t be disappointed.


And remember,

Books Are Life,



Filed under Book Reviews, Cozy, Cozy Mystery

“Life in Motion” by Misty Copeland


Title:  Life in Motion

Author:  Misty Copeland

Synopsis (from Misty Copeland, an African-American soloist at the American Ballet Theatre, shares her harrowing life story from her humble beginnings to dancing with one of the most prestigious ballet companies in the world.


My thoughts:  I started to become very intrigued with Misty Copeland during all of the recent Facebook posts and news reports when she was promoted to the first African-American soloist at ABT.  Hence, of course as any good avid reader would do, I picked up a copy of her book at the library!

I readily admit that I was a bit fearful that this book would be the typical “poor girl from very humble, awful beginnings defies all odds to become a star” and leave me wanting something more.   I was pleasantly surprised that although yes there of course was the “rags to riches” story, it was done very well and made for a nice read.

As I was reading, I thoroughly enjoyed reading the struggles and process of what it takes to become a world-renowned prima ballerina.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book – the story, the artistry, the power of the human spirit to follow ones dreams!


And remember,

Books Are Life,


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Book Review: “Live to See Tomorrow” by Iris Johansen (Catherine Ling #3)


Title:  Live to See Tomorrow

Author:  Iris Johansen

Series:  Catherine Ling #3

Synopsis (from  Catherine Ling is one of the CIA’s most prized operatives. Raised on the unforgiving streets of Hong Kong, she was pulled into the agency at the age of fourteen, already having accumulated more insight and secrets than the most seasoned professionals in her world. If life has taught her anything, it is not to get attached, but there are two exceptions to that rule: her son Luke and her mentor Hu Chang. When Luke was kidnapped at the age of two, it nearly broke her. Now, nine years later, her son has astonishingly been returned to her and Catherine vows never to fail him again. But when her job pulls her away from home, she relies on the brilliant and deadly Hu Chang to safeguard Luke in her absence. Now Erin Sullivan, an American journalist with mysterious ties to Hu Chang, has been kidnapped in Tibet. If Catherine doesn’t agree to spearhead the CIA rescue mission, she knows that Hu Chang himself will go, a possibility she can’t risk. But she will be facing a monster whose crimes stretch back forty years, always eluding the CIA. And the job grows even more complicated when Catherine meets Richard Cameron, a supposed ally who’s clearly not telling all he knows. Their attraction is immediate, but Catherine isn’t at all sure that he can be trusted. If she’s going to rescue this journalist with a story worth killing for, she’ll need to keep Cameron very close. From the treacherous landscape of the Himalayas to the twisting back alleys of San Francisco, the clock is ticking for Catherine and those she loves most. At every turn she faces a ruthless enemy who is determined to keep the truth buried, even if it means that none of them live to see tomorrow, in this novel from bestseller Iris Johansen.

My thoughts:  This book was a mixed bag for me.  Yes – I love this newer Catherine Ling series which is spin off from Iris Johansen’s highly successful Eve Duncan series.

I truly love the character of Catherine Ling who is a bad ass CIA operative, basically a strong, empowered, no nonsense, take no prisoners character who is in a word – AWESOME!

That being said no – I didn’t love this particular book in the series.  It fell a bit flat for me in its action and particularly when the author insisted on bringing in an odd supernatural component where Catherine could hear and feel when one of the other main characters was communicating with her despite him not actually being there with her.  Ugh  . . . why do authors feel the undying need to add this supernatural stuff to their books.

The overall storyline and action felt a bit repetitive to me as well . . . a theme I’m starting to notice in many of Johansen’s books.

Thank goodness I decided to read this on my iPad at the gym while working out . . . even a so so read is tolerable when you are trying to forget the pain and annoyance of the treadmill!

And remember,

Books Are Life,


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Filed under Book Reviews, Detective/Police, Fiction, Iris Johansen, Mystery