Reading Wrap Up - April 2015

Hiya my dearies! I know what you are thinking, it is halfway through May and I still haven't done my wrap up from April? Did she not even read?! Rest assured, I did some book damage in the month of April. At the end of April and beginning of May my family was faced with a very difficult event. At this time, I am not sure I will blog about it; however, that may change in the future. I took some time with my family. I am truly sorry for the delay in posting this blog. Now I am ready to jump back into my reading wrap ups. So are you ready to see what I read, spoiler free thoughts, and where it falls into my Popsugar Reading Challenge? Then let's get started, we have a lot to work through.

The Boxcar ChildrenThe Boxcar Children, Surprise Island, The Yellow House Mystery, Mystery Ranch, Mike's Mystery, Blue Bay Mystery, The Woodshed Mystery, The Lighthouse Mystery, and Mountain Top Mystery is the first nine books of the Boxcar Children books. The book follows the story of four siblings: Mike, Jessie, Violet, and Benny. In each one they are faced with a mystery to solve based on the clues and information they find. The setting and mystery changes with each book. These independent children show that they provide for themselves, help others, and solve mysteries.

I have been reading these to my girls and they love them! I would be fooling myself if I said that I haven't enjoyed them myself. I know I would have devoured these as a child. I love that the story is interesting and intriguing while also teaching morals such as independence, kindness, and many more.

Popsugar Reading Challenge: (1st book) Book You Can Read In A Day

Coming CleanComing Clean is a memoir about a girl growing up with a father that is a hoarder. In her childhood, she did not understand the problem with her home and why her parents wouldn't allow people inside. As she grows up she starts to understand the devastation around her. This is her journey of growing up, coping, and how it has affected her life.

This book was a very emotional read for me personally. Reading the journey that this woman has went through and how it has affected her as an adult is very thought provoking. It gives an insight into the family structure and dynamics of a family affected by hoarding. This book left me thinking about how my actions and mannerisms, whether psychologically driven or not, touches the lives of those around me.

Popsugar Reading Challenge: Nonfiction Book

The Fall of the House of UsherThe Fall of the House of Usher the story begins with a letter of summons to a house due to the unwell state of Roderick. Upon some time with him, Roderick talks of the house's haunted state. Soon one night the house seems to come alive in this haunting tale.

Poe has always been an intriguing author and poet to me. Although I would not say this is my favorite work, but I still enjoyed the creepy feel and the way in which Poe tells his story. The gothic imagery captivated my attention and kept me reading until I was finished. It is long overdue for me to read more of his work seeing as I own the beautifully bound collection I have linked above.

Popsugar Reading Challenge: More Than 100 Years Old

Shiver by Maggie StiefvaterShiver is the story of Grace who has been watching the wolves all of her life. Ever since she was attacked by the pack as a small child and survived, she has been drawn to their beauty, one in particular. When a local boy turns up dead, the town is quick to blame the wolves. The pack is in danger, can Grace step in to save them, to save the one she watches for each year?

The first time I attempted this I was in a reading slump. Needless to say, I never finished it. I am kicking myself for that now! I loved this story. Even though I love fantasy, I don't read many werewolf stories. I loved the relationships, the imagery, and the overall writing of this book. Continuing on with the series may happen eventually. I loved that the actual text in my copy was a dark blue instead of black. My other copies in the series follow along with matching the color on the cover. Neat!!!

Popsugar Reading Challenge: Started But Never Finished

Mary PoppinsMary Poppins when a spoonfull of sugar makes the medicine go down, you know that Mary Poppins has arrived on the east wind. What could such a cross woman do with such small children and an empty carpetbag? Follow her tales of being a nanny for Jane, Michael, and the twins. Filled with adventures around every turn.

Yet another book I read to my girls that I fell in love with myself. I always loved the movie; however, I never read the book growing up. Mary Poppins is captivating and full of fun. I love that this book teaches that everything is not always as it seems. Being cross will get you nowhere fast, but a little imagination will keep you going for miles.

The Halo Effect by M.J. RoseThe Halo Effect follows the story of a sex therapist by the name of Dr. Morgan Snow. As one of her patients turns up missing just after giving her the manuscript of her novel, Snow sets out to find out what has happened to her with or without the help of the police. As the chances of a serial killing on the lose increase, can Snow avoid the attention of the man hunting women? Is he the same man that has take Cleo? How many will it take to convince the police they are facing evil?

Being a huge fan of murder mysteries, I loved that Rose left me guessing until the end. I was blindsided around every turn. Just when I thought I had all of the pieces and knew who to point at, something would happen to scramble the pieces again. The story is brilliantly concocted. I look forward to continuing this series in the future. M.J. Rose has the makings of a favorite author for me.

Popsugar Reading Challenge: Author With The Same Initials (I swapped with a best friend)

Christmas Wedding WishesChristmas Wedding Wishes is about Callie, who after being left at the altar, starts to question everything about her life: her career, where she lives, etc. She decides to have a fresh start and takes the job as a librarian in a small town. Tom and his daughter have a schedule of going to the library, with a new librarian he isn't sure what to expect. With a busy schedule who has time to find love? Will either of them get the fresh start they are looking for? Or will it only lead to more heartbreak?

For a small book it worked out well, but had it been much longer I don't think the story would have held up. I enjoyed this short read. The ending was endearing even though I have no idea how that could ever be pulled off in real life. I love the connection that was established with Callie and Tom's little girl. It was a nice break even though it didn't fit into the category it was supposed to.

Popsugar Reading Challenge: Book Set During Christmas

The Mouse and the Motorcycle Ralph is a daring mouse that wants more freedom to look for adventure, so one night he ventures out of his home and into the hotel room. His family fears his fate. When a small boy checks into the room with the mouse hole, Ralph is fascinated with his red motorcycle. Will he be able to ride it without getting caught? Or will he expose his family to the hotel staff putting them in grave danger?

In elementary school, my teacher read this to my class and I loved it. So this was the perfect choice in my Popsugar Challenge. I am not sure my girls enjoyed it as much as I did though. I enjoyed the adventure and the memories that this book brought back to me. It will always be dear to my heart. So will the memory of the mouse in the classroom that made over half the girls scream and jump on their desks. I was not one of those girls for the record.

Popsugar Reading Challenge: Book From Your Childhood

Tuck EverlastingTuck Everlasting is a book about the family that has eternal life after drinking from a hidden stream. For years they have wondered aimlessly, keeping their secret from the world. Winnie dreams of leaving the yard of the cottage on her own. She dreams of freedom. One day she leaves and vows never to come back. She stumbles across the Tuck family. For the first time someone else is told their secret; however, they are not alone. Someone evil plots to exploit them all. Will they be able to escape or will the world finally know their secret? What will become of Winnie being in the care of the Tuck family?

This was an impulse read because I needed something I could take with me without having to record it for my girls or my fiance. Having seen the movie when I was younger, I was intrigued to read this story. The movie does not do it justice. The story is beautifully woven and detailed. The feelings are strong and the emotions run high. The author teaches lessons of right and wrong and how sometimes those lines are not as clear as we would like for them to be.

A Christmas To RememberA Christmas to Remember is the story of Carrie that loves her years as a nanny; however, having to watch her friends settle down has her thinking about her life. More importantly, the family she would like to have of her own. She agrees to do one last seasonal nanny position before setting out to get her life in order. What could go wrong? She is allowed to care for the kids however she sees fit and she gets to decorate the Christmas tree. But when Adam's family arrives and she steps into his life more things begin to shift. What will become during this holiday season of Carrie in a house with a completely strange family while thinking of her own?

I absolutely adored this book. I took away one star because had I owned a physical copy, it would have been found across the room near the end. It was slightly slow in places, but the story came together well. I like the personal reflections of Carrie; however, they could be a little repetitive from time to time. Adam could be frustrating as well, but his family was a lot of fun and everything one would hope for around the holidays. Overall I really loved this book.

Popsugar Reading Challenge: Book Set During Christmas

Fearsom by S.A. WolfeFearsome Jessica is struck by tragedy as she receives the news that her aunt has passed away leaving her estate, house included, to her. She is asked to come stay while all affairs are set in order at which point she can decide to keep the house or sell it. Upon arriving, family secrets are uncovered. Jessica is worried about her job, but the two bothers from the summer she spent there as a child are both pining for her attention. Which one will catch her eye? Will she stay or will she sale?

The romance in this book is enough to keep your head reeling until the very end. At times I was so frustrated with the characters; however, the storyline was wonderful. I found myself not wanting to put it down. I was captivated by the house and the small town. Overall I loved this book and I can't wait to see how the series is continue. I was happy it didn't end with a huge cliffhanger.

Popsugar Reading Challenge: Book With A Love Triangle

What books did you finish in the month of April? If you are doing the Popsugar Reading Challenge I would love to here what you are reading for yours! If you would like for me to do a post updating how far I am into the challenge and the books for the ones I have completed, just leave it in the comments below. I hope that you are all having a lovey day and that you have a book captivating your attention, after finishing this of course.