My Latest Reads

Trema's bookshelf: read

Gathering Blue
Sickened: The Memoir of a Munchausen by Proxy Childhood
The Giver
Child of Grace
The Silent Girl: A Novel
The One Who Waits for Me
Flesh and Blood So Cheap: The Triangle Fire and Its Legacy
The Blind in Darkness
Haunted Kids: True Ghost Stories (Haunted Kids)
Like the Willow Tree: The Diary of Lydia Amelia Pierce, Portland, Maine, 1918

Trema's favorite books »

Monday, August 14, 2017

Review: The Invisible Wall

The Invisible Wall
By~ Harry Bernstein

Quote: "Joe already told me. I'm very grateful to Arthur. I think it was a wonderful thing that he did, and I'm going to make up a basket of fruit for him. But he's a Christian, and I don't want him in the house and I don't want you in his house."~ Mother
(pg. 70)

Started: August 8, 2017
Finished: August 13, 2017

paperback/297 pages

From the cover:

On the eve of World War I, in a small English mill town, Harry Bernstein's family struggles to make ends meet. Harry's father earns little money at the Jewish tailoring shop and brings home even less, preferring to spend his wages drinking and gambling. Harry's mother, devoted to her children and fiercely resilient, survives on her dreams: new shoes for young Harry, her daughter's marriage to the local rabbi. Then harry's older sister does the unthinkable: She falls in love with a Christian boy. But they are separated by an "invisible wall" that divides Jewish families on one side of the street from Christian families on the other. When Harry unwittingly discovers the secret affair, he must choose between the morals he's been taught all his life, his loyalty to his selfless mother, and what he knows to be true in his own heart.

My Review:

I am always a sucker for a good memoir and this was no disappointment.
I have always been fascinated with other people's stories. Who they are and how they got there.
Harry Bernstein does a wonderful job of showing the reader exactly where he came from and how he struggled, dreamed and thrived in his situation. 
I will say I feel like the "love story" aspect of the book was overrated. Yes, it was a huge experience in Harry's life and the book is HIS memoir but in my opinion the "Invisible Wall" was there with or without the Jewish/Christian affair between his sister and Arthur.
The religions were separated already.
He shows that by the way the headmaster, neighbors, and peers treated them.
They were only cordial or interacted on a have to basis already.
As he shows in using them to light the fires or when having to shop at a Christian store.
In some ways they were dependent on the Christians yet the prejudice/dislike was mutual.

Yes, the affair stirred up even more issues and caused more tragedy and heartache.(As it had previously between Sarah and Freddy). I'm sure for them it was just as Harry describes. Horrific for their mother and unsettling for the Christians also.
I just don't feel that was the biggest struggle they were dealing with.
His father was a drunk who wasted what money they did have. He was violent and feared by his entire household. The mother seemed to dream through her children to the point of pushing them away completely. She may have been resilient, but I see a woman desperate and hopeless.
Again, it's just my opinion. I completely admire Mr. Bernstein for his willingness to retell his story to the world and to let us share his memories.
He is a wonderful writer and although he was 96 years old when The Invisible Wall was published, he managed to finish 2 more books The Dream:A Memoir and The Golden Willow before he passed away in 2011 at the age of 101!
I definitely will read his other two books.
And you can also find out more about him and his life here>> Harry Bernstein
I hope anyone who loves a great memoir. A true story or anyone needing to be reminded how prejudices can cause more harm than the good some believe by sticking to what they have been taught. This is a wonderful example of how fear and hatred lead to hurt, harm and even death.
5 Stars for The Invisible Wall

Monday, August 7, 2017

Review: Cover Of Snow

Cover of Snow

Jenny Milchman

Quote: " The only thing I can tell you about Brendan's last days is he was doing a lot of talking. More than usual even."~ Club
( pg.60)

Started: July 31, 2017
Finished: Aug. 7, 2017

paperback/336 pages

From the Cover:
Waking up one wintry morning in her old farmhouse nestled in the Adirondack Mountains of New York, Nora Hamilton finds her world suddenly shattered. Her husband, Brendan, has committed suicide. Then a disturbing awareness slowly settles in: Brendan left no note and gave no indication that he was contemplating taking his own life. Why would a rock-solid police officer with unwavering affection for his wife, job, and quaint hometown suddenly choose to end it all? Unraveling her late husband's final days, Nora searches for an explanation- but finds a bewildering resistance from Brendan's best friend and partner, his fellow police officers, and his brittle mother. It quickly becomes clear to Nora that she is asking questions no one wants to answer. For beneath the soft cover of snow lies a powerful conspiracy that will stop at nothing to keep its presence unknown...and its darkest secrets hidden.

My Review:
This is by far one of my new favorites!
It jumps right in and holds you from the beginning. 
The mysterious suicide of a small town cop starts a peeling away at a lifetime of secrets and crimes.
Nora, his wife is determined to find answers no one else wants uncovered. She is learning friend from foe along the way and keeps stumbling. She is struggling to understand the clues her truest ally, Dugger, an autistic man is trying to tell her. His rhymes are codes. "Red head, Red dead" He is trying to show her the big picture in small clips, recordings and sing songs.

Ned a  reporter, starts out with his own agenda(yet another crime the cops covered up), but quickly realizes he too has to help Nora and dives into all the danger at any cost to save her before the truth gets her killed.

Who knows the truth? What is the truth? Who is covering things up? and why?

This book definitely keeps you engrossed and wanting more.
Wonderful characters, plot, twists and action.
I think Jenny Milchman has done an amazing job and I will definitely recommend her and this book to any reader that loves a good thriller mystery.
5 Stars for Cover of Snow!

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Review: Orphan Mother

Orphan Mother
By~ Robert Hicks

Quote: " It mean, she don't know when she need help. She don't know when she in trouble. She don't know when it's time to give up." ~ Hooper
(pg. 150)

Started: July 23, 2017
Finished: July 31, 2017

paperback/320 pages

From the Cover:

In the years following the Civil War, Mariah Reddick, former slave to Carrie McGavock--the "Widow of the South"-- has quietly built a new life for herself as a midwife to the women of Franklin, Tennessee. But when her ambitious, politically minded grown son, Theopolis, is murdered, Mariah-no stranger to loss--finds her world once more breaking apart. How could this happen?
Who wanted him dead?
  Mariah's journey to uncover the truth leads her to unexpected people- including George Tole, a recent arrival in town, fleeing a difficult past of his own- and forces her to confront the truths of her own past. Brimming with the vivid prose and historical research that has won ROBERT HICKS recognition as a "master storyteller"(San Francisco Chronicle), THE ORPHAN MOTHER is the unforgettable story of one woman's heroic struggle in the face of overwhelming adversity and the undeniable strength of a mother's love.

My Review:

I have to say that I enjoyed this book right from the beginning. It is "someone's story".
Although it is fiction, someone, somewhere has lived this. Probably not exactly but it is definitely a "facts within" book. Which makes me love it even more.
The characters were real!
The place was believable.
The times were tragic and heartbreaking.
There was love, hate, sadness, joy, life and death.
All throughout history we see these things. Some trying to separate, some trying to come together. 
Power, greed, superiority, self doubt, shame
Judging, being judged. 
Sadly, there is no perfect answer.
We are born into things, taught things, we may learn things and at a point we must decide who we are. What do we believe and what will we pass on and live out in our own life and the choices we make.
I love any book that makes you humble. It really makes you take a look at yourself and ask...
What would I have done?
How would I have dealt with these circumstances, this situation?
How can we treat any other human this way?
Where does ignorance end and stupidity begin?

Will you become bitter or better?
 Faith and Hope are amazing things to behold!
Mariah's story is heartbreaking and empowering!
Definitely a 5 star.
I hope sooo many people will read her "story"

Sunday, July 30, 2017

TBR and....Thriftbooks deals!

TBR and....Thriftbooks deals!

I am a book hoarder and...I regret nothing!

I just ordered more books!!! (Squeals)
I couldn't help myself.

Years ago I had ordered a few children's books for Christmas presents and done the whole subscribe with your email blah blah stuff in order for them to send you periodic deals and savings tips.
I honestly haven't used the site since about 2014 but every now and then I actually would get an email.
20% your next purchase
Huge online savings!
We've found a book on your wish list!
Order soon!

Anyway, I always just deleted them or never took the time to actually click the included link to browse the site.

But, ...
since I started my blog back up, I do need new material to read and review.
So a couple days ago, I got yet another email reminder for a book I had added to my "wish list" way back whenever. (I actual have the book now and have read it).
I decided to look up the site and just see if there was anything "cheap" enough to consider ordering or just to add more books to my wish list.

I found a huge deal...
They are having a Thriftdeals sale. Which is a sale on there already "marked down" used books. If you buy 2 books it's $7, 3 for $10...and so on!
And 4 or more books gets you FREE SHIPPING!!
So, I bought 6 books for $18 and no shipping charges!!
Here are the 6 books that I ordered and the titles can all be found over at GOODREADS on my TBR list.

Orphan Train~ Christina Baker Kline
Someone Knows My Name~ Lawrence Hill
These Is My Words~ Nancy E. Turner
The One I Left Behind~ Jennifer McMahon
Left Neglected~ Lisa Genova
The Invisible Wall~ Harry Bernstein

Happy Reading and happy deal hunting!

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Review: Desire Becomes Her

Desire Becomes Her
Book #6 (Becomes Her series)

By: Shirlee Busbee

Quote:  " It's my house and I can speak my mind if I want to. If  your fine friend don't like it, Broadhaven sports two inns- he can put up there and take you along with him." ~ Silas (pg.74)

Started: July 5, 2017
Finished: July 22, 2017

paperback/390 pages

From the cover:

A Perilous Temptation

Gillian Dashwood's wastrel husband wagered away her fortune. His scandalous murder ruined her reputation. Still, she'll do whatever it takes to protect her beloved elderly uncle from Lucian Joslyn, the cool-headed gambler whose arrival is as mysterious as his newfound fortune. Once Luc makes it clear he is certain Gillian herself anything but innocent, she's determined to reveal the truth about him. But the shimmering desire that draws them even closer threatens those with vengeful secrets to keep. Now, trusting each other is a hazard Gillian and Luc never imagined- and a chance at enduring love is the one peril they can't resist...

My Review:

I have to say I have enjoyed all 6 of the books in this series. While they aren't super suspenseful, tragic, historical or factual like most of the books I prefer to read, I enjoy this author and love a good romantic, easy read from time to time.
As with most series, this book starts out by pulling in a character from the previous book and takes off with their story. 
In this book it is Lucian Joslyn( Luc), the illegitimate half brother of the new Viscount, Barnaby Joslyn.
Luc has a reputation for being a womanizer and a gambler. Although he has been on the outskirts of proper society things are changing.

I loved how this book pulls out his softer more "gentlemanly" side and how he learns to trust and follow his heart.
It also showed a great bond between brothers and how there is still a bond whether you were raised together or not.
Definitely has the adventure and mystery factors included.
A classic "who done it?" Wonderful characters and dialogue throughout.
I gave it 4 stars!

Don't forget to check out Shirlee Busbee over at Goodreads!
Happy Reading!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Ready to Revamp...Stay Tuned

I'm coming back!

Hello fellow readers, writers and lovers of all things about books!
 I want to sincerely thank all of you that haven't "un-followed" me!
That is true dedication!  Or you forgot all about me or don't know how to un-follow. LOL
Either way, I'm so glad your still with me!
I know I have been MIA for like....EVER!
I have been out of the loop for so long, I haven't really been sure where or how to get this back where I want it to go.
This started out as just a fun, easy way for me to write out my reviews and opinions on the books I've read and also to keep kind of an online journal for any of my friends that were also interested .
Every book lover knows how great it feels to connect with like minded souls and have that easy going, common ground to chat, share and explore. 

I am seriously going to give this my all and pray I don't let anyone down.

This blog needs a whole new vamp so please be patient as I refresh myself with all the codes, layouts, widgets, etc...
It is challenging to concentrate on all that when all I want to do is read so I can get that review wrote while it is still fresh...and before I can start the next book!

Here is my Current Read , don't forget to join Goodreads!

While I have temporary living conditions, I also have limited books to read or buy.
This is my current TBR shelf...while my life is in a 10X20 storage unit.

I've also started a new blog, COFFEEWASTEDMOMMA that is all about me, life, being a momma, living on a budget and all my hobbies. Please stop by anytime.


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