Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Reviewer Giveaway-Thank You, Fans!

WINNERS: Shandy and Hailey F.
Since Quickie Book Reviews started on Facebook, fans have shared their "quickie" reviews of books they've read by posting to the timeline. We have some regular posters and some fans who've only posted once or twice. 

As a thank you to all the wonderful fans who post reviews on QBR, I'm giving away two $5 Amazon Gift Cards.

Here's how you qualify:
~Post a review to the timeline by January 31
~Also, anyone that has posted a review in December or January is automatically qualified
~Note: Reviews may not be self promo's of your own book
~Review content includes: Title, Author, and a few sentences on what you thought about the book

On February 1, I will randomly select two names from all fans who have posted reviews in December and January.

Fine print: Winners will be announced here and on the Facebook page. I will also attempt to reach winners via their Facebook page. If winner doesn't respond within one week, prize will be forfeited. 

Don't forget to like Quickie Book Reviews and our sister page Book Haven.


Wednesday, January 2, 2013

TOP 10 LIST - Year End Special Edition

What were the best books you read in 2012? Below are lists from a few of the fans of the QBR Facebook page.


The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros
Thought provoking and moving. Cisneros uses several vignettes in the voice of a young, Latino girl growing up in Chicago to tell the story of many. I knew after finishing the introduction that I wouldn’t be putting the book down until I’d finished, and I didn’t!

Collateral by Ellen Hopkins
I cannot get through a Hopkins novel without feeling moved, changed even. In this novel, as usual, she’s taken a tough subject and brought it to light in an honest, raw way – no sugar coating, no spin…just real life situations in a fictional setting.

Divergent/Insurgent by Veronica Roth
I’m listing these two together since they are of the same series (book three is on the way in 2013). I read these in one weekend – I could not put them down. I have read and loved many YA Dystopian novels and didn’t expect to feel overly different about this one, but I was wrong. I LOVED every word and this has become my standout favorite in that genre.

The Prisoner of Heaven by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
This is the third installment in the Cemetery of Forgotten Books series and Zafon does not disappoint. His writing is so vivid, rich, and striking that I feel a part of his stories. I’ve never been to Barcelona, but I feel like I have – I can see it clearly as I read his words. His characters are just as deep – well-developed and multi-layered, they take you for a great ride!

These Girls by Sarah Pekkanen
Pekkanen is one of my all-time favorite authors. She writes characters that are always relatable. In this story three young women start lives in New York – I love reading stories set in NY, it is so alluring! Each woman has her own story and each intersects with the other at some point bringing them together in ways they could never predict.

Raising Abel by Carolyn Nash
By far the most heart-breaking, yet uplifting novel I read in 2012. Nash tells her own story – hers and Abel’s. I was at times furious, sad, happy, excited, scared, or all simultaneously. This one will bring forth emotion and tissue is recommended.

Impulse by Ellen Hopkins
Another one by Hopkins – I simply love her books. Impulse is a YA book featuring three troubled teens who are similar yet so different, flawed yet so perfect, unlikely friends yet so quickly linked. Writing, once again, in verse Hopkins takes readers on a journey through the lives of these three teens. 

11/22/63 by Stephen King
A little bit history, a little bit mystery and a whole lot Stephen King! JFK from King’s eyes and imagination – how in the world can a reader not enjoy that?!? One of the best books I read for the year.

Skipping a Beat by Sarah Pekkanen

Have your tissue ready for this one! As always Pekkanen brings you in and makes you feel her story and her characters. My life isn’t one iota the same as the characters in this book, but I related so much that it gave me cause to evaluate my own life and marriage. Pekkanen has a way of making her characters relatable to everyone!


Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn - This book totally blew my mind! I thought I had this book figured out but then the first bombshell dropped - and then the kept dropping!

Wool Omnibus by Hugh Howie - I don't normally read Science Fiction, but this post apocalypse book made me think more than any other I read all year.

Gabriel's Inferno by Sylvain Reynard - Contemporary romance - I had no idea this was originally Twilight fan fiction until after I had read it. Probably the most beautifully written book I have ever read.

11/22/63 by Stephen King - One of his best, second only to The Stand in my opinion. This book is not horror, but creepy in it's own way.

Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry - Such a wonderful book - it made me laugh out loud, and at times had me in tears.

The Black Dagger Brotherhood series by J.R. Ward - Steamy vampire series - I fell in love with every male lead from each book.
The Poet by Michael Connelly - A suspense novel that kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time.

The Harry Bosch series by Michael Connelly - I'm quickly working my way through this police/suspense series. Each book is better than the last.

The Case of the Flashing Fashion Queen by N. L. Wilson - fun and quirky cozy mystery. It kept me laughing and rooting for the female heroine.

In the Bleak Midwinter by Julia Spencer-Fleming - Cozy mystery about a female reverend and the local police chief. Fun and suspenseful.


Magnus Opum by Jonathan Gould – this is a book that is totally magical, brimming with imagination and fantasy, and entertaining from start to finish. One of those books that the whole family can read.

South Pole Santa by Dennis Canfield – a wonderful short story about a little elf panicking big time that Christmas is going to come to an end. Delightfully conceived with some charming illustrations.

White Lies by Jeremy Bates – an excellent first novel about a young woman who makes one wrong decision after another after a chance encounter with an attractive, smooth-talking man.

What Happened in Granite Creek by Robyn Bradley – a story about an unlikely love affair between a war veteran and a wife abused by her violent husband, and the secrets that a mother will keep to protect her children

Bad Book by Brooks, Mader and Hise – a book about a hitchhike through the literary genres that puts a permanent grin on your face. Funny, very, very funny.

Joe Cafe by J D Mader – excellent novel by Dan Mader. Dark, intense and very deep with a cast of characters so cleverly portrayed, you can’t turn your back on even the most depraved.

Speaking in Jitterbug by Jacqueline Girdner – a novel of 

exquisitely observed characters in a family whose relationship is strained by the mother’s schizophrenia and self-imposed 20-year silence.

The Second Internet Cafe by Chris James – a brilliant, intelligent, very enjoyable novel about a time-traveller who is also in a race against time.

Surfing in Stilettos by Carol Wyer – funny, witty, thoroughly entertaining novel of a fifty-plus’s good intentions to take a year travelling, but halts abruptly in France.

and my number one of this year is:

Drawing Breath by Laurie Boris – utterly outstanding novel of unrequited love that does draw your breath. Sad, poignant, joyful and a book that stays with you for a long, long time.


The Casual Vacancy by J. K Rowling - not your daughter's Harry Potter.

The Reading Promise by Alice Ozma - Inspirational.

Divergent by Veronica Roth - provocative.

Defending Jacob by Jacob W. Landay - disturbing.

Tumbleweeds by Leila Meecham - plot twists!

Ghost Soldiers: The Epic Account of WW2's Greatest Rescue Mission by Hamton Sides- captivating.

War Horse by M. Morpurgo - sad but SO worth it!

Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell - soul searching.     

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn - WOW! Speechless.
and the best book I read all year.....

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. FUN! 80's lovers MUST read!


Tell the Wolves I'm Home by Carol Rifka Brunt
Everything I love in a book – a thoughtful, socially awkward young narrator coming of age at a particularly dramatic historical moment.

Extremely Loud and Incredible Close by Jonathan Safron Foer
Brilliant and devastating, this novel left me gasping for air and too stunned to read anything else for weeks.

A Land More Kind than Home by Wiley Cash
Cash did not so much ease me into the deeply disturbing world of religious extremism, as grip me by the throat and pull me into this highly dramatic Appalachian backwater.

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
This excellent novel forced me to completely re-examine my belief that I’m not a fan of thrillers.

Rules of Civility by Amor Towles
Towles evoked the late 1920s era with such intelligence and sophistication that I wanted to be Kate’s best friend.

Girlchild by Tupelo Hassman
You have to be willing to delve into the rawest world of mistreatment and abuse to discover the beauty buried at its core.

This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper
I laughed long and often throughout this brilliantly clever dark comedy.

The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes
This novel is further proof that my favorite books are not those that are driven by plot, or even by character, but instead, are books whose language transports me.

Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter
A little bit mystery, a little romance, a little historical fiction, even a little Hollywood, Walters does a fantastic job of blending all these components into something smart, entertaining and lovely.

Unless by Carol Shields

This kind of passive first-person storytelling will not work for all readers, but I loved Shield’s focus on language and internal monologues.


The Light Between Oceans.by M.L. Stedman
Every character was developed as fully as possible and the reader could root for each one.

The Whistling Season by Ivan Doing
The Montana prairie life of the early 1900's was described with a paint brush of words making the visual come to life in the mind's eye.

Room by Emma Donoghue
The child's voice was clear in every sentence. The premise of the imprisoned pair was believable.

When Captain Flint was Still a Good Man by Nick Dybek
A coming of age story set in Vancouver British Columbia with the focus on the fishing industry.

Freedom by Jonathan Franzen
A complicated dysfunctional family in the Midwest becomes enmeshed in the "greening of America ".

Still Alice by Lisa Genova
Intelligent academic struggles with early stages of Alzheimers while trying to maintain normalcy in life and work relationships. The authority of the writer is clear as it is in her other books: Left Neglected and Loving Anthony.

The Racketeer by John Grisham
The hero of the story is in prison at the outset but soon maneuvers the action with as many twists and turns as you can expect from a master storyteller. Grisham is at the top of his game.

Tigers in Red Weather by Liz Klaussmann
This debut by Herman Melville's great granddaughter is set on Martha's Vineyard and is a psychological exploration of family dynamics.

The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton
An English child arrives in Australia alone and her granddaughter travels back to England decades later to unearthed the story.

Lone Wolf by Jodi picoult
A man who has lived with and raises wolves is dying and his estranged daughter tries to save him.

Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay
Jewish internment and genocide in PAris during German occupation leads a young girl to make a tragic mistake to be discovered decades later by relatives.

A Thread of Grace by Mary Doria Russell
Peasants and migrating Jews in the alps of northwest Italy during world war II..they hide from fascists...they hide from Germans..and the Allies are bombing too.


*Would you like to share your top 10 reads. QBR features top 10 lists periodically on the website. You can come up with your own themed list or simply do your favorite books. Like Quickie Book Reviews on facebook and then message me using the message button on the page if you're interested.