A couple of books to talk about

The first book I want to mention is called Asylum Lake and is going to be free tomorrow 3/1/13 on Amazon.com

If you like creepy thrillers with a stay with you and haunt you later this might just be the book for you. Here is the info :


Memories are like water. Some float on the surface bright and clear. Some lie deeper – blurred by time and distance. Others rest far from the light in the depths of the darkness. These memories are best forgotten. At the bottom of Asylum Lake the unremembered are growing restless.

After the sudden death of his wife, Brady Tanner moves to the small Michigan town where he spent summers as a youth. But he soon learns that small towns can be stained by memories…and secrets too. As Brady is drawn into unearthing the secrets of the town and of the abandoned psychiatric hospital on the shores of Asylum Lake, he discovers a new love in an old friend. But there is an evil presence lurking beneath the waters of the lake. What is the source of this evil–and what does it want with Brady Tanner?

You can find this book HERE


The second book is Shadows of the Past by the very talented Romanian author Carmen Stefanescu. She is currently promoting her book through a blog tour, and you can find out more about it below.


Anne’s relationship with her boyfriend Neil has disintegrated. After a two-year separation, they packs for a week vacation in hopes of reconciling. But fate has other plans for them.

The discovery of a bejeweled cross and ancient human bones opens a door to a new and frightening world–one where the ghost of a medieval nun named Genevieve will not let Anne rest. This new world threatens not only to ruin Anne and Neil’s vacation but to end all hopes of reconciliation as Anne feels compelled to help free Genevieve’s soul from its torment.

Can Anne save her relationship and help Genevieve find her eternal rest? Or will evil win again?

You can find this book Here


Where Carmen is located she does not have ready access to Twitter and Facebook, so if you could help her spread the word about her book it would be much appreciated!

The Bears of Hemlock Mountain A Review by Elijah M. (Age 8)

This is the first official post for the children’s review section of Readful Things 🙂 I am proud to post the following book review as it is from my son. He is every bit as opinionated as me.

“There are no bears on Hemlock Mountain, No bears, no bears at all…”

Or so young Jonathan is told by the grown-ups as he sets out alone over Hemlock Mountain. But as Jonathan discovers on that cold winter night, grown-ups don’t always know…

And there are bears on Hemlock Mountain!–Description from Amazon.com

You can find this book HERE

I had to read this for school. At first I thought it would stink because the pictures looked like the ones from a long time ago but it turned out it wasn’t to bad. I liked Jonathan. He was funny for most of the book. I laughed at the part where he went to see his aunt it sounded like something I would do. I did think he was a little bit of a weenie when he was hiding from the bears but I would have done the same thing. I think other kids would liketo read this even if they didn’t have to but it would have been better if there was more stuff happening instead of just the boy talking to himself about bears. The bears werent scary.

Mom says I can rate it so other people know if they should read it or not so I give it three bears. It was okay for a book I had to read.

And Then I Found You by Patti Callahan Henry


Kate Vaughan is no stranger to tough choices.

She’s made them before. Now it’s time to do it again.

Kate has a secret, something tucked away in her past. And she’s getting on with her life.  Her business is thriving. She has a strong relationship with her family, and a devoted boyfriend whom she wants to love with all her heart. If Kate had ever made a list, Rowan would fill the imagined boxes of a perfect mate. But she wants more than the perfect on paper relationship; she wants a real and imperfect love. That’s why, when Kate discovers the small velvet box hidden in Rowan’s drawer, she panics.

It always happens this way. Just when Kate thinks she can love, just when she believes she can conquer the fear, she’s filled with dread. And she wants more than anything to make this feeling go away. But how?

When the mistakes have been made and the running is over, it’s time to face the truth. Kate knows this. She understands that a woman can never undo what can never be undone. Yet, for the first time in her life she also knows that she won’t fully love until she confronts those from her past. It’s time to act.

Can she do it? Can she travel to the place where it all began, to the one who shares her secret? Can the lost ever become found?

And Then I Found You gives new life to the phrase “inspired by a true story.” By travelling back to a painful time in her own family’s history, the author explores the limits of courage, and the price of a selfless act.–Description from Goodreads

Hardcover, 272 pages
Expected publication: April 9th 2013 by St. Martin’s Press
0312610769 (ISBN13: 9780312610760)
My thoughts on this book:
I didn’t start out enjoying this book. In the beginning,especially during the first chapter, I had a hard time paying attention to what was happening in the story. Soon after, during the second chapter, I felt the story took off and there was no looking back.By the end of this book I was thrilled with it and couldn’t wait to tell others about it. This book is one that I think I will remember for a long time. The characters are so well fleshed out and developed that over the course of reading this book I really felt like they had become friends of mine.

The story seems simple at first, but the more you read, the more apparent it becomes that everything is not what it first appears at the surface of the book. There is loss, love, devotion and determination in this story that compelled me to keep reading.

It isn’t often that I can’t decide which character I want to root for because there are just too many to love, but that was the case with this novel. After getting a feel for each character, you will find it hard to pick a favorite.

I liked that this book spanned many years rather than being just about what happened in the present. The way the author managed to tie together the back story and the current happenings of her characters came across as flawless. I was very impressed by how seamless this book felt for me as the reader.

Another thing that I particularly enjoyed about this book is that you aren’t really sure where the characters will end up when it is over. I had hopes for what I would like to see happen, and was pleased with the way the author chose to end her story.

What I found in this book, was a touching and unforgettable story that makes you believe in the power of resilience, eternal love and forgiveness. What makes this book more important than others, in my opinion, is that the inspiration for this story came from experience in the author’s own family. You can tell while reading this that she put her heart and soul into the crafting of this novel.

If you are a fan of love stories that have a timeless feel and well written novels that make you stop and think about life and our connections to one another, this book will be just what you have been searching for.

This review is based on a digital ARC from the publisher.

Now accepting reviews from children!

I am officially open to now accepting reviews from children. If you or someone

you know has a child that likes to read and would like to have their opinion

published on this blog for all to see, please go visit the Children’s reviews page on

this blog to find out how to submit a review. I am so looking forward to this and

hope there are a lot of wonderful opinions from young people shared here in the


What do you think? Children’s reviews

First of all, let me apologize for making everyone’s emails go ding! And Doing!

with all of my posts this morning. I’m not going to be home tomorrow so I

wanted to get all my blabbering out today:)

Secondly, I was have been talking for a while about including a section on the blog where kids can write a review of a book they have read and leave a review. I had a conversation with another blogger last night about it, and think it might be a fun way for kids to express themselves. The big retail sites tend to put restrictions on how old someone has to be before they can leave a review, but I think kids should have a vote too. Children’s literature is meant for kids, so I think it would validate the idea of young literacy to let them give their opinion?

So, what do you guys think? Would you read the kids reviews? 


The Notorious Lady Anne by Sharon Cullen

From rising romance star Sharon Cullen comes a tale of the fiery passion between a noble naval officer and a female pirate that’s as tempestuous and as unpredictable as the sea.
Nicholas Addison, celebrated captain of the Blackwell Shipping Fleet, has agreed to take Mrs. Emmaline Sutherland aboard the Pride and ferry the raven-haired beauty across the Atlantic on what he imagines will be a routine trip. But when the ship is attacked by pirates, the seemingly innocent passenger is revealed to be none other than the infamous marauder Lady Anne, whose name strikes fear in the hearts of sailors everywhere—and whose seductive wiles commandeers Nicholas’s affections.

Lady Anne, a legend of the high seas, has spent the last eleven years plotting revenge against her father, the owner of Blackwell Shipping. She’s targeted the Pride in hopes of plundering its captain’s company secrets. But beneath her fierce courage and bitter determination, Anne has the delicate heart of a woman—a heart that cannot help falling for Nicholas. Now Anne must make a difficult choice: bring down Blackwell or surrender to love.
Includes a special message from the editor, as well as excerpts from these Loveswept titles: The Reluctant Countess, Wild Rain, and Silk on the Skin.–Description From Amazon.com

  • File Size: 1375 KB
  • Print Length: 351 pages
  • Publisher: Loveswept (February 11, 2013)
  • Sold by: Random House Digital, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00957T6IQ

You can find this book HERE

This book doesn’t follow the conventional romance recipe and I was grateful for that. How many roguish heroes can come and sweep the poor innocent woman off into the sunset before you begin to yawn? The main character in this book is not conventional, nor is she a poor hapless twit. She is fiery, strong, funny and determined. She made all the other heroines look bad, in my opinion.

The hero is no slouch either, and if you like your romance a bit spicy, this book will most likely work well for you. The heat is apparent from the first meeting of the characters. I liked that this book had believable elements as well as some that were more fantastical. I think the author found a nice balance in writing this. It wasn’t boring, but it also wasn’t so far fetched that I was doing the eye-roll. Her characters played well off of each other and were different enough that it gave them a natural spark.

The descriptions of sailing, the parts of the ship and the duties of the crew were wonderful. It is clear that Sharon Cullen did her homework before writing this novel. She used vibrant language that colored her scenes in a lovely way and made the images I got from reading this highly memorable.

The dialogue between the two main characters was often funny. I enjoyed the way that Emmaline responded to Nicholas in the beginning of their relationship. She never backed down from an argument, and it made me love her. She had the type of personality that kept me reading, eager to see what she would say to him next.

The only thing that I wasn’t 100 percent in love with was the “big reveal” of Anne’s secret. I felt it lacked a little gusto. I might have liked to have seen more shock…amazement…horror, something.

My favorite part of this story was the end. I hate when books end in an obvious way, and this one still had a bit of mystery until the very last page. I have always been a fan of the historical romance, and this is definitely an author that I will be watching from this point forward.

Overall this was a fun book with a different approach that fans of the genre will be thrilled with. I am happy I had the opportunity to read it.

I received a copy of this book as a digital ARC from the publisher.


Allegany to Appomattox: The Life and Letters of Private William Whitlock of the 188th New York Volunteers by Valgene Dunham

On September 7, 1864, William Whitlock, aged thirty-five, left his wife and four children in Allegany, New York, to join the Union army in battle. More than 100 years later, his unpublished letters to his wife were found in the attic of a family home. These letters serve as the foundation for Allegany to Appomattox, giving readers a vivid glimpse into the environment and political atmosphere that surrounded the Civil War from the perspective of a northern farmer and lumberman.

Whitlock’s observations tell of exhausting marches, limited rations, and grueling combat. In plainspoken language, the letters also reveal a desperate homesickness, consistently expressing concern for the family’s health and financial situation and requesting news from home. Dunham’s detailed descriptions of the war’s progress and specific battles provide a rich context for Whitlock’s letters, orienting readers to both the broad narrative of the Civil War and the intimate chronicle of one soldier’s impressions.–Description from Amazon.com

You can find this book HERE



I really love this book. If you are a fan of history, particularly of the Civil War or the Lincoln era, you will want to add this to your collection.

The author, Valgene Dunham, has done an incredible job researching the material included in this work. There are quite a few photos, and it was not only interesting, but somehow ethereal to see what the land looked like during this historical period. I thought the photos added a lot to the book, allowing the reader to glimpse the world William Whitlock speaks of through his correspondence.

The part of this book that captivated my attention, was the reproduction of the letters William wrote to his family. Being able to glimpse the events he saw through his own words was fascinating and kept me up late into the night reading. I appreciated that the letters were not edited and were presented with spelling errors and all. It gave me the opportunity to compare the world of today with the historical period being discussed.

This book offers an excellent viewpoint for the reader of the Confederate strategy as well as that of the Union. I have read a lot of different historical books that talked about Appomattox, but this one far exceeded the others.

If you love history and get excited when you have the chance to reach back into the past and learn, this is a book you will not want to miss.

This review is based on a digital copy from the publisher.

What the Snakes Wrote written by Hazel Hutchins and illustrated by Tina Holdcroft

Hurray for snakes!

Rufus the farmyard dog first notices the strangely shaped snakes on the ground outside his house. The word they form with their bodies, DOG, looks oddly familiar. As Rufus goes about his patrol, the snakes follow behind. Soon dozens of snakes join in, until the farmer’s field is covered in words. What are the snakes trying to tell Rufus?

The farmer, busy covering up an old well in a far corner of his field, doesn’t realize that his action will destroy the wintertime home of the harmless snakes. But Rufus’s determination helps the snakes find a way to tell the farmer their predicament and save their home.

Tina Holdcroft’s illustrations are an energetic and fun-filled complement to a charming story that subtly presents the benefits of literacy as well as the importance of preserving animal habitats. A brief afterword gives young readers additional information about snakes.–Description from Amazon.com

You can find this book HERE


My thoughts on What the Snakes Wrote:

This book is so adorable! The snakes are in trouble! Will dog be able to save them? Read this book with your children or grandchildren and find out.

What I loved about this children’s title, is the way the author used a silly, fun story with colorful illustrations to teach children about snakes. At the end of the story, there is information on real snakes. This makes it easy to help your child understand more about them and opens up a door for discussion.

The story itself is imaginative and fun to read and dog is so loveable! I would recommend this book to anyone with a younger child in their life. So much fun to share.


**I love books that use animal characters to teach kids something valuable. This is an opportunity to teach the child in your life more about snakes without them feeling like learning is boring. Love it:)


Wow! You People are awesome!!!!!

Holy Cow

just noticed today that I have over 500 WordPress


Maybe for some people this isn’t huge, but for me, who is still relatively new at this whole blogging thing, having 500 WordPress followers is incredible!!! I am astonished, astounded, amazed and…er…all those other A related words that mean blown away!

What I am trying to say, is…



On a similar note, since this post is all about thanking everyone for their generosity and love:)


I would like to thank http://legendsofwindemere.com for the nomination for the Beautiful Blogger Award

http://ramblingsofabipolarwoman.wordpress.com for the nomination for the very inspiring blogger 2013 award

http://hardcoverangel.wordpress.com for the re-nomination of the Liebster award

and http://tashastraveltroves.com for the re-nomination of the Versatile Blogger award

It may take me a while to get these straightened out and figure out who my own nominees are:)

I am not sure what I might have done to attract so many wonderful followers and friends, but I am so grateful to all of you for listening to my various thoughts and ramblings.

I am now terrified that I will run out of things to say! (I can see the eye rolls.) Okay, so we all know I never stop talking.