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Monday, December 28, 2015

My One-Word Resolution for 2016 is Appreciate

Appreciate is the word I chose to be my One-Word Resolution for 2016. I want to slow down and appreciate every minute of my life. It takes time to get to a certain age and realize that your life is not infinite on this earth. All though I anticipate being reunited with the ones I love in Heaven someday, I really want to slow down and enjoy the moments that I have here on this earth. Because when you appreciate what you have, contentment and happiness will follow,

Also I need to appreciate the moments that I find to write. Sometimes I find myself getting frustrated with the time I do not get to write my book or other writing. But how lucky am I to finally have any time to enjoy this pursuit that I love. It has taken me quite a few years to get back to this thing I love to do and I need to appreciate the time I have to do it - no matter the interruptions or length of minutes I can sneak in at one sitting. My family was thoughtful enough to provide me with a brand new, very comfortable chair to use at our desk and after our Holiday trip I can't wait to get home and use it!

I also want to appreciate the time I have with my husband, daughter, and extended family. So many times I have said that I wish I could stop time and enjoy the moment longer. But that is not possible, the one thing you can count on is the evitable movement of time. I want to appreciate all the moments that I have during my life - the good, the bad and the ugly. Unfortunately we lost too many wonderful people in our family this year, 2015. One of these people was one that I wanted to write a book with of the enduring story of my husband's amazing father and his 11 siblings. Six of the brothers were in World War II and some went on to serve  our nation in other wars. My fingers are itching to tell that story but as time marches by the stories are harder to find. 
I also plan to stop being frustrated over what I can not change and appreciate what I can change. I will probably never get back the body I had at 22, but I want to appreciate the one I have now. I plan to appreciate the health I have and treat it with dignity, so hopefully it will continue to treat me well also. 
I also want to appreciate my food in moderation but not cheat myself from enjoying treats as they 
are presented to me without guilt. No easy feat. 
Appreciate - something that I plan to learn how to do better in 2016. That old saying about 
slow down and appreciate the little things in life is just what I plan to do. Please share with me 
the words you choose for your One-Word Resolution! Hope you can appreciate your wonderful families, good health, and each and every moment of your lives.  --Patty

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Just started "A Tale for the Time Being" by Ruth Ozeki!

This is the book I received at my Book Club Christmas Dinner! Or rather that I stole to take home as we do during our book exchange.😄
I am loving the writing but this part made me and my husband, who I had to share it with, laugh out loud! 
"He wants me to go Canada. He's got this thing about Canada. He says it's like America only with health care and no guns, ....."
Sad but true! Can't wait to keep reading! Hope you all got lots of books for Christmas too! 

Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas!

Wishing you all a very, Merry Christmas! May your wishes come true, your gifts be filled with books, and your family be well. 2016 promises us all 365 days to read, spend time with our families, and write! Or read.... did I mention there are some many books on my To-read list! Thank goodness for GoodReads so I can keep a list! Have a wonderful rest of Christmas and wish you all a happy and healthy New Year! 

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Patty Pick for Favorite Books of 2015!

There are so many good choices to make the favorite book list this year, out of the books 
I've read. There were also quite a few that I planned to read, but never made time for. Hopefully next year will bring my first book an agent and it will be in the published group of books for 2016!

This is by no means a complete list, just the favorite books that I read this year and if you want a review, please feel free to look them up on my blog. 

1)  A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman. 
          By far the best book that I've read! 
2) All the Light You Cannot See by Anthony Doerr. 
          Close book choice for Number 1!
3) The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins. 
          This one needs no introduction. 
4) After You by Jojo Moyes; Sequel to Me Before You - a really good book!
5) To Kill A Mockingbird & Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee. 
          These two books are classics. Loved them both but still have some 
          reservations about Go Set a Watchman. 
6) This Dark Road to Mercy by Wiley Cash. 
           Another great new author from North Carolina. 
7) Every Fifteen Minutes by Lisa Scottoline - Definitely Lisa Scottoline is tops in her field 
            with psychological thrillers. This is a good one that will keep you guessing. 
8) My Sunshine Away by M.O. Walsh - FirstRead winner by a new author and fresh voice               with a male point of view.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Blog Post for "After You" by Jojo Moyes

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes was one of the best books I read last year.
Jojo Moyes just tells a good story and the characters of Will and Lou will
resonate with you if you have a heart of any size. :)
Will is a brilliant, handsome man who became a quadriplegic in a freak
accident one day crossing the street for a taxi. When we meet him he wants to end his life through assisted suicide. The fallout will effect Lou and his family in ways they did not see coming.
After You , Jojo Moye's new sequel, begins with Lou after Will's death, after the news reports, judgement of her by everyone good and bad, and after time has passed to some extent. She is living in London with the help of the money that Will left her. Lou is dissatisfied with her life and feels she is breaking her promise to Will to "Live", but she can not break out of the day-to-day existence she has chosen.
After drinking too much one night, she has her own strange, life-changing accident. Looking at the
world that Will faced she understands some of what he was going through. After recuperating back
home with her parents for months, she returns to her empty apartment to start over in the job she hates. She joins a support group for grieving family members and runs into the ambulance worker
whose voice she remembers from the her accident.
Their turbulent relationship along with surprising entries from Will's family will keep Lou struggling to help them sort out their grief and to work through her own. It's hard not to spill out the secrets in this book but you want to discover them for yourself. Jojo Moyes builds the story well and you deserve to discover Lou's story one page at a time. Bring the kleenex box!!

Patty Pick for 9/24/15 is "Take Me With You" by Catherine Ryan Hyde

August, a science teacher, is struggling with many different issues when we meet him at the start of this novel. His vacation is not off to a good start with the breakdown of his RV barely after the start of his trip. He is stranded in a small town while a local mechanic fixes the problems, with what August hopes will not be too large a cost. August is an alcoholic who has taken steps to seek help and is currently sober. His teenage son, Phillip, has died in a car accident and he is carrying some of Phillip's ashes to Yellowstone Park. This trip was supposed to be one they made together.Now August will be scattering Phillip's ashes along the way with only his loyal dog, Woody, for company. Woody does tend  to steal the show when he can. 

As August waits in the heat, he meets the mechanic's young sons, Seth and Henry. In an amazing turn of events our mechanic asks August to take his sons for the summer because he has to serve a prison sentence and no one else can help. He is also an alcoholic but has not come to terms with his disease. August decides to take them with him against his better judgment. The descriptions for the various national parks they visited are vivid and you can feel the healing take place for them all as the summer advances. 

When August has to take them back to their father, he tries to figure out a way to keep them so he can remove them from the situation they have. But the reality is, they must stay. August tries to find ways to stay in touch through skype and telephone calls over the years, but they all drift off into their own worlds. As the boys age, they find ways to survive. When Seth calls to visit, August has changed. He has aged and can no longer take his annual summer trips in the RV. He offers to give it to Seth and both boys surprise him with a visit and trip. This will be a different trip due to Augusts' health but the boys surprise him with a special destination. This is a good solid read.   

Patty Pick for 11/19/15 is "Betrayed" by Lisa Scottoline

Image result for betrayed by lisa scottoline

Lisa Scottoline has perfected the mystery genre. She mixes 
well-rounded characters with plenty of action to keep you involved in the storyline until the end. With this Rosato & DiNunzio novel you will be invested from the beginning with Judy, her family, and her crazy life. As Judy is adjusting to the facts of life around her, such as her best friend getting married and making partner before her while they are at the same firm, she also finds out that her favorite Aunt Barb has cancer. And if that is not enough, she is having doubts that she wants to stay with her live-in boyfriend who never seems to be there when she needs him. 

While Judy is visiting her aunt to discuss the cancer, Iris Juarez drops in for a visit. 
Judy has heard many good things and her Aunt Barb and Iris are close friends. Later that night Iris is found dead in her car. The authorities believe it is natural causes, but Judy is suspicious. Iris was a healthy person and it does not add up that Iris would drop dead hours later. 

Now you should be get ready for non-stop action. It takes off and you need to hold on. There are drug gangs, cancer, and stupid boyfriends everywhere. Judy tries to solve the mystery of Iris' death while helping her aunt deal with Iris' death and have surgery for cancer. When Judy finds ten thousand dollars, she begins having doubts in Iris' innocence. As she searches for the truth, Judy struggles to work out her personal life. This one will be a quick read but worth every page. 

Patty Pick for 11/5/15 is "All We Had" by Annie Weatherwax

Ruthie & Rita have struggled their entire lives. As  Ruthie introduces us to the pair, we learn some of the hardships they have faced as a homeless mother and daughter. Rita has never told Ruthie who her real father is and she herself is a product of a foster home childhood. Rita treats Ruthie as an adult and Ruthie is allowed to know all the intimate details of what Rita will do to just continue to exist on this Earth. 

After they leave Rita's current boyfriend, they take what they can to sell and survive. As their money runs low on the way from California to Boston, they pull off to find a place for gas and to steal some food. They run smack into Fat River and that lucky or divine decision saved them, at least for a while. 

Fat River is your average small mill town slowly dying off in small pieces but still living off the money generated by the mill. Industry is dripping slowly out of America and heading to Mexico and China but the mill is still providing income for Mel and the diner/gas station combination business he runs. Lucky for Ruthie and Rita, their car breaks down here because kind-hearted Mel gives them a job and a place to live. 

Ruthie and Rita finally have roots and stability for one of the first times in their lives. They have friends in the small community they live in and coworkers who look out for them. Rita waitresses at the diner and Ruthie washes dishes. Peter Pam and Arlene become the glue and laughter that Rita and Ruthie need to survive. Ruthie strives to keep her impulsive mom on the straight and narrow but life has a way of throwing curve balls when you least expect them. When they get in financial trouble again, their lives take another desperate turn. Rita tries hard to provide for her daughter the only way she knows how and plans out Ruthie's future attending an Ivy league college. Will Ruthie make it, is the question? As we meet all the "family" they make along the way, we have hope. 

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Full-on Panic Mode

Image result for panic over the holidays
Here it is December and I am in full panic mode! My blog, the editing of my book, Christmas shopping, ..... The list could go on and on. Reading time, much less writing time has been at a premium during the last few weeks.

Right now I am in the middle of Nicholas Spark's new novel, 
See Me. Well, not exactly in the middle, more like at the 
beginning. Every year I forget how hectic this time of year 
becomes no matter how much I plan ahead. There is this special time continuum that speeds everything up between 
Thanksgiving and Christmas each year! 

Hope you all are feeling less panicked, and having a wonderful start to your Holiday season! I will be back on Thursday, 12/10/15, with a great review of After You by 
Jojo Moyes. She is definitely an author you want to read and this sequel to one of 
my favorite books, Me Before You, will not disappoint. Happy shopping, cooking, and 
celebrating, and definitely reading !!