Thursday, April 4, 2019

My Top Books for 2019: The First Quarter, Plus an Update

2019 has been a whirlwind for me! I was excited about the plans I had for my blog this year, but on the very first weekend of January, everything changed. My family and I travelled to eastern Oklahoma, where my husband was voted in as pastor of a wonderful church. We went back to southeast Texas, and the following weekend, my husband resigned from our church of twelve years. The transition process started, and at the end of February, we moved 450 miles away. After twelve hours on the road and a broken trailer axle that set us back a couple of hours, we arrived in Oklahoma and started our new lives here. It's been an exhausting adventure and an emotional roller coaster! While it was hard to say goodbye to Texas, we're excited about our future in Oklahoma. And since my husband and I were born and raised in Arkansas, being so close to the Arkansas/Oklahoma border makes us feel like we're back home. Isn't it gorgeous?

I haven't done nearly as much reading as I normally do during the beginning of the year. Last year I read seven books in January alone. This year, at the end of March, I'd only read six. Life looks a lot different this year than last year, though. We're getting settled into our new town and new church, house hunting, job hunting, getting our oldest ready to start full time college in the fall, and so much more. We're in a very different season of life, and my reading time is a lot more limited. It's worth the trade-off, though.

Now that life is settling down a little, I plan to be on the blog more. I've missed it, and I've been excited about my plans for this year, even if they were a little delayed.

While my reading list was short in the first quarter of 2019, I read some amazing books! The following all got five-star Goodreads reviews from me:

The Curse of Misty Wayfair--Jaime Jo Wright

Sometimes an author comes along who always writes a great book that hooks you from the first chapter. Jaime Jo Wright is one of those. When I started The Curse of Misty Wayfair, I knew this book was different. As great as Jaime's first two books were, this takes her writing to a new level. Jaime tackles some very tough issues - anxiety, mental illness, the struggles of abandonment in childhood and adulthood, and more. This is definitely Jaime's best book yet! In fact, I loved this one so much that when the character-inspired cozies appeared in The Cozy Life Shop on Etsy, I ordered my favorite. Isn't this the perfect cozy for a mystery lover?

The Wind Will Howl--Sibella Giorello

I've been reading about Raleigh Harmon from the beginning of her story, and every book just keeps getting better. The ending of this book...oh my goodness! If you're already a Raleigh fan, you have to read this one! If you're not a fan yet, start at the beginning and catch up on this series.

The Wedding Dress, The Wedding Chapel--Rachel Hauck

For years, I avidly avoided romance novels. I repeatedly said I didn't like them, with the exception of romantic suspense. But last year, I needed a book recommendation for a reading challenge, and someone recommended Rachel Hauck's The Love Letter. I was hooked. The Wedding Dress is the second book I've read by this author, and as soon as I finished it, I dove directly into The Wedding Chapel. I love the dual timelines of Rachel Hauck's books, and her writing is phenomenal. Every single story draws me in and wraps me up in the story.

What are you reading this year? What are your favorites of the year so far?

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