Top Ten Tuesday: Halloween Fun Reads

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is an original weekly meme feature created at The Broke and the Bookish. We’d love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists. For the list of past topics and future schedule, click here.

Halloween Fun Reads


What is your favorite Halloween read?

Review: Blue Steal


Title: Blue Steal
Author: Marnie St. Clair
Publisher: Escape Publishing
Release Date: September 2016
Length: 260 pages
Series?: no
Genre: Romance, Mystery

A witty, sexy and suspenseful story about a stolen necklace, a doomed hotel, and two people determined to get their hands on the jewels—at any cost.

Selina Migliore is smart and streetwise—with an ill sister and an elderly grandmother relying on her, she has to be. When fate hands her a chance to change her life, she’s determined to seize it. All she has to do is retrieve a long-lost sapphire necklace before the Empire Hotel is blown to smithereens. Nothing’s going to get in her way…

…except Jack Tierney, PI, who’s also on the hunt for the stolen jewelry. Jack is amused by his clashes with the pushy brunette, but as he continues to bump into Selina at strange times and in odd places, he starts to question who she is and what she’s doing at the Empire.

The pressure cooker really heats up when a new player enters the scene and it becomes apparent that Jack’s not the only one keeping an eye on Selina…

Find the book: Goodreads | Amazon

my review

The Skinny

Selina Migliore is on a mission. She sets out for the once-grand Empire Hotel, where her immigrant grandmother fell in love with one of the hotel owners’ sons fifty years before. Now she is ailing in health and Selina’s sister has a serious illness that requires much more money than Selina makes as an executive administrator. Now that the ring in the famous Petrovsky sapphire collection has been found in the hotel where it went missing the night Nonna’s lover died all those years ago, Selina is there to find the matching sapphire necklace. It will solve all of her sister’s medical finances. There’s just one problem: Selina only has one week before the Empire is demolished.

Little does she know that fellow Empire resident Jack Tierney, P.I., is also at the hotel on behalf of the Petrovsky family to find the necklace stolen fifty years before. Once he finds inconsistencies with Selina’s story, they “team” up to find the necklace. Suddenly Selina’s great-uncle Lewis, her grandfather’s twin, finds an interest in Selina and establishes contact. While trying to riddle out the necklace’s possible hiding places, Jack and Selina both discover the mystery surrounding her grandfather’s death due to the Petrovsky sapphires just doesn’t add up. And Jack’s not going to let that go.

The Quote

Why they bothered creeping, he didn’t know. They could have banged around like a herd of baby elephants and no one would have batted an eyelid.

The Highs and Lows

  • Selina. She puts on a good front to Jack when caught red-handed searching for the sapphires. At this point, I’d already read about her botched engagement to a rich man (to pay for her sister’s medical needs), so it was saddening to hear her valiantly selling herself as a heartless gold digger to Jack in the linen closet. She’s such a good person, kind and caring and loving, that she is eager to please her great-uncle Lewis when he comes calling, no matter how socially awkward and strange he is.
  • Jack. He is a PI with a past he projects upon Selina, especially the money bit. While I could understand his pain from the previous relationship he denotes, I couldn’t quite grasp how after three years he hadn’t started moving past that and opened up even a little smidge to the possibility of a new person. Instead, he projected that old relationship onto Selina and continued to make ultimatums with her and with himself about trusting her. Despite this, he is drawn to her like a moth to a flame. As he digs deeper into the old police report about the stolen jewels and Andrew Holloway’s death (along with the Empire’s security guard), Jack begins his own investigation and uncovers some unsavoury tidbits that he is concerned about bringing to Selina’s attention, but he had already threatened her requiring some information after the night she gave him the slip…and slipped him something!
  • Lewis. For all these years he’s acted like a lone Holloway, turning Nonna away when she came to him and the family about her pregnancy. That doesn’t sit well with Selina and is the one thing she can’t let go of. Consequently, she is now a Holloway and named Lewis’s heir. She will inherit everything – as long as she doesn’t disappoint Lewis. His nature and mannerisms are slightly unsettling, but Selina chalks it up to living for fifty years without his twin.
  • Pacing and Mystery This is a fast-paced story without much deviation or subplots. The story brings in some of the hotel staff and Jack’s partner, Charles, into the investigation. When the original cop on the Holloway scene and a childhood acquaintance turn up, the mystery of what happened the night Andrew died intensifies and starts crystallizing into a third story than the two previously told.
  • The Ending. It was spectacular! There were so many elements to the ending that brought Selina back to the Empire. The ending was fitting and perfect. I did, however, wonder why the Empire hadn’t been torn down weeks after its closing like stated in the beginning of the book.


Marnie grew up in country NSW but now lives in a lovely leafy suburb of Melbourne with her husband and two gorgeous daughters. Apart from a deep and abiding love of all things romance, she has a wide array of embarrassing and/or unusual passions including playing Bridge, growing succulents, visiting deserts and getting down on the Zumba floor. No points for guessing which passion is the embarrassing one.

Find the author: GoodreadsWebsite 

Sunday Post ~ I Am Famous

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba @ Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It is a weekly news post to recap the past week on your blog, showcase the books and other goodies you’ve received, and share news about upcoming events on your blog. Be creative and personalize it! To get in on the Sunday fun day, see the rules here: Suday Post Meme.

Monday my students spent part of the period in the library for book fair. I love it but I hate the running back and forth from my classroom to the library. I had a kid walk out with a wishlist of 17 books. My BFF right there. I picked out ALL graphic novels this year!

The next day we read my favorite chapter in our novel and their minds about exploded. Some put two and two together and figured out this chapter is the climax of the story. YAY! Thinking!

I was gone to our education service center Wednesday and Thursday, which was SO nice. My partner also went so I had a friend. My students finished the book while I was gone, so now we started the wrap up on Friday.

My boys on Monday again for the second week in a row all gave me glowing comments about my hair. It was so nice! I blow dried it on Saturday for the hockey game and wore it down for the first time since I cut it in June. There was this volume and swoopy thing going on that made me look very sophisticated, so I kept it up. The kids and several of my coworkers loved it, so it made me feel good after the self-consciousness I’ve had about it due to an incident (which is why I’ve worn it up since July.) I think it has grown out slightly enough that the incident vestiges cannot be seen.

Texas Teen Book Festival reposted MY photo!!!

3357410033574182On Sunday I crawled into bed for a nap at 5:15 and pulled The Man’s type of naps that turn into real sleep. I woke up at 10pm and was hungry, so I took my meds and ate something small and crawled back in bed…and cracked open The Scandalous Flirt to help me along. I ended up finishing the entire book at 4:15. I had to get up in 45 minutes. Monday was hell, let’s just get that straight. Further hell was The Man going on and on about how I got such great sleep Sunday night, 5 to 10 and midnight to five. He works nights, so stays up in the living room and has no clue I wasn’t sleeping. I couldn’t tell him. He’d been ragging on me all week about reading my book and not going to sleep, when in reality I was only reading on my Kindle to fall asleep, which I did…every single night. Read 1-3 pages and POOF! Asleep.

Then I started The Scot Beds His Wife. The first chapter was markedly horrifying. Like so much so that I thought the wrong cover got put on the wrong book and I was reading a quasi-horror book set in Scotland. Now I’m starting to get the point of it all…but it could have been done a little less graphically. I actually ended up reading my book almost the entire second day of my workshop. Yep, I sure did. And I still participated and listened. I got from about 25% to 55% of it! I finished it early Saturday morning and started reading one of my Christmas reads! 🙂

Snowed has been fun so far, although I can feel the traitorous moment coming. That’s what happens when you’re not honest with someone. In a way it reminds me of Perfect by Judith McNaught, but the motivations of each character and their histories are totally different.

Snowed in with a billionaire! A fun contemporary romance novel brimming with secrets, witty banter, and surprising twists.

The last thing wealthy photographer James Bradburn expects when he turns in after his surprise birthday party is to find a beautiful woman asleep in his bed. The last thing Leah Harmony expects after succumbing to exhaustion during the party is to find herself stranded with the yummy birthday boy at his isolated Gold Coast mansion. A record blizzard has trapped them together for days on end.

Leah guards a stunning secret as she struggles to resist their mutual attraction. Of all the men in the world, James is the last one she should even think of that way! Little does she suspect he harbors a secret of his own.

I got a couple of blog posts written throughout the week and got up on the visiting and commenting back. I cleaned out my inbox on Thursday and felt SO accomplished, but then it fills up again Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. I have a few reviews to write that I hope I can write this week.

  • Monday
    • Review ~ Blue Steal
  • Tuesday
    • Top Ten Tuesday ~ Halloween Fun Reads
    • Teaser Tuesday & Intro ~ TBD
  • Wednesday
    • WWW Wednesday
    • My Favorite ~ Social Media Accounts
  • Thursday
    • Fall Theme Q&A
  •  Friday
    • Book Blogger Hop ~ 11.3.17





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All my life I have known this blue box, unchanged over the years, and the smell of its perfume. It is what my grandmother wore for all my life. We joked and joked that she was wearing me, and when I was little I felt so privileged to be trusted and sent by myself to get the perfume at the store, even before I could read. All I had to do was look for my name! I was in the store last week looking for something and rounded a corner and immediately spotted the blue box. I couldn't walk out without it. While it may carry my name, I will forever think of my grandmother every time I get the hint of this scent, see this typography, or blue box. #perfume #fragrance #scent #charlie #revlon #blue #memories #grandmother

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Book Blogger Hop ~ 10.27.17


The Book Blogger Hop is a weekly meme hosted by Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. Each week poses a book-related question. The hop starts on Friday and ends on Thursday. The purpose is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers.

 Candy Corn? Chocolate bar? Popcorn? Which of these snacks is your favorite to eat while reading? (submitted by Billy @ Coffee Addicted Writer)

I used to eat candy corn like crazy when I was a kid, and it seems it’s been harder to find in recent years. Not something the stores are carrying very much, I guess. While I’m reading, though, I’d prefer eating popcorn. Easy to tump into a big bowl and gobble down easily.


Famous Last Words #30

Famous Last Words

Famous Last Words is a new monthly feature here in Land of 1000 Wonders. I wanted to find a new way to share some fabulous quotations from reads old and new. The inspiration for this feature came from the character Pudge in John Green’s Looking for Alaska.


Some games are hotter off the ice.

Sofia Phillips feels cursed. Her father cheated on her mother, her boyfriend cheated on her she’s done with dating. A summer work-exchange program in Finland is the perfect escape. But instead of gaining experience as an athletic trainer, she’s cleaning toilets. Awesome. The trip is a disaster, and even better, she meets Kyle Bennett. In the sauna. Naked.

Sexy hockey player Kyle was the star right wing for an NHL team. But after an accident killed his wife and left him injured, Kyle has appreciated the therapeutic benefits of booze and puck bunnies. Now in Finland for the summer, he’s coaching in an elite hockey-training camp for teens. When Sofia’s grandmother decides to set her up with a nice Finnish man, Sofia recruits Kyle as her make-believe boyfriend. Neither expects their first kiss to sizzle. And neither expects, while stranded on an island during a storm, to have a scorching night of passion.

But as their charade, and then their attraction, develops into something deeper, the past comes back, threatening to destroy them. They must decide if their feelings for each other are strong enough to survive or it will be game over in Heat It Up.

WWW Wednesdays (Oct 24)


This is a weekly meme hosted by Sam @ Taking On A World of Words. To join in answer the following three questions and hop over to Sam’s and leave your link.

What are you currently reading?


I started reading this the other night and I’m not sure how to feel about it. The first chapter was extremely strange. I was left wondering why the author included it. It did not at all match the type of book this is, and I was wondering if they put the wrong cover on it. It was a chore to get through, taking me two nights. I am hoping things pick up and the first chapter is later explained.

Gavin St. James, Earl of Thorne, is a notorious Highlander and an unrelenting Lothario who uses his slightly menacing charm to get what he wants—including too many women married to other men. But now, Gavin wants to put his shady past behind him…more or less. When a fiery lass who is the heiress to the land he wishes to possess drops into his lap, he sees a perfectly delicious opportunity…

A marriage most convenient

Samantha Masters has come back to Scotland, in a pair of trousers, and with a whole world of dangerous secrets from her time spent in the Wild West trailing behind her. Her only hope of protection is to marry—and to do so quickly. Gavin is only too willing to provide that service for someone he finds so disturbingly irresistible. But even as danger approaches, what begins as a scandalous proposition slowly turns into an all-consuming passion. And Gavin discovers that he will do whatever is necessary to keep the woman he has claimed as his own…

 What did you just finish reading?

I stayed up basically all night Sunday night reading finishing my book. I crawled in bed at 5:15 after my exhausting weekend and slept until 10, and then was up and read until 4 am.

I loved this book. The entire premise was interesting and kept me on my toes.

What do you think you’ll read next?

I have one more recent non-Christmas download from NetGalley, and then I’m starting in on those nine Christmas novellas and books I downloaded last week. I’m hoping they fly by!

 How about you? What are you reading this week?

Leave a comment with your answers! Share the link to your WWW Wednesday post OR leave your answers in the comments if you don’t have a blog. Happy Reading! 🙂

8 Reasons Reading Is A Superpower!

Confessions of a Book Geek

Book lovers have long held the notion that reading is good for you – ask any Book Geek and they’ll tell you reading is relaxing, fun, and educational, that they feel more empathetic and understanding as a result of the stories they’ve read, and that their horizons have been broadened, which is all great stuff, but now there’s scientific evidence to prove that reading actually IS a superpower 😉

1. Reading Improves Your Memory

Reading Improves Your Memory Gif

Not only is it proven that reading improves your memory, but researchers also believe that chapter books in particular encourage “deep reading”.

Unlike reading magazines and newspapers, reading a book (of any genre) forces your brain to think critically and make connections from one chapter to the next, as well as make connections to your real-life and the outside world. When you make these connections, so does your brain, literally forging new pathways. Over…

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