June and July 2013 Recommended Reads

June and July Books Read

Summer is almost over and I didn’t get as much reading done as I had planned and the majority of reading I did took place in my car listening to books on CD but that still counts!

I got off my English history kick and have been enjoying some “lighter” reads this summer.  My book group introduced me to Susanna Kearsley and I read The Winter Sea back in April and have really enjoyed reading more of her books – historical fiction, my favorite genre.

So here are my Recommended Reads for the last two months.

June Recommended Reads

Palisades Park by Alan Brennert.  I am a big fan of this author.  His book Molokai was one of my favorites and I really enjoyed Honolulu too.  I was excited for a new read from this author.  Palisades Park doesn’t take place in Hawaii like the other two (at least not the whole book)  and is based on the real life Palisades Park  in New Jersey during the 1930’s.    The the author grew up near Palisades Park.   The story takes us through the Great Depression and Pearl Harbor and a family of dreamers who don’t always have the same dream.  I loved the combination of history and fiction.


4.5 Stars

The Shadowy Horses by Susanna Kearsley.  This book is a sequel to The Winter Sea which our book club read and I loved.  This book also takes place in Scotland. This story is about a group of archaeologists searching for proof that Roman legions once roamed the land.  I love how this author combines, history, fiction, romance and a little paranormal into one story.

Shadowy Horses

4.5 Stars

The Art of Hearing Heartbeats by Jan Philipp-Sendker.  This is one of my favorite books I have read this year.  Not only is it beautifully written but the story is beautiful and inspirational.  It is a love story that takes place in Burma and begins in the 1950’s and continues into present day.  Julia’s father disappears and she sets out on a quest to find him and discover his hidden story.   Your belief in the power of love will be renewed after reading this story.


5.0 Stars

The Rose Garden by Susanna Kearsley.  When I discover an author I like I tend to read everything they have written.  This is my third book by Kearsley and I enjoyed it as much as the other two.  Not only did I like this one because it is historical fiction but it also involves a rose garden!  How could I not love it.  This story is set on the Cornish Coast and involves a woman who is trying to confront her own ghosts and meets a few more on the way hidden in the rose garden.  A story of love, importance of family and home.


4.5 Stars

The Last Runaway by Tracy Chevalier.   Another historical saga that takes place during the 1850’s and deals with slavery and the underground railroad.  The story is about a Quaker family and a woman named Honor who must learn to deal with her personal/religious views in regards to slavery  and acting on what she  believes vs. protecting her husband’s family and their property.


3 Stars

The Astronaut Wives Club by Lily Koppel.  This is the story of the wives of the first Mercury astronauts.  What is was like to live in the shadow of their famous husbands, to have the press living in your front yard and deal with the stress of having your husband charting unknown territory in space.  An interesting look at the story behind the story.  As divorce and tragedy strike their bonds of friendship are fortified and strengthened.


4.0 Stars

I lucked out with a lot of really good reads the last two months.  Several of them were suggested by you.  Thanks so much!  I love it when I love a book.  Now if you’d take a minute, leave a comment, and let me know what you’ve been reading lately I’d appreciate it much!!!

For some other Recommended Reads check out what else I have read this year.

January 2013 Recommended Reads

February 2013 Recommended Reads

March 2013 Recommended Reads

April & May 2013 Recommended Reads



Leigh Anne

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Leigh Anne
Hi – I’m Leigh Anne! I have been a homebased mom for 30 years since my first baby boy was born! I love working with women and helping to inspire them to achieve their goals and dreams while still maintaining motherhood and family as their number one priority. I blog about everything I enjoy – creating treats and meals in my kitchen, spending time in my garden, entertaining and party planning, reading, self improvement and tips and ideas on style and fashion.
Leigh Anne
Leigh Anne

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  1. Melissa D. says

    Thank you for the recommendations! Historical fiction is my favorite too! I am excited to check out your other lists! I am guessing that some of my favorites might be in them based on the above suggestions!

  2. Romy says

    I listen to books too. The price of audiobooks stops me from enjoying more often. Any tricks of the trade you could share? Do you get your CD’s from Amazon. I just signed up for Amazon Prime. I will check into the Audio Books there. I have tried Audible.com too. I wish there were a lending library for audible books. Thanks!

  3. Jenn A says

    I LOVE audiobooks. I love that I can work and read at the same time! I’m excited to try some of these books you recommended. I’m always looking for a new good story! By the way, I just found your blog through Pinterest.

  4. says

    I also really enjoyed The Art of Hearing Heartbeats. That was one of my favorite reads this summer. The Language of Flowers was my other favorite.

    I have read all of Susanna Kearsley’s books. Mariana was very good as well.

    Have you read The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey? It reminded me of Kearsley’s books with the historical aspect and a touch of paranormal.

  5. says

    I just read The American Heiress by Daisy Goodwin and absolutely loved all of it! It is a historical fiction novel much like Downton Abbey.

  6. Suzanne says

    My summer booklist included: The Lost Wife by Alyson Richman, my favorite for the summer, The Sisters by Nancy Jensen, interesting, but would not highly recommend, When in Doubt, Add Butter, by Beth Harbison, I finished it, but would not recommend, Death Comes to Pemberley, by P.D. James – it was a great read and finally by Francine Rivers, Redeeming Love. Thanks for posting book reviews, I am always interested in what others are reading and maybe finding a new author.

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