Spotlight on Bloggers Recommend

Cover of Murder As a Fine ArtIn March I was invited to take part in Bloggers Recommend, a monthly newsletter conceived by bloggers Jen Karsbaek and Nicole Bonia. The objective of the newsletter is gather a group of bloggers and identify books we recommend to readers for the upcoming month. I couldn’t have been more thrilled to be asked to join the group as a founding member of the Advisory Board. Each month beginning with April I’ve identified one title for the newsletter. Although I’ve reviewed Murder As A Fine Art by David Morrell, a book I recommended in May, I haven’t had the opportunity to highlight any of the other titles. Today I want to take the opportunity to highlight my past recommendations.

The following are the three other novels I’ve recommended over the months as part of Bloggers Recommend to date:

April Recommendation

Cover of And Then I Found You

And Then I Found You by Patti Callahan Henry

My Blurb in the Bloggers Recommend Newsletter:

When Kate discovered her pregnancy after Jack had married another woman, they chose adoption in hopes of giving their child the best possible future. And Then I Found You candidly explores how love, loss, and faith wrap around the hearts of all those touched by adoption like a bittersweet braid.

As an adoptive mother, I am drawn to fiction dealing with adoption and the way it impacts all of those involved. Patti Callahan Henry was inspired to write this novel based upon her family’s experience. The emotional honesty in this book conveys her connection to adoption just much as the interviews I’ve read. I loved that in this book does not rely on stereotypes when painting the picture of 13-year-old Emily’s birth and the adoptive parents. It doesn’t gloss over the struggles encountered by birth parents making or who have made an adoption plan nor does it hide the insecurities of the adoptive parents. I still think of this book often and recommend to anyone, especially those whose lives have been touched by adoption.

June Recommendation

Cover of Transatlantic

TransAtlantic by Column McCann

My Blurb in the Bloggers Recommend Newsletter:

With a crisp, concise beauty, Colum McCann breathes life into the distance between Ireland and the United States in this novel featuring Frederick Douglass and the Good Friday Agreement. What connects these stories is as moving as that long anticipated glimpse of land after a journey across the vast ocean.

Today the Man Booker Prize longlist was announced and I wasn’t at all surprised to find TransAtlantic on the list. This novel, which begins with a flight across the Atlantic ocean and then follows the adventures of Americans visiting Ireland and vice versa, makes for an interesting journey for the reader as well. While perhaps not as immediately engrossing is Let the Great World Spin, the scope of McCann’s writing is just as broad. There is much to think about as the book comes to a close and I’ll never forget meeting Frederick Douglass in fiction and the way he made the novel tie together nicely.

July Recommendation

Cover of Kiss Me First

Kiss Me First by Lottie Moggach

My Blurb in the Bloggers Recommend Newsletter:

Kiss Me First is an intense look at the dangers of letting the Internet consume our lives. The delicious dread grows as we follow socially awkward Leila as she happily accepts an invitation to her intellectual guru’s secret project. With a debut like this, you will be sure to follow Moggach’s career.

This book was so engrossing that it kept me reading in the midst of my intense PMP Prep cram class. Did I want to review the PMI Code of Ethics or did I want to finish this novel? You can guess which I chose. From the description of the book I had an idea of what to expect from Lottie Moggach’s first novel, but it kept me guessing and following Leila down a really poisonous rabbit hole. I felt for her. Multiple times I yelled at her through my eReader to  turn off her gadgets and go outside and enjoy her life. In many ways it was a good last hurrah before I started studying full time for my exam. While Leila really had very little life outside of her apartment, Kiss Me First provided a huge reminder that life is what happens when you’re not on your computer and have put your phone and electronics away.

From contemporary women’s fiction to a murder mystery in Victorian England to journeys across the ocean to a socially awkward woman’s cyber obsession, I’m happy with the wide variety of books I’ve read for Bloggers Recommend. It’s enhanced my reading and has prompted me to be creative in my pursuit of soon to be released titles. As I intend to spend more time reading backlist titles from my bookshelves for the rest of the year, I’m thankful that working with this group of bloggers is something that will keep me close to the new and coming soon titles as well.

So what will I be recommending for August? You’ll have to wait about another week until the August issue of Bloggers Recommend is posted. If you haven’t already, you can get the newsletter delivered directly to your inbox by signing up through the website.


  • At 2013.07.23 13:41, Nicole said:

    I always love your picks! They are usually the ones I want to read but didn’t get to. Yay, for sharing a brain and taste.

    • At 2013.07.23 19:21, Jennifer said:

      With Bloggers Recommend, we complete each other, Nicole.

      • At 2013.07.23 21:26, Nicole said:

        Pretty much.

    (Required, will not be published)

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