ARC Reviews, Memoirs

Where the Water Meets the Sand by Tyra Manning

Ages 18+

water sand

Tyra Manning tells her heartbreaking story of love and loss in Where the Water Meets the Sand. Tyra’s husband Larry is deployed in the Vietnam War, when their daughter Laura is just two years old. Then Tyra voluntarily admits herself into the hospital to get help with her addictions and depression. It is hard for her to be away from her daughter, especially when her husband is away as well, but it is something she feels she needs to do. Tyra holds onto the hope that she and Larry will meet during his R&R period, “where the water meets the sand.” Then, Tyra’s doctor tells her that Larry has died in action. Now she has to finish her hospital stay and be released to take care of Laura as a single parent. How will she handle all this without Larry?

Thanks to for a review copy of this book.

Historical Fiction, YA Fiction

Burn Baby Burn by Meg Medina

Grades 9-12


Burn Baby Burn is Meg Medina’s latest novel. It takes place in 1977 in New York, among Son of Sam, constant arson and a blackout. Nora Lopez and her friend Kathleen MacInerney try to stay out of trouble dying their senior year in high school, because Nora’s single mother surely can’t manage if something happened to Nora in these crazy times, so her curfew is “before dark.” On top of that, Nora’s older brother is spinning out of control and her father is so busy with his new family that he only remembers to call on national holidays (which of course don’t include Nora’s birthday). Medina captures 1977 so that those who grew up in the 70s will be nostalgic and those who were born after will get a clear picture about what life was like then.

Adventure, Middle Grade Fiction, Series

The Family Fletcher Takes Rock Island

Grades 4-7


The Fletcher family is back in this sequel to The Misadventures of the Family Fletcher. There are two dads, four adopted boys and 3 pets. They all go to Rock Island, whose tag line is “Welcome to Rock Island: Where time stands still.” However, this summer, things are a little different on Rock Island. The family’s favorite lighthouse is boarded up, and the boys can’t figure out how to save it. Their vacation just gets crazier from there! I recommend this middle grade novel for readers who love a good adventure!

Adult Fiction, Mystery, Series

Dishonorable Intentions by Stuart Woods

Ages 18+


The 38th book in the Stone Barrington series, Dishonorable Intentions is a fun and quick read. In this installment of the series, Stone Barrington is involved with a woman named Gala Wilde. She’s great, but unfortunately she was involved with a man who she has unfinished business with she can’t quite shake. On top of all that, the book has a surprise ending! Definitely worth reading.

Blogging For Books, Memoirs

Mother, Can You Not? by Kate Siegel

Ages 18+

mother can you not.jpg

Mother, Can You Not? by Kate Siegel is a hilarious account of a daughter’s relationship with her mother. Laden with different text conversations and motherly advice, this book is definitely one for those women who love (and possibly love-hate) their mothers. Kate is a single girl whose mother wants her to always make sure her daughter gets married soon, hasn’t been raped and got home safe. This is definitely one I will recommend to my friends!

Thanks to for a review copy of this book.

Middle Grade Fiction

Look Both Ways in the Barrio Blanco by Judith Robbins Rose

Grades 4-6

In Look Both Ways in the Barrio Blanco by Judith Robbins Rose, Jacinta Juarez is a Mexican-American girl who moved back to Mexico soon after she was born. Now, at twelve, she’s living back in the U.S.

One day, she meets Kathryn Dawson Dahl, a reporter from 5 News when she comes for a visit at the Youth Center. Jacinta calls her “Miss,” and she quickly becomes Jacinta’s mentor and friend. Miss teaches her how to take discounted classes at the local recreation center and then she takes her to get a new bathing suit for the center’s pool.

Jacinta’s father warns her about her new friend, because he doesn’t want her to give too much information away about their family. Then Jacinta’s worst nightmare comes true when her Papi is deported. Will Jacinta’s world ever be right again? Read Look Both Ways in the Barrio Blanco by Judith Rose Robbins to find out what happens to Jacinta and her family!

Middle Grade Fiction

Adventures with Waffles by Maria Parr

Grades 3-5

Adventures with Waffles by Maria Parr is a book about Lena and Trille, two friends who are neighbors. They have lots of adventures and love doing everything together, including eating Auntie Granny’s waffles! Then Trille’s world feels as if it’s falling apart when Lena moves away, and Auntie Granny goes to a better place. Will anything ever be okay again? Read Adventures with Waffles by Maria Parr to find out!

Graphic, Middle Grade Fiction

Sunnyside Up by Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm

Grades 4-6

sunny side

This is Sunnyside Up, a graphic novel by Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm. It’s 1976, and ten-year-old Sunny has just arrived in Florida to spend the summer with her grandpa, who lives in a retirement community.

In the beginning, Sunny is bored because Gramps thinks outings like going to the post office and the grocery store are fun.

Finally, Gramps reveals that there is a pool where he lives. There, she meets a boy named Buzz and thinks start looking up.  They talk about comic books and collect runaway golf balls together.

To find out how the rest of the summer is for Sunny and Buzz, read Sunnyside Up by Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm!