Showing posts from January, 2012

The Mill River Recluse / Darcie Chan. 2011

Back in December, I read this post on The Passive Voice blog about how this self-published ebook became a best-seller. Author Darcie Chan had attempted to get this book published for years, but no one wanted it. And so one day, after reading about the success authors were having with self-publishing, she decided to do it herself. I believe it's been available since last spring. The full story of how she did it is worth reading. By the time the end of the year rolled around she'd sold over 400,000 copies, most of them at $0.99 each. I was impressed with Chan's rise to the best-seller ranks. I was also intrigued by the synopsis of her book: a wealthy, reclusive widow leaves her fortune to the people of the small town where she lived. I figured that for 99 cents I wouldn't be taking much of a risk and I bought it.

So let me just say flat out that I ended up loving this book. It's not a romance, although there is a small romantic subplot. But I think this book would a…

Latest QBFF Challenge

My QBFFs & I have done some fun projects together over the last few years. One thing that's become a tradition for us is to create some sort of challenge each year. For example, one year we each had to make something that included 3 specific fat quarters of fabric. I made this star quilt. There was also the Paint Chip Challenge. Last summer QBFF T came up with an interesting idea that will result in 4 very, very different quilts. Her rules were that each of us had to put together a fabric packet that totals 2.5 yds. and can have up to 10 different fabrics. Our fabric packet was passed to another QBFF and that person has to add one, and only one fabric of at least 1 yard to make a lap quilt. The completed quilt will be returned to the QBFF who purchased the original fabric packet.
Since QBFF C & I are sisters, we decided to fix it so that C & I are NOT working on quilts for one another. In the end, QBFF T & I are making quilts for one another and QBFF A & C wil…

Phyl's 5 Phaves for December

5. Someone to Cherish / Kate Rothwell. Here's an entertaining historical set in 19th c. New York City. Callie Scott is an incredibly naive young woman who had been very restricted by her now-dead grandmother. Left on her own, Callie takes a job with her late father's friend only to find herself caught up in a scandal surrounding a murder, and the scandal in turn leaves her homeless. The detective on the case, Cutter, ends up hiring Callie to take care of his dying landlady. Cutter himself grew up on the streets and he feels entirely unworthy of a true lady like Callie. Callie's a funny, engaging character who is a great foil for the stubborn, taciturn Cutter. In enjoyed them both. Plus, it's always great to read a historical set outside of Europe.

4. A Place Called Home / Jo Goodman. This is a contemporary romance by one of my favorite authors. Goodman normally writes historicals and it was very enjoyable to read something so different from what I'm used to from he…

TBR Day. His Secret Past / Ellen Hartman. 2008

I'm pleased to say that this year's TBR Challenge began for me with a wonderful read. I'm really regretting that I let this one languish in the closet for so long and I'm eager to read more by this author. I've been trying to remember how I ended up even owning this book and I'm pretty sure I won it in a contest. I should write these things down. Anyway, based on the blurb, it's not something I'd ordinarily buy. My copy is autographed by Hartman, which is why I think I won it.
     His Secret Past is the story of Mason Star, former lead singer for a once-popular rock band. Mason joined the band when he was only 16. After reaching the top of the rock star world Mason was so messed up that the band kicked him out. Now, years later, he's built a new life for himself as the owner/caretaker of a small community called Mulligans that provides housing and life skills training to people trying to get on their feet. Mason has buried himself in his work …