Review: The Promise Kitchen

The Promise Kitchen Book Cover The Promise Kitchen
Peggy Lampman
Lake Union Publishing
September 27, 2016
Net Galley

This book was really not for me. I wanted to like it, and I wanted to root for the characters, but I really just didn’t connect with it. I started and stopped it so many times until I finally just forced myself to finish.

The story started off very slowly and took a lot of time to build. Things didn’t really start going until halfway through the book, but even then it progressed very slowly. Until the last few chapters which kept jumping ahead, leaving things out. I would have preferred some of the beginning content to have been skipped over and to have actually experienced some of the parts that were glossed over in the end.

Maybe if I had been able to identify with either Shelby or Mallory, I would have enjoyed the story more. Unfortunately I was never invested in the characters and actually found them to be unlikable at times. I wanted to root for Shelby to succeed, but had a hard time believing in her. And Mallory just wasn’t real for me.

It’s always hard for me when I don’t enjoy a book, especially one that I need to review. But unfortunately this one just didn’t hit the mark for me.

Disclaimer: I received an eARC of this book through Net Galley and the publisher {Lake Union Publishing} in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Book Blogger Hop

Book Blogger Hop #13

I am linking up with Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer for the Book Blogger Hop. And what is the Book Blogger Hop? Well according to the meme’s page:

Each week the hop will start on a Friday and end on Thursday. There will be a weekly prompt featuring a book related question. The hop’s purpose is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.

This week’s question:

Have you ever slept with a favorite, beloved book under your pillow, or cradled in your arms? (submitted by Maria @ A Night’s Dream of Books)

I would have to say no, I haven’t slept with a favorite book in my arms or under my pillow, but I have fallen asleep with my current read on more than one occasion… and my Kindle can usually be found in the corner of the bed most nights.

Book Beginnings

Book Beginnings~ The Rose Society

I’ve added some additional memes to my repertoire and am linking up with Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader.

This meme is a fairly simple concept, we share the first line or so from a current read. This week I’m featuring The Rose Society by Marie Lu.

The Rose Society (The Young Elites, #2)

When I was a little girl, my mother would spend long afternoons telling me old folktales. I remember one story particularly well.

Great memory!

The Friday 56

The Friday 56~ I Was Here

It’s time for another edition of The Friday 56, a weekly meme hosted by Freda’s Voice.

*Grab a book, any book.
*Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader
(If you have to improvise, that’s ok.)
*Find any sentence, (or few, just don’t spoil it)
*Post it.
*Link up.

This week I chose to feature I Was Here by Gayle Forman.

I Was Here

“Recoil. Like the recoil of a gun. It’s what he does again. Like he’s been physically yanked back. Only this time it’s not anger that’s on his face; it’s something else. ‘No,’ he says.”

Thirsty Thursday & Hungry Hearts

Thirsty Thursday & Hungry Hearts~ Paper and Fire

Thirsty Thursday and Hungry Hearts - (un)Conventional Bookviews

I’m participating in Thirsty Thursday & Hungry Hearts, hosted by Lexxie over at {un}Conventional Book Views again this week.

What is Thirsty Thursday & Hungry Hearts? Well here’s a description from Lexxie’s site:

The idea of this feature is to share a quote with food or drinks that showed up in a recent read, as well as if it’s something you think you’d like or not. Please share the title of the book it happened in, as well as the character who ate or drank the special little something you discovered between the pages of a good read. Each week there is a link-up for the current post so that it’s easy to find other participants as well.

This week I am featuring Paper and Fire by Rachel Caine. This scene takes in the garden room at the Iron Tower. {pg. 268}

Paper and Fire (The Great Library, #2)

Jess sat down on a bench and poured himself a cup of hot tea from the waiting pot; his hands were steady enough to hold it now, at least. As he drank, Glain came through. She arrived unconscious, and blood leaked in thick drips from her uniform’s trouser leg onto the couch. The Obscurist stood up, suddenly very tall and active, and went to her side….
… This all seemed so strange. He’d expected to arrive in a dark, forbidding world filled with angry soldiers ready to take them down, or, at least, in a place no better than the torture chamber beneath the basilica. But there was a kindly man and tea, flowers, and a Medica team hurrying now into the garden to tend to Glain. Maybe they didn’t know they were welcoming fugitives, sworn enemies of the Archivist. Maybe word hadn’t come here at all, and once it did, the bars would finally close in on them.
He drank all the tea quickly, just in case. It was the first liquid he’d had in what seemed like hours, and he was severely thirsty…

Thursday Quotables

Thursday Quotables~ The Unexpected Everything


Because I love sharing quotes from books, the more random the better, I decided to join Bookshelf Fantasies for Thursday Quotables to highlight some great quotes from the books I’m reading.

This week I’m featuring quotes from Morgan Matson’s The Unexpected Everything.

The Unexpected Everything


He’d always been there, so it was like it never occurred to me to really look at him, not realizing that one day he might be gone.


And I didn’t want to compare the two, but the proof of how different Clark and Topher were was right in front of me– in the very fact that Clark was hanging out with my friends.


It was mostly me– everything was just feeling so good and so right that I was having more and more trouble remembering why I’d decided that was all I could do.


September Challenge Update

New Release Challenge


Full House Reading Challenge

Full House Reading Challenge 2017

Nonfiction: Daring Greatly
On TBR for more than 2 years: Going Home
More than 500 pgs:
Page Turner: Wrong Number, Right Guy
Middle Grade: Legend of the Guardians
Published in 2017: Rejected Writers Take the Stage
Published pre-2000: Mary Poppins
UK or European Author: The Ocean at the End of the Lane
Backlist: City of Ashes
From a List: When Breath Becomes Air
Award Winner: Bone Gap
Book about books: Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library
Size word in title: The Little French Bistro
2 word title: Game Changer
Debut book: Bitter is the New Black
Food on the cover: The Sweet Life in Paris
Cozy mystery:
From Childhood: Stuart Little
Diverse read: I am Malala
Australian or NZ Author: Tempting Autumn
US or Canadian Author: Faultlines
Not You: The Food of Love
Attractive cover: Across the Universe
Borrowed: 10% Happier

Backlist Challenge


Goodreads Challenge


New to Me Challenge {Authors}

37/15 Complete!

Read All the Books Challenge {Nora Roberts}


Read the Books You Buy

3/155 1.9% {Goal 21-40%} FAILED!

Blogger Shame Review Challenge


Charity Reading Challenge

January- Eugene Mission: 11 books $55
February- St. Jude’s: 16 books $80
March- ASPCA: 17 books $85
April- The Hunger Project: 10 books $50
May- USO: 19 Books $95
June- Breast Cancer Research Foundation 11 Books $55
July- Proliteracy Worldwide 7 Books $35
August- American Diabetes Association 11 books $55

September- Wildlife Conservation Society

  1. Secretly Hers
  2. The Glass Magician
  3. Wrong Number, Right Guy
  4. Show No Mercy
  5. Falling for Her
  6. Forged in Smoke
  7. The Promise Kitchen

Alphabet Soup Reading Challenge

A- Angels & Demons
B- The Battle of the Labyrinth
C- City of Ashes
D- Daring Greatly
E- Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library
F- Finding Myself in Britain
G- Game Changer
H- How to Say Goodbye
I- I am Malala
K- Kisses on a Paper Airplane
L- Legend of the Guardians
M- Me Before You
N- Night Diver
O- The Ocean at the End of the Lane
P- The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake
Q- Queen of Babble
R- Ready Player One
S- The Sea of Monsters
T- Tempting Autumn
U- Under the Wide and Starry Sky
W- When Breath Becomes Air

GWB 2017 Book Bingo



More than 100 years old
Takes place in Spring
About a different culture: I am Malala
Over 500 pages
Pink cover
Takes place in Fall: Tempting Autumn
Takes place in Winter: The Titan’s Curse
Becoming a movie in 2017
Published in 2017: The Rejected Writers Book Club
Based on a fairytale
Popular Author’s debut: Bitter is the New Black
Last book in a series: The Last Olympian
Takes place in Summer
Read in High School
Author I Have Met
Most Recent TBR Addition: The Ocean at the End of the Lane
Translated to English: The Little French Bistro
About mental illness: The Good Luck of Right Now
From Library: Under the Wide and Starry Sky
Graphic novel
Brought me joy: Wrong Number, Right Guy
Debut Novel

eBook Reading Challenge


Audio Book Reading Challenge

70/25 Complete!

2017 Net Galley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge


Mount TBR Reading Challenge 2017


2017 Literary Escapes Challenge


Alaska~ Forged in Smoke



California~ Game Changer

Colorado~ Accidentally Hers



District of Columbia~

Florida~ How to Say Goodbye

Georgia~ The Promise Kitchen



Illinois~ Bone Gap





Louisiana~ Wrong Number, Right Guy

Maine~ Liar’s Key

Maryland~ Every Day

Massachusetts~ The Thing About Jellyfish



Mississippi~ The Haters





New Hampshire~

New Jersey~ Every Exquisite Thing

New Mexico~

New York~ The Sea of Monsters

North Carolina~ Crazy for Her

North Dakota~

Ohio~ Ready Player One


Oregon~ The Rejected Writers Book Club

Pennsylvania~ The Good Luck of Right Now

Rhode Island~

South Carolina~

South Dakota~

Tennessee~ Catching Jordan

Texas~ Faultlines




Washington~ Come Away With Me

West Virginia~ From Rocket Boys to October Sky

Wisconsin~ Kisses on a Paper Airplane*


2017 Audiobook Challenge

70/30 Complete!

2017 Library Love Challenge

43/24 Complete!

Reading Assignment

Jan~ Sea of Monsters
Feb~ City of Ashes
March~ The Eternity Code
April~ Come Away With Me
May~ Show No Mercy


Bookish Resolutions

Complete 10 Reading Challenges~ 4/10
Complete 2 Read-a-thons~ 1/2
Complete 5 series~ 1/5
Read 1 Nonfiction book per month~ J F M A M J J FAILED

Post 1 Review per week~ FAILED
Clean up Bloglovin’ Feed~ Completed!
Comment on 1 Blog per day FAILED

Write every day FAILED
Outline & Plot Novel~ not started
Complete First Draft~ not started

Move closer to work~ in progress
Try 1 new thing every week FAILED
Join a club~ not started
Take a class~ not started

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday~ Books that Feature Retail Associates

Welcome to another edition of Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by the amazing team at The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is books that feature X characters. I decided to go with books that feature people who work in my own profession… so books that feature people who work in retail.

Rejected Writers Take the Stage

Rejected Writers Take the Stage

The Sweetest Kiss (Kissed by the Bay #4)

The Sweetest Kiss

Deep Waters

Deep Waters

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (Sisterhood, #1)

Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants

The Secret Lives of Dresses

The Secret Lives of Dresses

The Next Always (Inn BoonsBoro Trilogy #1)

The Next Always

Hush (Lodestone, #1;  Stark Brothers, #1)


The Little Paris Bookshop

The Little Paris Bookshop

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry

The Storied Life of AJ Fikry

One Less Problem Without You

One Less Problem Without You

**All covers link to Goodreads; all titles link to Amazon {affiliate}


Down the TBR Hole #14

One of the newer memes that I found and fell in love with is Down the TBR Hole by Lost in a Love Story. I found this meme featured on Bursting with Books and had never seen anything like it, but I loved the concept. Essentially you go through your Goodreads TBR shelf and take another look at the books that have been hanging out there for a while. You then determine whether you want to keep the book on your TBR or remove it.

  • Go to your goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopses of the books
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?

Here are this week’s selections:

MWF Seeking BFF: My Yearlong Search For A New Best Friend

MWF Seeking BFF by Rachel Bertsche
Nonfiction; Memoir
Added January 30, 2012

When Rachel Bertsche first moves to Chicago, she’s thrilled to finally share a zip code with her boyfriend. But shortly after getting married, she realizes that her new life is missing one thing: friends. Sure, she has plenty of BFFs—in New York and San Francisco and Boston and Washington, D.C. Still, in her adopted hometown, there’s no one to call at the last minute for girl talk over brunch or a reality-TV marathon over a bottle of wine. Taking matters into her own hands, Bertsche develops a plan: Meeting people everywhere from improv class to friend rental websites, she’ll go on fifty-two friend-dates, one per week for a year, in hopes of meeting her new Best Friend Forever.

Verdict: Remove

La Bella Lingua: My Love Affair with Italian, the World's Most Enchanting Language

La Bella Lingua by Dianne Hales
Nonfiction; Travel; Memoir
Added January 30, 2012

A celebration of the language and culture of Italy, La Bella Lingua is the story of how a language shaped a nation, told against the backdrop of one woman’s personal quest to speak fluent Italian.

For anyone who has been to Italy, the fantasy of living the Italian life is powerfully seductive. But to truly become Italian, one must learn the language. This is how Dianne Hales began her journey. In La Bella Lingua, she brings the story of her decades-long experience with the “the world’s most loved and lovable language” together with explorations of Italy’s history, literature, art, music, movies, lifestyle and food in a true opera amorosa — a labor of her love of Italy.

Throughout  her first excursion in Italy — with  “non parlo Italiano” as her only Italian phrase — Dianne delighted in the beauty of what she saw but craved comprehension of what she heard.  And so she chose to inhabit the language.  Over more than twenty-five years she has studied Italian in every way possible through Berlitz,  books, CDs, podcasts, private tutorials and conversation groups, and, most importantly, large blocks of time in Italy.   In the process she found that Italian became not just a passion and a pleasure, but a passport into Italy’s storia and its very soul.  She offers charming insights into what it is that makes Italian the most emotionally expressive of languages, from how the “pronto” (“Ready!”) Italians say when they answer the telephone conveys a sense of something coming alive, to how even ordinary things such as a towel (asciugamano) or handkerchief (fazzoletto) sound better in Italian.

Verdict: Remove

Wanderlust: A Love Affair with Five Continents

Wanderlust by Elisabeth Eaves
Nonfiction; Travel; Memoir
Added January 30, 2012

Spanning 15 years of travel, beginning when she is a sophomore in college, Wanderlust documents Elisabeth Eaves’s insatiable hunger for the rush of the unfamiliar and the experience of encountering new people and cultures. Young and independent, she crisscrosses five continents and chases the exotic, both in culture and in romance. In the jungles of Papua New Guinea, she loses herself—literally—to an Australian tour guide; in Cairo, she reconnects with her high school sweetheart, only to discover the beginning of a pattern that will characterize her life over the long-term: while long-distance relationships work well for her, traditional relationships do not.

Verdict: Remove

The Olive Farm: A Memoir of Life, Love, and Olive Oil in the South of France

The Olive Farm by Carol Drinkwater
Nonfiction; Travel; Memoir
Added January 30, 2012

When Carol Drinkwater and her fiancé, cute Michel, are given the opportunity to purchase ten acres of an abandoned olive farm in the South of France, they find the region’s splendor impossible to resist. Using their entire savings as a down payment, the couple embark on an adventure that brings them in contact with the charming countryside of Provence, its querulous personalities, petty bureaucracies, and extraordinary wildlife. From the glamour of Cannes and the Isles of L&eacuterins to the charm of her own small plot of land-which she transforms from overgrown weeds into a thriving farm-Drinkwater triumphantly relates how she realized her dream of a peaceful, meaningful life.

Verdict: Remove

Living in a Foreign Language: A Memoir of Food, Wine, and Love in Italy

Living in a Foreign Language by Michael Tucker
Nonfiction; Travel; Memoir
Added January 30, 2012

The actor Michael Tucker and his wife, the actress Jill Eikenberry, having sent their last child off to college, were vacationing in Italy when they happened upon a small cottage nestled in the Umbrian countryside. The three-hundred-fifty-year-old rustico sat perched on a hill in the verdant Spoleto valley amid an olive grove and fruit trees of every kind. For the Tuckers, it was literally love at first sight, and the couple purchased the house without testing the water pressure or checking for signs of termites. Shedding the vestiges of their American life, Michael and Jill endeavored to learn the language, understand the nuances of Italian culture, and build a home in this new chapter of their lives. Both a celebration of a good marriage and a careful study of the nature of home, Living in a Foreign Language is a gorgeous, organic travelogue written with an epicurean’s delight in detail and a gourmand’s appreciation for all things fine.

Verdict: Remove

We’re 5/5 on the removal this week, making it 46/70.

**All covers link to Goodreads; all titles link to Amazon {affiliate}