On Jacqui's Bookshelf ...

Just started reading ... The Cookie Club by Ann Pearlman
Synopsis: On the first Monday of December, every year, twelve friends gather in the evening with batches of homemade cookies wrapped in beautiful packages. They drink wine, they eat and they take turns telling the story of the cookies they have baked. Somehow these stories are always emblematic of the year that has just passed, as complicated and rich as our own lives. Lives full of sisterly love and conflict, yearning for babies and grandchildren, passion and disillusionment with men, a secret decade long affair, the loss of a job, the death of a child.

These women are as imperfect as real women, made heroic by their ability to resolve conflict, to endure and support each other.

Just finished reading ... Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
Synopsis: There were no surprises in GatlinCounty. We were pretty much the epicenter of the middle of nowhere. At least, that's what I thought. Turns out, I couldn't have been more wrong. There was a curse. There was a girl. And in the end, there was a grave.

Lena Duchannes is unlike anyone the small Southern town of Gatlin has ever seen, and she's struggling to conceal her power and a curse that has haunted her family for generations. But even within the overgrown gardens, murky swamps and crumbling graveyards of the forgotten South, a secret cannot stay hidden forever.

Ethan Wate, who has been counting the months until he can escape from Gatlin, is haunted by dreams of a beautiful girl he has never met. When Lena moves into the town's oldest and most infamous plantation, Ethan is inexplicably drawn to her and determined to uncover the connection between them.

In a town with no surprises, one secret could change everything.

Jacqui's Review: Everyone who had read this book kept telling me how 'beautiful' it was and there's no better way to describe this book, it is truely beautiful.  It was interesting reading from the point of view of a young adult male, although it kept me wondering whether men did in fact think that way or whether it is what women want men to be thinking. Perhaps I've been around too long, and a younger reader may just be happy to accept that Ethan is simply a sensitive new age kind of guy.  Regardless of my sceptisism  the book was magical and well worth a read.  And it wasn't about vampires (what a relief!). 3 out of 5.

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