Goodreads Challenge, Part Nine

The busier I get, the more I enjoy reading. Thanks to all my devices, I can pretty much read anywhere. So while waiting in doctor’s offices, ignoring football games, and avoiding my laundry I managed to read these five books. Hopefully you’ll find something that interests you!

51xk6jq-m9l._sy346_On the Surface by Margo Hoornstra
Margo was my guest here a few weeks ago. I read the first of her Brothers in Blue series and posted this review on Amazon and Goodreads:
There is so much action in this story I kept reading far later than I should. Brad and Jenny’s story is a wonderful opener to this series, and we get a glimpse of the heroes in the upcoming installments. Set in Michigan, we’re shown the contrast between the tough streets of Detroit and the peacefulness of the rural areas to the north. I’m looking forward to digging into Book Two! Margo does a wonderful job of creating the sense of danger and urgency, and there were times I’d find myself shaking as I turned the pages!

51b4g2bfgbilThe Island Patriot by Julia Keanini
Heathcliff Family Romances, Book Eight
Cooking shows are quite popular at our house, so the setting for this book was one I could identify with. The behind-the-scenes romance brewing between two of the contestants is well-done, as it is in all Julia Keanini’s stories. It seems a bit shorter than other Heathcliff Family romances, but is equally enjoyable. Sophie, as one of the wealthy Heathcliff family, works in the Maui resort with her brothers and cousins, but she also runs a YouTube cooking channel and has snagged a spot on a contest show in which she’s paired up with a football player with whom she’s had a disagreeable experience. Marcus had his reasons for his behavior that day, and eventually they sort out their differences and work together toward their goal of winning the contest – and hopefully a happily-ever-after.

51iks4ft4xlThe Social Tutor by Sally Britton
Branches of Love, Book One
I had so much fun reading the monthly selection from the Sweet Reads Lounge Facebook group, I decided to download and read this month’s book as well.

Christine is eager for her London season, but knows she needs to learn more about interacting with the social set in order to succeed in making a match that will please her father. Since she’d lost her mother, she asks her neighbor Thomas for help. As payment for his tutelage, she offers the stud services of her horses, which will go a long way toward  getting his horse farm profitable.

This was a delightful read. Though Christine seems quite naive, her actions and motivations are understandable, and I enjoyed seeing her mature through the book. Thomas is a wonderful hero, principled and true to his beliefs. I enjoyed his family, and hope they appear in other books in this series.

51vaofjqhvlMemories on Muslin: 1934 Athelstan Quilt Blogs & Depression-Era Quilting by Trisha Faye
I downloaded this book after reading Trisha’s feature a week and a half ago. Since I enjoy quilting, I loved reading about the 30 Sunbonnet Sue and Overall Bill quilt squares found at a yard sale in Southern California. After a description of how the author found and purchased the squares, the author describes the research she undertook to discover information about the people whose names are embroidered on them. Next, we are shown pictures of 29 of the squares. The author explains that the person named on the 30th block still lives (at the time of publication) and did not want to be mentioned. The rest of the book includes a variety of information about the Athelstan, Iowa area, a snapshot of prices, popular movies and foods, and news headlines in 1934. There’s a section with information about Depression Era quilting, and then the decline and disincorporation of Athelstan.

One mystery that is unanswered is how the squares got from Iowa to California! Unfortunately, although I love reading mysteries, my writer’s mind won’t quite come up with a story to explain that one. This truly was enjoyable reading on a rainy day.

51kr6tafzylThe Kissing Game by Julia Keanini
Kiss Academy, Book One
Since I’m a member of Julia’s review team, I was able to get an advance copy of the first in her new YA romance series. Kiss is short for Kissinger Academy, where children of the rich and famous attend, along with a few scholarship students like Marley. She really doesn’t fit in, but she tries not to let that bother her, because she knows that the school will prepare her for future success at a top university. She’s also focused on getting good grades and playing soccer, and not on the handsome movie-star brother of her best friend. But it’s getting more and more difficult when Nash seems to turn up everywhere she goes. This is a cute book and the setting and situations remind me of the movie Clueless. This is the first of a three-book (so far) series, and I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the stories about Kiss Academy.



About Patricia Kiyono

During her first career, Patricia Kiyono taught elementary music, computer classes, elementary classrooms, and junior high social studies. She now teaches music education at the university level. She lives in southwest Michigan with her husband, not far from her five children, nine grandchildren (so far), and great-granddaughters. Current interests, aside from writing, include sewing, crocheting, scrapbooking, and music. A love of travel and an interest in faraway people inspires her to create stories about different cultures. Check out her sweet historical contemporary romances at her Amazon author page:
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17 Responses to Goodreads Challenge, Part Nine

  1. I’m so glad that you enjoyed Memories on Muslin. I have not gotten to it, but that is what made me ask Trisha in, and then all of her diverse books followed. I am also interested in the book(s) of your recent guest, Margo Hoornstra.
    All of the books sound interesting. I went for one semester to a school where I, too, did not fit in on the socio-economic level, and a cousin went to smaller Ivy League school where, well, it is summed up when she said, “What was I thinking? All of my friends had trust-funds!”

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Jeff Salter says:

    all these sound great and “On the Surface” especially sounds down my alley.
    I remember the previous mention of those re-discovered quilt squares but I had not realized that the sole survivor of the thirty persons names was reluctant to be identified. That brings up so many fascinating possibilities for a mystery story!
    Our church recently had a two-day quilt show and my wife entered one of her grandma’s quilts from back in the 40s perhaps. We’re not sure, actually.
    Hand made quilts are definitely heirlooms.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Patricia Kiyono says:

      Yes, the old-style handmade quilts are definitely heirlooms. Each one has a story behind it, and as you say, lots of possibilities for a mystery story!


    • One of the few “Waltons” episodes I saw all the way through was about the grandmother wanting to have a ‘quilting’ for the oldest daughter. It seems that was the common tradition of young women to start out their ‘hope chests’ and let everyone know that they were of courting age. Each woman in the community who was invited was asked to make a special square and then they would have a ‘bee’, to put the quilt together. I assume that the quilt squares Trisha found were from such a situation, and perhaps the girl was jilted, died, ran off, or something else that was too painful or too provate to discuss.

      Liked by 3 people

    • trishafaye says:

      Hi Jeff! Actually the squares came from Doris Morris (real maiden name, not made up LOL). I discovered later that she & her husband moved to CA in their last years & died there, near children and grandchildren.
      Actually there’s still 2 people alive. Leona was 18 months old when her mother stitched her square in 1934. I was able to meet her and spend some time with her touring the remnants of the town, which I greatly enjoyed.
      The other lady still alive, who stitched the square when she was a young girl, has some very negative memories of the town. She sent an adamant letter to the museum requesting that she not be mentioned and even wanted her square back! (80 years later after she’d given it to someone else!) She didn’t get it back. It still went to the museum with the whole set. But to honor her request, I’ve kept the photo of her square out of the book.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. These all sound great. I have The Social Tutor but haven’t read it yet. I think I am going to go ahead and download it to my Kindle and read it this week before I start on my Christmas TBR pile.


  4. trishafaye says:

    Thanks Patricia! I’m glad you enjoyed Memories on Muslin.
    I’ve since found out that Doris and her husband moved to California in their later years and both died there. Probably to be around children and grandchildren. I’m amazed that they were in a yard sale, but realize that the children and grandchildren can’t keep EVERYTHING that Grandma had. I couldn’t have let go of something that had so much history…but we’re not all the same. In this case, luckily for me, so I could find the squares and get them back to Iowa where they came from.
    Thanks for the review!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Elaine Cantrell says:

    The books all sound great. I read a lot, but you do beat me.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Christie Hawkes says:

    I’m impressed by all the reading you got done. I do love to read, but haven’t been making the time for much of it lately. I need to fix that in 2020.

    Liked by 1 person

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