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The Week in Review: 10.26.2018

October 26, 2018
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Between the Covers

Finished last week:

LISTEN TO THE MARRIAGE by John Jay Osborn is the story of a marriage in crisis told from the perspective of the marriage counselor.  Gretchen and Steve have separated because Gretchen has grown tired of Steve’s infidelities.  They’re not ready to give up on their marriage, though, so they go to Sandy for help.  All of the action in this novel takes place in Sandy’s office and, at first, I found it fascinating.  I grew a little weary of the premise after a while, though, because it seemed like they rehashed the same things over and over but maybe that’s how it is when you’re trying to save a marriage.  It was a quick read for me and I’m glad I read it but I’m not sure it’s for everyone.

Osborn is the author of THE PAPER CHASE and wrote this book after his own marriage was saved through marriage counseling.  He hopes LISTEN TO THE MARRIAGE will “change some marriages for the better.”  (Review copy provided by Farrar, Straus and Giroux.)


TRUCK FULL OF DUCKS by Ross Burach is a silly picture book with a great message that’s sure to make little ones giggle.  Bernie gets an order for a truck full of ducks but one of the ducks eats the directions so he doesn’t know where to go.  He drives around town, asking everyone he sees if they ordered a truck full of ducks.  When he gets to the Deep Dark Woods, a voice calls out to let Bernie know he ordered the ducks.  Everyone’s scared when they see who it is but they quickly learn that things aren’t always as they appear.  The illustrations in this book are a lot of fun and include a little humor adults will appreciate as well.  The story is humorous and will keep kids’ attention but the best part of this book is the message not to judge by appearance.  (Review copy provided by Scholastic.)


Because of its cover, I expected ALASKAN HOLIDAY by Debbie Macomber to be a holiday story but it’s not – instead it’s a sweet love story.  Josie takes a summer job cooking at a hotel in Ponder, Alaska to fill time before her job with famous chef Anton in Seattle and while she’s there she falls in love with Palmer.  He loves his life in the rural Alaska town but her job is in the city.  The point of view shifts between the two so readers know how they both feel.  Can the two of them work out a compromise that works?  This book was a fun, quick, and predictable read that I liked but can’t say I loved.  The audio version is read by Laurel Rankin and Luke Daniels – they both did a good job but I preferred Rankin’s narration.  (Review copy provided by Penguin Random House.)


Currently reading:

On the Screen

I’d never seen A Star is Born until the latest version with Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper so I wasn’t prepared for the ending.  It’s the story of Jackson Maine, a country rock star who has a chance meeting with talented Ally Campagna.  He’s impressed with her talent and there’s a spark between the two.  He helps launch her career even as he struggles with alcohol and drugs.

I thought Cooper and Gaga owned their roles and had great chemistry.  The movie is emotional and the music and the singing are fantastic.  I suspect this one will be winning some awards.

Off the blog

  • It seems like we went from summer to winter overnight and have decided to skip fall for now.  We had to cut our heat on (yes, cut it on – that’s what we do in the south) this week.
  • We walked at least three miles every morning and I averaged almost 15,200 Fitbit steps.

What’s going on in your corner of the world?

24 Comments leave one →
  1. October 26, 2018 6:28 am

    The info about Osborn at the end of your review is interesting. Not sure the book is for me but hopefully it will help someone.
    I liked the Streisand/Kristofferson version of ASIB and will most likely stream the new one.
    I’ve never heard ‘cut the heat on’ before 🙂

  2. October 26, 2018 7:38 am

    I was a big fan of the Streisand/Kristofferson movie back in the day. Not sure I’m interested in this one. I know that the new trend is to do remakes of the older movies, but sometimes I’m sad about that. LOL

  3. October 26, 2018 9:06 am

    I have never heard that expression before…heat cutting…I have only seen the Barbara Streisand version…but I think I want to see this one.

  4. October 26, 2018 9:14 am

    I am curious about Listen To the Marriage. I’m also thinking about seeing A Star Is Born, but I so loved the Barbra Streisand/Kris Kristofferson rendition, that I’m on the fence. But I’ve heard good things about this newest version.

    I have heard that expression “cut the heat on,” mostly in the southern novels I read, but I also remember hearing it from my paternal grandmother, who grew up in Missouri.

    Enjoy your weekend!

  5. October 26, 2018 9:28 am

    My wife and I were in the minority on this one. Although we liked it – the music and the acting – we didn’t love it like so many people did. We thought it was too long. Still gave it a 3/4.

  6. October 26, 2018 9:41 am

    We also went to immediate winter – and to early darkness! Bleh.

  7. October 26, 2018 9:55 am

    I had seen the original movie so I knew the ending. I ws glad it was done tastefully so we didnt come away devastated. Great music and singing.

  8. October 26, 2018 11:02 am

    I haven’t seen any of the Star is Born movies either. Perhaps this is the one I should see.

  9. October 26, 2018 11:45 am

    I haven’t seen any of those versions of that film, but the Gaga one does look good. Sounds like it was 🙂 By that by, is that Jeff Tweedy the lead singer of Wilco? Hope you have a great weekend!! Stay warm 🙂

  10. October 26, 2018 1:26 pm

    I loved the original ASIB but I want to see the new one too. Funny, but I don’t remember the ending, but it was a long time ago.

  11. October 26, 2018 2:25 pm

    Yes it got cold here too, brrrrrrr

  12. October 26, 2018 3:08 pm

    Thank you for your reviews. I’m very interested in seeing A Star is Born.
    Have a terrific weekend! 🙂

  13. Diane permalink
    October 26, 2018 3:24 pm

    I’m glad u love A Star is Born, I had to see it twice! “Cut our heat on” made me smile. We “turned”ours on 10/15 🙂 Alaskan Holiday sounds good! Enjoy the weekend- Go Red Sox.

  14. October 27, 2018 2:30 am

    I’ve never heard the term cut out heat. I wish I could literally cut it here.

  15. October 27, 2018 8:29 am

    I like the premise of Listen to the Marriage, but I can see how it might grate on you after a while. Need to see a Star is Born. We just got to SW Florida (it was snowing when we left) and they’re finally expecting a cold front down here… I expect we’ll be able to turn off the air and open the windows tonight 😉

  16. October 27, 2018 12:30 pm

    I love reading Debbie Macomber books, but haven’t picked one up in a while. I’m hoping to see A Star Is Born too… I’ve not seen it before either.

  17. Literary Feline permalink
    October 27, 2018 9:18 pm

    I need to give Debbie Macomber a try one of these days. I think I may have an e-copy of Alaskan Holiday. I would have assumed it was more a Christmas romance myself. I hope you are staying warm! It was 90F today, which seems too warm for this time of year. I hope you have a great week, Kathy!

  18. October 29, 2018 7:24 am

    I like the look of Truck Full of Ducks. I find that lately I need to read something diverting. Scholastic always delivers that to me.

  19. October 29, 2018 11:40 am

    I have yet to see A Star is Born, which I probably won’t until it’s on video. Truck Full of Ducks sounds hilarious.

  20. October 29, 2018 2:32 pm

    I haven’t read a Debbie Macomber book in quite a while. This one looks good for a holiday read. I liked the original A Star Is Born and I think I’d like the new one. It hasn’t come to town yet, but here’s hoping we get it.

  21. October 29, 2018 8:48 pm

    I loved A Star is Born so much I’ve seen it twice. I’ve been playing the soundtrack nonstop too. I love Bradley Cooper’s voice. I think you’re right – it’s going to get a lot of awards.

  22. October 30, 2018 11:01 am

    Still haven’t seen A Star is Born and in all likelihood, probably won’t in the theatre. I just never seem to have the time to go to the movies. BUT, I will see it at some point.

    You skipped fall? We haven’t hit fall yet. 90 degrees pretty much all week although the nights are very nice and the quality of light is different and yes, a few trees are changing colors but not by much. Our trees get so confused.

    Right now I am at work trying to take care of a few things so I can finally be done with them. Tonight my life group meets but it will be a small group. Sickness and other commitments call. Tomorrow, just handing out candy, making chili (probably in the Crock Pot since I have to work all day). I hope to watch one scary movie too.

  23. The Cue Card permalink
    October 31, 2018 7:13 pm

    Cut the heat on, eh? I’m not familiar with that phrasing. I’m glad you liked A Star Is Born – I liked the musical performances for sure. The ending was a bit rough / sad eh? Tissues required. Enjoy your week.

  24. bookingmama permalink
    November 15, 2018 11:04 am

    I hope to find some time to see A STAR IS BORN. As far as books go, I love the premise of the picture book. It looks adorable!

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