Connect Through Reading – My Summer Reads


A return to the Dine & Dish “Connect Through Reading” posts as I share reviews of my favorite books I read this summer!
Connect Through Reading - 5 Great Summer Reads Reviewed at

Last year I read a ton… more than I probably have in any other year. I read so many great books in 2013, I knew my streak was likely to not continue for much longer!

This year reading has been more of a struggle. I started out the year reading some not so great books – most of which I didn’t finish. I had a really hard time finding books as great as my favorites from last year. I persevered though, and after a little bit of a reading break, I’ve finally read some really great books I’m excited to share with you!

I love connecting with you all through the books we’ve read, so make sure to share what books you’ve read lately that you’ve loved (or didn’t love) in the comments section below. Also, let’s connect on Goodreads so we can continue to share our book recommendations!

What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty

What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty

What Alice Forgot was about a woman (Alice) who fell off an exercise bike at the gym and woke up forgetting the past 10 years of her life. She becomes shocked and confused as she discovers how much her life has changed over the course of 10 years…and boy has her life changed. I could relate to this book on many levels and I think most moms and women can – how can life and the expectations to be perfect that we put on ourselves change who we are to the core? I highly recommend this one, especially if you have a book club to discuss it in! It’s a book that could lead to some really interesting discussions among your friends, I’m sure. This was almost a 5 star for me, but I ended up giving it 4 stars on Goodreads (4 1/2 if Goodreads allowed half stars!)

Download What Alice Forgot to your kindle here, buy the paper copy from Amazon or add it to your library on Goodreads.

Review of The Good House by Ann Leary

The Good House by Ann Leary

 I actually listened to The Good House through and loved the voice of the narrator. The story is the whole package… riveting, mysterious, sad, hilarious, sexy and more. Hildy is a 60 year old real estate agent in a small New England town. She is also a raging alcoholic who thinks that, even though she drinks only when she is lonely, she has her alcoholism under control. The story intertwines with interesting characters… her own daughter, her ex-husband, a past fling, her grandbaby and a new found friend. Each little corner of the book takes you on unexpected turns, but all comes together in an ending very fitting to the story. I gave The Good House 4 stars on Goodreads (and if you like audio books, highly recommend listening to it that way.)

Download The Good House to your kindle here, buy the paper copy from Amazon or add it to your library on Goodreads.

Friendkeeping book review

Friendkeeping by Julie Klam

As many of you know, The Happiness Project, is one of my favorite books. Friendkeeping follows suit in that it examines a subject very near and dear to me…adult female friendships. In this book, Julie takes readers through the different types of friendships, makes for suggestions on what friendships to keep as an adult and what friendships to say goodbye to, talks about the evolution of friendships through life changes and more. I read Friendkeeping in one day. It’s an easy read but full of a lot of great info. Keep your highlighter handy as there are a lot of various passages and snippets you’ll want to remember! I gave Friendkeeping 5 Stars on Goodreads.

  Download Friendkeeping to your kindle here, buy the paper copy from Amazon or add it to your library on Goodreads.

Book Review of I've Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella

I’ve Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella

I was a big Sophie Kinsella fan during her Shopaholic days, but felt like her books started to all become the same, so I stopped reading her. That was until my friend Deanna recommended I pick up I’ve Got Your Number, one of Sophie Kinsella’s newest books. I’m so glad I did because this was the perfect, fun and interesting pool side read. Poppy Wyatt is sent into a panic when she loses her heirloom engagement ring, of course, right before meeting her soon to be new in-laws. I’ve Got Your Number is all about the lengths Poppy will go through to find her ring, and keep the fact that it’s lost hidden from her fiance and his family. In typical Sophie Kinsella fashion, readers will be taken on a hilarious, over the top journey with a story that will win you over while making you laugh out loud! I gave this book 4 stars on Goodreads.

Download I’ve Got Your Number on your Kindle here,  buy the paper copy from Amazon or add it to your library on Goodreads.

The Story of Beautiful Girl - review on

The Story of Beautiful Girl by Rachel Simon

This book truly touched my heart. In The Story of Beautiful Girl you will meet Lynnie and Homan, two soulmates who because of “special needs” were placed in “School for the Incurable and Feebleminded” to live out their lives. The journey these two are taken on throughout the pages of this book will make you fall in love with them, and root for them all along the way. This is a story being told over 40 years time…a story of odds being beat, promises being kept, and love being found and held onto. It took me a little while to get into, but in the end, I really loved this story. I gave it 4 stars on Goodreads.

Download The Story of Beautiful Girl on your Kindle here,  buy the paper copy from Amazon or add it to your library on Goodreads.

I enjoy reading on my Kindle Paperwhite. Read all about why I love it on my Simplify Saturday post – The Kindle Paperwhite.


I’m currently reading The Interestings and Me Before You is next. 

Stay Connected

Subscribe to receive news, updates, and exclusive content from Dine & Dish.

Facebook      Twitter      Pinterest       RSS


  1. says

    The Interestings is on my kitchen table. So is “The End of Your Life Book Club”. I tried What Alice Forgot but couldn’t do it. I recently read the latest Barbara Kingsolver (can’t remember the name – Flight Behavior maybe?) but to be honest, I’m really super stuck in expat /repat themed books right now …

    I’m also very much conflicted with being distracted and not able to really get into and settle with a book … but that’s a whole ‘nother issue. :)

    • says

      Oh friend, I can totally relate to the distracted thing!
      I read The End of Your Life Book Club and liked it ok… it wasn’t my favorite book, but it got better as I went along. I just had a really hard time connecting with it. The Interestings is good so far, but like you, I’m too distracted by other things to get it read!
      Bummer about What Alice Forgot. I really liked it and related to it so much!

  2. says

    I loved What Alice Forgot! And The Good House is on my list. I’ve Got Your Number was a fun guilty pleasure book for me, too :) Thanks for the reccs!

  3. says

    You always have the best book recommendations. I have read so many books this summer. I read all 7 Harry Potters (which I loved), and just finished the first two books in the Divergent series, which is a lot like The Hunger Games. I have been reading non-stop and I love reading again. I didn’t realize how much I missed it.

    • says

      I always feel the same way about you and your book recommendations – they are always the best!!
      Good for you for putting reading forefront in your life again!

  4. says

    I love The Happiness Project too!

    Recently, I read Apron Anxiety and *loved* it. Highly recommended! I also read Gone Girl and Reconstructing Amelia before that. I totally get what you mean about Sophie Kinsella, all stories tended to sound the same. I’m off to buy ‘I’ve Got Your Number’ now!

  5. says

    What Alice Forgot is on my to read list!! I always love these posts since they add to my to read library!! I recently read the new Dan Brown book {Inferno} which I was slightly disappointed in… I thought it was good but not as good as the previous Robert Langdon books {Angels & Demons, DaVinci Code & The Lost Symbol}. I also just read The Help… I know! I’ve seen the movie a ton of times but I just got around to reading the book which was so.good!!

    • says

      I hope you like What Alice Forgot as much as I did!
      Oh The Help… such a GREAT book! If you loved that you’ll love The Kitchen House. It was so good and similar stories, but not quite!

  6. says

    I just finished The Art of Hearing Heartbeats and really liked it. I was surprised that I did – I tend towards tragic, real life stories. But, it was good. I’m now starting in on Coming Clean by Kimberly Rae Miller, but I don’t really have an opinion yet. I tried, but could not get into Cutting for Stone. I’ll try again as it seems to be a popular book, but the writing style wasn’t meshing with me somehow. Thanks as always for your lists!

  7. says

    Some books I have really enjoyed are The Age of Miracles, The Night Circus and The Fault in Our Stars. Definitely going to check out all of your recommendations!!

  8. says

    So glad you loved Friendkeeping as much as me! I keep hearing about The Good House from Aggie. I’m reading Julie Klam’s You Had Me At Woof and Lean In! :) Enjoying them both!

  9. Lynne says

    Thanks for your recommendations.. I’m reading 2 books per week – enjoying my favorite authors: Nora Roberts (& JD Robb), Kat Martin (The Raines of Wind Canyon series), and Maya Banks (“Never Love a Highlander”). And thanks for introducing me to Goodreads. Enjoy!

  10. Rebecca says

    I just finished “The story of Beautiful Girl”, not to sound cliche but it was one of the most beautiful stories I have read, brilliant! I am going on a reading hiatus for a couple of days so I can continue to absorb the joy of the book. I still can’t talk with people about it without sobbing a bit.

  11. says

    I always have a hard time fitting reading time into my day during the summer. We always have so much going on, whether we’re traveling, working in the yard, out on the bike trails or entertaining friends and family. You’d think I’d squeeze in a lot of books while traveling, but my downtime is usually spent catching up on emails and blog-hopping. These reasons alone make me long for fall and, yes, winter. That and the unbearable heat we’ve had this past week. Ugh.

    Anyhow, books. Yes, I agree 100% on The Good House. I had a tough time getting used to the reader, but once I did, I loved the book. I wasn’t sure where it was going and thought it hinted at some sort of a mystery toward the end, but all in all I thought it was outstanding.

    I see (on Goodreads) that you loved The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. That’s another I thought was remarkable. Review to come on both of these books.

    I’ve got the ARC of What Alice Forgot in my stacks. Yep, I’ve had it for a few years now. Guess I should move it to my nightstand…

    Recommendations for ya? The Light Between Oceans and Eleanor & Park (print versions) and The Aviator’s Wife and Calling Me Home (audio versions).

    BTW, I loved Me Before You!

  12. Mitali Desai says

    Me Before You is the best book I have read. You will laugh and cry (so have a tissue box close by). I’m sure you will enjoy it


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *