Wedding Girl by Stacey Ballis

26067937This is another Stacey Ballis novel set in Chicago about a woman who works with food, and I still can’t get enough!

Our heroine is Sophie Bernstein, a nice Jewish girl whose FABULOUS wedding falls through when the groom runs off with another woman that afternoon. She’s left at loose ends, destroying her professional reputation and ends up moving in with her grandmother. A part-time job at the neighborhood bakery ends up changing the entire course of her life, but without the usual chick-lit cliches.

Sophie’s family and friends are well-drawn characters, and I didn’t want to leave this world behind as the book as coming to an end. The romance really works as well, since it doesn’t dominate the book or Sophie’s return to “real life.” I also thought her new friend’s “gift” to help her pay off her credit card debt was inspired!

There’s a tiny cross-over with Sophie mentioning Anneke several times throughout the book (she’s pregnant with twins), but otherwise, this book exists in its own world, which is nice given that the main character is still part of the restaurant world. Great book as always!

Perfect Week for a Not-So-Perfect Lady

screen-shot-2016-10-01-at-9-06-53-pmThis is my first perfect FitBit week since the beginning of June. Coincidentally, my weight has increasing during that same amount of time. Did I lose weight this week? Of course not! No matter how much you walk, it can’t combat the amount of shit food that I eat on a pretty regular basis.

But thanks to San Francisco summer and a little perseverance (ask me about the evening I walked 4500 steps in my tiny apartment!), I was able to be all green, all week!

Tomorrow starts a new week and I hope I can keep it up while the light holds.


Royal Blood by Rhys Bowen

7895168I requested a couple books from the library because why make a dent in my TBR pile, when I can get new books to read? LOL!

This is another installment in the “Royal Spyness” series, this time set in Transylvania. Our heroine, Lady Georgiana, has been asked by Queen Mary to represent the Royal Family at a wedding of between a Romanian princess and a Bulgarian prince. And Georgie just happened to go to school with the Romanian princess, who is the sister of the prince that everyone wants Georgie to marry. (They make it quite clear that Prince Siegfried DOESN’T LIKE GIRLS in this one, just in case you were wondering. I was not.)

Of course, someone dies, everyone is trapped in a Transylvanian castle and there are rumors of vampires afoot. Georgie has an incompetent maid, Princess Maria Theresa doesn’t seem like herself and Georgie’s on-again/off-again paramour Darcy O’Malley is around because why not? It’s a fun mystery that’s not as obvious as it seems. A little bit of movement on the Darcy front and Georgie acquits herself better in this book than previously. Definitely ready of the next book!

The Overnight Socialite by Bridie Clark

6411599This is another Friends of SFPL purchase, which is now nearly a year old. I’m still not entirely sure what to think. It’s pretty basic My Fair Lady chick lit, with our wannabe fashion designer heroine from Minnesota who runs into her Henry Higgins, a Manhattan playboy, looking for his next project. He thinks turning Lucy Jo Ellis into the next IT girl of the NYC socialite scene will make a great academic book as an anthropological study of the class of people to whom he also belongs. Lucy Jo gets a makeover and a promise of contacts to launch her fashion line.

It proceeds as expected with Lucy changing her name, her accent, her backstory and her body to conform to the expected socialite standards. Wyatt, her Henry Higgins, feels guilty for not telling her about the book that will unmask her as the fraud she is, but never enough to actually TELL her about it. And everyone they meet seems to think they are an item. I assume we’re supposed to think that too, but it’s never really clear that he does like her.

The end is more satisfying that I expected and I did like how it was kinda open-ended. I didn’t think I’d finish this book feeling good, but here we are.

The Singles Game by Lauren Weisberger

27276380The other day, I started looking at my favorite authors’ websites to see if they’ve published anything new while I’ve been working my way through my Brit Chick Lit and public library sale books. Many had, but this was the only one I could actually get my hands on through Link+.

We meet our heroine, Charlie, a professional tennis player, who is about to play a match on Centre Court at Wimbledon. It doesn’t go the way she expects (understatement!), and this sets up a domino effect of changes in the next year of her professional career. She’s got a new coach, new fitness regime, a new image and endorsements to go with it.

I was immediately drawn into this world, even though I’ve never watched tennis. Charlie’s only 25 and she spends 48 weeks a year on the road from tournament to tournament. I could tell you that Wimbledon happens in June and the US Open is happening right now (thanks Instagram!), but I had no idea how much tennis is being played at any given time. A lot of the things that Charlie goes through reminds me of when a gymnast goes pro, trying to balance training and endorsements with trying to have a life and just be a young woman in the world. Engrossing read and I was sad to see it end!